If you want to land a good project manager role, one of the things to consider is certification.
When I did my first project management training, it was all classroom based. Fortunately, that isn’t the case any longer and if you can’t take a week off work or travel to a training center, there are plenty of online resources that will help you get ahead in your certification journey.
Here are 5 types of online project management study resources you can use for certification prep, regardless of what exam you are taking or method you are following.
1. Online courses
Obviously, the first thing I’m going to recommend is an online training course, tailored to prepare you for the certification you’re going for.
Here are the courses I recommend for popular project management credentials:
For Project Management Professional (PMP)®: The PM PrepCast
For PRINCE2: Mplaza’s PRINCE2 Practitioner prep course
For APM PMQ: Parallel Project Training
For Google Project Management: Google Career Certificates
There are dozens of providers offering online, hybrid and classroom models, so if you are going for a certification, your absolute first starting point should be a reputable, recommended training course that covers the complete syllabus.
I’m not aware of any publicly-available PMQ simulators but training providers will offer you practice exams and plenty of experience at mocks before your real exam.
There is no exam simulator for the Google PM course but you won’t need one because the courses include practice quizzes. Plus, you can the graded quizzes and hands-on projects as many times as you like anyway.
2. Study notes
You can prepare for the PRINCE2, APM PMQ, Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM)®,
Yes, people share their own study notes online!
These notes usually contain crucial information from training courses and lectures, making them useful as a starting point for your own notes, or as a refresh from a different perspective once you’ve made your own.
The good news is that there are plenty of study notes available online.
You can use the study notes on Studocu, which students from top universities like Imperial College London and Lancaster University created.
Users also rate the study notes on the platform to help fellow users find the most helpful lecture notes, summaries, and exam preparation documents from a variety of courses.
At the time of writing, there are limited project management contributions on Studocu, but it’s a growing platform and I found some really interesting ones. Online searches will also turn up files other people have shared.
3. Book summaries
Are you pressed for time when it comes to your exam preparation?
Many of the syllabuses require you to have general management knowledge. When I took APMQ (when it was called APMP admittedly), the syllabus covered leadership and
You can use Blinkist to listen to summaries of project management and general management books in fifteen minutes or less on any of your devices.
Got a question? Chances are someone has already had the same question, especially about prep for standardized tests.
Forums are a great place to browse common Q&A. Whether it’s what to expect on exam day, the best course providers, study tips for online education or something else, you’ll find a group of friendly, expert contributors in forums.
They are also a good place to ask about the project management skills you need to land a job, beyond getting through the test, so definitely worth logging into.
And I’m sure there are things you can contribute too.
The forum where I’m the most active is projectmanagement.com (a Project Management Institute website) although I also hang out in Project Management Café, which is our very own Facebook group.
To round out your knowledge, try a wiki.
There are a number of good sites online that will help you generally get better at project management, and that’s really what a good certification exam should test.
These are the ones I’d recommend spending some time browsing:
- Max Wideman: a huge repository of information about managing projects. Not a traditional wiki, but an amazing site to browse.
- Praxis: a detailed journey through the different aspects of project management. Easy to navigate, but tailored to the Praxis methodology, so if your certification uses a different one, then just be aware of translating the
jargonand processes to what you will be examined in.
- PMI Standards+: if you are working towards
PMP, this is the wiki for you. You’ll need to be a PMI member to access the resource, but if you aren’t and you are going for a PMI exam, then it is worth registering.
Use wikis as a supplement to your other study materials, for example when you want to go deeper into a topic or your stuck and need someone else to explain a concept in a different way to your prep books.
There is a wide range of online resources for project managers available, so it’s worth looking outside your exam prep course to what else will support you as you get ready for your exam.
However, remember that your project management career doesn’t only rest on whether you pass an exam. Soft skills, and the ability to put those skills into practice, are hard to test in exam conditions – experience is also what employers are looking for.
More exam prep resources
Here are some links to popular content to help you prepare for whatever certification is next for you.