Project Management Professional: Prep for PMP

Project Management Professional Exam Prep. 35 PDU Contact Hours for PMP Exam
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  • Lectures 140
  • Contents Video: 11 hours
    Other: 38 hours
  • Skill Level Expert Level
  • Languages English
  • Includes Lifetime access
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    Available on iOS and Android
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About This Course

Published 12/2014 English

Course Description

We are a PMI Registered Education Provider:

  • Instructingcom, LLC #4082
  • PMP Exam Prep Online; Activity ID 145641
  • 36.50 PDU hours

Not all trainers on Udemy are part of the PMI REP program - we are! We have passed a quality audit, a business review, and we completely abide by the PMI REP program.

You need to pass the PMP® exam and you need quality training that'll help you in your role as a project manager. You also want to learn from an authority in project management, in an online environment with plenty of exercises, videos, and concise explanations. This course provides 36.5-contact hours of project management education and is taught by project management author and expert Joseph Phillips.

The 36.5 contact hours of project management education are earned by completing all of the course videos AND all the interactive video sessions in the course. You must complete all of the videos and all of the interactive video sessions to claim the educational hours for your PMP exam application. The Learning Management System tracks your completion of the course.

Our PMP® Exam Prep course provides complete coverage of the PMP® exam objectives for the PMBOK Guide, Fifth Edition. Start today, invest in your career, and begin working to clear your PMP® exam. Here's what's included in our PMP® Exam Prep Online Seminar:

►Updated for the 2016 PMP Exam Objectives

►Complete coverage of the entire PMBOK® Guide, fifth edition

►Complete coverage of the entire PMP® exam objectives

►35 contact hours of project management education

►Certificate of Completion from our company at end of course

►400 PMP® practice exam questions and answers on all exam objectives

►14 module exams (280 practice questions) covering every chapter of the PMBOK® Guide, fifth edition

►323-page PDF course workbook; entire course for note-taking and following along

►Videos of all concepts, formulas, theories, and project management practices

►Lectures on the entire PMP® exam objectives

►Math and concept worksheets for PMP® exam formulas

►Worksheet of the 47 processes and their ITTOs

►24 x 7 Web and mobile access

►Flashcards of every term used in the PMBOK Guide, Fifth Edition, and this course

►PMP® Memory Sheets (PDF document) for printing, review, and on-the-go learning

►All exams are distributed in PDF format for easy printing and studying on-the-go

►Course discussions with the Instructor and peers

►30-day satisfaction guaranteed

What are the requirements?

  • Project manager experience
  • PMP candidate (applied or will apply for the PMP exam)
  • Dedication to completing the course and passing the PMP exam

What am I going to get from this course?

  • Pass the PMI PMP certification exam
  • Discuss the PMBOK 5th edition with confidence
  • Explain the project management processes
  • Discuss the project management knowledge areas
  • Demonstrate the formulas, charts, and theories of project management
  • Calculate float for complex project network diagrams
  • Memorize the formulas for earned value management
  • Compare and contrast processes, knowledge areas, theories, and project management best practices
  • Games! Games! Games! Reinforce your learning with our learning games!

What is the target audience?

  • The PMP Exam Prep is geared for project managers who are preparing to PASS their PMI PMP examination. If you're looking for an introductory course on project management, this isn't it. This course is detailed, hands-on, and explores all possibilities of the PMBOK 5th edition for the PMI PMP Exam.
  • This course is registered with PMI for 35 Professional Development Units (PDUs). If you're looking for an intensive study of the PMBOK Guide, fifth edition, this is the course for you.

What you get with this course?

Not for you? No problem.
30 day money back guarantee.

Forever yours.
Lifetime access.

Learn on the go.
Desktop, iOS and Android.

Get rewarded.
Certificate of completion.


Section 1: PMP 2016 Exam Objectives

PMI has updated the PMP Exam Objectives for 2016. This lecture will explore the update and what it means for the PMP candidate.


There are eight initiating tasks for the 2016 PMP exam. Initiating accounts for 13 percent of the PMP exam and has two new tasks for the exam.


The PMP exam domain Planning accounts for 24 percent of the PMP exam. There are 13 planning tasks covered in this domain. There is only one new task in this domain.


The PMP exam domain of Executing accounts for 31 percent of the PMP exam. There are seven executing tasks covered in this domain, two of which are new tasks.


The Monitoring and Controlling PMP Exam domain accounts for 25 percent of the exam. There are seven monitoring and controlling tasks in this domain - two of which are new.


The 2016 PMP exam domain of closing accounts for seven percent of the PMP exam domain and has seven closing tasks. No new tasks have been added to this domain.

Section 2: Preparing to pass the PMP exam

This course, while online, is the same course I've delivered to thousands of PMP candidates - most of whom have successfully passed their PMP examination. Over the years I've developed an approach that ensures PMP success. Here's what's included:

  • Completing the course objectives
  • Utilizing the Score Keeper document
  • Embracing the flashcards
  • Exploring the ITTO Worksheet document
  • Memorizing the PMP Memory Sheets

I'm often asked how long should it take to pass the PMP? Well, technically you only have four hours to pass the test, but you can prepare to pass the PMP in four weeks. Four weeks?! Absolutely!

In this lecture I'll walk through a sample four-week strategy that you can adapt to pass the PMP in just four weeks.

3 pages

As you can imagine I get lots of and lots of private messages and emails about this course. While I try to answer all of them quickly, sometimes I can't. So... to save you (and me) some time and frustration I've created a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document.

Before you contact me, please read this document first. There's a real good chance your question and answer is herein. If not, then do send me a note or add a comment to the lecture where you have a question. Thanks!


