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1. Fulfill Eligibility Criteria
All PMI certifications require you to meet domain experience levels, educational levels or both before you apply. You will need to provide us with the details of this experience and/or education, so it’s best to gather and prepare this information before you open the application.
To find out the eligibility requirements, consult the handbook for the certification that interests you. Each one has unique eligibility criteria.
2. Complete Application
Once you’ve determined you meet the eligibility criteria, it’s time to apply. Collect the following information and then use our online certification system to guide you through the process.
- Contact information — email, address, phone number
- Education attained — school attended, level of education attained, degree date
- Domain experience — details of the projects, programs, portfolios you’ve worked on including qualifying hours, dates of employment, role, organization details, reference, and experience summary
- Domain education — names of courses completed, institutions attended, dates, qualifying hours
Once you open an application, it will remain active for 90 days after which time it will close.
Tip: To complete the application quickly, gather all of the information and documentation you need before opening it. Otherwise, it will likely take you multiple sessions to complete.
3. Application Review
Once we receive your application, we’ll verify that you meet the eligibility criteria and that your experience and/or education is valid and consistent with the guidelines stated in the certification handbook.
Typically the application review period will take 5–10 days, depending on the certification. Once it’s complete, we’ll email you to move on to the next step.
If we have any questions or issues with your application, we’ll email you further instructions and direction.
For each certification, a specified percentage of applications are randomly selected for audit. PMI conducts application audits to confirm the experience and/or education documented on certification applications. The purpose of the audit is to enhance the credibility of the certification program and of the certification holders. Read Frequently Asked Questions about the application audit process.
Program Management Professional (PgMP)® and Portfolio Management Professional (PfMP)® applications include an additional step of panel review. Once we have completed the initial review, a panel of PMI certification holders will evaluate your experience summaries to confirm your qualification.
After we notify you that your application is approved, it’s time to provide payment so you can move to the final stage. The fastest and easiest way to pay is through our online certification system.
Once payment is received, we’ll email you an eligibility number that you’ll use to schedule your exam appointment. You are eligible for one year, and you may take the exam up to three times during that year.
5. Schedule Exam Appointment
Once you are eligible, PMI will e-mail you exam scheduling instructions with your eligibility code, which you will need when scheduling your exam appointment. You can schedule your exam appointment online or by telephone. Full details can be found in the certification handbook and within the examination scheduling instructions. Then all that’s left is to take the exam.
Want to create an exam study plan?
- Review the certification handbook and the exam content outline — they’ll explain the exam format and topics that will be covered.
- Read current books and articles in your domain topic areas.
- Study! Consider enrolling in an exam prep course and forming a study group with your colleagues or friends.