How To Earn 60 PDUs For Free And Maintain Your PMP®Certification

  • Project Management
  • Agile and Scrum
Created on :
December 5, 2019
Saket Bansal
Updated on :
July 13, 2023
0 Comments
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After every three years, Project Management Professional (PMP)® certified professionals are required to renew their credentials by earning sixty Professional Development Units (PDUs). Many individuals often have questions regarding the process of earning these PDUs, such as how to accumulate sixty PMP® PDUs and whether it is costly. Fortunately, the methods for earning PDUs are straightforward and adaptable, allowing you to choose options that align with your interests and professional requirements.

For a comprehensive guide on earning PDUs, please refer to the blog titled “Ways to Earn PDUs for PMI’s Certification.” In this particular blog, we will specifically focus on simple strategies to obtain the necessary 60 PDUs for PMP certification renewal and ensure the continuity of your PMP® credential. To summarize here for the ways to earn PDUs, these 60 PDUs can be broken down as follows:

  • Education PDUs: These Education PDUs are further divided into categories like Course or Training, Organization Meetings, Online or Digital Media, Read, and Informal Learning.
  • Giving Back PDUs: The Giving Back to PDUs are divided into categories Work as a Practitioner, Create Content, Give Presentations, Share Knowledge, and Volunteer.

To ensure a clear understanding of the earning and reporting PDU process, consider the following key points:

  • According to PMI’s Continuing Certification Requirements (CCR), you must earn a minimum of 35 PDUs under the Education category.
  • The great news is that you have the flexibility to earn all sixty PDUs from any one of the Education categories comfortable to you.
  • PDUs earned under the Education category align with the three dimensions of the Talent Triangle: Ways of Working (formerly Technical Project Management), Power Skills (formerly Leadership), and Business Acumen (formerly Strategic and Business Management). These dimensions encompass essential skills for project management success.
  • Categorize learning activities that focus on Team Development and empowerment under the “Power Skills” category. This category highlights the importance of developing people skills such as negotiation, servant leadership, collaboration, and influence. These activities primarily align with the People Domain of the PMP exam content outline.
  • Assign learning activities corresponding to project processes, including scope, cost, schedule, resources, risk management, communication, change management, quality management, and procurement, to the “Ways of Working” category. These activities align with the Process Domain of the PMP exam content outline.
  • Place learning activities that align with compliance, project benefits and value, and supporting organizational change in the “Business Acumen” category. This category primarily focuses on activities within the Business Environment Domain of the PMP exam content outline.

By understanding these points, you can navigate the PDU process more effectively and make strategic learning choices that align with your professional goals and areas of expertise.

Let’s explore some easy and popular ways to earn your sixty PDUs:

  • Read Books: Reading books could be a personal favourite and an effective way to earn PDUs. You can create a reading list in areas related to project management processes, power skills, and business acumen. Blogs focusing on earning PDUs in the Ways of Working, Business Acumen, and Power Skills categories can provide book recommendations to assist you in earning PMI PDUs.
  • Watch Videos: Another option is to watch videos that align with the Talent Triangle. You can find playlists in the areas of Ways of Working, Business Acumen, and Power Skills, which are listed in their respective blogs.
  • Professional Development through Courses and Training Programs): Enrolling in programs organized by Registered Education Providers (REP) or Authorized Training Partners (ATPs) is a highly advantageous option if you plan to enhance your skills based on your specific career goals. These programs offer an excellent opportunity to earn PDUs and are particularly beneficial if you are considering pursuing additional certifications like PMI-ACP, PMI-PBA, CSM, A-CAM, SAFe Agilist, ICF-ACC, ICP-ACC, ICP-ATF, and ICP-CAT. These programs not only provide PDUs but also assist in developing and refining your skills in alignment with your professional aspirations.