While the PMP application directions are pretty straightforward, there's some additional info you should know when you complete your exam application.


Contact hours and PDUs are not the same thing! You get contact hours before you are a PMP. Once you're a PMP, then you can earn PDUs... this lecture explains the difference.

This lecture also explains the new PMI Talent Triangle and how your PDUs are distributed among technology, leadership, and business.


It's been said that repetition is the mother of learning. These PMP Exam Prep Flashcards will help you learn all of the project management terms - and that'll make passing the PMP Exam even easier. There are three sets of flashcards included:

One term per page - great for studying flashcards on your phone

Two terms per page - great for printing or viewing on a tablet computer

Three terms per page - ideal for printing all of the terms to study unplugged


These PMP Memory Sheets include everything you must know for your PMI exam. Inside this lecture and document you'll find secrets to help you pass the PMP exam. This document includes details on these key PMP Exam topics:

  • Project Integration Management
  • Tips for Finding Float
  • Schedule Management for all projects
  • Project Cost Estimating and Budgeting
  • Earned Value Management formulas
  • Quality Control and Quality Assurance
  • Human Resources on the Project Team
  • Communication terms you must know for your PMP exam
  • How to identify, analyze, and respond to project risks
  • Following the procurement processes
  • Stakeholder management tips and secrets
  • All of the PMP processes in knowledge areas and in process groups
2 pages

This PMP Exam Prep includes PMP practice questions at the end of each lecture and there are four 100-question PMP practice tests too. This Score Keeper document will help you track your scores throughout the course. This will help you determine what areas of the PMP exam objective you'll need to spend more time studying and which areas you've already mastered.

The Score Keeper document is a PDF document to manually track and record your PMP Exam practice test scores.


Not everyone can take the PMP, only qualified applicants. Do you really qualify? This lecture will explain what it takes to qualify for the PMP exam and how to apply.

  • Become a member of the Project Management Institute
  • PMP® exam requirements
  • Document your application

There's much concern and some confusion regarding the PMP exam application. Some folks will tell you that if you're "real careful" with your wording you won't get audited. Other people tell you that's it order of your projects that affect the audit outcome. The truth is, as I explain in this lecture, the audit selection process is actually totally random. There's nothing you can do to totally avoid an audit of your application.

There are, however, some steps you can take to make the audit, should you get selected, a bit easier to manager. I'll share those tips and tricks in this lecture. Let's go!


The Project Management Body of Knowledge, fifth edition is what the PMP exam is based upon. This book, often just called the PMBOK® Guide, covers all of the exam objectives, but not always in detail. This lecture will explore what the PMBOK® Guide is and why you need it.

  • Why you need the PMBOK® Guide
  • Where to get the PMBOK® Guide
  • This class and the PMBOK® Guide
Section 3: Project Management Fundamentals
In order to be a project manager you need to understand what a project is, what a project manager does, and how your personality can help you be a better project manager.
  • The difference between projects and operations
  • Management skills you’ll need
  • Using your personality

You'll be tested on the role of the project manager, the stakeholder-project manager relationships, and how projects operate in organizations. Stakeholder management is a new knowledge area in the PMBOK Guide, fifth edition, so you can expect many questions on stakeholder management throughout the exam.

  • Working with senior project managers
  • Working with programs
  • Working with a project management office
  • Using enterprise environmental factors
Every project is unique and it's the role of the project manager to manage that uniqueness. Add the context of organizational structure and culture to the mix and project management can become quite complex. This lecture includes:
  • Managing projects within a program
  • Managing the project portfolio
  • Working with subprojects
  • Managing a project within a Project Management Office
14 pages

This PMP practice exam will test your comprehension of the topics covered in the module. Take this PMP practice test over and over until you can complete the exam with a perfect score. If you've questions about the PMP practice tests add them to the discussion and I'll help.

323 pages

This workbook includes every scene from this PMP Exam Prep course. You can print out the workbook and follow along with the screen. There's room for notes and it's a nice document to review before passing your PMP exam.

Section 4: Organizational Influence and the Project Life Cycle

Stakeholders can influence how smoothly your project operates. Depending on the structure your project is operating in you will manage and influence the stakeholders differently. It's important for the PMP exam to recognize the different organizational types and how the project manager may operate within each structure.

The PMP exam will test your understanding of how project managers get things done in different types of organizations.

  • Influencing the organization
  • How organizations operate
  • Considering the organizational structure

Stakeholder management is a new knowledge area in the PMBOK Guide, fifth edition. Stakeholder management happens throughout the project and requires an understanding of who a stakeholder is, their power and influence in the organization, and how the project manager can work with each stakeholder type.

A stakeholder is anyone that can influence your project or is influenced by your project.

  • Determining who is a stakeholder
  • Typical project stakeholders
  • Working with positive and negative stakeholders
  • Managing stakeholder expectations

Project management is about getting things done and it's the project team that executes the project plan. Building the project team is an ongoing activity, but it starts as early as possible in the project timeline. The project team describes the individuals that complete the assignments to build the project scope. This lecture discusses:

  • Who the project team
  • Dedicated project team members
  • Part-time project team members
  • Who the project team may report to

Project stakeholders can be affected by the project life cycle. The project life cycle is unique to each project and is different from the project management life cycle. This lecture covers:

  • Project stakeholders influence
  • Project stakeholders and their contributions
  • Project life cycle characteristics
18 pages
This PMP practice exam will test your comprehension of the topics covered in the module. Take this PMP practice test over and over until you can complete the exam with a perfect score. If you've questions about the PMP practice tests add them to the discussion and I'll help.
Section 5: Examining the Project Management Processes

