APMP or PRINCE2 project management qualification – which one for you?

APMP and PRINCE2 are the two leading knowledge based project management qualifications in the UK.  But which one is right for you?  Here are some factors to consider.

Accrediting organisation Association for Project Management (APM) – 20,000 members based professional organisation APMG-International – private global accreditation company working under contract to the Cabinet Office
Syllabus source APM Body of Knowledge (52 topics outlined in BoK published by APM PRINCE2 Manual published by TSO c. 300+ pages.
Quality assurance APM’s internal structures and alignment to International Project Management Association (IPMA) Level D qualification UKAS accredited with authoring and review panels drawn from consultants and industry
Recognition Held in high esteem by industry because it is broad and rigorous. Principally UK based with c. 4,000 per year taking APMP. Huge international volume of c. 100,000 per year.  High pass rate has reduced its reputation in recent years.
Professional membership Free membership after taking the examination None
Syllabus focus Principles based principally with some techniques around 37 topics including life-cycles, organisation, risk, change, issues, earned value, leadership, sponsorship, communication, negotiation etc.) Process based (e.g. starting, initiating, directing, controlling and closing) principally with seven themes – business case, organisation, quality, plans, risk, change, and progress.
Study time Recommended 40-60 hours Recommended 30-50 hours
Exam 3 hours written paper in English. 10 questions from 16. Pass rate c. 75% Multiple languages.  Foundation 1 hour 75 multiple choice questions. Pass rate 99%+Practitioner 2.5 hours 8 objective choice questions.  Pass rate c.90+%
Open exam centres Four time per year in UK.  No remote proctoring. Every month plus on demand plus remote proctoring.
Cost of a single place including examination on a public classroom based course £1,000 – £1,500 £750 – £1,250

APMP is right for you if your organisation or its clients do not use the PRINCE2 methodology and you are interested in a broader more rounded and more highly regarded qualification from a  professional membership based organisation that you may wish to join.

PRINCE2 is right for you if your organisation or its clients use the methodology for its project management or you want a method focused project management qualification that is more widely known both in the UK and in some overseas countries, and is easier to pass and is slightly cheaper.

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One Response to APMP or PRINCE2 project management qualification – which one for you?

  1. Nick says:

    I’ve always thought more effort needs to be placed on adopting PRINCE2, I’ve developed a tool to help review how well project managers are adopting PRINCE2, its a PRINCE Maturity Model, it free and I would welcome feedback. The tool can be found here:


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