Lesson 00: Introduction
Welcome to the course!
This first lesson is just an introduction that covers some basic information about the course and the certification program.
Based on AXELOS PRINCE2® material. Reproduced under licence from AXELOS. All rights reserved.
Note: PRINCE2 2017 edition is now called PRINCE2 6th edition.
- 00:48 – Hello and welcome to this PRINCE2 Practitioner course My name is Frank and this is my colleague Nader Good So we would like to give you a short introduction into the course and answer some basic questions which you may already have And the first question would be what is the purpose of the Practitioner certification especially compared to the Foundation certification.
- 01:12 – Nader, would you like to have a go at that?
- 01:14 – Oh yes. Well, Foundation is a basic understanding of PRINCE2 Yeah and the idea is that people will learn the terminology and they will be able to work in a project that is already using PRINCE2 Yeah. So they’ll be aware of what’s going on and be used to the terms, okay.
- 01:32 – Yeah. But for the Practitioner, it’s more advanced and we expect more from people.
- 01:37 – For example, know how to set up a project management system; almost, not entirely, but almost.
- 01:44 – How to tailor a project management system.
- 01:46 – Yeah.
- 01:47 – In other words, to use the system, help others use the system.
- 01:52 – Yes, I think that’s the goal.
- 01:55 – Also, to be able to apply it from lots of different points of view, and be able to understand their own environment and how best to use PRINCE2 in that environment as well and that’s, of course, where tailoring comes in quite a lot, and basically to think like a Project Manager all the time and carry out their day-to-day activities that’s what the purpose is.
- 02:15 – What is the exam like? What’s the …
- 02:18 – So how many questions and so on and what’s the objectives of the testing, do you know?
- 02:25 – Well, I may not remember everything properly. Maybe you can tell them.
- 02:29 – Yeah. I checked this before. So okay.
- 02:33 – So, it’s objective testing. Actually what does that mean, objective testing?
- 02:38 – Based on scenarios not isolated questions like those you’ve had in the Foundation exam.
- 02:47 – Yeah, okay. Good. There are 68 questions, I think?
- 02:50 – Yeah, there are 68 questions.
- 02:52 – So you have to get 55% of those questions to pass.
- 02:56 – So, you have to get 38.
- 02:58 – The time, the duration for the exam is about 2.5 hours and if you speak English as a second language you can get an extension on that timing as well.
- 03:08 – The other thing is that it’s an open book exam so what that means is you can have the manual the PRINCE2 manual in front of you and we will repeat this many, many times during the course but get used to understanding the manual so you know how to look stuff up if you need to verify something, of course.
- 03:27 – And the PRINCE2 manual is the only book you can use during the exam.
- 03:31 – Yeah.
- 03:32 – It’s not that open, not the whole library.
- 03:34 – Correct, yeah.
- 03:35 – And it’s not about notes or things like that. It’s only the manual, the clean manual maybe with some You can have some pencil notes in it, but you cannot stick anything into it, let’s say. Yeah.
- 03:47 – Okay. About 80% of the questions are scenario-based questions so you have to read it, understand maybe the whole context of the question and then try to figure out which answer best applies to that.
- 04:02 – So, it’s important that you really have a good basically working knowledge of PRINCE2 and that’s our goal, is to give you that in the rest of the course.
- 04:11 – So, think like a Project Manager.
- 04:14 – Actually it changed a few times, the exam structure.
- 04:18 – First I think it was essay based? The old, old ones?
- 04:23 – Oh yes, correct, yeah.
- 04:24 – Still some people ask. Some people still think that PRINCE2 Practitioner is essay based.
- 04:29 – Yeah, where you would write for hours.
- 04:31 – Yeah, yeah. That would have been difficult.
- 04:33 – That would make it good if you were both left-handed and right-handed Yeah. Good idea.
- 04:37 – Yeah. So, they changed it and then it was a combination of different types of questions not simple multiple choice questions. Yes.
- 04:47 – There were things you had to connect to each other but now it’s just in the 2017 version, it’s just normal multiple choice questions. Yeah.
- 04:56 – So that’s good for you. Also, it’s very organized, the exam.
- 05:03 – You have sections in your exam for different topics in PRINCE2 Yes.