There are 47 project management processes that a project manager and the project team use to move a project along. The goal of these processes is to have a successful project, but a project’s success is based on more than just leveraging these processes. A successful project depends on five things:

  • Using the appropriate processes at the appropriate times
  • Following a defined project management approach for execution and project control
  • Developing and implementing a solid project management plan that addresses all areas of the project
  • Conforming the project and the project management approach to the customer requirements
  • Balancing the project time, cost, scope, quality, resources, and risks while meeting the project objectives

The project manager is assigned during initiation, and the inputs from the original project initiator and/or the project sponsor are considered throughout the initiation processes. Project initiation is, of course, the first process that kicks off the project. This is exam-essential information includes:

  • Getting the project initiated
  • Developing the project charter
  • Identifying the project stakeholders

Projects fail at the beginning and not the end. A project needs effective planning, or it will be doomed. The whole point of the planning process group is to develop the project management plan. The good news is that the entire project plan doesn’t have to happen in one session; in fact, planning is an iterative process, and the project manager and the project team return to the planning phase as needed to allow the project to move forward. Planning is key to project, and PMP, success. This lecture introduces:

  • Developing the project management plan
  • Planning the project scope
  • Collecting project requirements
  • Defining the project scope
  • Creating the Work Breakdown Structure
  • Planning for schedule management
  • Defining the project activities
  • Sequencing the project activities
  • Estimating the activity resources
  • Estimating the activity duration
  • Developing the project schedule
  • Planning project cost management
  • Estimating the project costs
  • Planning the project budget
  • Planning for quality
  • Completing human resources planning
  • Planning for project communications
  • Planning the project risks
  • Identifying the project risks
  • Performing qualitative risk analysis
  • Performing quantitative risk analysis
  • Planning for risk responses
  • Planning procurement management
  • Planning stakeholder management

The executing processes allow the project work to be performed. They include the execution of the project plan, the execution of vendor management, and the management of the project implementation. The project manager works closely with the project team in this process group to ensure that the work is being completed and that the work results are of quality. The project manager also works with vendors to ensure that their procured work is complete, of quality, and meets the obligations of the contracts. The executing processes are all about getting the project work done. This lecture covers:

  • Directing and managing project execution
  • Performing quality assurance
  • Acquiring the project team
  • Developing the project team
  • Managing the project team
  • Managing project communications
  • Conducting project procurements
  • Managing stakeholder engagement

This process group focuses on monitoring the project work for variances, changes, and discrepancies so that corrective action can be used to ensure that the project continues to move toward its successful completion. This means lots of measuring, inspecting, and communicating with the project team to ensure that the project plan is followed, variances to the plan are reported, and responses can be expedited. While the project team does the work the project manager monitors and controls the work. This lecture details:

  • Monitoring and controlling the project work
  • Managing integrated change control
  • Validating the project scope
  • Controlling the project scope
  • Controlling the project schedule
  • Controlling the project costs
  • Performing quality control
  • Controlling communications
  • Monitoring and controlling project risk
  • Controlling project procurements
  • Controlling stakeholder engagements

This process group focuses on monitoring the project work for variances, changes, and discrepancies so that corrective action can be used to ensure that the project continues to move toward its successful completion. This means lots of measuring, inspecting, and communicating with the project team to ensure that the project plan is followed, variances to the plan are reported, and responses can be expedited. Closing process include:

  • Closing the project
  • Closing procurement
17 pages
This PMP practice exam will test your comprehension of the topics covered in the module. Take this PMP practice test over and over until you can complete the exam with a perfect score. If you've questions about the PMP practice tests add them to the discussion and I'll help.
Section 6: Project Integration Management

Preparing to create the charter is often trickier than actually writing it. However, before the project management team can actually create a charter, there needs to be a project. This means the organization, the project steering committee, or the project portfolio management team needs to choose a project to initiate. There are reasons why some projects are selected and others are not. This lecture will explore:

  • Why projects are selected by organizations
  • Benefit measurement methods for project selection
  • Time value of money
  • Introduction to constrained optimization selection methods

The project charter, as a final reminder for your exam, is endorsed by an entity outside of the project boundaries. This person or entity has the power to authorize the project and grant the project manager the power to assign resources to the project work. The project charter should define the business needs and what the project aims to create in order to solve those business needs. You'll need to know how project charters are written. This includes:

  • Project statement of work
  • Business cases
  • Using expert judgment
  • Identifying the contents of the project charter

It's imperative for the project manager to know why a project management plan, what's included in the project management plan, and how to create the plan. This lecture defines:

  • Examining the project management plan
  • Creating project management subsidiary plans
  • Working with a Configuration Management System
  • Comparing the project plan to the project documents

The product of the project is created during these execution processes. The largest percentage of the project budget will be spent during project execution. The project manager and the project team must work together to orchestrate the timing and integration of all the project’s moving parts. A flaw in one area of the execution can have ramifications in cost and additional risk, and can cause additional flaws in other areas of the project. Once you have a plan you'll execute it. This lecture covers:

  • Executing the project work
  • Directing the project team
  • Examining the project deliverables
  • Applying project actions

As soon as a project begins, the project management monitoring and controlling processes also begin. These processes monitor all the other processes within the project to ensure they are being done according to plan, according to the performing organization’s practices, and to ensure that a limited number of defects enters the project.

