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Passing your PRINCE2 Practitioner exam

by PRINCE2 Online
Discover key strategies for the PRINCE2 Practitioner exam and boost your exam chances effortlessly.
Passing your PRINCE2 Practitioner exam |


Explore how to pass your Practitioner PRINCE2 exam |
Staying current with the latest developments in PRINCE2 is vital for practitioners seeking to bolster their project management credentials. The PRINCE2 Practitioner exam adapts to changes in the field, ensuring that the knowledge assessed is relevant and up-to-date. As the body of project management knowledge grows, the exam evolves, and reflecting shifts in industry best practices.

PRINCE2 Practitioner exam goals

Exam objectives

The primary aim of the PRINCE2 Practitioner exam is not only to test the candidates’ grasp of the PRINCE2 methodology but also to assess their ability to apply this knowledge effectively in practice. The exam is structured to ensure candidates can contribute to projects meaningfully, using PRINCE2 to guide them through common project management challenges.

Competencies tested

Candidates are evaluated on their ability to apply the seven PRINCE2 principles in context, adapting the method’s practices and processes to the project at hand. The exam rigorously tests a candidate’s ability to integrate PRINCE2 practices within the management of a project and requires a thorough understanding of how the principles underpin the framework’s effectiveness.

Relevance to real-world projects

The exam’s emphasis on practical application means that candidates need to demonstrate proficiency in leveraging PRINCE2’s recommended roles, responsibilities, and management products to support project activities. The situational relevance of these components is vital, as it proves a candidate is capable of navigating real-life project challenges effectively.

Core areas in the exam

To ensure thorough preparation, candidates must acquaint themselves with the entirety of the PRINCE2 manual. Given that the Practitioner exam is comprehensive, a detailed study of the principles, people, practices, and processes that form the backbone of PRINCE2 is essential – a task that demands both time and focus.

The focus on principles, practices, people, and processes ensures that those seeking Practitioner certification possess a well-rounded understanding of the PRINCE2 manual. This depth of knowledge is crucial for anyone aspiring to master the intricacies of project management using the PRINCE2 methodology.


Prior to sitting your PRINCE2 Practitioner examination requires proof of one or the prerequisite project management qualifications. The PRINCE2 Foundation certification (version 6 or 7) or PRINCE2 Practitioner (version 6) serves as the most direct route, ensuring that all candidates have a solid grounding in the basics before advancing.

For those outside the PRINCE2 Foundation or PRINCE2 Agile Foundation pathway, there is recognition of equivalent qualifications. Among these are the APM PMQ, APM PPQ, PMP, CAPM, and IPMA Levels A to D – all illustrating a candidate’s deep-rooted understanding of project management principles, allowing them to pursue Practitioner certification.

Exam structure and requirements

The Practitioner exam contains 70 questions to navigate, each anchored in practical scenarios reflective of real-world projects, the examination demands focused application of the PRINCE2 manual and its methodologies.

Passing practitioner exam digital manual |

Passing practitioner exam apply principles |

Utilising the PRINCE2 manual

Being able to use the PRINCE2 manual during the exam is not an invitation to rely on it for every answer. Rather, it’s a resource to complement a candidate’s knowledge, particularly for the more challenging aspects of the exam.

Pass mark in Practitioner |

Question types

Standard questions

Standard questions pose a straight choice between four possible answers, but often, these choices are closely related, testing nuance as much as knowledge. This mirrors the real-life decisions project managers must make, where options are seldom clear-cut.

Standard exam sample |

Sample question standard |

Matching questions

Candidates will also face matching questions, which assess their ability to discern the interplay between different facets of the PRINCE2 framework. Such questions test a candidate’s comprehensive understanding of how the method’s various components align and interact.

Matching exam sample |

Sample question matching |

Exam preparation strategies

Engaging with sample exams is an invaluable part of preparation. They serve as a dry run, simulating the pressure of the examination environment and acclimatising candidates to the types of questions they will encounter. Prolonged practice with these papers can significantly increase a candidate’s confidence and proficiency.

Studying the manual effectively

A strategic approach to studying the PRINCE2 manual can make all the difference. Candidates should become familiar with the layout, contents, and glossary, allowing for quick navigation during the exam. This efficient use of the manual can free up valuable time for deliberation on the more complex questions.

Mind mapping for memory

Mental engagement with the material is vital, and creating mind maps is one such proactive strategy. Such visual tools can help solidify the relationship between different themes and processes, providing a mental image that can be recalled during examination.

The role of rest

Rest should not be underestimated in the lead-up to the exam. A well-rested mind is agile, capable of making quick, informed decisions – essential under the timed conditions of the Practitioner exam. Make sure you read up about the importance of the right food and drink prior to your exam.

Exam strategy

There are broadly 2 main approaches to time management during the exam: equal time, and two-pass strategies.

Strategy for equal time allocation

One recommended approach is to divide the available time equally across all questions. This systematic strategy helps to maintain a steady pace and ensures that no question is left unanswered, which could be crucial for achieving the 60% pass mark.

Total time practitioner exam |

Two-pass approach

Alternatively, candidates can deploy the “two-pass” method. Initially, they answer the questions that are most accessible, marking them and swiftly moving on. In the second pass, they tackle the more complex questions. This strategy can help candidates manage their time but requires discipline to ensure that no question is left untouched.

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Exam day

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Pre-exam checklist

Calm and collected, candidates should check off all the necessary items and requirements before the exam begins. Ensuring that nothing is left to chance can set the stage for a focused and successful examination experience.

Exam environment essentials

The appropriate exam environment is free from distractions and fully compliant with the examination rules. Ensuring this serene setting can help candidates maintain concentration throughout the exam period.

The role of water in exam performance

The correlation between hydration and cognitive performance is well-documented. Drinking water during the exam can aid clarity of thought, potentially contributing to a better performance and a higher score.

Wrapping up

Summary of preparation tips

This guide has distilled the essence of what it takes to pass the PRINCE2 Practitioner exam. Armed with knowledge, effective techniques, and practise, candidates can approach the exam with confidence, ready to prove their expertise.

Last-minute reminders

Entering the exam, it is vital to remind oneself of the hard work and preparation that has been undertaken. Confidence in one’s abilities, coupled with thorough knowledge, can make a significant difference in the exam’s outcome.


Passing your PRINCE2 Practitioner exam |

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