26. October 2019

The PMI® adapts the PMP® test as of July 2020

Only last spring the Project Management Institute (PMI)® updated the standard work for the PMP® exams – the PMBOK® Guide – with the 6th edition. One of the major innovations was a shift in content towards agile project management approaches. However, this reaction to current trends in project management has not led to a comprehensive change in the process landscape described in the PMBOK® Guide. Rather, the focus was on tailoring considerations, since project management processes are also applied in agile processes, which massively influences their implementation (even if the goal and function of the processes within the process landscape remain unaffected by this).

With the recent change of the PMP® Examination Content Outline, the PMI® goes one step further and puts a stronger focus on agile projects. Of course, the current 6th edition of the PMBOK® Guide remains the content basis for the examination, but PMP® aspirants must also have an understanding of the special challenges in agile projects.

The Examination Content Outline comprises tasks defined by the PMI® which project managers must prove to be successful in order to be certified as PMP®. On the whole, this means demonstrating a deep understanding of the contents of the PMBOK® Guide in the exam. These tasks have now been adapted for agile projects.

For the exam, this has the consequence that the way in which the contents are queried changes. The formal framework remains unchanged (4 hours, 200 multiple choice questions, 4 possible answers, 1 correct answer). In the exam, however, the contents of the PMBOK® Guide are not simply queried, but are put into a situational context with each exam question, in which the best answer should then be selected.

With the latest update of the Examination Content Outline, more situations from an agile environment are presented. One half of the exam should contain questions from a predictable and therefore plan-oriented project management approach, the other half should contain questions from agile or hybrid (i.e. mixed) approaches.

The new PMP® Examination Content Outline is available for download at

New Domains

In addition, the so-called knowledge domains will be adapted. These are knowledge areas to which the questions are assigned in the exam. Previously, the domains were oriented to the process groups of the process landscape (Initiating, Planning, Executing, Monitoring & Controlling, Closing).

The new domains comprise:

  1. People (42%)
  2. Process (50%)
  3. Business Environment (8%)

The definition of the new domains is above all a new orientation of the assessment of the examination. Every PMP® aspirant must pass in the domains in order to pass the PMP® exam.

What do I have to learn for the new exam?

Basically, not much changes for PMP® aspirants. The stronger focus on agile project management was already introduced with the current edition of the PMBOK® Guide. The exam now follows at this point.

It is still the case that PMP® aspirants should be prepared for every possible question. This now increasingly includes questions from an agile environment. Agile approaches and their discussion is already part of our PMP® courses. Essential terms and the discussion of agile methods are already part of our PMP® preparation courses.

In addition, our training materials have been supplemented in particular with exercise questions in order to take account of the stronger focus on agile project management.

We also prepare you for your PMP® exam in the best possible way with our new Content Outline.


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