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Guide to the PMP® Exam Fifth Edition
PMI updated its PMP® exam on July 31, 2013

What are the major updates to the PMBOK ® Guide — Fifth Edition?

The PMBOK® Guide—Fifth Edition continues to reflect the evolving knowledge within the profession of project management.
Like previous editions it represents generally recognised good practice in the profession.

The major updates to the Fifth Edition are summarised below:

  • The Project Communications Management Knowledge Area has been split and rewritten. The stakeholder-focused elements have been moved to a new knowledge area leaving the Communications Knowledge Area to focus more on the actual communications, managing and controlling the flow of communication and information within the project.
  • A new Knowledge Area has been created called “Project Stakeholder Management,” which increases the focus on identifying and engaging stakeholders. This increases the number of Knowledge Areas from nine to 10.
  • Four planning processes have been added to reinforce the concept that each major Knowledge Area has a planning process focusing on how that area will be planned and executed.

Credential Exams

How will updates to the PMBOK® Guide—Fifth Edition affect credential examinations?

When an update to a standard, such as the PMBOK® Guide—Fifth Edition, is released, credential exams are updated as appropriate to reflect changes in the professional reference. (Please see below for the Update Schedule.)

It is estimated that about one-third of the examination items/questions require updates that directly address actual changes in the standards. As a regular part of the examination update process, PMI continually develops new questions that replace older questions on a periodic schedule rather than upon the immediate update/change of a particular reference.


When does PMI intend to update the credential examinations?

PMI updated its PMP® certification exam on July 31, 2013

When studying for a credential exam, which editions of the standards should I use?


Date to sit for exam

Study Recommendation


Prior to 31 July 2013

PMBOK® Guide — Fourth Edition


After 31 July 2013

PMBOK® Guide — Fifth Edition

Fifth Edition: Highlights of the process changes

*The red font in the above graph depicts the changes to the PMP® exam Fifth Edition. The areas highlighted in blue are NEW to the exam.

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