- 05:08 – And there are I think 15 sections? Correct?
- 05:11 – Yeah. 7 processes, 7 themes, and 1 section for all principles, so that makes it 15.
- 05:19 – And that’s the same structure we have in this course.
- 05:22 – We will go through 15 main sections aligned with the 15 sections of your exam.
- 05:28 – Yes. One other point as well. There are 8 questions on principles so it’s important to know principles well and then about 5 questions then on every other section that follows.
- 05:40 – So that gives you an idea of what to expect.
- 05:44 – Now, the next thing we can look at is where you’re coming from.
- 05:50 – So, for example, if you have done the PRINCE2 Foundation course already or if you’ve done the Practitioner … sorry, if you’ve come from let’s say PMP environment.
- 06:00 – So if it’s a long time ago since you’ve done the PRINCE2 Foundation course what would you advise, Nader?
- 06:09 – I think it would be a good idea for them to take a look at PRINCE2 in the Foundation level before coming here because here we assume that you know PRINCE2 and if you’ve done that many years ago and you don’t remember much then maybe they can go through the Foundation course a little bit.
- 06:27 – Yeah, it’s a good idea and even if, at least go through the free part, which is about 30% of the course and then you can decide whether you have enough and it all comes falling back but if you’re in any doubt, I would advise you to continue with the course because you will need that core knowledge to really make the most of the Practitioner course And now what happens if a person has done their PMP course?
- 06:52 – But before that, for those who have the Foundation certificate some of them may have the Foundation from the 2009 edition and now they want to get Practitioner certified in 2017.
- 07:06 – I think that that should be fine because the changes in this edition were not so much.
- 07:12 – It was mainly about improving the manual, not changing the methodology itself. Yeah.
- 07:18 – So, you don’t need to learn it again, in other words.
- 07:23 – Correct, yeah. Just focus … just maybe read the tailoring sections of the manual in every theme and the responses for risk, just focus on that in the manual, that’s the main things that have changed.
- 07:36 – But we will also go through them through the course. Yeah.
- 07:38 – I think if they remember the PRINCE2 Foundation in the 2009 edition well enough, then it’s fine.
- 07:46 – Maybe you don’t need to do anything.
- 07:48 – You can just continue with this course and we will tell you about the changes in the 2017 edition. Yeah, okay.
- 07:53 – So what about So, yeah, back to your question.
- 07:56 – In the past, you needed to be PRINCE2 Foundation certified before sitting the exam for the Practitioner but now you can have other certificates as well instead of Foundation.
- 08:09 – It can be PMP, CAPM or IPMA-A, B, C, D, any of them.
- 08:15 – So if you have them, you don’t need to have the Foundation certificate and you can just take the Practitioner exam directly after finishing the course but for those of you who are not PRINCE2 Foundation certified and you’ve not studied Foundation level of PRINCE2 before, you need to do it because here in this course, we don’t go through all the basic things.
- 08:39 – It’s an advanced course, that’s the whole purpose.
- 08:42 – So if you’re PMP certified, for example, you need to take the PRINCE2 Foundation course first.
- 08:48 – You don’t need to take the exam, just the course go through it quickly and then come back here to the Practitioner course with us. Yeah.
- 08:56 – And also, there may be some differences between the PMBOK guide and PRINCE2 and those that are important, we will mention them through the course to make sure that we won’t mix things.
- 09:12 – Yeah. And as Nader said, it’s a good idea to go through the Foundation course, the full one, but if you can’t because maybe you can’t afford it, then I would suggest at least do the free part of it, that 30% at the beginning to at least give you a little bit better knowledge of it, okay, and then you can decide for yourself.
- 09:33 – Let’s look at classroom training for a second.
- 09:35 – So what’s a normal classroom training like compared to what we do in the course?
- 09:40 – How much practice?
- 09:43 – It’s a 2-day course normally. Yeah.
- 09:46 – In the past, wasn’t it 3 days?
- 09:48 – Well, it always depends on whether it was called the combi course where you could have that 5 days …
- 09:55 – 5 days and then some training companies offer 2 days and offer 3 days.
- 10:01 – So now it’s actually created as a 2-day course, so in actual fact, it’s a 1.5-day course and you basically go through one question paper during that course.
