How do I get a Project Manager Certificate?

Harriette Halepis
Harriette Halepis
Businesswoman talking on a mobile phone
Businesswoman talking on a mobile phone

A project manager certificate can be gained through experience, schooling, and professional classes. Project managers are expected to perform more tasks today than ever before. Due to a continuously expanding and shifting world, managers must be well trained and knowledgeable. Following proper schooling, all graduates need to gain certification before acting as project managers.

Project managers are responsible for keeping a project within budget, supervising project workers across borders, and ensuring that project deadlines are met. In addition to these tasks, a project manager must also be able to think quickly, since numerous problems often arise. All of these skills can be learned by gaining an associate's or bachelor's degree within the project management field.

Certification program criteria tends to fluctuate from country to country, though most programs follow the same basic outline. Almost all project manager certificate candidates must complete schooling, work in a professional environment, and then pass a certification examination. Commonly, project managers must also be willing to keep abreast of new industry knowledge by enrolling in courses and attending seminars. In most cases, certification dues are required on a yearly basis.

Some certification programs allow candidates to list prior professional experience as a form of credit. In order for a certification board to consider professional work credits, these experiences must be detailed and documented. Therefore, any candidate wishing to gain a project manager certificate should make careful note of former and current professional accomplishments. In addition to the criteria listed above, all certification programs audit random individuals as a form of quality control.

When an audit of this manner occurs, candidates will be asked to provide formal schooling papers, professional work documentation, supervisor signatures, and education certificates. In short, becoming a project manager is never easy, though it is entirely rewarding work. While each country has unique certification programs, one of the most widely recognized certificates is the Project Management Professionalism certification.

This certification is awarded by the Project Management Institute, which is recognized by the International Organization for Standardization. Applicants with an associate's degree will need five years of experience in order to gain acceptance, while those with a bachelor's degree must accumulate three years of work experience. While seemingly difficult, a project manager certificate from the Project Management Institute is one of the most valuable certificates that a project manager can gain.

In addition to the Project Management Institute, the American Academy of Project Management within the United States, and the International Association of Project and Program Management offer comparable management certificates. There are a number of ways to gain a project manager certificate, but almost all of them follow three basic steps: schooling, work experience, and continuing education.

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