  • Examining project performance
  • Tracking and monitoring project risks
  • Maintaining product information
  • Forecasting the project’s success
  • Monitoring approved changes
Changes can affect all areas of the project. Consider a change in the project scope and how it could affect the project budget, schedule, quality, human resources, communications, risks, procurement and even other stakeholders.
  • Using change control tools
  • Examining integrated change control
  • Applying configuration management

Every project manager that I know loves to close a project. There’s something rewarding about completing a project and then transferring the deliverable to the customer or project user. I’ve also learned from participant feedback in my PMP Exam Prep seminars that this topic is the category where exam candidates missed the most questions on their way to their PMP certification. I believe it’s because folks have a tendency to study in the order of the process groups: initiation, planning, executing, monitoring and controlling, and then (finally) closing. I imagine they’re winded by the time their studying efforts get to closing. With that in mind, really home in on this closing discussion. I want you to pass your exam!

  • Performing administrative closure
  • Closing the project contracts
  • Closing the project
  • Update the organizational process assets
17 pages

This PMP practice exam will test your comprehension of the topics covered in the module. Take this PMP practice test over and over until you can complete the exam with a perfect score. If you've questions about the PMP practice tests add them to the discussion and I'll help.

Section 7: Project Scope Management

One of the first things you’ll have to achieve in your role as the project manager of a new project is to define the project’s scope management plan. Now, your organization may rely on organizational process assets in the form of a template for all projects, but it’s possible that you’ll be creating this scope management plan from scratch. In this section, you’ll learn both approaches that you can apply to your projects and your PMI exam. This lecture includes:

  • Relying on project information
  • Using templates and forms
  • Creating the Project Scope Management Plan
  • Performing product analysis
  • Using alternative identification
  • Interviewing experts and stakeholders

The second plan that comes out of this process is the requirements management plan. While similar in nature, this plan explains how the project will collect, analyze, record, and manage the requirements throughout the project. Like the scope management plan, this plan doesn’t list the actual requirements, but sets the rules for how the project manager, team, and stakeholders will interact with the project’s requirements. This plan is also a subsidiary plan for the overall project management plan. The project requirements are defined through many tools and techniques to help document the requirements and to create a requirements traceability matrix. This lecture details:

  1. Working with stakeholders to define requirements
  2. Requirement gathering techniques
  3. Documenting and publishing requirements
  4. Creating a requirements traceability matrix
The project scope statement is one of the most important documents in the project. This lecture covers:
  • Detailing the project objectives
  • Describing the product scope
  • Defining the project requirements
  • Establishing the project boundaries
  • Defining the project acceptance criteria
  • Identifying the project constraints
  • Listing the project assumptions
  • Defining the initial project organization
  • Defining the initial project risks
  • Determining the schedule milestones
  • Setting fund limitations
  • Estimating the project costs
  • Determining the project configuration management requirements
  • Identifying project specification documents
  • Documenting the project approval requirements

A key concept for your PMP exam, and often your projects, is the Work Breakdown Structure (WBS). The WBS is all about the project deliverables. It’s a breakdown of the project scope into hierarchical deliverables. The WBS takes the project scope and breaks it down into smaller, manageable chunks of deliverables. Each layer of the WBS breaks down the layer above it into smaller deliverables, until it arrives at the smallest item in the WBS, the work package. This lecture details:

  • Defining the WBS
  • Using a WBS template
  • Decomposing the project scope
  • Creating the WBS
  • Creating the WBS dictionary
  • Defining the scope baseline

Scope validation is the process of the project customer accepting the project deliverables. It happens either at the end of each project phase or as major deliverables are created. Scope validation ensures that the deliverables the project creates are in alignment with the project scope. It is concerned with the acceptance of the work. A related activity, quality control (QC), is concerned with the correctness of the work. Scope validation and QC can happen in tandem because the quality of the work contributes to scope validation. Poor quality will typically result in scope validation failure. How do you know your scope and deliverables are valid? This lecture will help you to understand:

  • Defining scope validation
  • Performing scope validation
  • Group-decision making techniques
  • Gaining project acceptance

Scope control is about protecting the project scope from change and, when change does happen, managing those changes. Ideally, all requested changes follow the scope change control system, which means that change requests must be documented. Those changes that sneak into the project scope are lumped into that project poison category of scope creep. Scope creep is, of course, bad, bad news. You must protect the project scope from changes and this lecture will help. You'll learn:

  • Establishing a change control system
  • Studying variances
  • Replanning the project work
  • Revisiting the configuration management system
16 pages

This PMP practice exam will test your comprehension of the topics covered in the module. Take this PMP practice test over and over until you can complete the exam with a perfect score. If you've questions about the PMP practice tests add them to the discussion and I'll help.

Section 8: Project Time Management

The project management planning processes are iterative, as you know, and will happen over and over throughout the project. You and the project team—and even some key stakeholders—will work together to define the project’s schedule management plan. This will happen early in the project’s planning processes, but chances are good you’ll need to return to schedule management planning to adjust, replan, or focus on the schedule you’ve created for the project. Schedules are created and designed throughout the project. This lecture will help you to understand these concepts:

  • Examining policies and procedures
  • Working with a deadline
  • Creating the schedule based on scope

When a project is first initiated, project managers often focus immediately on the labor and activities that will be required to complete the project work. But that focus ignores the scope. In Chapter 5, I discussed the project scope and the work breakdown structure (WBS) as prerequisites to defining the project activities. Before the work actually begins you'll need to work with the project team to define the activities to schedule. This lecture covers:

  • Examining the inputs to activity definition
  • Decomposing the project work
  • Relying on project templates
  • Using rolling wave planning
  • Planning for more work
  • Examining the project activities and their attributes

Now that the activity list has been created, the activities must be arranged in a logical sequence. This process calls on the project manager and the project team to identify the logical relationships between activities, as well as the preferred relationship between those activities. Once you have the activities defined you'll need to put them in the correct order. That's what this module is all about:

