How to prepare for the APM PMQ exam – part 2

By Ben Snell 

Hi, in the fourth edition of my blog I’ll be covering the remainder of the APM PMQ exam; how to prepare for the exam, some study tips (my area of expertise being a former teacher) and what the exam looks like. In the last blog I went through choosing a provider and starting the study process.

After starting my study journey and finding it somewhat daunting, I progressed onto answering questions under exam conditions with no notes while steadily increasing the number of questions I would answer in one sitting. Over the course of a few months I would send a set of questions off to my tutor who would mark them and give feedback which I would then integrate into my future answers. 

Doing this also helped me realise which topics I was weakest at, while you shouldn’t avoid a huge number of topics there are always going to be a few topics that it’s just not worth investing time into (for me, I could never wrap my head around governance so I chose to not use any time revising it). This is a good way of streamlining your revision and making yourself more efficient.

After six months of studying for a few hours a day I was ready for the exam. Taking the exam during the height of COVID meant that I could at least take it from the comfort of my own home. This meant having to train my laptop and phone camera on myself to ensure I wasn’t cheating but after all the preparation I had done I genuinely felt I had no need to cheat.

Repeating exam questions and getting the exam technique down meant I felt more prepared for this exam than I ever had before. It’s not easy and there’s no magic solution but being able to go from totally overwhelmed to extremely confident in the space of six months shows that it’s a method that really works. If you had any experience it would not take as long. The questions that came up were really similar to the many I had prepared during my study so I felt really relaxed being able to write down questions that, by this point, I felt like I had practiced a million times.

Thanks for reading my blog. Next time I’ll be covering what to do after you pass the APM PMQ and what kinds of roles to be looking out for.