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Differences between PMP® and PMI-ACP® 

Project management Professionals (PMP) and Agile Certified Practitioners (PMI-ACP) are two of the most popular certifications facilitated by Project management Institute (PMI) and most sought after by aspiring and existing Project Managers who are striving to niche out as exceptional professionals. While both certifications are designed to validate a candidate’s skills and knowledge in project management, the two examinations show a stark contrast in their structure and approach to attempt. Education Nest has given you this detailed article exploring the differences between the PMP and PMI-ACP exams.

The Involved Focus and Philosophy

Differences between PMP and PMI-ACP

The PMP exam is focused on traditional project management methods, whereas the PMI-ACP exam is focused on Agile methodologies involved in the field. The PMP exam emphasizes using Project management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK) Guide and traditional project management processes, such as scope management, time management, cost management, and quality management. On the other hand, the PMI-ACP exam emphasizes using Agile methodologies, such as Scrum, Lean, and Kanban. It is designed for professionals who are interested in Agile development.

Format of the Exam

The PMP will comprise 200 multiple-choice questions, and candidates have four hours to complete the exam. On the other hand, the PMI-ACP exam contains a set of 120 multiple-choice questions and must be completed within three hours. The PMP exam covers all areas of project management, including scope, time, cost, quality, communication, risk, and procurement. The PMI-ACP exam, on the other hand, covers Agile methodologies, such as Scrum, Lean, and Kanban, and covers topics like Agile planning and estimation, Agile project execution, and Agile monitoring and control.

Eligibility Criteria

To be eligible for the PMP exam, candidates must have a high school diploma or equivalent, 35 hours of project management education, and at least three years of project management experience (or five years of non-overlapping project management experience). PMI-ACP exam, on the other hand, has more flexible eligibility criteria. Candidates must have a high school diploma or equivalent, 21 hours of Agile project management education, and at least an year worth general project experience in the last five years. Additionally, candidates must have at least eight months of Agile project management experience in the last three years.

Renewal of these Certificates

Both certifications require renewal every three years. PMP certification requires the completion of 60 professional development units (PDUs), while PMI-ACP certification requires the completion of 30 PDUs. Additionally, PMP certification requires the completion of a re-examination every three years, while PMI-ACP certification only requires the submission of a renewal application and payment of fees.


In our fast-paced modern world where project management is king, certifications like PMP and PMI-ACP are the keys to perfecting your skills! Whether you’re a traditionalist or an Agile aficionado, there’s a certification that fits your style. But before you take the plunge, remember that each certification has unique requirements and perks. So, take a deep breath, assess your goals, and choose the certification that will help you reign supreme in project management! You can find promising courses on mastering these exams on Education Nest and grab exciting offers. Check out our website for more informative articles. 

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