Vicki James, PMP, CBAP, PMI-PBA, CSM

formerly of Professional Project Services, LCC

6 Easy Ways to Earn PDUs for your PMP

Are you up to date on your PDUs? Is your renewal deadline fast approaching? Here are some ideas, in ease to earn order, to help you get your PDUs in time for your certification renewal. Full detail for categories is available in the PMP Handbook. Refer to your copy for additional information to plan for and record your PDUs.

Category F* – Working as a Professional In Project Management

You can earn up to 5 PDUs per year, 15 per certification cycle, for working full time as a project manager. Your 25% on your way to re-certification!

*Subject to maximum of 45 credits combined in categories D, E, and F.

Category C – Self Directed Learning

Anything you read, watch, or discuss related to project management may count towards your PDUs. Keep records of the time you participate in these activities along with any notes and record your PDUs. One PDU per hour of activity up to 30 PDUs in your certification cycle is allowed.

  • Webinars
  • Podcasts
  • Articles
  • Books

There are hundreds of self-directed learning opportunities on the web. Check out these links to find out more. Sign up for their email lists to get notice of opportunities directly in your inbox.

  • – PDU of the Day provides PDU opportunities from all categories. Many are self-directed activities. Opportunities listed provide information includes category information, recording requirements, and anything else you need to know to make the most of the opportunity provided.
  • – This is a portal to many PDU opportunities of various categories. Find an event calendar of opportunities or browse for on-demand activities that are available. Also includes a link to information on the, an opportunity to earn PDUs through recorded podcasts.

Category E* – Volunteer Service

Have you volunteered with the PMI, maybe within your local chapter, or reviewing an upcoming standard on This also provides PDU credit. Find out more on volunteering at the PMI Volunteer page.

Volunteering is not just a great way to get PDU credit, it also is a great way to expand your network and your skills while benefiting PMI and project managers everywhere. You earn 1 PDU per hour up to the 45 PDU limit in your certification cycle.

*Subject to 45 credit limit for activities in categories D, E, and F.

Category B – Continuing Education

Did you know that you get credit for all project management training, not just training provided by PMI Registered Education Providers? That’s right! That is what category B is all about. Participate in any formal training session and get credit for that time of the curriculum that is project management specific. So go ahead and sign up for the project management workshop you want. It does count!

Category D* – Create New Project Management Knowledge

Do you write or train on project management? Well give yourself credit. PMI grants PDUs for sharing knowledge through writing, presenting, and training. You get PDU credit for preparation and presentation time hour for hour.

*Subject to 45 credit limit for activities in categories D, E, and F.

Conferences, Congresses, and Seminar Events

This is perhaps the most fun and efficient way to earn PDUs. Not only do you get a large selections of topics to see presentations on, but you get to meet project managers from around the world and see what is happening in the world of vendors and tools. You might not even have to record your PDUs  for sponsored events as they will often do this for you from your registration and attended sessions.

A Final Note

Make managing your PDUs easier by recording as you as you earn them. This will make the overall task easier and provide an easy to follow view of where you are in your certification cycle. Record your PDUs online on the Continuing Education Requirements System. Got too many? No problem…you can roll over up to 20 PDUs for your next cycle.

* Categories D, E, and F are grouped as “Giving Back to the Profession.” PMI has placed a limit on the number of PDUs allowed in these categories to 45 per certification cycle.
Image credit: nikolaev / 123RF Stock Photo

4 responses to “6 Easy Ways to Earn PDUs for your PMP

  1. Jeff Furman July 15, 2012 at 8:02 am

    Hi Vicki, excellent post! (clears up some mysteries)

    I have 2 comments your followers might like to know about:

    1) Where you mention PODCASTS (Under Category C) I would highly recommend
    several series of podcasts hosted by Cornelius Fichtner:
    a) The Project Management Podcast:,
    b) The PDU Podcast: (longer, in-depth, more PDUs!),
    c) The PM Prepcast (for preparing for your PMP/CAPM)
    d) I just heard that Cornelius has a new series coming soon…”The Agile Prepcast”

    Disclaimer – I have done several “Project Management Podcast” interviews
    with Cornelius, and one “PDU Podcast.”

    2) Also, presentations for PDUs DON’T have to be for as large an audience as a PMI
    Chapter Meeting or a PMI Conference. If a PM puts together a presentation/seminar
    internal to your company about a PM topic, such as “How I Got My PMP” or
    “Did You Know There Are Six (6!) Certifications From PMI — Learn All About Them!”
    those are examples of presentations that could be eligible also (Category D).

  2. Alexander Salamanca April 28, 2013 at 9:34 pm

    One question, if you don’t mind me asking: When I put together a small audience (for example, a meetup group) for a presentation, can I use that for claming PDUs? Should I record a video for proof? If not, then how the PMI would know that the event actually occurred?

    Thanks for answering

    • vickipps April 28, 2013 at 9:59 pm

      Thank you for the question. I would suggest keeping good records. The date, time, place, and attendees should be sufficient proof in the event of audit. They don’t follow up on verifying PDUs recorded unless there in audit.

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