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PMP Exam Questions and Answers

Question 1

A project may need to update its schedule baseline to:
A. Report schedule updates
B. Show that the project is not behind schedule
C. Provide realistic data to measure performance
D. Mask deviations within schedule tolerance

Question 2

To ensure that all of the project work is included, which of the following should be used?
A. Create a contingency plan
B. Create a WBS
C. Create a risk management plan
D. Create a scope statement

Question 3
The purpose of attribute sampling is to:
A. Determine whether a batch conforms to the specifications
B. Check on the quality of the inspection process
C. Ensure that every item is tested individually
D. Identify which employees are creating defective items

Question 4

An organisation has a strong competitive advantage due to its adherence to pollution laws and regulations. While planning the scope for a potential new project, one of the alternative approaches provides a ‘quick to market’ and high revenue option but includes a low probability risk to meeting pollution legislation.

What should the project team do?
A. Plan all precautions to avoid the risk
B. Work out a mitigation plan
C. Procure an insurance against the risk
D. Drop the alternative approach

Question 5
Adjusting when non critical tasks occur without delaying the project is known as:
A. Resource levelling
B. Resource smoothing
C. Resource balancing
D. Resource optimising

Question 6

The three tasks shown below are the entire critical path of a project network. The three estimates of each of these tasks are tabulated below. How long would the project take to complete expressed with an accuracy of one standard deviation?
Task Optimistic    Most likely    Pessimistic
A                 15                            25                      47
B                  12                            22                      35
C                  16                            27                      32

Which of the following:
A. 74.5 plus or minus 7.00
B. 75.5 plus or minus 7.09
C. 75.5 plus or minus 8.5
D. 73.5 plus or minus 2.83

Question 7
The Total Point of Assumption is when:
A. The project is formally handed over to the client
B. Actual costs equal the project budget
C. When the project manager assumes full control of the project after the project management plan is signed off
D. None of the above

Question 8

When the completion of a successor is dependent on initiation of its predecessor? What is the relationship called?
A. SF
B. FF
C. SS
D. FS
Question 9
A quality audit team advises the project manager that the wrong quality standards were being used on her project, and that this could lead to the need for rework. What was the objective of the project manager in initiating the quality audit team’s action?
A. Quality control
B. Quality planning
C. Checking adherence to processes
D. Quality assurance
Question 10
Which of the following provides the foundation for team development?
A. Motivation
B. Individual Development
C. Conflict Management
D. Organizational development
Question 11
Which of the following is NOT an input to project plan execution?
A. Corrective action
B. Project plan
C. Work authorization system
D. Preventive action

Question 8

Which of the following options should a project manager do or follow to ensure that clear boundaries are set and agreed for project completion?
A. Scope verification
B. Complete a scope statement
C. Scope definition
D. Risk management plan

Question 9
A project manager has a team of 16 hardware developers out of which 4 are integration specialists. In addition the team has 3 technical writers. As a result of a recent audit, the project manager has agreed to add 2 hardware testers to assist the developers. This will add to the project cost, but is seen as improving quality and reliability of the hardware products.
To ensure that effective communication occurs, the project manager is updating the Communications Management Plan. How many additional communication channels will be added as a result of the above team additions?
A. 28
B. 41
C. 2
D. 21
Question 10

In which form of organisation would the project manager find team development most difficult?
A. Weak Matrix organization
B. Balanced Matrix organization
C. Projectized organization
D. Tight Matrix organization

Question 11

Which of the following options is a common format for performance reporting?
A. Pareto Diagrams
B. Responsibility Assignment Matrices
C. Bar charts
D. Control Charts
Question 12

You are checking the progress of your project and determine that both schedule and cost variance are positive. Which of the following options does this signify?
A. Project is under budget and ahead schedule
B. Project is over budget and behind schedule
C. Project is under budget and behind of schedule
D. Project is over budget and ahead of schedule

Question 13

As part of progressive elaboration a new risk is identified during the execution process of your project. Due to the remedial actions and additional resources required for risk management, an additional amount of cost will be added and an extra 4 days to the critical path.
Your project already has provisions for contingency and management reserves, so how should the extra time and cost be accounted for?

A. Contingency reserves
B. Residual risks
C. Management reserves
D. Secondary risks
Question 14

Which of the following options is a tool used to secure expert judgment?
A. Peer review
B. Delphi technique
C. Expected value technique
D. Work Breakdown Structure (WBS)

Question 15

Which one of the following is the last step of the Close Project or Phase process when used at the end of the project?
A. Client has accepted the product
B. Lessons learnt are documented
C. Client appreciates your product
D. Archives are complete
Question 16

An organization based in the USA Midwest, is signing a contract to outsource a part of its software development services to a highly skilled, efficient and lower cost company based in the Philippines.
The project manager of a current project will be using these new services as part of their project engineering development and wants to provide their team with the best approach to aid working with their new co-workers. Which of the following options would be most sensible?
A. A training course on the laws of the country
B. A course on linguistic differences
C. An exposure to the cultural differences
D. A communication management plan