Here I am listing some courses for the breakup of PDUs according to Talent Triangle; these programs are listed on the official website of PMI:

Course nameDelivery modePDUsFree or paid
Certified Scrum Master Certification & TrainingVirtual Live / Classroom Ways of Working: 10
Power Skills: 4
Business Acumen: 2
Paid
Certified Scrum Product Owner  (CSPO) Certification & TrainingVirtual Live / ClassroomWays of Working: 10
Power Skills: 4
Business Acumen: 2
Paid
Scaled Agile Framework – Leading SAFe (SA) Certification & TrainingVirtual Live / ClassroomWays of Working: 16
Power Skills: 0
Business Acumen: 0
Paid
SAFe Product Owner / Product Manager (SAFe POPM) Certification & TrainingVirtual Live / ClassroomWays of Working: 8
Power Skills: 5
Business Acumen: 3
Paid
SAFe Scrum Master (SSM) Certification & TrainingVirtual Live / ClassroomWays of Working:
Power Skills:
Business Acumen:
Paid
SAFe Advanced Scrum Master (SASM) Certification & TrainingVirtual Live / ClassroomWays of Working: 6
Power Skills: 10
Business Acumen: 0
Paid
SAFe Lean Portfolio Management (LPM) Certification & TrainingVirtual Live / ClassroomWays of Working: 16
Power Skills: 0
Business Acumen: 0
Paid
PMI-PBA Certification Introductory ProgramOnlineWays of Working: 4.5
Power Skills: 0.50
Business Acumen: 2.00
Free
PMP Certification Introductory ProgramOnlineWays of Working: 5
Power Skills: 1
Business Acumen: 1
Free
PMI-ACP Certification Introductory ProgramOnlineWays of Working: 3.5
Power Skills: 1
Business Acumen: 2.5
Free
ICAgile Certified Professional-Agile CoachingVirtual Live / ClassroomWays of Working: 0
Power Skills: 16
Business Acumen: 0
Paid
ICAgile -Coaching Agile Transitions (ICP-CAT) Certification & TrainingVirtual Live / ClassroomWays of Working: 0
Power Skills: 24
Business Acumen: 0
Paid
ICAgile -Agile Team Facilitation(ICP-ATF) Certification & Training Virtual Live / ClassroomWays of Working: 21
Power Skills: 0
Business Acumen: 0
Paid
Certified Scrum Product Owner (CSPO) Certification & Training Virtual Live / ClassroomWays of Working: 10
Power Skills: 4
Business Acumen: 2
Paid
Advanced Certified Scrum Master® (A-CSM) Certification & TrainingVirtual Live / ClassroomWays of Working: 10
Power Skills: 4
Business Acumen: 2
Paid
Certified Scrum Professional® – Scrum Master (CSP-SM) Certification & Training Virtual LiveWays of Working: 9
Power Skills: 4
Business Acumen: 3
Paid


iZenBridge PMI-ACP Certification Online CourseOnlineWays of Working: 11
Power Skills: 2
Business Acumen: 8
Paid
iZenBridge PMI-PBA Certification Online CourseOnlineWays of Working: 21
Power Skills: 4
Business Acumen: 10
Paid
Kanban System Design (KMP Foundation 1) Certification & TrainingVirtual Live / ClassroomWays of Working: 11
Power Skills: 2
Business Acumen: 3
Paid
Kanban Management Professional (KMP2) Certification & TrainingVirtual Live / ClassroomWays of Working: 9
Power Skills: 2
Business Acumen: 5
Paid

When PMP-certified professionals reach out to me seeking guidance on PDUs, they often ask straightforward questions such as, “What can I do to earn PDUs quickly and preferably for free?” In the following section, I will provide advice divided into two categories:

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PDU Tips for Those Not in a Hurry:

  • Subscribe to our YouTube channel and watch videos on Project Management processes, Leading teams, and business environment-related topics to earn PDUs under the “Online or Digital Media” category.
  • As you are not in a hurry, you can also accumulate eight PDUs over three years by working as a Project Manager, which falls under the “Work as a Practitioner” category.
  • Participate in our periodic PMP Live sessions and Openhour Q&A sessions from time to time on LinkedIn and YouTube, which offer an opportunity to earn PDUs under the “Online and Digital Media” category.
  • Contribute to the project management community by writing a blog. This not only allows you to share your knowledge but also enables you to claim PDUs under the “Create Content” category. You may even consider writing for our platform as well.
  • Attend Chapter events or other conferences. Event organizers will provide you with a PDU Claim Code, which you can use to report PDUs.
  • Read books relevant to project management and claim PDUs under the “Read” category.

By following these tips, you can earn PDUs at a comfortable pace while engaging in activities that align with your professional development and interests.

