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PMP Exam Time Management

How to efficiently manage your PMP exam duration

Besides being tough, the PMP exam is quite long too. Therefore, the way you manage your the allotted duration is key to succeed the certification exam on your first try. The following tips and tricks can help you ensure efficient time management so keep on reading. 

The PMP exam duration is 3 hours and 50 minutes, without counting the two 10-minute breaks. This means that the whole exam lasts 4 hours and 10 minutes if you decide to take both breaks, which I strongly advise taking into consideration how exhausting it can be to sit for such a long time. However, you should be careful to not exceed the break time otherwise the exam timer will start and you’ll be losing time dedicated to answering questions. 

Knowing that the exam duration is 230 minutes, it should take you 1.27 min to answer a single question: 230 min / 180 questions = 1.27 min, 25 minutes to answer 20 questions, and 1h:16 min to answer 60 questions. So, if you end up finishing your first set of 60 questions in more than 1h:16 min, you might want to be more careful about your exam time management. 

To do that, you should note how much time it’s taking you to answer 20 questions, for instance, in order to keep an eye on how you’re managing the time you have. If you find yourself taking way more time answering questions than you should, do the following; scan the question while focusing on key terms and then move directly to the last sentence to figure out what answer you should pick. 

Keep in mind that it shouldn’t take you more than 2 minutes to answer a single question otherwise, you might not be able to answer all of the exam questions on time. If you find yourself wasting too much time on a complicated question, you might as well skip it since you’ll be risking losing precious time on a question that you’re not even confident you’ll be answering correctly.

Efficient time management requires practice, therefore, while taking practice tests and mock exams, try to mimic the whole exam experience by using a timer to answer a set of 180 questions, and only then you’ll be able to judge your ability to answer all questions in the designated time.