Latest PMBOK Guide 7th Edition & PMP Exam Changes in 2023

latest pmp exam changes pmbok guide 7th 6th edition

The latest version of the PMBOK Guide (A Guide to Project Management Body of Knowledge) is 7th edition. It was released in August 2021.

The current PMP exam (Project Management Professional) is not based on any particular book but is aligned to three PMI publications viz. PMBOK Guide seventh edition, Process Groups Practice Guide, and Agile Practice Guide.

PMI (Project Management Institute) has started the process of sunsetting (retiring) the PMBOK Guide 6th edition as of March 31, 2022. But with the release of Process Groups Practice Guide in October 2022, PMBOK Guide 6th edition has become redundant.

PMI releases a new PMBOK Guide every 4 years. It is considered as the project management standard. The next version i.e. PMBOK Guide 8th edition is likely to be released in 2025 but PMI has not any announcement till now.

PMI uses terminology from PMBOK Guide, Process Groups Practice Guide, and Agile Practice Guide to design PMP exam questions, These books are considered as main reference books for the exam. However, PMP credential exam is not completely based on the PMBOK Guide.

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The PMP certification exam is based on Exam Content Outline (ECO), which illustrates the curriculum of the PMP exam. The current PMP exam is based on the ECO that was published in January 2021. The exam was last updated on January 2, 2021 and has not changed since then.

I have written this post to talk about the relationship between PMP exam, PMBOK Guide, and ECO. It also contains information about the PMP exam changes that have happened in 2023.

PMBOK Guide 7th is the Latest Edition

The latest version of the PMBOK Guide is the 7th edition. It was released on August 01, 2021. Prior to this, PMBOK Guide 6th edition was released on September 07, 2017.

Back in September 07, 2017, PMI had also published Agile Practice Guide along with the 6th edition of the PMBOK Guide.

PMBOK Guide along with Agile Practice Guide are considered to be the primary reference books for the PMP exam. PMI has not released a newer version of the Agile Practice Guide when it released 7th edition of PMBOK Guide. 2017 version of the Agile Practice Guide remains remains the current version.

As we will find out in later in the article, the seventh edition of the PMBOK Guide is very different from the sixth edition.

One of the major differences is that seventh edition gives a cursory overview of the Process Groups (PG), whereas the bulk of sixth edition is written around PG and processes. In addition, 7th edition introduces concept of project management principles, project performance domains, models, and methods, which were not their in the prior editions.

In order to fill the PG gap, PMI published a brand new Process Group Practice Guide in October 2022. With the release of Process Groups Practice Guide, PMBOK Guide 6th edition has become redundant. The Process Groups Practice Guide contains all 5 PGs and 49 project management processes that are described in the 6th edition.

There is a small difference between Process Groups Practice Guide and PMBOK Guide 6th edition – the concepts of Knowledge Areas (project schedule management, project quality management, project resource management etc.) that was central to 6th edition has been removed from the the Process Groups Practice Guide.

You can download free pdf copy of all the PMI publications if you have taken the membership of PMI. You can also buy a paper copy of the Guide from Amazon if you are not comfortable reading from a pdf file. You can click on the following links to check prices on Amazon.

PMP Exam Changes in 2023

PMI has still not made any formal announcement about the exam update but it has started the process of retiring the PMBOK Guide 6th edition. The 7th edition has become the primary reference material for the exam in the beginning of 2023.

Many people are under the (wrong) impression that the PMP exam is based on the PMBOK Guide. The credential test is not based on any particular book but follows PMBOK Guide as a major reference study material.

The PMP exam is based on the Exam Content Outline, which is like a syllabus for the PMP exam. The current version of ECO was published in January 2021. PMI revises ECO after every 4-5 years.

ECO lists down domains and tasks that are tested in the exam. The current ECO lists three domains viz. People, Process, and Business Environment. Each domain has multiple tasks.

PMP exam questions are based on ECO tasks. The following table shows the percentage of PMP questions coming from each domain.


Percentage of Items on Test

I. People


II. Process


II. Business Environment




You can can look at my post on structure of PMP exam to understand the format of these questions.

Reference Books for the PMP Exam

The PMI has published an article containing list of reference books to prepare for the exam.The reference list contains PMBOK Guide as well as many other books.

Here is a quote from that article.

The exam is based on the PMP certification exam content outline (ECO), not the (PMBOK® Guide) or other reference books. A Guide to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK® Guide) – 7th Edition will now be a reference to inform the development of the exam items. However, before any validated exam item is added to the exam, there is a very rigorous and thorough review and field test cycle. This process takes multiple months.

We can clearly deduce that the questions are now aligned to PMBOK Guide 7th. PMI is likely to make a formal announcement before introducing any other change in the exam.

How to do PMP Exam Prep?

There are numerous reference books to study for the PMP exam. Out of these PMBOK Guide is the major reference. So, one should study at least PMBOK Guide and other PMI publications to prepare for the exam.

The best thing to do is to enroll into a PMP exam oriented project management training from a reputable provider like us. The training will give you all the necessary tools and knowledge to pass the exam.

You can consider our PMP certification training course as it is competitively priced and comes with a host of features that will enable you to pass the exam in your first try. Here are a few benefits of our course.

  1. 100% pass guarantee.
  2. Unlimited trainer’s support.
  3. Training is currently aligned to PMBOK Guide 6th and 7th and Agile Practice Guide.
  4. Training is always kept updated for latest exam.
  5. Tips to clear the exam in your first attempt.
  6. Personalized PMP exam preparation schedule.
  7. Support for filling the PMP exam application.

You can watch the free demo of course of our PMP training program before investing in it.


PMP is an expensive and difficult exam. Its difficulty level increases because of uncertainties around the study material and passing criteria. A number of aspirants do not study for the exam or attempt it because of these uncertainties.

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In our opinion, you should not get perturbed by the things that are not in your control. Rather you should focus only on what is in your control which includes choosing a good training program and studying hard for the exam.

Delaying the exam because of uncertainties is not really worth it. The benefits of the PMP certification far outweigh the uncertainties, hard work, and perspiration. People with PMP certification tend to get high returns on their investment.

The cost of delaying the PMP exam is very high. With each passing day you are potentially losing a 16% increase in your salary.

Our PMP 35 online training course includes every study aid possible. It is designed to prepare you for the real PMP exam.

The cost of our PMP program starts at USD 149 in the USA. Our training is unparalleled in the industry. It will allow you to pass the PMP exam on your first attempt. If you fail, we will refund 100% of your training fee.

Your Thoughts

When do you think PMI will revise the exam for PMBOK Guide 7th edition? Would they revise it in ealry 2023 or will they wait for a few more months? Do you think PMI will give enough notice to the PMP aspirants before they change the exam?

We would love to hear your thoughts.

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  1. Good day Sir/Ma,
    Can the PMP examination training by your organization be done virtually? i.e online. You can reach me through any of the info details below.
    Many thanks
    ONI Abayomi

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