How much does it cost to get a PMI certification? – Forbes Advisor

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If you have started or plan to start a career in project management, certification from the Project Management Institute (PMI) can strengthen your project management skills and make you more marketable as a project management professional.

Job prospects for project managers are excellent, with a projected growth of 33% (translating to approximately 22 million new jobs) from 2017 to 2027. Earning a PMI certification can make you a standout candidate for the many career opportunities available in this field.

What are PMI certifications?

PMI certificates are diplomas that validate your knowledge and skills in project management. The Project Management Institute administers these certifications. Earning a PMI certification shows that you have demonstrated the knowledge and skills necessary to be a successful project manager.

Certifications are available for project management professionals at all stages of their career. These certifications help professionals build their skills and take their careers to the next level. The Project Management Institute offers the following PMI certifications.

Project Management Professional (PMP®)

The PMP Certification focuses on skills related to managing people, leading project teams, managing the technical elements of projects, and connecting projects to an organization’s strategies and goals.

Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM®)

The CAPM certification focuses on managing large projects with a variety of approaches. It covers the fundamentals of project management and the principles of business analysis.

Program Management Professional (PgMP®)

The PgMP Certification develops the skills you need to coordinate and manage multiple projects within an organization.

Portfolio Management Professional (PfMP®)

The PfMP certification teaches individuals how to implement strategic initiatives in an organization’s portfolio management. This title means that you have the ability to manage one or more portfolios according to the objectives of an organization.

PMI Professional in Business Analysis (PMI-PBA®)

The PMI-PBA certification focuses on using business analysis to establish precise functional requirements and achieve desired business results.

PMI Risk Management Professional (PMI-RMP®)

The PMI-RMP certification demonstrates that a project management professional can identify issues, assess risks, mitigate threats, and achieve positive results while conserving resources.

PMI Planning Professional (PMI-SP®)

The PMI-SP certification emphasizes the fundamental role of planning in managing resources and activities and in achieving positive results in project management.

PMI Agile Certified Practitioner (PMI-ACP®)

The PMI-ACP certification focuses on agile approaches and collaboration in project management.

PMI Project Management Ready™

The PMI Project Management Ready certification teaches high school and post-secondary students the basics of project management. This certification process aims to help young learners determine if project management is a good career option for them.

How long do PMI certifications last?

Each certification has different requirements and there are many ways to prepare for your certification exam. The time it takes to earn a PMI certification varies depending on the degree you seek and your individual learning style.

If you already have a college degree and years of relevant work experience under your belt, you can complete your certification requirements faster than someone starting right out of high school. If you’ve already completed your high school or bachelor’s degree requirements, you may be able to earn your certification in as little as eight to 12 weeks.

You must meet education requirements before moving forward with a PMI certification. Obtaining a degree usually takes two to four years. You should also schedule time to study for the certification exam. Although these exams only take a few hours, candidates often study for two to three months in preparation.

Many universities offer prep programs for project management certification tests. These programs often last five days and resemble a bootcamp. They use courses that align with the content of the PMI certification exam. PMI certification preparation programs can provide you with training hours that also count towards PMI’s application requirements.

How much do PMI certification courses cost?

You can find courses to help you prepare for your certification exam through the Project Management Institute, universities, and other project management training organizations. There are many options for certification courses and costs vary widely.

PMI’s authorized on-demand PMP exam prep course costs $699 for members and $799 for non-members. You can also choose bootcamp programs, such as a live online bootcamp, for about $1,200. Project Management Academy offers three bootcamp course training packages which range in price from around $2,000 to $3,000. Clemson offers an online program for $3,000, and a program similar to Penn State costs about $1,200.

Some universities offer comprehensive project management training programs rather than just certification prep courses. For instance, UCLA offers a $6,000 program that you can complete online or in class. This program lasts one to two years. The UCLA course differs from other programs because it prepares you for your certification exam and confers a separate certificate from UCLA.

Low-cost options are also available. For instance, Udemy offers a $20 seminar that includes approximately 30 hours of lectures and online content.

How much do PMI certification exams cost?

The cost of PMI certification exams depends on the type of certification. Each exam covers material that is relevant to its corresponding certification. Since every exam is different, the costs also vary.

You can take an exam up to three times during your one-year eligibility period. In other words, if you fail your exam the first time, you can retake it up to two times. However, if you fail your exam three times, you must wait one year before retaking it.

To retake an exam, you must pay a re-examination fee. It costs $275 for PMI members or $375 for non-members.

Below is a breakdown of the costs of the PMI certification exams.

  • PMP®
    • PMI members: $405
    • All the others: $555
  • CAPM®
    • PMI members: $225
    • All the others: $300
  • PgMP®
    • PMI members: $800
    • All the others: $1,000
  • PfMP®
    • PMI members: $800
    • All the others: $1,000
  • PMI-PBA®
    • PMI members: $405
    • All the others: $555
  • PMI-RMP®
    • PMI members: $520
    • All the others: $670
  • PMI-SP®
    • PMI members: $520
    • All the others: $670
  • PMI-ACP®
    • PMI members: $435
    • All the others: $495

How much is the PMI renewal fee?

PMI membership has many benefits, including lower certification exam and renewal fees. The fee to renew your certification is $60 for PMI members and $150 for non-members.

PMI membership fees are $129 per year for most people. Students pay a reduced rate of $32 per year, and PMI members who have been members in good standing for five years or have retired can maintain their membership for $65 per year.

How do I maintain my certification?

To maintain your PMI certification, you must meet continuing certification requirements, which involve earning Professional Development Units (PDUs). Depending on the type of PMI certification you hold, you must earn between 15 and 60 PDUs to maintain the title.

You can earn PDUs by furthering your education or by giving back to the project management community. Options include taking classes, attending seminars, mentoring newcomers to the profession, giving presentations, and creating relevant content.

The essential

When deciding which path to take for your PMI certification training, you need to consider the quality of the program, the materials covered, and the cost. It’s hard to estimate how much it costs to get a PMI certification because there are so many factors to consider.

Ultimately, you can expect to pay between $20 and $6,000 for PMI certification courses and exam preparation. It then costs between $225 and $1,000 to take your PMI certification exam, depending on the certification chosen and whether or not you are a PMI member. PMI membership costs between $32 and $129, depending on your particular situation.

In total, you could spend any amount between $230 and $7,130 to get a PMI certification.

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