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The Top 5 Project Management Certification Resources

written by: Finn Orfano • edited by: Marlene Gundlach • updated: 3/9/2013

There are quite a few articles on the Internet about PM Certification Courses and PM Certification Choices. This article discusses some top Project Management Certification Resources that can move an aspiring novice along the path to become a complete project management professional.

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    By the time a candidate chooses to take a project management course, he or she has become aware of the valuable project management credentials necessary to see projects through to successful completion. However, before he can excel in an effective project management environment, a candidate must go beyond the credentialing course and understand the value of the significant amount of time and effort required to pass the exams. Mere exam preparation in order to garner recognition through certification does not make someone into a project management professional. The process requires an overall investment of practical approach, dedication and real hands-on experience.

    Here is a compiled list of the top five project management certification resources.

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    Certification as a PMP

    The certification program (PMP) conducted by the Project Management Institute (PMI) is the most coveted project management qualification, recognized throughout the United States and in many countries around the globe. In fact, there are well over twenty thousand PMP certificate holders spread over twenty six countries. Many organizations insist on this achievement before offering employment as a project professional.

    The PMP focuses on five important factors of project management – Project Initiation, Project Planning, Project Execution, Project Control and Project Completion. The PMP exam consists of 200 objective multiple-choice questions with a time limit of four hours. But it doesn't stop with passing the exam. In addition, you must earn 60 Project Development Units (PDUs) through continuing education in order to qualify for recertification when the time arises.

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    Program Management Professional (PgMP)

    The PgMP is the PMI’s specifically developed course to recognize and award the abilities of the project professional with a minimum of four years' project management experience and four to seven years of program management experience. Candidates who earn this credential are internationally recognized as professionals with the knowledge and experience to accomplish the strategic objectives of project management.

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    PMI-SP: The Scheduling Professional

    Due to the increasing market demand for professionals with advanced expertise in critical areas of project management, the PMI has introduced this new specialized course. When a program is multi-located and diverse, scheduling management assumes critical importance. If you've had the necessary experience and put in the study time, the PMI Scheduling Professional (PMI-SP) Examination will give you the certification you need.

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    CAPM: Certified Associate

    The Certified Association in Project Management (CAPM) provides entry-level credentialing for business and project managers. As you work your way into this fascinating career, if you've demonstrated your commitment to project management processes and you have at least 1,500 hours of project experience you can sit for this exam. In lieu of the experience, you can demonstrate 23 hours of project management experience.

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    CPM Program

    This is a project management certification program offered at an advanced level. This certification course is meant for those who have successfully maintained their portfolios in a project management system and showcased their abilities. It's not just about passing the PMP exams; it also requires you to be one of those passionate professionals who intends to do much more than just gain certificates in order to be recognized as a project management professional. Emphasis is given on real-world experience, and most of the exams conducted are practical in nature.

    These are some PM certification resources, and you've most likely identified which will best suit your educational and experience level. There are also a few area-specific certifications. Whichever path your choose, remember that evolving into an all-around project management professional is achieved through hands-on experience with project teams and a continuing commitment to the field.

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