  • Defining the activity relationships
  • Determining the network structure to use
  • Establishing activity dependencies
  • Applying leads and lags

Resources include materials, equipment, and people. After the project manager and the project team have worked together to determine the sequence of the activities, they now have to determine which resources are needed for each activity, as well as how much of each resource. As you can guess, resource estimating goes hand in hand with cost estimating. This lecture will define:

  • Considering the project work
  • Examining the labor availability
  • Estimating the resource need
  • Creating a resource calendar

First, you identify the activities, sequence the activities, define the resources, and then estimate durations. These processes are needed to complete the project schedule and the project duration estimate. These four processes are iterated as more information becomes available. If the proposed schedule is acceptable, the project can move forward. If the proposed schedule takes too long, the scheduler can use a few strategies to compress the project. We’ll discuss the art of scheduling in a few moments.

Activity duration estimates, like the activity list and the WBS, don’t come from the project manager—they come from the people completing the work. The estimates may also undergo progressive elaboration. In this section, we’ll examine the approach to completing activity duration estimates, the basis of these estimates, and allow for activity list updates. In order to predict when the project will end you'll need to examine project activity duration. That's what this module covers:

  • Estimating the project duration
  • Using analogous estimates
  • Using parametric estimates
  • Using three-point estimates
  • Creating a management reserve

The project manager, the project team, and possibly even the key stakeholders, will examine the inputs previously described and apply the techniques discussed in this section to create a feasible schedule for the project. The point of the project schedule is to complete the project scope in the shortest possible time without incurring exceptional costs, risks, or a loss of quality.

Creating the project schedule is part of the planning process group. It is calendar-based and relies on both the project network diagram and the accuracy of time estimates. When the project manager creates the project schedule, she’ll also reference the risk register. The identified risks and their associated responses can affect the sequence of the project work and when the project work can take place. In addition, if a risk comes to fruition, the risk event may affect the scheduling of the resources and the project completion date. Do you know how to calculate float? If not, this is the module you'll want to spend some time in. This module includes:

  • Examining the project network
  • Finding the critical path and float
  • Worksheet: Chapter Six Float Exercise
  • Compressing the project schedule
  • Simulating the project work
  • Leveling the project resources
  • Using the critical chain methodology
  • Applying calendars and updating the project schedule

Float, or slack, is the amount of time an activity can be delayed without postponing the project’s completion. Technically, there are three different types of float:

Free float: This is the total time a single activity can be delayed without affecting the early start of any successor activities.

Total float: This is the total time an activity can be delayed without affecting project completion.

Project float: This is the total time the project can be delayed without passing the customer-expected completion date.

There are a couple of different approaches to calculating float. I’m sharing the approach that I learned and that I think is the best approach. You may have learned a different method that you prefer. You won’t hurt my feelings if you use your method to get the same result as my method. What’s most important is that you understand the concepts of forward and backward passes, and that you can find the critical path and float in a simple network diagram.

Most project management software will automatically calculate float. On the PMP exam, however, candidates will be expected to calculate float manually. Don’t worry—it’s not too tough.


Schedule compression is also a mathematical approach to scheduling. The trick with schedule compression, as its name implies, is calculating ways the project can get done sooner than expected. Consider a construction project. The project may be slated to last eight months, but due to the expected cold and nasty weather typical of month 7, the project manager needs to rearrange activities, where possible, to end the project as soon as possible.

In some instances, the relationship between activities cannot be changed due to hard logic or external dependencies. The relationships are fixed and must remain as scheduled. Now consider the same construction company that is promised a bonus if they can complete the work by the end of Month 7. Now there’s incentive to complete the work, but there’s also the fixed relationship between activities.

To apply duration compression, the performing organization can rely on two different methods. These methods can be used independently or together, and are applied to activities or to the entire project based on need, risk, and cost.


Like most things in a project, the project manager will need to work to control the schedule from slipping off its baseline. A schedule control system is a formal approach to managing changes to the project schedule. It considers the conditions, reasons, requests, costs, and risks of making changes. It includes methods of tracking changes, approval levels based on thresholds, and the documentation of approved or declined changes. The schedule control system process is part of integrated change management. This lecture will help you to understand:

  • Examining the project schedule characteristics
  • Examining the schedule baseline
  • Reporting the project progress
  • Using a schedule change control system
  • Examining schedule variances
  • Using schedule comparison bar charts
17 pages

This PMP practice exam will test your comprehension of the topics covered in the module. Take this PMP practice test over and over until you can complete the exam with a perfect score. If you've questions about the PMP practice tests add them to the discussion and I'll help.

Section 9: Project Cost Management

You need a plan just for project costs. You need a plan that will help you define what policies you and the project team have to adhere to in regard to costs, a plan that documents how you get to spend project money, and a plan for how cost management will happen throughout your entire project. Well, you’re in luck! This plan, a subsidiary plan of the project management plan, is the project cost management plan. You'll need to understand all about the project's cost management plan for your PMP exam. This lecture covers:

  • Creating the cost management plan
  • Adhering to organizational policies and procedures
  • Relying on organizational process assets and enterprise environmental factors

Assuming that the project manager and the project team are working together to create the cost estimates, there are many inputs to the cost-estimating process. For your PMI exam, it would behoove you to be familiar with these inputs because these are often the supporting details for the cost estimate the project management team creates. Cost estimating uses several tools and techniques. You'll learn in this module:

