Head First PMP: A Learner’s Companion to Passing the Project Management Professional Exam


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What will you learn from this book?

Head First PMP teaches you the latest principles and certification objectives in The PMBOK® Guide in a unique and inspiring way. This updated fourth edition takes you beyond specific questions and answers with a unique visual format that helps you grasp the big picture of project management. By putting PMP concepts into context, you’ll be able to understand, remember, and apply them—not just on the exam, but on the job. No wonder so many people have used Head First PMP as their sole source for passing the PMP exam.

This book will help you:

  • Learn PMP’s underlying concepts to help you understand the PMBOK principles and pass the certification exam with flying colors
  • Get 100% coverage of the latest principles and certification objectives in The PMBOK® Guide, Sixth Edition
  • Make use of a thorough and effective preparation guide with hundreds of practice questions and exam strategies
  • Explore the material through puzzles, games, problems, and exercises that make learning easy and entertaining

Why does this book look so different?

Based on the latest research in cognitive science and learning theory, Head First PMP uses a visually rich format to engage your mind, rather than a text-heavy approach that puts you to sleep. Why waste your time struggling with new concepts? This multi-sensory learning experience is designed for the way your brain really works.


From the Publisher

Head First
Head First

We think of a Head First Reader as a Learner

Learning isn’t something that just happens to you. It’s something you do. You can’t learn without pumping some neurons. Learning means building more mental pathways, bridging connections between new and pre-existing knowledge, recognizing patterns, and turning facts and information into knowledge (and ultimately, wisdom). Based on the latest research in cognitive science, neuro-biology, and educational psychology, Head First books get your brain into learning mode.

Here’s how we help you do that:

We tell stories using casual language, instead of lecturing. We don’t take ourselves too seriously. Which would you pay more attention to: a stimulating dinner party companion, or a lecture?

We make it visual. Images are far more memorable than words alone, and make learning much more effective. They also make things more fun.

We use attention-grabbing tactics. Learning a new, tough, technical topic doesn’t have to be boring. The graphics are often surprising, oversized, humorous, sarcastic, or edgy. The page layout is dynamic: no two pages are the same, and each one has a mix of text and images.

Metacognition: thinking about thinking

If you really want to learn, and you want to learn more quickly and more deeply, pay attention to how you pay attention. Think about how you think. The trick is to get your brain to see the new material you’re learning as Really Important. Crucial to your well-being. Otherwise, you’re in for a constant battle, with your brain doing its best to keep the new content from sticking.

Head First
Head First

Here’s what we do:

We use pictures, because your brain is tuned for visuals, not text. As far as your brain’s concerned, a picture really is worth a thousand words. And when text and pictures work together, we embedded the text in the pictures because your brain works more effectively when the text is within the thing the text refers to, as opposed to in a caption or buried in the text somewhere.

We use redundancy, saying the same thing in different ways and with different media types, and multiple senses, to increase the chance that the content gets coded into more than one area of your brain.

We use concepts and pictures in unexpected ways because your brain is tuned for novelty, and we use pictures and ideas with at least some emotional content, because your brain is more likely to remember when you feel something.

We use a personalized, conversational style, because your brain is tuned to pay more attention when it believes you’re in a conversation than if it thinks you’re passively listening to a presentation.

We include many activities, because your brain is tuned to learn and remember more when you do things than when you read about things. And we make the exercises challenging-yet-do-able, because that’s what most people prefer.

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We use multiple learning styles, because you might prefer step-by-step procedures, while someone else wants to understand the big picture first, and someone else just wants to see an example. But regardless of your own learning preference, everyone benefits from seeing the same content represented in multiple ways.

We include content for both sides of your brain, because the more of your brain you engage, the more likely you are to learn and remember, and the longer you can stay focused. Since working one side of the brain often means giving the other side a chance to rest, you can be more productive at learning for a longer period of time.

We include challenges by asking questions that don’t always have a straight answer, because your brain is tuned to learn and remember when it has to work at something.

Finally, we use people in our stories, examples, and pictures, because, well, you’re a person. Your brain pays more attention to people than to things.

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