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Get Out Your Checkbook

Earning the PgMP isn’t free, it’ll cost you plenty. The electronic exam fee requires a payment of $1,500 for PMI members. And if you’re not a PMI member, you’ll have to cough up $1,800 for the exam experience. Note that you can join PMI for $129, so it’s really silly to pay the extra $300 for not being a PMI member. Either way, this is some serious cash for an exam that you just might not pass. Maybe that’s why this certification hasn’t seen much traction over the past year.

If, for some reason, you pay the $1,500 for the exam process and PMI considers you unworthy of the PgMP status, you can get a refund. You’ll receive $700 of your exam application fee if PMI deems that you don’t qualify as a program manager or if you fail your application audit. Good-bye, 800 bucks.

Once you submit your application and are approved for the PgMP exam, you have one year to complete the exam. If you change your mind about taking the exam or can’t complete the exam in a year, you can receive a $700 refund as well. You just have to ask for the refund by Month 11 of your one-year certification eligibility.

Finally, you can receive $350 back from PMI if you complete everything but the MRA review process. Remember, you get to choose the people participating in the MRA review, you’ve already qualified for and passed the PgMP exam, and all that’s left is for 12 people that you’ve selected to report on how great you are. Kinda silly not to complete the process.

Preparing for the PgMP Process

First, hop over to PMI’s website for the most specific exam details. You’ll want to check out its certification handbook and exact requirements for completing the PgMP certification application. Second, you might as well cough up some bucks for its book The Standard for Program Management.

This PMI certification exam is slated to change on August 31, 2009. The new PgMP exam, details of which are pending as of this writing, will likely be based on a new version of The Standard for Program Management. Always check with PMI for exam specifics.

This is a serious, cumbersome certification. You’ll want to be as prepared as possible if you venture down this certification path.

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