How I failed and passed

For a little over four years, I’ve been working in IT project management. Right from the beginning, I understood that experience is an asset, but in order to obtain better results it is necessary to constantly learn. After I'd worked a year as a project manager (or rather, as a manager of one particularly large project), I realised that it was necessary to structure my knowledge and confirm it with a certificate. Therefore, I purchased a course on one of the local platforms that offer educational programs that cover a wide range of areas related to the IT sphere.

I’m not going to criticize these courses. For IT newbies such courses may be quite useful, as they can provide core knowledge. And, due to them, I managed to systematize my existing knowledge and get a certificate.

Then there was a job change and new projects, but I still felt the need for information that would help me work more efficiently. And one day I heard about PMCLUB from my colleague — and that's how I learned about

There’s the best possible description of the framework on the official website — it's easy to learn, easy to use and easy to teach. By the way, the "easy to teach" part is missing in the Russian version of the site, which is the one I was using. As a result, for about six months I was thinking about buying the course, and then I saw news about the special offer and realized it was the right time.

I believe that one week is enough to complete the course and prepare for certification, but I extended it over two weeks because of my workload. After completing the basic course, I got access to 12 trials and one main test. To pass, you need to get 67% of the questions right.

I passed three trial tests, my scores were high (80%, 88% and 100%), then I decided to take the main test to get the certificate. It contained a lot of situational questions, which took me plenty of time at the very beginning, but in general, when the test was done and double-checked, I still had 10 minutes left. I thought that I had nothing to add, and pressed the "send" button ... And voila — 65%. What the …?! Within the 10 minutes remaining after the test, I went through all the stages of emotional acceptance and wrote to PMCLUB asking how to buy another coupon and re-sit the exam. The founder of the school, Dmitry, gave some advice: firstly, you need to spend all the allocated time — and perhaps in my case this could help to find that one wrong answer which I needed to pass. Secondly, during the test, you need to cut off your mind from the reality that surrounds you, especially at a national level, and imagine that all the situational questions are asked in the context of an ideal world.

Within the next week, I re-watched all the videos, read the descriptions of all steps (handily available in pdf format), revised the NUPP, code of ethics (not forgetting about the ideal world), license information and discovered a fascinating project simulator. Actually, it’s in English and the language is simple there, but if it’s really a problem, then you can translate the page. I also made a cheat sheet for myself, where I listed the main documents in the framework and the stages when they are updated — this also helped me to pass.

This time I decided to take the test on Sunday: I turned off notifications on my phone, printed out some materials and started doing the tasks. When all the questions were answered, I had 20 minutes left, which were spent on double checking. So,10 seconds are left, I press the "send" button and see 72%. I did it!

Thus, I came to the following conclusions: first and foremost, trial tests primarily demonstrate how the site works, and shouldn’t be considered as a means for assessing your knowledge level. Next, when doing the test, it is necessary to abstract ourselves from past experience and the world around us, and focus on NUPP, the code of ethics and the framework itself.

And finally, the most important thing is to not despair and to not give up if you didn’t manage to pass at the first attempt.