  • Following the organizational process assets
  • Building a cost management plan
  • Creating an analogous estimate
  • Determining resource cost rates
  • Create a bottom-up estimate
  • Building a parametric estimate
  • Using the PMIS
  • Analyzing vendor bids
  • Considering the contingency reserve
  • Presenting the cost estimate

Now that the project estimate has been created, it’s time to create the official cost budget. Cost budgeting is really cost aggregation, which means the project manager will be assigning specific dollar amounts for each of the scheduled activities or, more likely, for each of the work packages in the WBS. The aggregation of the work package cost equates to the summary budget for the entire project. There is a difference between what was estimated and what's actually being spent on the project. This lecture defines:

  • Aggregating the project costs
  • Completing project cost reconciliation
  • Creating the project cost baseline
  • Examining the project cash flow

Once a project has been funded, it’s up to the project manager and the project team to work effectively and efficiently to control costs. This means doing the work right the first time. It also means, and this is tricky, avoiding scope creep and undocumented changes, as well as getting rid of any non-value-added activities. Basically, if the project team is adding components or features that aren’t called for in the project, they’re wasting time and money.

Cost control focuses on controlling the ability of costs to change and on how the project management team may allow or prevent cost changes from happening. When a change does occur, the project manager must document the change and the reason why it occurred and, if necessary, create a variance report. Cost control is concerned with understanding why the cost variances, both good and bad, have occurred. The “why” behind the variances allows the project manager to make appropriate decisions on future project actions. Managing cost control is an ongoing activity within a project. This lecture defines cost control, including earned value management. You'll learn:

  • Working with a cost change control system
  • Measuring project performance
  • Earned Value Management fundamentals
  • Finding project variances
  • Calculating the project performance
  • Forecasting the project performance
  • Earned Value Management formula review
17 pages

This PMP practice exam will test your comprehension of the topics covered in the module. Take this PMP practice test over and over until you can complete the exam with a perfect score. If you've questions about the PMP practice tests add them to the discussion and I'll help.

Section 10: Project Quality Management

Quality planning is the process of first determining which quality standards are relevant to your project and then finding the best methods of adhering to those quality standards. This is a great example of project integration management, which was referred to earlier. Quality planning is core to the planning process group because each knowledge area has relevant standards that affect quality, and quality planning is integrated into each planning process. Quality can be an esoteric topic, but this lecture will help. You'll learn:

  • Defining project quality
  • Completing a cost-benefits analysis
  • Benchmarking the project
  • Performing a design of experiments
  • Determining the cost of quality
  • Creating the Quality Management Plan
  • Establishing quality metrics
  • Using quality checklists
  • Creating a Process Improvement Plan
  • Establishing a quality baseline
Additional Quality Planning Concerns

Quality assurance (QA) is the sum of the creation and implementation of the plans by the project manager, the project team, and management to ensure that the project meets the demands of quality. QA is not something that is done only at the end of the project, but is done before and during the project as well. Quality management is prevention-driven; you want to do the work correctly the first time. Quality Assurance is a prevention-driven activity. This lecture will explore that concept through these topics:

  • Defining QA
  • Performing a quality audit
  • Examining the project processes
  • Recommending corrective actions

This is the section of the project where the project manager and the project team have control and influence. Quality assurance (QA), for the most part, is specific to your organization, and the project manager doesn’t have much control over the QA processes—he just has to do them. Quality control (QC), on the other hand, is specific to the project manager, so the project manager has lots of activities. Quality control is an inspection-driven activity and you'll learn that concept through this lecture.

  • Performing quality control measurements
  • Creating a cause and effect diagram
  • Creating a control chart
  • Completing project flowcharting
  • Creating a histogram
  • Examining a Pareto chart
  • Creating a run chart
  • Examining a scatter diagram
  • Completing a statistical sampling
  • Inspecting the project work
  • Review defect repair
  • Quality control and lessons learned
17 pages

This PMP practice exam will test your comprehension of the topics covered in the module. Take this PMP practice test over and over until you can complete the exam with a perfect score. If you've questions about the PMP practice tests add them to the discussion and I'll help.

Section 11: Project Human Resource Management

Have you noticed that every knowledge area for your PMI examination starts with a planning process? Hmmm, I hope so. Planning is an iterative process that begins early in the project and continues through the project management life cycle. Planning for project human resources is vital to a successful project. After all, you’ve got to plan how the project work will be completed and which resources will complete that work.

When it comes to planning human resources, the project manager is aiming to plan for several facets of the project. This lecture defines the planning for HR management:

  • Defining human resource planning
  • Examining the project interfaces
  • Considering the project constraints
  • Charting the organizational structure
  • Defining the project roles and responsibilities
  • Creating the Staffing Management Plan

You need people to complete your project. But have you ever managed a project where the resources you wanted on the project were not available? Or have you managed a project where the resources you were assigned weren’t the best resources to complete the project work? Staff acquisition is the process of getting the needed resources on the project team to complete the project work. It focuses on working within the policies and procedures of the performing organization to obtain the needed resources to complete the project work. Negotiation, communication, and political savvy are the keys to getting the desired resources on the project team. For your PMP exam, it's important to understand that how a project manager acquires the project team can vary by organization. You'll need to know all of these topics:

  • Working with your organization
  • Managing a pre-assigned project team
  • Negotiating for project resources
  • Acquiring project resources
  • Relying on virtual project teams

The project team is developed by enhancing the competencies of the individual project team members and promoting the interaction of all the project team members. Throughout the project, the project manager will have to work to develop the project team. The project manager may have to develop an individual team member’s skills so that she can complete her assignments. The project manager will also have to work to develop the project team as a whole so that the team can work together to complete the project. The project manager can use certain tools, techniques, and approaches to develop the project team. That's what this module details:

