There are two categories of PMP aspirants,
- Those who give more than required importance to Brain Dump
- Those who give less than required importance to Brain Dump
The key is to understand that brain dump is the crucial to correctly and quickly answer 20 to 25 questions in the exam but the brain dump alone cannot get you through.
So what exactly should your PMP Brain Dump include? As most other things in project management the answer to this is – It depends!
It depends on what are the concepts/names/formulas you find difficult to remember because that is the sole purpose of a brain dump. The first thing you can do before the exam begins is to jot down everything you find difficult to remember so that you can quickly refer to it when the relevant question shows up in the exam.
You can start to design your brain dump in the last week leading up to PMP exam so that you are starting to design it when you have finished studying everything and at the same time you have ample time to practice it. Below is what can typically go into your brain dump,
- Formulas – All earned value formulas (including EAC, ETC, VAC), Point of Total Assumption, Communication Channels, Present Value
- List of names – Stages of Team Development, Different Types of Powers, 7 Basic Quality Tools, Risk Response Strategies
- Common Values – How much time does a PM spend communicating, Values of Sigma
- PG-KA Mapping – This one is not compulsory but can come in handy. Do you really need to mug up the PG-KA mapping for the exam? Read here
Ofcourse whatever mentioned above is just a sample structure of what can the PMP Brain Dump look like, it will obviously differ for every individual. But the goal remains the same – to jot down as much key info as possible during the short time window of ~15 mins you get just before the exam begins so that it can come in handy when relevant questions show up.
Note – No matter what you do, under no circumstances should you use an available brain dump created by someone else. Create your own brain dump!