PMP Exam – Learning the 44 Processes in the 3rd Edition PMBOK

Posted on January 30, 2009 by


As mentioned in yesterday’s posting, for those studying to take their PMP exam, it’s valuable to know for each of the 44 processes in the PMBOK® to which knowledge area it belongs and to which process group it belongs. Each process belongs to one of the nine knowledge areas (Integration, Scope, Time, Cost, Quality, Human Resource, Communications, Risk or Procurement) and one of the five process groups (Initiating, Planning, Executing, Monitoring & Controlling, and Closing). One of the best ways to learn them is to step back and look at the patterns across all 44 processes. Take some time to study page 70 in the 3rd edition PMBOK which has a table showing how all these processes fit into the knowledge areas and process groups.
One of the first things to notice is that the Initiating and Closing process groups only have two processes in them, and the Planning process group has more processes than any other group. The processes are not spread out evenly—for example, there are no Time processes in the Executing group, but there are five Time processes in the Planning group. When teaching how these processes all fit together, here are some of the tips I like to give. There are more patterns than what is listed here—please share any other patterns or tips that you have for learning the organization of the processes.

1. Integration is the only knowledge area with processes in all five process groups.
2. Procurement is the only knowledge area with processes in four process groups.
3. These two are the only knowledge areas that have a process in the Closing process group.
4. Only Planning and Monitoring and Controlling have processes in all nine knowledge areas.
5. The four Human Resources processes all have either “human” or “team” in their name
6. If the process name has the word “plan” in the name, it is in the Planning process group.