  • Using general management skills
  • Training the project team
  • Using team building activities
  • Establishing ground rules for the project team
  • Working with non-collocated teams
  • Establishing a rewards and recognition system
  • Assessing the team performance

Now that the project manager has planned for the human resources and developed the project team, he can focus on managing the project team. This process involves tracking each team member’s performance, offering feedback, taking care of project issues, and managing those pesky change requests that can affect the project team and its work. The staffing management plan may be updated based on lessons learned and changes within the team management process. The project manager will have to manage the project team. This includes:

  • Observing and conversing with project team members
  • Completing project team appraisals
  • Resolving and managing team conflict
  • Creating an issue log
17 pages
This PMP practice exam will test your comprehension of the topics covered in the module. Take this PMP practice test over and over until you can complete the exam with a perfect score. If you've questions about the PMP practice tests add them to the discussion and I'll help.
Section 12: Project Communications Management

Communication planning is actually done very early in the project planning processes. It’s essential to answer the previous questions as early as possible because their outcomes can affect the remainder of the project planning. Throughout the project, updates to communications planning are expected. Even the responses to the five project management communication questions can change as stakeholders, project team members, vendors, and other project interfaces change.. Communication is key to most of project management. This lecture defines:

  • Examining the communications model
  • Analyzing communication requirements
  • Determining the communications technology
  • Creating the Communications Management Plan

Now that the project’s communications management plan has been created, it’s time to execute it. Managing project communications is the process of ensuring that the proper stakeholders get the appropriate information when and how they need it. Essentially, it’s the implementation of the communications management plan. This plan details how the information is to be created and dispersed, and also how the dispersed information is archived. Managing project communications ensures that the right people, get the right message, at the right time, in the right modality.

  • Examining communication skills
  • Creating an Information Gathering and Retrieval System
  • Dispersing project information
  • Documenting the project’s Lessons Learned
  • Updating the organizational process assets

Throughout the project, customers and other stakeholders are going to need updates on the project performance, work status, and project information. The work performance information—the status of what’s been completed and what’s left to do—is always at the heart of performance reporting. Stakeholders want to be kept abreast of how the project is performing, but also what issues, risks, and conditions in the project have evolved.

Controlling communication is the process of following the communications management plan, distributing information, and sharing how the project is performing. Performance reporting is the process of collecting, organizing, and disseminating information on how project resources are being used to complete the project objectives. In other words, the people footing the bill and who are affected by the outcome of the project need some confirmation that things are going the way the project manager has promised. This lecture details:

  • Determining the communication method
  • Dispersing project information
  • Creating an Issue Log
19 pages

This PMP practice exam will test your comprehension of the topics covered in the module. Take this PMP practice test over and over until you can complete the exam with a perfect score. If you've questions about the PMP practice tests add them to the discussion and I'll help.

Section 13: Project Risk Management

Risk management planning is not the identification of risks or even the response to known risks within a project. Risk management planning is how the project management team will complete the risk management activities within the project. These activities really set up the project to effectively manage the five other risk management activities. Risk management planning creates the risk management plan.

By deciding the approach to each of the risk management activities before moving into them, the project management team can more effectively identify risks, complete risk analysis, and then plan risk responses. In addition, planning for risk management also allows the project management team to create a strategy for the ongoing identification and monitoring of existing risks within the project. This lecture will define all of risk management planning:

  • Defining project risk
  • Hosting a risk planning meeting
  • Creating a Risk Management Plan

Risk identification is the systematic process of combing through the project, the project plan, the work breakdown structure (WBS), and all supporting documentation to identify as many of the risks that may affect the project as possible. Remember, a risk is an uncertain event or condition that may affect the project outcome. Risks can be positive or negative. This lecture includes:

  • Reviewing project documentation
  • Identifying the project risks
  • Analyzing the project assumptions
  • Diagramming project risks

The first, and somewhat shallow, risk analysis is qualitative analysis. Qualitative risk analysis “qualifies” the risks that have been identified in the project. Specifically, qualitative risk analysis examines and prioritizes the risks based on their probability of occurring and the impact on the project if the risks do occur. Qualitative risk analysis is a broad approach to ranking risks by priority, which then guides the risk reaction process. The end result of qualitative risk analysis (once risks have been identified and prioritized) can either lead to more in-depth quantitative risk analysis or move directly into risk response planning. Qualitative risk analysis is a high-level, fast method of qualifying the risk for more analysis. This lecture will define:

  • Using a risk register
  • Creating a risk probability and impact matrix
  • Examining the data quality
  • Categorizing risks
  • Updating the risk register

Quantitative risk analysis attempts to numerically assess the probability and impact of the identified risks. It also creates an overall risk score for the project. This method is more in-depth than qualitative risk analysis and relies on several different tools to accomplish its goal.

