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Tips on Applying for and Passing the PMP® or CAPM® Exam – Part II – PMP Exam Requirements (#2 in the series Tips on Applying for and Passing the PMP® or CAPM® Exam)
By Vicki Wrona, PMP – Global Knowledge Instructor

PMP Exam Requirements

While the requirements necessary to be eligible to take the PMP exam are listed on PMI’s website, they are also covered here to provide all the pertinent information condensed and in one place. This site provides a PDF of the PMP Handbook, which contains the requirements to qualify to take the PMP exam and the application form. Even if you intend to submit your application on-line, which is the preferred method, I suggest using the paper form to compile and organize the information beforehand. Once it is compiled, actual entry of the information goes very quickly. Applicants with a bachelor’s degree or global equivalent must meet the following requirements (a masters degree or higher does not decrease the following requirements):

  • Minimum 4,500 hours PM experience
  • Minimum 36 months PM experience within the prior 72 months
  • Minimum 35 contact hours of PM instruction

Applicants who do not have a bachelor’s degree, but instead have a high school diploma, associate’s degree, or global equivalent, must meet the following requirements (notice the only real change is to increase the PM experience needed and, of course, the time allowed to get that experience):

  • Minimum 7,500 hours PM experience
  • Minimum 60 months PM experience within the prior 96 months
  • Minimum 35 contact hours of PM instruction

Contact hours can be obtained through a university or college, by a course offered by a PMI-recognized Registered Education Provider (REP) such as Global Knowledge, by employee-sponsored classes, or by a training company or consultant. Some potential applicants misunderstand the requirement for PM experience. This includes not only experience as a Project or Program Manager, but also experience working on projects from other vantage points, such as in the role of a team member, Subject Matter Expert (SME), Sponsor, etc. PMI’s newer terminology states that candidates have experience leading and directing project tasks, the details of which are explained in the PMP Application section below.

Vicki Wrona, PMP, has been managing projects and mentoring project managers for the past 18 years in both the private and public sectors, in manufacturing, service, and IT. Over the past 7 years, she has personally trained over 3,100 people through Global Knowledge. She is the President of Forward Momentum, LLC, an 8(a) company.

This article was originally published in Global Knowledge’s Business Brief e-newsletter. Global Knowledge delivers comprehensive hands-on project management, business process, and professional skills training. Visit our online Knowledge Center at for free white papers, webinars, and more.

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