Greetings NCARB community!
I'm happy to say I passed PjM on Monday, and am thankful for all the encouragement, support, and motivation from others on this forum. I've now passed my first 5 and am taking CE next Monday, and hope to report good news next week!
Even though my approach for this exam wasn't unique, I thought I would post and share my thoughts just to reiterate the importance of the following resources. I also have posted after each of my previous exams and it just feels appropriate to continue that trend.
As I mentioned in my PcM post, I decided to study for PcM, PjM, and CE all together. I had about 5 weeks to study for the first two, which was fairly aggressive but given the studying I've already done for PPD, PDD, and PA, I felt comfortable with that timeline.
Over the weekend when reviewing before the exam, I realized I probably spent more time studying the PjM content than studying for the PcM material, so I felt much more confident going into PjM than I did for PcM. Typically I think taking exams 3 days apart could be a little too close (depending on the person and exams, of course), but I felt well prepared and was much more comfortable with this content.
What to Study
- AHPP - This book is the most important resource for these three exams, especially for Practice and Project Management. I used the Narmour Wright/Wiley list of suggested chapters to help me focus on what I was reading.
- Schiff Hardin Lectures - I listened to these daily, focusing on the A201 and B101 lectures. This was the bulk of the "studying" I did for contracts, in addition to reading the AHPP. These lectures are easy to follow, and make the contracts much easier to understand. He breaks down the legal jargon and provides real-world examples to give a full picture of what each part of the contract covers.
- Ballast - I read this first and skimmed through it again over the weekend. I don't think it's a necessity but it helped reinforce some of the ideas in AHPP.
- I also did some of the Ballast practice exams/questions. These were ok, but I mainly used them to identify my weak areas.
What to Know
- Contracts. Definitely know and understand the A201, B101, and C401. Be able to apply them to a given situation. Nothing too complicated but this is essential.
- Scheduling. Know the different types of schedules, understand how to read them.
- Project delivery methods
- Fee calculations
- Everything else covered in the ARE Handbook. The Handbook was very accurate describing what would be on this exam.
- Not as many "pick 3" or "pick 4" out of a list of 6 (had a lot of these in PcM), which I was thankful for.
- More calculations were required than I expected. Nothing complicated at all though, if you can add/subtract/multiply/divide you'll be ok. I like to save all the math questions for the end and do them at the same time, and there were probably 10-15.
- I definitely felt more confident at the end of this exam than I did for PcM. I think that's mainly due to the focus of my studying leading into this exam, I know others have said they were more comfortable with PcM than PjM.
I've said this before, but the ARE Handbook was very accurate in what I saw on the exam. The content covered, the types of questions you'll be asked, etc. Make sure you refer to the Handbook frequently while studying to make sure you know all the info covered.
Hope that helps! Spending this week studying/refreshing content for CE, hope I can have more good news next week.
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