PDU Tips for Individuals in the Suspension Period:

This advice is for those who have not renewed their PMP® certification after completing the three-year cycle and are currently in the one-year suspension period. It’s common for the realization to come late, often when you’re already close to the suspension deadline. Here are some key points to keep in mind:

  • Subscribe to our YouTube channel and watch Project Management videos to earn PDUs under the “Online or Digital Media” category. Our channel offers a wide range of content that can help you accumulate the necessary PDUs.
  • As a busy project manager, it’s understandable that you may have overlooked renewing your PMP® certification. However, you can still claim eight PDUs under the “Work as a Practitioner” category for the three years you’ve been working in that role.
  • Take a look back at the past three years and assess if there were any courses you attended related to project management, coaching, business strategies, or leadership. If you have, you can claim these PDUs under the “Course or Training” category. Even if these programs were not organized by Authorized Training Partners (ATPs), you could still claim PDUs by providing the course description and name.

By following these tips and actively seeking opportunities to earn PDUs, you can make progress towards renewing your PMP® certification even during the suspension period.

 I hope this blog has provided you with comprehensive answers to your queries regarding how to earn 60 PDUs and maintain your PMP® certification throughout your professional career without incurring significant expenses. If you have any follow-up questions or need further assistance, please feel free to post them in the comment box provided. I am more than happy to help you.

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Frequently Asked Questions:

Question: What are PDUs? What is the meaning of PDU?

Answer: PDUs (Professional Development Units) are a measure of continuous professional development. They serve as evidence of your commitment to upgrading your skills, applying project management concepts, and staying current in your field. PMI (Project Management Institute) encourages professionals to earn PDUs as part of the Continuing Certification Requirements for maintaining their PMI credentials. PMI has identified various ways to enhance skills and categorized them into different PDU categories. These categories cover a wide range of activities related to project management and professional development. By earning and reporting 60 PMP® PDUs within a three-year cycle, you can maintain the

Question: When should I start earning PDUs?

Answer: You can begin earning PDUs as soon as you obtain your PMP® certification. There is no need to wait; you can immediately engage in activities that contribute to your professional development and PDU accumulation. There are numerous ways to earn PDUs, and you can explore various options based on your interests, learning preferences, and career goals. For detailed information on quick and diverse methods of earning PDUs, you can refer to the blog titled “Way To Earn PDUs For PMIs Certification.” It provides insights into different ways to earn PDUs and offers valuable guidance on maintaining your professional development journey.

 Question: What is the PMP® renewal fee? Is the PMP® Certification renewal fee in India different from other countries?

Answer: To renew your PMP® certification, the cost varies depending on your country and membership status. In India, the renewal fee for non-members is approx ₹9,500(all inclusive), while PMI members enjoy a discounted rate of ₹3,500(all inclusive). Membership fees for PMI in India is ₹9,933.24(all inclusive). However, In the USA, the renewal fee for members is USD 60, while non-members are charged USD 150. The membership fee in the USA is USD 149. it’s important to note that these fees are subject to change, and it is recommended to visit the official PMI website or contact PMI directly for the most accurate and up-to-date information regarding renewal fees and membership costs. So, Yes, the renewal fee in India is different from other countries.

Question: Can I transfer PDUs to my next cycle?

Answer: Yes, it is possible to transfer PDUs to your next certification cycle if you have earned more than the required 60 PDUs. However, please note that PDUs earned during the first two years of your three-year cycle cannot be carried forward or applied to the next cycle. It is important to plan your PDU earning activities strategically to ensure you fulfill the requirements for each certification cycle.

Question: When reporting PDU activities, is any supporting documentation required?

Answer: No, supporting documentation is not required when initially reporting PDUs. However, PMI recommends that you maintain all PDU-related records for at least 18 months after the end of your Continuing Certification Requirements (CCR) cycle. This is because PMI conducts random audits to verify the accuracy of reported PDUs. If you are selected for an audit, you will be required to provide supporting documentation for the activities you claimed PDUs for. Therefore, it is important to keep records of your PDU activities, such as certificates of completion, attendance records, or other relevant documentation, to be prepared in case of an audit.

Question: How can I get 60 PDUs for PMP renewal for free?

