My Take on the PMI-ACP Exam: Tips for Your Clients
Christine Aykac / 01 July 2014
After taking the PMP and PMI-Risk Management professional exams, the PMI-ACP exam was my third exposure to PMI’s exam style. I thought that the exam was similar to the current PMI style, i.e., find the best answer and inputs & outputs of the methodologies, meetings, reports and charts. The questions were based on PMI’s PMP process groups and ITTOs, even though there is no standard or knowledge area in PMBOK about agile.
Sometimes, I wasn’t sure how to answer, because it wasn’t clear what methodology was being referred to. Scrum, Lean or XP? Do I reread the question(s) and choose the most common sense option? I also think reading all of the recommended books only leads to more confusion, because the terminology used in the books is not the same. I believe that my having experience with Agile manifesto and principles, Scrum, XP and Lean methodologies helped me choose the best answers and pass the exam.
Regardless of your experience, of the 10 recommended by PMI, I recommend that your clients read at least the following books to get familiar with the terminology:
- Agile Project Management with Scrum
- Agile Estimating and Planning
- Agile Project Management: Creating Innovative Products Second Edition
- Lean – Agile Software Development
The questions I encountered on the exam were on the following topics:
|Agile manifesto: fill out the exact wording||Tools used in Lean and Kanban||Agile Estimating and Planning|
|Agile leadership style||Burn down & burn up charts; inputs & outputs||Sprint Retrospective Meeting|
|Agile principles: what is in or out, comparing to Lean, XP or Scrum||User stories: cards, task boards, content||Scrum of Scrums|
|Incremental development and differences||Roles: Scrum master, XP Coach, team, etc.||Information Radiator|
|XP||Spike||TDD (test driven)|
|Release||Planning poker||Cumulative flow diagrams|
|Sprint and comparison||Fractional Assignment||Iterations|
I recommend taking a course that provides an optimal mix of classroom lectures, interactive case studies, assignments and additional reading materials to successfully prepare you to pass the PMI-ACP exam.