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PMI® Credential Policies & Procedures

Instructor: Eric Campos

Eric has tutored in English, writing, history, and other subjects.

As you begin your journey towards becoming a certified Project Management Professional (PMP)®, you may want to familiarize yourself with the official Project Management Institute credential policies and procedures. Read on to learn more about eligibility requirements, the application process, testing policies, continuing education requirements and more.

Credential Eligibility Requirements

Eligibility requirements vary according to the credential you're seeking, but typically include a combination of work experience and project management training. To qualify for the PMP designation, for instance, you'll need 3-5 years of project management experience that includes between 4,500 and 7,500 hours in a leadership position. All applicants must also have completed 35 hours of project management education.

Application Procedures

Official applications for the credential you're interested in can be found and completed online after creating an account on the PMI website. Once you start the application process you have 90 days to complete it.

After submitting your finished application, it will be reviewed to make sure that you meet the qualifications to take the certification exam. This review process usually takes around 5 days. During this time, the review panel may or may not contact you with questions or concerns about your application, so be sure to check your email regularly. When your application is approved, you'll be prompted to pay the application fee.

Audit Process

If your application is selected for audit, this process must be completed prior to taking the exam. Receiving an audit is no need for panic. This often means that the review panel has randomly chosen your application in order to examine more details about your work experience and education.

You will receive a detailed email explaining what is expected of you. Usually, the audit asks for certificates, diplomas, or any other documents that substantiate the information included on your application. After being issued the audit you'll have exactly 90 days to gather all the required documents and mail them in. Be sure to send all of them at once in order to expedite the process. Typically the audit takes 5-7 days to complete. If everything checks out, you'll be free to continue the credential process.

Exam Policies

Once your application is approved and all exam fees have been received, you'll have a year to schedule your initial testing appointment and up to two retakes, if necessary. If you need to reschedule any appointments, you'll be able to do so up to two days before the test. Cancellations can be made after this point, but your exam fee will be forfeited. Keep in mind that any changes to your testing appointment within a month of your test date will incur an extra fee.

Renewal Requirements

Once you've achieved your credential you may include it on your resume, business card, or in any way you see fit to promote your qualifications. To keep your PMP credential, however, you'll need to submit a renewal fee and earn 60 new professional development units (PDUs) every three years. These must include 35 education units in three required subject areas and 25 giving back units.

Suspensions and Expirations

PMI credentials are guarantees to employers of an individual's continual development and consistent performance. If you don't go through the maintenance and renewal processes your credential will be suspended. You'll then have a year to complete the PDU requirements and pay all fees in order for it to be restored. If you haven't fulfilled the continuing certification requirements within the year of your suspension, your credential will expire. You'll have to undergo the entire application process all over again to regain it.

Additional Resources on PMI Credentials

Study.com offers a few online resources that can help you acquire PMI credentials. These Project Management Training and Project Management courses break down all facets of project management and the certification process through video lessons and transcripts. You'll be able to go through the material at your own convenience. Also included are practice quizzes and exams to make sure you are grasping key project management concepts.

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