CAPM Exam – Difficulty, Details and Preparation Tips

By Melissa

Last updated on Sep 7 2020

CAPM Exam – Difficulty, Details and Preparation Tips

Is the CAPM exam difficult?


Certified Associate in Project Management certification validates your skills and knowledge in project management. Also, it is helpful to find the best usage practices in organizations recommended by the PMI Institute. The Project Management Institute is one of the most important institutes of Project Management. It is a beginner-level certificate. If you want to start your career in project management, this certificate is the best choice to make.

In addition, you will gain all the basic concepts, principles, and methods of project management. You will get better job opportunities and a higher salary.


CAPM Certification Exam Format


The CAPM exam contains multiple choice-based questions. You have to answer a total of 150 questions within the time limit of three hours. In addition, there are fifteen pre-test questions in the exam. However, these questions do not affect your final score. Also, no information is given for the pre-test questions. Thus, you have to answer every question seriously.

In addition, this exam does not have any negative marking. One point is awarded for every correct answer and no negative marking is done for this exam for giving wrong answers.


Report on the exam

After completing the exam, you can receive result of exam. In addition, you will receive the details of your marks.

Firstly, you will receive a performance report for every knowledge area. Secondly, your answers in every knowledge area are helpful for understanding your abilities. You will also receive your results with a stamped copy before exiting the exam center. In addition, if you clear the PMP exam you will receive your certificate within a few weeks or a month.


CAPM Exam Difficulty Analysis


CAPM is an entry-level certification that provides opportunities for both beginners and professionals to enhance their skills and knowledge. The candidates wanting to acquire the CAPM Certification have adequate resources and information for their preparation. The PMBOK Guide is extremely crucial in the preparation for the CAPM exam.


 Requirements for CAPM exam:

  1. You must have a secondary diploma or a high school diploma.
  2. You also need 23 hours of education on project management.


Cost of CAPM Certification exam

You have to pay a total of $225 if you are a PMI member. However, if you do not have a PMI membership you have to pay a total of $300. If you want to take up the PMI membership you have to pay a total of $129 every year. You will also have to take up training courses and buy the materials and guides for the exam. You can take up the training course to complete your 23 hours of training and gain enough knowledge to pass the examination.


CAPM Exam Content


The exam structure of the CAPM certification according to the chapters of the PMBoK guide are:

  • Third chapter – 15%
  • Fourth chapter – 12%
  • Fifth chapter – 11%
  • Sixth chapter – 12%
  • Seventh chapter – 7%
  • Eight chapter – 6%
  • Ninth chapter – 8%
  • Tenth chapter – 6%
  • Eleventh chapter – 9%
  • Twelfth chapter – 7%
  • Thirteenth chapter – 7%

These are all covered in the preparation course and mock questions of the CAPM exam. The candidates must have a schedule for learning and understanding each of the areas completely. You can also take up online courses to prepare for the CAPM exam. All you need to do is sit back and watch while taking the important notes. Spending time on the online course and those contents will give you the perfect preparation for the exam.


Exam Duration of CAPM

The time constraint of a CAPM Certification exam is around three hours. The questions are usually graded based on their difficulty; hence you can’t know the difference between the scored and unscored questions and the psychometric analysis is also used to score you. You must read all the questions thoroughly to give the correct answers. You must allot a specific time limit to each section to finish the exam on time without missing any questions.


Booking the CAPM Certification Exam

You can book the CAPM Certification exam online either on the phone, tablet, or laptop after that you will receive 90 days to finish or complete your exam. It is advised that you should book the exam after having ensured that your preparations are complete.


Exam format

The CAPM exam contains multiple choice-based questions. A total of 150 questions appear in the exam. Out of 150, 15 questions are considered pre-test questions as they are used for future tests. Although you'll not be informed about the 15 questions in advance, so you need to answer all the questions seriously. Every multiple-choice question answered correctly will award with one point each. It does not have a system for negative marking. There are no negative marks given for incorrect answers.



To crack the CAPM exam you need to allot time to all the different areas equally. To completely master each of the sections you need to give them an equal amount of time. Your schedule must contain learning the basics, solving sample questions, and practicing. You should also take mock exams to completely understand and identify your mistakes and improve your weak areas. The mock exam score will help you show your weak areas that you can work on later.


Steps to Achieve CAPM Certification


CAPM is a beginner level certificate. However, it can be difficult to clear without any proper preparation. You must follow these steps given below to prepare completely for the CAPM exam:


Understand PMBoK Guide Completely


It is the most important resource or material available for the preparation of CAPM. You must understand the guide completely. You must read through the entire guide thoroughly. If you completed reading the guide, you can take up additional materials and resources for the CAPM exam as per your choice.

You can use this guide to prepare for both the PMP exam and the CAPM exam. It includes a huge amount of theories, concepts, principles, and so on. However, you might get stressed at the amount of the content present in the guide. But if you can complete this guide, you can guarantee your success.

You should also practice the mock exams and sample questions to improve your understanding. In addition, you will gain a clear knowledge related to all the topics covered in the guide.


Make notes of every knowledge area:


You have to make notes and write down the key points of every knowledge area. It will allow you to memorize all the knowledge areas available. It contains ten knowledge areas, forty-seven processes, and five project management process groups.

If you want to pass the CAPM exam, you must understand all the concepts of the project management first.


Visual memorization


Since the guide contains a large of texts, it might get difficult to memorize everything in detail. Therefore, you can adapt the visualization method of studying. You can use flashcards, diagrams, flow charts, sketches, models, chats, and so on. The visualization method is much easier and more effective than the normal reading method. You can learn and memorize much better.


Practice questions


You have to practice questions to improve you understand of a specific topic. It is one of the most important steps needed to complete your preparation.

There are many materials and resources available everywhere on the internet. You can also find free resources and applications available that can help you to practice. You should practice the mock exams. It will help you to understand your mistakes and weak areas. Therefore, you can work hard to strengthen your understanding of those important topics.


Read questions carefully


Before starting the exams, you can note down the knowledge areas, process groups, and the important formulas needed in the first fifteen minutes. It becomes difficult to remember the knowledge areas or the important formulas right away. Therefore, it will be more beneficial for you.

You must manage your time accordingly. You must divide the time according to the sections. It will help you to complete the exam quicker. You can use the time provided to you to note down the difficult formulas. For that, you can use the rough paper given to you for the examination.


Noise cancellation earphones


In many exam centers, noise-canceling earphones are being provided. You can concentrate on your exam better with these. You will be able to focus completely on your exam without getting distracted.


Bookmark the question


It is yet another important point to follow. You can bookmark the difficult questions so that you can recheck them at the end.

Every question comes with a flag option. You can use this option to review the tough questions at the end. Skip a question is also possible. You must read every question thoroughly before answering.


Pass CAPM exam in the first attempt with CAPM training program



Final Words

You can get a large number of study materials and books available for the preparation of the CAPM exam. You can also take up courses to help you understand better. If you put in your effort, hard work, time, and dedication, you can successfully achieve the certificate.


To get full details about CAPM Training from industry expert trainers, chat with our course expert or reach us at Click Here


Suggest Read – CAPM Exam Preparation Guide 2020 (UPDATED)



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About the Author

Sprintzeal   Melissa

Technical Content Writer with Experience in Creating Content for Project Management and Other Popular Domains.

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