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How do I get those 60 PMI PDUs?

The Precious PDUs – We all love the PDU!

How do I get those 60 PMI PDUs in 2022?

You would be surprised, but the question I get asked a lot from my customers, peers, and co-workers is about PMI’s PDUs. Everybody wants those PDUs. Hey, I am a “
PMP, how do I get my PDUs?”. Or I get hey, I am looking to get “free PMI PDUs” do you know where I can? Yes, it comes up repeatedly, so I thought instead of answering the same questions multiple times, I would put together some information for you all. 

People ask me if my classes and courses offer PDU’s as well. Yes, of course they do, but when I get that question, I can tell that many people are confused about this topic. 

First and I want to be clear, there is only one primary source for PDU information and that is on PMI’s PDU site. Anyone else, me included, is just summarizing all the information on that site. It goes into a ton of details on PDU tracking and let’s be honest; you don’t have to make this topic that complicated. Although, to be 100% sure and up to date, it is important you review the official site for the latest information. I will add the link below. However, the PMI.org site can be very confusing to find any information, so I thought I would summarize for you. 

There is so much to cover here, so let me break this down to help you get your answers quickly. I am going to put on my newspaper reporter hat and focus on the critical questions who, what, where, when, and how. Those standard questions will be a great way to break down the process of how to go about collecting those precious PDUs. 

WHO?

The who is very clear, it is you, and you alone. You must get PDUs for all your certifications. If you have your PMP, or your PgMP, or your PfMP, whatever one you get, get PDUs to remain certified. We will cover which certifications must get PDUs below, but it is up to you to get them. If you miss them and don’t get 60 in your 3-year cycle, they could subject you to recertification. Do you want to take that test again? I don’t. The last time I took the test was in early 2000, when that test was much-much easier and to this day I remember how hard it was and how much I studied for it.

WHAT? 

What are the certifications that need to get their PDUs? This is interesting because they differ slightly for the different certifications. But here is the official list.  

  • PMP – 3-year cycle and 60 PDUs needed
  • PgMP – 3-year cycle and 60 PDUs needed
  • PfMP – 3-year cycle and 60 PDUs needed
  • PMI-PBA – 3-year cycle and 60 PDUs needed
  • PMI-ACP – 3-year cycle and 30 PDUs needed
  • PMI-RMP – 3-year cycle and 30 PDUs needed
  • PMI-SP – 3-year cycle and 30 PDUs needed
  • CAPM – 3-year cycle and 15 PDUs needed 

PMI breaks down the PDU’s into Education and Given-Back PDU’s, again as you fill in your PDU’s on your CCRS dashboard, you will see exactly the breakdown. Don’t overthink it, it is simple and clear as you report the PDU’s. 

Where?

I love this question because I am going to break them down into two categories of how to get your PDUs. They are simply Free & Paid. Yep, I have done this for years and years and I go the free route, so you can as well. I am going to give you the places I go and how I do it, and you copy what I do as well.

Free Sites:

Who does not love free, right? Well, here are my top two sites I use all the time for PDUs.

So, can I stop here for a second and be honest? I just go to free sites for my PDUs. I have done it for years. It is not that I haven’t tried paid sites; they are good, but I keep going back to the free ones. Again, who does not love free, right? I mean, why would I need to give you site after site if the ones we just covered will give you enough PDUs for many-many renew cycles. But do you also notice that these are both Podcast sites and if you are looking for an easy way to get PDUs, this is it. Hit that easy button because you just listen, and learn, and earn those free PDUs. They just keep coming and coming!

Paid Sites to get your PDU’s:

Ok, let me give you my favorite paid sites. 

I have worked with the www.greatpro.org team for years now doing webinars and I think they are all great people. I really like their paid PDU program. It has amazing quality presentations that you review to get your PDUs. They are always having sales and it really is an impressive site for you to check out if you are going down the paid route. Go check them out today on the website above. 

Remember earlier, I pointed you to the free podcasts on the project-management podcast site? Well noted below, I also have paid podcasts up there as well. You should check it out if you are going to pay a subscription fee. There are couple price points noted on the web, but I would go with monthly at $9.00 US, which is inexpensive for all the materials that are available to you.

Episode 328: Agile Communications (Premium)

There are hundreds of paid sites to get your PDUs that all have a variety of price points, but why use them without exhausting the free sites first? I have not had too yet! 

Where do I go for many-many years for PDUs?

My first stop is here: https://www.project-management-podcast.com/

My friend and acquaintance Cornelius Fichtner has run this site for years. They have interviewed me twice already, and it is absolutely my first stop for free and paid PDUs. 

Here are my podcasts if you are interested on his site:

Episode 327: Social Media Project Management Tools (Free)

Episode 229: The Tactical Approach to Building a PMO (Free)

This is a great starting point for you to get started on collecting PDUs. Now you must also do your own research as well because we see sites popping up all the time. It really is in your best interest to stay on top of this information. Remember, PMI won’t send you those reminders, it is on you! 

WHEN?

Your PDUs renew every three years. Make sure you log into PMI.org and review the CCRS dashboard to see your exact dates. Those dates are so important to remember, so go log in there when you are done reading this article and look around a bit and make sure you are comfortable with the site. I will give you that site below as well.

Let’s keep going, as it is important to know that you need to keep close track of this renewal date yourself. PMI does not give you little warning signals or let you know that your renewal time is coming up. Nope, you are on your own! You can log into PMI’s CCRS site and look at your dashboard at any time, but people get busy and forget. It happens to the best of us. You need to track this on your own and be prepared for those key renewal dates. 

Secret: In your last year of your certification, you can pre-collect (is that a word!) 20 PDUs that will apply to your three-year cycle. So, this leaves you with just getting 40 PDUs for the remaining three years. 

HOW CAN I COLLECT PDUs?

The official list from PMI on how to collect your PDUs has six major categories. They broke each of these categories down on the website, but I wanted to summarize here so you can see the main areas. 

  1. Course or Training 
  2. Global Events
  3. Local Meetings 
  4. Online or Digital Media
  5. Reading
  6. Informal Learning

Ok, that’s a simple right, well not so fast, because you are going to find on the site that each of these categories breakdown into further subcategories. But that’s ok, because PMI offers this amazing PDF file that helps you understand this entire process. Here is that link for you to download and review. It is called the CCR Handbook. 

What do you think? 

Have you been to those sites before? Have you seen or tried sites I never covered? Let me know what you think because as I said there are so many different sites out there and new ones coming all the time.

Oh, if you like this article, I thought you would like this one about PMI as well: Project Management Knowledge Areas – PMI’s little-known Treasures

Oh shoot, right, the PMI PDU site, here you go! https://www.pmi.org/certifications/certification-resources/maintain/earn-pdus/education 

Right, I almost forgot, here is where you go to log into your PMI CCRS Dashboard. 

Thanks!
Bill Dow, PMP

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