Question 17

While reviewing project progress, the project manager assesses that an activity has been missed out from the implementation plan. A milestone, scheduled to be achieved within another week, would be missed with the current implementation plan.
Which of the following options should be the first action for the project manager to take?
A. Report the error and the expected delay
B. Omit the status update on the milestone
C. Report the error and the planned recovery actions
D. Assess alternatives to meet the milestone
Question 18

During a meeting with senior management, you are discussing four potential project choices resulting from the recommendations of a recent feasibility study. The details of these four projects are:
Project Whizz with BCR (Benefit Cost ratio) of 1:1.6;
Project Bang with NPV of US $ 500,000;
Project Rocket with IRR (Internal rate of return) of 17%
Project Launch with opportunity cost of US $ 500,000.
Which option would be your recommendation?
A. Project Whizz
B. Project Rocket
C. Either Project Bang or Launch
D. The information provided is ambiguous and a clear choice cannot be made

Question 19

The three tasks shown in the table below are the entire critical path of a project network. How long would the project take to complete expressed with an accuracy of one standard deviation?
A. 74.5 plus or minus 7.00
B. 75.5 plus or minus 11.08
C. 75.3 plus or minus 7.11
D. 73.5 + plus or minus 2.83

Optimistic        Most Likely        Pessimistic
Task A             10                        26                           42
Task B              14                        24                           34
Task C              18                        24                           38

Question 20

Who should be involved in the creation of lessons learned, at closure of a project?
A. Stakeholders
B. Project team
C. Management of the performing organization
D. Project office

ANSWERS:

Question 1

Answer: C
The baseline is the standard used to measure project performance, in this case, the schedule reference, and should not be changed unless approved by management. Therefore, it is not changed just because a report is due, nor to hide the truth to management whether this is acceptable or unacceptable deviation.

Question 2

Answer: B

A WBS is a deliverable oriented grouping of project components that organizes and defines the total scope of the project.

Question 3

Answer: A

There is no middle ground in attribute sampling, it either conforms or it is non-conforming in terms of a specification or requirement. It is not there to check the process, not insist that each item is tested individually, nor to identify who creates the defects.

Question 4

Answer: D

Because the organization’s reputation is at stake, the impact is high, therefore the threshold for such a risk would be very low.

Mitigation plan against avoiding the threat to pollution laws would mean reducing the impact, which may not be a plausible response.
Procuring an insurance against the risk would only transfer the monetary impact of the risk, and not the intangible impact, for example, the reputation of the organization.
Planning precautions against the occurrence would still leave a probability of occurrence, and cannot be completely avoided.
The best option would be to drop the approach – that is, to plan complete avoidance of the risk.
Question 5

Answer: B 

Smoothing tries to smooth out resources and reduce peaks by adjusting the start, end, or duration of non-critical tasks and hence protect the project end date. Resource levelling may move the project end date. Resource balancing and optimising do not refer to any particular technique and are just general phrases.

Question 6

Answer: B
The critical path is the longest duration path through a network and determines the shortest time to complete the project. The PERT estimates of the tasks listed are 27, 22.5 & 26. Therefore, the length of the critical path of the project is 27+22.5+26 = 75.5

The standard deviations of the estimates of the three tasks are determined as (P-O)/6 = 5.33, 3.83 & 2.66 respectively. The standard deviation of the total path is determined as the square root of the sum of the squares of standard deviation.

Hence, standard deviation of critical path = square root of (28.44+14.66+7.07) = 7.09
Question 7

Answer: B
When the actual costs equal the budget at completion, the entire budget is spent, and for a fixed price contract, is the point where the contractor assumes responsibility for all further costs.

Question 8

Answer: A

A start-to-finish (SF) relationship between two activities implies that the completion of successor is dependent on the initiation of its predecessor.
A finish-to-start (FS) relationship between two activities implies that the initiation of successor is dependent on the completion of predecessor.
A finish-to-finish (FF) relationship between two activities implies that the completion of successor is dependent on the completion of predecessor.
A start-to-start (SS) relationship implies that the initiation of successor is dependent on the initiation of predecessor.
Question 9

Answer: D

Determining validity of quality standards, followed by the project is a ‘quality assurance’ activity.

Compliance of work results to required specifications is a ‘quality control’ activity.

Determining quality standards is a ‘quality planning’ activity.

‘Checking adherence to processes’ is a quality audit activity to ensure that relevant standard procedures or guidance documents are being followed to ensure adherence for producing the process deliverables.
Question 10

Answer: B

Individual development (managerial and technical) is the foundation of a team.

Question 11

Answer: C

A Project plan is the basis of project plan execution and is a primary input.
Work authorization system is a tool used for orchestrating execution of various project tasks.
Whereas, Corrective and Preventive actions are inputs to the project plan execution process from various controlling processes.

