Would a graduate-level course in project management meet the academic requirements equivalent to “23 contact hours of formal project management education?”

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Full question: I completed an MBA program from Bradford University in 2006. Now I would like to sit for the Certified Associate in Project Management (CAPM) exam at a testing center in London. Would a graduate-level course in project management meet the academic requirements equivalent to “23 contact hours of formal project management education?” Asked by Asad.

Answer 1:

Short answer: “Yes.” According to the U.K. chapter of the Project Management Institute (PMI), an MBA in project management does meet the 23-hours requirement for formal project management education.

Long answer: “Yes.” The MBA in project management will meet the required educational contact hours. The first step you must take is to register with PMI via the online application form or snail mail. The next step is to take the required CAPM exam, which lasts three hours, contains 150 questions and is based on A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK Guide). This exam can be taken at any Prometric test site; details on how to register for the exam will be sent to you from PMI after it accepts your application.

You haven\’t stated if you have any professional certifications or if you\’re interested in any other professional certifications based on project management. You may be interested in the following certifications:

CompTIA Project+: This is a globally recognized project management certification that does not expire and attracts 120 guided-learning hours. In the U.K., it is mapped to level 4 of the National Qualifications Framework. (This sits at the same educational level as a BTEC/Edexcel professional award.)

Prince2: There are two levels of Prince2: Prince2 Foundation and Prince2 Practitioner. It was developed by the U.K. Office of Government Commerce and is quickly growing in popularity outside the U.K. As with PMI credentials, IT professionals holding the Prince2 Practitioner certification must re-register every three to five years.

ITIL v3: This certification works well with project management.

As for which is more relevant, at the end of the day, it depends on which methodology the company in question uses, as well as how it implements it.


Answer 2:

Examining the documentation on the PMI Web site, I think the answer depends on the various classes you have completed.

The 23 hours of formal project management education often is accomplished by a single delivery management or project management course in “semester” format at the university level. As a result, you should have completed the education-related requirements for your CAPM certification. Therefore, I would advise you to go and schedule the exam for your CAPM.

Longer term, you should be able to apply your project management experience to pursue the far more accepted PMP credential.

The other element here to keep in mind is that the CAPM is considered an entry-level credential and likely will not provide a significant competitive edge in terms of building your attractiveness as a candidate. Your master’s postgraduate education as a project manager probably will provide far more value to an organization than CAPM Certification. Further, the CAPM is seldom singled out as a way to find an excellent candidate for a position. When an organization has a project management need, it tends to seek a candidate with a more advanced certification that indicates more experience and a more comprehensive coverage of project management competencies.

For example, a search for the CAPM credential on Monster.com turned up just 97 positions, indicating how often organizations are specifically requesting that certification. By contrast, searching on a similar basis for the term “PMP” turned up 1,876 positions.



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CertMag Staff


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