Sunday, May 20, 2007

Pass Mark

When I took my first full text from Rita's Fasttrack, results said 'Sorry, you did not pass'.

I had scored 78%. I thought the pass percentage was much lower than 78%. Still I felt despair and had adrenaline rush in my belly. Because I was just 2 days away for my scheduled exam. As it was very late in the night (11:30 pm) I could not call up any friends who had taken PMP to confirm about the pass mark.

I referred to Rita Mulcahy's book. It said 82% is the pass mark. I just couldn't believe it.

I went to PMI's offical site to learn about the pass mark. There was no straight forward information.

I drafted a mail to my colleague asking about the pass percentage with a background description of my worries. Anyway, he was not in the office at that odd hour.

I searched Rita's website. There again not adequate information.

I sent a mail to Rita's customer service.

Then I sent a mail to the customer service of PMI (

Then again searched in the net and got the customer service number of PMI. It's Pennsylvania number. I called immediately and spoke to the representative. Finally got my answer that I would require only 61% to pass the PMP exam. I was glad, at last.

As a response to my mail from Rita's website I got a straight forward answer about the pass mark.

Interestingly, from PMI I got an elaborate mail explaining about the split of questions et all. I have given it below. I hope it would be a useful info to everyone.

Dear Mr. Seenivasan,

Greetings. Thank you for your email. Candidates need to answer at least 61% of the questions correctly to pass the exam. PMI's diagnostic score report will show each candidate their overall pass or fail status. In addition, a picture of overall strengths and weaknesses within each Domain will be provided on the score report.
Each of the six Domains have different amounts of questions within them and are represented as a percentage that are relative to each other but not equal to each other. That alone means that 100% of Domain 1, is not equal to, but rather relative to, 100% of Domain 2. Therefore, one should not take an overall average of the percentages given as that will not produce the overall passing percentage. It is possible to fail one of the domains and yet still pass the exam. It all depends on how many items were present in the domains that were failed.
The exam consists of the 200 questions, 25 of which are considered pretest. Pretest questions do not affect your score and are used in examinations as an effective and legitimate way to increase the number of future PMP examination questions. The pretest questions are randomly placed throughout the exam.
The following reflects the percent of questions on the 2005 PMP exam in each of the performance domains:
- Initiation 11 %
- Planning 23%
- Executing 27%
- Monitoring and Controlling 21%
- Closing 9%
- Professional and Social Responsibility 9%
In addition to reviewing your score report to determine areas on the exam that may need more attention, please click on the links below for more information that should be helpful to you as you prepare for the PMP exam:

If you have any questions or concerns please do not hesitate to contact me.


Matt Swift
Customer Care Associate
Project Management Institute