Answer: There are several ways to earn PDUs for free and fulfill the requirement of 60 PDUs for PMP renewal. Here are a few options:

  • Subscribe to our YouTube channel: We offer informative videos on project management topics that qualify for PDUs under the “Online or Digital Media” category. By watching these videos, you can earn PDUs without any cost.
  • Enroll in our free certification programs: We provide free certification programs for PMP®, PMI-ACP®, and PMI-PBA®. These programs enhance your skills and offer PDUs as part of the certification process.
  • Attend Live Sessions: Look out for YouTube and Linedin Live events offered by experts. These offer PDUs, and they are free to attend.
  • Volunteer for professional activities: Participate in professional activities such as speaking at conferences, organizing events, or contributing to industry forums. These activities can earn you PDUs under the “Giving Back to the Profession” category.

Remember to keep track of your PDUs and accurately report them to PMI for renewal purposes.

Question: How many PDUs can you claim as a practitioner?

Answer: As a practitioner, you can claim a maximum of eight PDUs under the ‘Work as a Practitioner’ category for every three years of work experience as a Project Manager. This category recognizes your practical application of project management skills and allows you to earn PDUs based on your professional experience.

Question: How many PDUs can I claim for reading a book?

Answer: You can claim all 60 PDUs by utilizing the ‘Read’ category. This category is a favourite among individuals who enjoy enhancing their skills through reading books. It allows you to earn PDUs for the time spent reading and gaining knowledge from relevant books related to project management or other professional development topics. Whether you prefer physical books, e-books, or audiobooks, as long as the content aligns with the PMP® certification topics, you can claim the appropriate number of PDUs in the ‘Read’ category. Remember to keep track of the books you read and the time spent on each to accurately report your PDUs during the renewal process.

Question: How do I claim PDUs in PMI? 

Answer: To claim PDUs in PMI, follow these steps:

  • Log in to Project Management Institute | PMI using your PMI credentials.
  • Go to your dashboard or profile page.
  • Look for the option to report PDUs (this may vary depending on the PMI website interface).
  • Click on “Report PDUs” or a similar option.
  • Select the appropriate PDU category that aligns with the activity you want to claim PDUs. PMI offers various categories under the main categories of Education, Giving Back.
  • Provide the necessary details and information related to the PDU activity, such as the activity description, provider name (if applicable), date, and duration.
  • Submit the PDU claim.
  • Review the details and confirm the submission.
  • Keep a record of the PDU claim submission for future reference.

It’s important to ensure that the activities you claim for PDUs meet the criteria and requirements set by PMI. Also, PMI recommends keeping all PDU-related records for at least 18 months after your CCR cycle ends, as you may be subject to an audit where you’ll need to provide documentation to support your claimed PDUs.

Question: What is the validity of the Project Management Professional (PMP)® Certificate?

Answer: The PMP® certificate is valid for three years from the date it is issued. After obtaining your PMP® certification, you must renew it every three years to maintain active certification status. The renewal process involves earning and reporting 60 Professional Development Units (PDUs) within a three-year cycle. After reporting at least 60 PDUs, you can pay the renewal fee. By fulfilling the renewal requirements, you can keep your PMP® certification up to date and demonstrate your commitment to continuous professional development in project management.

 If you have aspirations to pursue the PMP certification, enroll with us for comprehensive support in your PMP certification journey. We offer expert guidance in exam preparation, assistance with the application process, and help in scheduling the exam. With our assistance, you can confidently navigate the certification process and increase your chances of success.

 iZenBridge offers a wide range of comprehensive FREE resources to support you throughout your PMP certification journey. Explore our PMP Free Practice test, which provides a realistic simulation of the actual exam and helps you assess your preparedness with up-to-date questions. Our 50 Agile PMP Questions tutorial also delves deep into essential PMP Agile concepts, such as working with Requirements, value delivery, Agile Metrics, incremental delivery, and feedback. These tutorials provide detailed explanations and expose you to common Agile-related PMP exam questions. Whether you’re new to Agile or seeking to strengthen your understanding, our scenario-based PMP Agile questions are valuable tools for effective concept comprehension.

Name Date Place
PMP Certification and Training 9 March – 7 April 2024 Pune More Details
PMP Certification and Training 18 Apr – 17 May 2024 Chennai More Details

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