- 10:13 – So, a course that gives you a good overview of what type of questions to expect but it’s a good idea to be prepared before you go into the course as well because there’s a lot you have to cover and you really have to know PRINCE2 well in order to pass the exam.
- 10:30 – One problem that I have with most courses, not even limited to PRINCE2 is that in most courses, people only learn how to pass the exam instead of learning the topic in a way they can use it and in this course, we really tried our best to make it something practical you can use in your projects and passing the exam is the next thing in line because we think that passing the exam cannot be the final goal for a professional person who’s investing a lot of time and money on a course.
- 11:02 – Yes. Yeah. That’s for sure.
- 11:04 – A common question for people is, “Is this course enough for me to learn and pass the exam?” Oh yeah, good question, yes. Yes, of course, it is.
- 11:14 – I think it’s more than enough.
- 11:16 – Yeah, it’s because we go into so much in detail.
- 11:18 – We really are able to look from lots of different points of view on each theme or each subject.
- 11:24 – We give you some background knowledge or Nader gives you some background knowledge on general project management and how that could apply to PRINCE2 and we give an example of a sample course as well or a sample project which is great because then you see an overview on each document and how it can be used and we even do what we call a practice project or trailer project which is actually a live version of a simple project which shows you how to run a PRINCE2 project, and that gives you another view on tailoring as well.
- 12:01 – So that brings PRINCE2 to life, let’s say.
- 12:04 – Now, the structure of the course.
- 12:06 – So what’s the structure of our course?
- 12:09 – Well, as I mentioned before, it’s aligned with the 15 sections that the candidates will have in their exam. Yeah.
- 12:17 – and in each section, we have multiple lessons.
- 12:20 – In each lesson, we will go through multiple scenario-based questions.
- 12:24 – Yeah. So I generally ask the questions and Nader gives a comment from always a general Project Management point of view, not really a PRINCE2.
- 12:33 – The good thing about that is that he’s using his certain logic to answer them and you can see him stepping through it.
- 12:40 – He doesn’t always get them right, of course and then I will do a recap if needed where maybe he went wrong and then we can learn together. Okay.
- 12:51 – So that’s a good summary of it, but most of the questions, of course, he gets right, you know it’s just that some things are different from a PRINCE2 point of view but it’s very, very good to see those as well and you’re using that approach you’ll be better able to answer the questions in the future exam as well.
- 13:08 – This is the last lesson we are recording here so we know exactly what happens during the course.
- 13:13 – Yeah, correct, yes, yeah.
- 13:16 – And by the way, I don’t know the questions that Frank asks during the course.
- 13:21 – That’s the first time I face them. Yeah.
- 13:24 – I’m not prepared, I just try to come up with a good answer as if you want to answer something that you’ve seen in your projects.
- 13:31 – You have a problem or you have a decision to make and you want to see what’s the best thing to do. Yeah.
- 13:39 – There are also a few things in the structure of the lessons For example, each time that Frank asks a question before I start answering, we expect you to think about the answer.
- 13:52 – So because of that, we will add a short pause between the question Frank’s question and my answer.
- 13:58 – We will give you a sign there to remind you to pause the video and think about the answer and in that point, it’s a good idea to think about the answer first then check the manual and correct your answer if you need and then you can continue with the video and see what I say, how Frank responds to my answer. Yeah.
- 14:18 – And as Frank mentioned, sometimes some of the things that I may say are not compatible with PRINCE2 or even maybe Frank says something I know, I don’t know.
- 14:29 – We’ll see later on. Yes, yes, I’m not perfect.
- 14:35 – In those cases, yeah, to make sure you won’t be confused whenever we say something that is not compatible with PRINCE2 there will be a sign here saying that it’s not compatible, okay.
- 14:47 – And sometimes there may be extra things that people may want to know, things that you don’t need for the exam, but you may find them interesting or you just may need to add some extra information.
- 15:03 – They will be added to the text on the bottom of the video. Yeah.
- 15:06 – And finally, some of the things we discuss here are really related to the topic that we have in PRINCE2 but the thing that we are discussing may not be included in the PRINCE2 manual and the PRINCE2 exam.
- 15:20 – Again, we will write it on the screen.
- 15:23 – We will say that what Nader just said, for example I may mention, for example, Earned Value Management.
