I have seen many people using PMP Contact Hours and PDUs alternatively to mean the same. But, in reality they are totally different. Here are the key differences between PMP Contact Hours and PDUs.
PMP Contact Hours:
- PMP contact hours refer to the formal project management training to be taken BEFORE earning the PMP credential
- One hour of such formal training earns one contact hour
- Earning 35 contact hours is a prerequisite to apply for PMP certification
- These contact hours can be earned through university programs,employer sponsored trainings and programs, programs from training providers and consultants, distance learning programs provided by online training providers that may or many be R.E.Ps
You can find more about some of the popular 35 contact hours trainings here.
- PDU stands for Professional Development Unit
- PDUs come into picture AFTER you earn your PMP credential
- PDUs are key part of PMI’s Continuing Certification Requirements(CCR)
- You need to earn 60 PDUs in three years to maintain your PMP credential
- You can earn PDUs by participating in professional development activities that include E-Learning, PMI community offered meetings and sessions,R.E.P courses, self directed learning etc.
- Contact Hour Trainings DO NOT qualify to earn PDUs
- There are both paid and free ways to earn these PDUs
To learn more about earning PDUs for free read this article: How I earned my PMP CCR PDUs for Free