Sharon Rodrigues Jan 25, 2024
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2021 PMP Exam Changes You Must be Aware of

Did you know that the Project Management Institute (PMI)® announced the change in the PMP exam from January 2021? The PMP exam outline is going to be still based on the PMBoK 6th edition (current edition) until PMBOK 7th edition is officially released. 

Had plans to take up the PMP certification exam? If yes, remember, 31 December 2020 is the last day you can take the current version of the PMP Exam. Also, 2 January 2021 will be the first day you can take the new version of the PMP Exam.

What are the Changes?

The new exam content outline has several differences from the old exam pattern and content outline. As the impact of emerging trends and the responsibilities of project managers have been evolving in time, the exam content is also upgraded. Read below to know the major changes:

1. Domain

As we already know that there are 5 domains in the PMP exam currently. In the coming exams, there would be only 3 domains. These new changes are defined in the PMP Exam Content Outline (ECO). Here is the detailed data for your understanding.

Domains Current ECO Exam coverage New ECO Exam coverage
1 Initiating 13% People 42%
2 Planning 4% Process 50%
3 Executing 31% Business Environment 8%
4 Monitoring & Controlling 25%    
5 Closing 7%    

2. Tasks

Within each of the three domains (People, Process, and Business Environment) the new exam content outline has listed Tasks. The number of tasks is 42 now, but it can be 35 in the new ECO. 

  • The People domain has 14 tasks from managing conflicts, leading the team, empowering team members to engaging virtual teams, and mentoring relevant stakeholders.
  • The Process domain has 17 tasks from executing projects with urgency, managing communications to determining appropriate project methods, and managing project closure.
  • The Business Environment domain has 4 tasks from evaluating project benefits, addressing external business environment changes to support organizational change. 

3. More Situational Questions 

If you are planning to write the new PMP exam, expect situational questions from predictive, agile, and hybrid approaches across all the three-domains. You can expect half of the examination to be of predictive project management approaches and the other half of agile or hybrid approaches.

4. Enablers 

Within each domain, consists of enablers. Enablers are the actions we take to complete the tasks. Enablers are descriptive examples associated with the task. Get to know about the new enablers coming with the new PMP exam.

Is The PMBOK® Guide Changing?


The new exam content outline is still based on PMP Guide sixth edition. The PMBOK® Guide Seventh Edition is not expected soon. PMI is expected to use the Sixth Edition as an exam reference throughout 2021.

Keep updated and keep learning about the new changes. As we know Project Manager skills are to be polished every day to stay competent in the industry. 

When should you take the PMP exam? 

If you have already registered and are eligible to attend the PMP exam on or before 31 December 2020, continue your studies without changing anything.

But, if you are planning to take up the PMP exam after January 2021, you must be careful about the new exam outline. Download the new PMP Exam Content Outline and give an in-depth reading on the topics regarding the exam content outline. You can continue your studies using the PMBOK® Guide 6th Edition. Go for new exam content, outline training materials, and be updated. 

Stay calm, and get ready to accept the changes as well as to start preparing accordingly. Start your journey with the updated PMP preparation materials and grab your certificate to amaze everyone!  Meanwhile, you can also kick-start your career through other Project Management training courses that fit your skill level.

Key Takeaways

Given below are the Key takeaways from PMP Exam changes;

  • The Project Management Institute (PMI)® announced the change in the PMP exam in January 2021.
  • The PMP exam is going to be still based on the PMBoK 6th edition.
  • The new exam content outline has only three domains- People, Process, and Business Environment.
  • The number of tasks will be 35 in the new exam content outline.
  • Predictive, agile, and hybrid approaches will be a part of all three domains.

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Sharon Rodrigues is an aspiring writer who loves to write thought-provoking blogs, articles, and marketing posts. Her contents simply interact and connect with readers easily, giving them a reason to stick around. She is passionate about keeping up to date with industry trends and upskilling in the digital marketing platform. Apart from writing, she binge-watches Netflix shows and listens to culture podcasts