Question 8

Answer: B

The project team must complete a scope statement for developing a common understanding of the project scope among stakeholders. This lists project deliverables – summary level sub-products, whose full and satisfactory delivery marks the completion of the project.

Scope verification is the process of securing a formal acceptance of the project scope by stakeholders.

Scope definition is the process of subdividing the major project deliverables into smaller, more manageable components.

A risk management plan involves setting up processes for identifying and dealing with project risks.

Question 9

Answer: B

Number of communication channels with “n” members = n*(n-1)/2
Originally the project has 20 members (including the project manager), which makes the total communication channels as (20*19)/2 = 190

With the addition of the two hardware testers, the communication channels increase to (22*21)/2 = 231

Therefore, the additional channels as a result of the change is, 231-190 = 41

Question 10

Answer: A

In a functional organization, the project team members have dual reporting to two bosses – the project manager and the functional manager.
In a weak matrix organization, the power rests with the functional manager.

In a balanced matrix organization, the power is shared between the functional manager and the project manager. A projectized organization is grouped by projects and the project manager has complete control on the project and its team.

A Tight matrix organization refers to co-locating the project team and has nothing to do with a matrix organization.

Therefore, a project manager would find it difficult to drive team development in a weak matrix organization.

Question 11

Answer: C

Common formats for Performance Reports are, bar charts (also called Gantt Charts), S-curves, histograms and tables etc.

Question 12

Answer: A
Positive Schedule Variance means the project is ahead of schedule; Negative Cost Variance means the project is over-budget.

Question 13

Answer: A
Reserves are meant for making provisions in cost and schedule, to accommodate for consequences of risk events.

Provisions for risks that were not originally identified and accounted for are in management reserves. Risks that were identified and provisions made are accommodated in contingency reserves.

Management reserves are at the discretion of senior management while the contingency reserves are at the project manager’s discretion.

Residual and secondary risks are remaining unmitigated risks and resultant risks of mitigation, respectively. These are not reserves.
In this case, the risk event is one of the identified risks and therefore, ‘contingency reserve’ is the option where the cost and schedule impact would be added.

Question 14

Answer: B

The ‘Delphi technique’ is a commonly used tool to secure expert judgment while initiating a project.
‘Peer review’ is a project selection tool, ‘Expected value’ is a method quantitative risk analysis, and ‘WBS’ is a project planning tool.

Question 15

Answer: D

Archiving is the last step in the project closing.

Question 16

Answer: C

Understanding cultural differences is the first step towards an effective communication amongst the project team involving outsourced work from a different country. So, what is needed in this case is ‘an exposure to the cultural differences’, which is being mentioned as choice C.

A training course on the laws of the country is a subject of legal experts and not of the project team.

A course on linguistic differences would not serve the purpose of understanding and appreciating cultural differences, for better teaming.

A communication management plan is a document that provides data gathering and dissemination amongst stakeholders of the project. It is necessary for the project but does not help in bridging communication gaps across different cultures.

Question 17

Answer: D

Option D indicates confronting the issue with an attempt to resolve the issue. Hence this would be the first action to take followed by reporting the issue correctly.

Options A and C, that is, ‘report the error and the expected delay’ or ‘report the error and the planned recovery actions’ do not make any attempt to solve the problem.

Option B is unethical.

Question 18

Answer: B

Project Rocket has an IRR of 17%, which means the revenues from the project equal the cost expended at an interest rate of 17%. This is a definitive and a favourable parameter, and hence can be recommended for selection.

Project Whizz has an unfavourable BCR and hence cannot be recommended.

Information provided on Project Bang and Project Launch is not definitive, and hence neither of these options qualifies for a positive recommendation.

Question 19

Answer: C
The critical path is the longest duration path through a network and determines the shortest time to complete the project. The PERT estimates of the tasks listed are 26, 24 & 25.3.

Therefore, the length of the critical path of the project is 26+24+25.3 = 75.3.

The standard deviations of the estimates of the three tasks are determined as (P-O)/6 = 5.33, 3.33 & 3.33 respectively.

The standard deviation of the total path is determined as the square root of the sum of the squares of standard deviation.

Optimistic      Most Likely      Pessimistic      Pert Duration      Std Deviation      σ squared
Task A            10                       26                         42                           26                           5.33                   28.44
Task B             14                       24                         34                           24                           3.33                   11.08
Task C             18                       24                         38                          25.3                        3.33                   11.08
Critical Path                                                                                          75.3                        7.11                    50.6

Question 20

Answer: A

‘Stakeholders’ include everyone who are actively involved in the project or whose interests may be affected as a result of the project execution or completion.

The ‘project team’ creates the lessons learned on the project.

The role of the project office depends on the function defined for it within the performing organization and it could be either facilitating best practices for all projects or could constitute the project team.

As lessons learned should capture all variations and what could have been done better for future deployment, ‘stakeholders’ should be involved in creation of lessons learned.

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