Qualitative risk analysis typically precedes quantitative risk analysis. I like to say that qualitative analysis qualifies risks, while quantitative analysis quantifies risks. All or a portion of the identified risks in qualitative risk analysis can be examined in the quantitative analysis. The performing organization may have policies on the risk scores in qualitative analysis that require the risks to advance to the quantitative analysis. The availability of time and budget may also be a factor in determining which risks should pass through quantitative analysis. Quantitative analysis is a more time-consuming process, and is, therefore, also more expensive. This lecture will cover:

  • Gathering risk data
  • Creating a risk probability distribution
  • Modeling risk data
  • Creating a contingency reserve
  • Updating the risk register

Risk response planning is all about options and actions. It focuses on how to decrease the possibility of risks adversely affecting the project’s objectives and also on how to increase the likelihood of positive risks that can aid the project. Risk response planning assigns responsibilities to people and groups close to the risk event. Risks will increase or decrease based on the effectiveness of risk response planning. This lecture will help you learn everything there is to know for your PMP exam about risk responses. This includes:

  • Determining the risk tolerance
  • Considering negative risks
  • Planning for positive risks
  • Accepting risk response
  • Creating a contingent response strategy

Risks must be actively monitored, and new risks must be responded to as they are discovered. Risk monitoring and control is the process of monitoring identified risks for signs that they may be occurring, controlling identified risks with the agreed-upon responses, and looking for new risks that may creep into the project. Risk monitoring and control also is concerned with the documentation of the success or failure of risk response plans and keeping records of metrics that signal risks are occurring or disappearing from the project. This lecture will help you to:

  • Reassessing the project for risks
  • Completing a risk audit
  • Examining the project trends and technical performance
  • Hosting a project status meeting
  • Recommending corrective and preventive actions
22 pages

This PMP practice exam will test your comprehension of the topics covered in the module. Take this PMP practice test over and over until you can complete the exam with a perfect score. If you've questions about the PMP practice tests add them to the discussion and I'll help.

Section 14: Project Procurement Management

Procurement planning is the process of identifying which part of the project should be procured from resources outside of the organization. Generally, procurement decisions are made early on in the planning processes. Procurement planning centers on four elements:

  • Whether procurement is needed
  • What to procure
  • How much to procure
  • When to procure

Procurement management planning is an essential part of a project manager's job. Know these topics for your PMP exam:

  • Make or Buy analysis
  • Determining contract type
  • Creating a Procurement Management Plan
  • Contracts and risk management
  • Creating evaluation materials

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Instructor Biography

Joseph Phillips, PMP, PMI-ACP, Project+, Certified Technical Trainer

About Joseph Phillips

Motivated, personable business professional with more than 15 years’ experience as a project management consultant, educator, technology consultant, business owner, and technical writer. Extensive experience as a project manager, management consultant, organizational change management consultant, organizational process analyst, and technical implementations. Well-versed in project management methodologies, process engineering, organizational change management, risk management, project planning, team building, communication, and technical implementations of organizational change, software projects, network operating systems, and web development projects.

Project management certifications include the Project Management Professional (PMP), PMI-Agile Certified Practioner, and the Project+ Professional designation.

Skills Summary

  • Project management
  • Business management
  • Risk management
  • Change management
  • Microsoft Office
  • Microsoft Project
  • Articulate Suite
  • Server systems
  • PMBOK Guide methodologies
  • Bloom’s Taxonomy
  • Public speaking
  • Leadership and coaching
  • Technical writing

  • Professional Experience
  • Project management
  • Project management consultant for project management office implementation, organizational change management, process configuration mapping, workflow analysis, and project management information system selection and deployment.
  • IT project manager for technology upgrades, server conversions, network topology and design, and technical projects in the legal, healthcare, architectural, and engineering disciplines.
  • Project management consultant for a hospital project to establish protocols and procedures for non-English speaking patients in consideration of security, health, and privacy requirements.
  • Project management consultant for several initiatives, including software deployment, network operating systems, Microsoft Exchange, Microsoft Office, Microsoft Server Operating Systems, and others.
  • Consulted as a project manager for new business startups, hospitals, architectural firms, and manufacturers.

  • Adult education
  • Created, designed, and led seminars on project management, PMP certification, IT project management, risk management, scheduling, Microsoft Project, technical writing, and goal achievement.
  • Designed web-based training with Articulate Studio, developed course materials, and led both public and private seminars, lectures, and speeches for organizations.
  • Taught college-level courses and corporate educational seminars on project management, program management, writing, business analysis, Microsoft products, workflow, process engineering, and related topics.
  • Produced course materials for custom seminars; courses include workbooks with exercises and quizzes, instructor materials, and slide decks.
  • Technical writing
  • Have completed hundreds of writing assignments for Pearson Education, CIO Magazine, MCP Magazine, Bedrock Learning, UCertify, and others.

  • Co-authored more than 30 books on technology, Microsoft products, and networking for MacMillan Press and Pearson Education.
  • Authored several books on project management, business analysis, and technical training for McGraw-Hill and the American Management Association Press.

  • Author

2000 to Present

Written, co-authored, or served as technical editor to more than 35 books on technology, careers, project management, and goal setting for MacMillan, McGraw-Hill, Pearson Education, and AMA Press.

Recent publications include:

PMP Project Management Professional Study Guide
McGraw-Hill; ISBN: 0071626735 CAPM/PMP All-in-One Exam Guide
McGraw-Hill; ISBN: 0071632999 PMP Project Management Lab Book
McGraw-Hill; ISBN: 0071744266 The Certified Technical Trainer All-in-One Exam Guide
McGraw-Hill; ISBN: 978-0071771160 IT Project Management: On Track from Start to Finish
McGraw-Hill; ISBN: 0071700439 Project Management for Small Business American Management Association Press;ISBN: 978-0814417676 The Lifelong Project
Amazon CreateSpace Publishers;
ISBN: 0615337546 Software Project Management for DummiesFor Dummies, PublisherISBN: 978-0471749349 Vampire Management: Why Your Job Sucks
Amazon CreateSpace Publishers;
ISBN: 978-0983970101

Education and certifications

Columbia College Chicago, 1995

Project Management Professional (PMP)

Comptia Project+ Professional

Comptia A+ Professional

Comptia Network+ Professional

Comptia Certified Technical Trainer+ Professional

Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer

Microsoft Certified Trainer

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