What is Project Management?
Project management is the art of starting, organizing, planning, and managing projects. Essential tasks in project management include managing scope, time, and cost of projects. Up until the 20th century, project management was practiced informally in a variety of fields. In the mid-20th century, the Project Management Institute (PMI) was established, and the field of project management was first recognized as a legitimate field of study. Today, project managers and other project management professionals can earn a degree in project management, but the more common route is certification.
PMI, the authority on project management, offers several project management certifications for project management professionals according to their field of study or project management methodology. The two most popular project management certifications are PMP® and CAPM®, which are general certifications for project managers in all fields of study. The fastest growing certification program at PMI is the PMI-ACP (Project Management Institute - Agile Certified Practitioner). The PMI-ACP is for project management professionals that practice Agile methodologies, such as Scrum, Kanban, and Lean.
Learn more about project management and topics covered on the Project Management certification exams on our Free PMP and CAPM Tutorial Guides.
The entry-level certification in project management, CAPM® or Certified Associate in Project Management is ideal for new and aspiring project managers with little-to-no experience in the field. The CAPM® certification serves as an industry-recognized verification of your competence in project management. The skills you learn as part of your CAPM® certification process will assist you as develop hands-on experience in project management.
To qualify for the CAPM® certification, individuals must meet one of two requirements:
- A high school diploma 1,500 hours of experience in project management
- 23 hours of project management education
If you do not yet have experience in project management, the easiest way to qualify is to take a CAPM® training course. After completing the CAPM course, the student must apply for certification online by submitting proof of eligibility (work history or CAPM® training course). After acceptance of the application and payment, students have one year to take the CAPM exam. CAPM® fees are $225 and $300 for PMI members and non-members respectively. Students currently enrolled in a degree program can take advantage of the PMI student bundle, and pay one fee of $257 for PMI membership and the CAPM® exam.
Unlike the PMP®, students seeking CAPM® certification can take a proctored online exam. The CAPM exam consists of 150 questions, 135 graded questions and 15 ungraded beta questions for possible placement on future exams. PMI does not publish data on the score required to pass the CAPM exam, as each test is individually evaluated. That said it’s recommended that you score at least a 61%, which would require you to answer at least 83 of the 135 questions correctly.
Review PMI’s CAPM® handbook for more information about the exam.
The PMP® is the gold standard in project management certification. Regardless of your field of expertise or the particular methodology that you practice, PMP® certification provides credibility of your project management expertise and credentials in any field. There are two ways to meet certification requirements for the PMP exam:
- High school diploma or Associate’s Degree + 4,500 hours of project management experience
- Bachelor’s degree + 3,500 hours of project management experience
The PMP® exam is $405 and $555 for members and non-members respectively. Applicants are encouraged to become members to take advantage of PMI’s free member and exam preparation resources. Applicants are given four hours to take the 200-question PMP® exam. Of the 200 questions, 175 questions are graded, and 25 are ungraded beta questions for future exams. Applicants should earn at least a 61% or answer at least 106 of the 175 items correctly. It’s important to note that PMI does not publish pass requirements, and the final pass/fail designation is determined on the day of the test.
PMI’s Agile Certified Professional or PMI-ACP® certification is for experienced project managers that practice Agile methodologies including extreme programming (XP), Kanban, Lean, Scrum, and Test-Driven Development (TDD). PMI-ACP® is PMI’s fastest growing certification, which can be explained in part, by the growing number of careers in tech and computer software development. Agile project management methods are most commonly practiced in the software development industry.
To qualify for the PMI-ACP® exam, project managers should meet the following requirements:
- High School Diploma or Associate’s Degree
- PMP®, PgMP® certification, or 2,000 hours of project management experience working with teams in the past five years
- 1,500 experience working with agile project teams or using agile methodologies (in addition to the 2,000 hours) in the past three years
- 21 hours of training in Agile methodologies
To qualify for the PMI-ACP® certification exam, project managers must submit an online application demonstrating satisfaction of the above prerequisites. After the five-day review period, applicants must pay the $435 or $495 application fee for members or non-members respectively. The PMI-ACP® exam consists of 100 graded questions and 20 ungraded beta questions for placement on future exams. PMI does not publish pass requirements for the exam.
Learn more about the exam in the PMI-ACP® Certification Handbook.
What Other Certifications Are Available?
In addition to CAPM®, PMP®, and PMI-ACP®, PMI offers over five certifications suited to specific approaches or industries. There are also a variety of other project management methodologies and certifications produced by other companies including PRiSM, PRINCE2, and Critical Path Method (CPM). The most popular project management certifications in NYC include:
Project Management Certifications from the Project Management Institute:
- Project Management Professional Certification (PMP®)
- Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM®)
- Program Management Professional (PgMP®)
- Portfolio Management Professional (PfMP®)
- PMI Professional in Business Analysis (PMI-PBA®)
- PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP®)
- PMI Risk Management Professional (PMI-RMP®)
- PMI Scheduling Professional (PMI-SP®)
Project Management Certifications from The Scrum Alliance:
- Certified Scrum Master
- Certified Scrum Product Owner
- Certified Scrum Developer
- Certified Scrum Professional
Project Certifications from CompTIA:
- CompTIA Project +
Project Management Certifications from EC-Council:
- Certified Project Management Practitioner (CPMP)
- Project Management in IT Security (PMITS)
Project Management Certifications from the American Academy of Project Management:
- Master Project Manager (MPM)
- Certified International Project Manager (CIPM)