The APM Project Fundamentals Qualification (PFQ) is a qualification from the Association for Project Management (APM). It was previously known as the APM Introductory Certificate and is designed for new project managers, team members or people who are interested in starting out in project management. It will introduce you to the fundamental principles, skills, methods, tools and behaviours of project management. It is a highly practical approach that can be applied to projects of any size. It will kick start your introduction to project management because it mixes theory of project management, a practical case study and reflection exercises. During the course you will learn how to:
- Define the roles of the project manager.
- Capture and manage stakeholder expectations.
- Prepare a business case justifying the project.
- Prepare a project plan including a budget and schedule.
- Manage the risks to your project.
- Control changes during the project.
- Report progress
- Build and develop a project team.
What is Included in the Distance Learning Package from Parallel Project Training?
Parallel worked in partnership with the APM to write the official study guide for this qualification. Our course is presented by the authors of the study guide (John Bolton and Paul Naybour). As with our APM Project Management Qualification (APM PMQ) package we include a wide range of learning materials, providing with you with a flexible approach to your study. You can study in print, on-line, as you travel in the car or the train.
The package includes:
- The APM fundamentals study guide published by APM and written by Parallel Project Training.
- Twenty bite-size video lectures presented by the authors of the APM fundamentals study guide.
- Eighteen reflection exercises in which you consider how to apply the principles to your projects.
- Twenty five podcasts which you can download and listen to as you travel.
- Twenty four case study episodes in which you watch a new project manager apply the principles of project management to her first project.
- One hundred and four sample multiple choice questions to check you progress with the course.
- A full sample exam paper.
- An on-line tutor support via our study group.
We don't expect you will use all these resources as we find that different people have different learning styles, some prefer the printed resources, some find the pod casts fit into their working week, whilst other prefer the on-line lectures.
Bite Size Video Lectures.
These are presented a short bite-size presentations by the authors of the study guide (John Bolton and Paul Naybour) of the course contents. They cover all the areas required in the APM Project Fundamentals (APM PFQ) syllabus and are fast paced and engaging. Topics included are:
Project Management Principles
- Principles of project management
- The project environment
- Project life cycles
- Project roles
- The project management plan
- Scope management
- Resources management and procurement
- Risk management
- Quality management
- The project business case
- Success and benefits management
- Stakeholder management
- Issue management
- Change control and configuration management
- Leadership and teams
- Project reporting
- Project reviews
Case Study Episodes
During the course we will follow a new project manager, called Jayne, as she seeks to apply project management to her first project. You will meet the rest of her team, including the sponsor and venture capitalist, Zac Shallow, the IT manager, Karim and the operations manager Colin. In twenty-two short episodes you can follow Jayne each step of the way during the project life cycle. Watch as she:
- Sorts out the roles for the project including the project sponsor and user.
- Prepares and presents a business case for the project.
- Works with the team to define the project management plan.
- Manages the risks and issues that emerge along the way
- Deals with changes introduced by the project sponsor.
This case study brings the application of project management to life.
During the course we also invite you to consider the implications of what we have learned and how you can apply these lessons to the projects you manage day to day. For example
- Considering the questions we would ask a sponsor at a start up meeting?
- Considering the success factors, benefits and KPI for the case study project and how these apply to your project?
- Analysis of the different stakeholder's in a project?
- Considering the best structure for a project management plan?
- Considering how to respond to a risk or and issue?
The aim of these reflection exercises is to help you think about the ways in which you can apply the key learning points from the course to the projects you manage day-to-day.
Podcasts are MP3 audio files that you can download and listen to anywhere. They are ideal for playing on the train or in the car. These podcasts provide more background to the topics in the course, with more examples and discussion than the video lectures. In these we share our hints and tips for the practical application of these tools.
After each section we provide you with multiple choice review questions to check your understanding of each section. These are marked on-line and you can take these review questions as often as you like. Your scores are tracked and you can use these to monitor your understanding of each topic.
Once you have completed your study you can take the APM Project Fundamentals Exam (APM PFQ). This is an on-line exam which you can take at any time convenient to you. During the exam you are observed by a remote proctor using a web cam, so you do need to book your slot 72 hours in advance. As you register for the course we will send you a link to take the exam when you are ready. To help prepare for the exam we have included a sample paper from the APM in the study material.
Technical Requirements and Compatibility
Our e-Learning system will support the following browsers: Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer 9+, Microsoft Edge, Safari and Safari on iPhone iOS 8+ (iPhone 4s through current), Safari on iPads with iOS 8+ (iPad 2 through current) and Chrome on Android. We do not support IE8 which is no longer supported by Microsoft. For the exam you will need a web cam as well.
In simple terms, if you can play the sample videos on this page then our e-Learning will work on your system, as they use the same streaming technology. The requirements for the APM PFQ online exam (including a testing link) can be found here: https://ondemand.questionmark.eu/601315/ext/candidate
How Long Can I Access My Training For?
We will initially enable you access to our e-Learning System for six months, but if you need to extend the access for a further six months at any time then please do get in touch. There is no time limit on you taking the exam, although we may ask for a small additional payment to cover any change in the exam fees by the APM.