- 15:30 – Frank may ask something and I may say that using Earned Value Management is a good idea.
- 15:36 – Then you will read it here, it says that Earned Value Management is not one of the topics in PRINCE2.
- 15:42 – Yeah. Just to give you some extra background, that’s all.
- 15:45 – Yeah, and still you don’t need to be worried.
- 15:48 – If you don’t know Earned Value Management, you won’t have a problem in your exam but my personal suggestion is that in that certain question, it’s helpful if you know Earned Value Management if you want to learn more in the future.
- 16:01 – How do you how much time do you think they should spend a day on the course?
- 16:06 – On the course? On the online course.
- 16:08 – Yeah. Well, we try to keep the lessons short because most of the learners for this course are busy professionals. Yeah.
- 16:18 – That’s probably the case for you.
- 16:20 – So instead of having of 1 hour or half an hour lessons, we have really short lessons most of them are about 15 minutes, sometimes 10 minutes, maximum 20 minutes in a way that you can do one lesson per day make it possible for you to do at least one lesson per day.
- 16:39 – It’s really great if you can do it continuously. Yes.
- 16:43 – That’s the best way. Yes. Keep the momentum.
- 16:45 – Yeah. That helps you learn more. Make it part of your life for a while.
- 16:52 – Instead of doing it in only 2 or 3 days you could do it in 1 month but continuously.
- 17:01 – The final output is much better than doing it in only 2 or 3 days, that’s my opinion, you know.
- 17:07 – So if the person let’s say has a short time, maybe they could do Could they do 2 lessons a day then?
- 17:13 – Yes, of course. Of course, 2 or 3, 4, it’s possible.
- 17:16 – As long as you keep that momentum and plan it in.
- 17:19 – Yeah, keeping the momentum.
- 17:21 – So if you can dedicate about 20 minutes per day at least, then it will be perfect.
- 17:26 – Very good. And lastly, enjoy the course. That’s the most important thing.
- 17:32 – So I think we’ve tried to make it as light as possible and as user friendly and animal friendly as possible.
- 17:40 – You will see about this later what we mean.
- 17:43 – Can’t wait. Okay. So, yeah, enjoy the rest of the course.
- 17:47 – Okay. Thank you
Good. We’ll start discussing principles in the next lesson. The next lesson is about the principle of Continued Business Justification.
Do you know what principles are about? Maybe you can spend a few minutes looking them up in the official manual before taking the lesson.
The official manual
As mentioned, you need to have a copy of the official PRINCE2 manual, titled “Managing Successful Projects with PRINCE2” (ISBN 9780113315338).
You can choose from among these options when you buy the book:
- Printed book: suitable for the exam
- PDF ebook: CAN’T be used for the exam
- Online version: CAN’T be used for the exam.
Note: They’ve changed the rules for the use of the PDF/online version of the book in the exam. It’s sometimes allowed and sometimes not, so it’s safer just to buy the printed version.
About your trainer, Frank Turley
Frank is on a mission to help aspiring project managers gain practical experience. He does this through his writings, sample projects, tips, and innovative ways of teaching the PM methodologies.
He’s one of the most influential PRINCE2 trainers in the community, and has helped many learners familiarize themselves with this interesting methodology, and use it to improve their project management systems.
Besides giving training in PRINCE2 and Agile/Scrum, he’s also a co-author of P3.express, which is a lightweight project management framework that is easy to teach, to learn, and to use.
About your trainer, Nader K. Rad
Nader K. Rad has about 24 years of experience in construction, process plant, and IT projects. He’s an expert in the history, evolution, and nature of methodologies and their practical consequences, as well as the techniques and practices that accompany them.
He has been an official reviewer of PRINCE2® 6th edition, and PRINCE2 Agile®, and lead author of P3.express, and NUPP. He’s also one of the 12 core team members for developing the 7th edition of the PMBOK® Guide.
Nader is focused on helping project leaders improve their systems and get better results through coaching and training, with a focus on critical thinking and practical knowledge. He has designed many project management courses, prepared multiple eLearning courses, and written more than 40 books.
Here you can submit your questions related to the content of the course. (For other questions, use the support system). The trainer's reply will be email to you in 48 hours.
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