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Diane Johnson
Diane Johnson

Your Journey to the CBAP® Certification Exam

Pursuing your International Institute of Business Analysis (IIBA®) Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP®) certification? The adage “It’s not the destination, it’s the journey” certainly applies to this challenging professional effort.

Earning the CBAP® certification is the accumulation of your professional development and knowledge; crossing the finish line just affirms what you’ve learned throughout your career. Nevertheless, preparing for the 150-question CBAP® certification exam requires structure in your preparation approach and efficient, effective use of your time. Here are some hints for the long road ahead:
1.      The IIBA® Business Analysis Body of Knowledge® (BABOK®), Version 1.6, is your roadmap. The CBAP® journey will require you to blend your experiences with the guidelines stated in plus its cited references. When preparing for the exam, you should brush up on topics, knowledge areas, and techniques from the BABOK®  V1.6.
2.      Know the IIBA® answer. Most of the time, when comparing your lessons learned with the stated guidelines in the BABOK®  V1.6, your experiences will be confirmed. However, for instances when your lessons learned don’t match the BABOK® V1.6, remember your objective: passing the exam. Know the acceptable answers of the governing body that is offering the certification.
3.      Contact a local IIBA® chapter.  Many chapters offer study groups and contacts of peers who have already achieved their CBAP® certification. Also, if you aren’t already a member, it’s likely you’ll want to join after certification, and the CBAP® exam fee is $125 less for members (it essentially reimburses the $125 application fee required of all certification candidates).
4.      Work with a study group.  Study group activities offer the best approach to exam preparation other than taking a CBAP® exam prep course. Suggested study group activities include:
  • Conducting a walk-through of CBAP® applications before submission and ensuring that experiences cited fall within the exam qualification guidelines.
  • Chart the processes of the six knowledge areas in the BABOK® V1.6 and understand the natural sequence (parallel and iterative) of the flow.
  • Create a group glossary of terms, ensuring the definitions are derived from the BABOK®  V1.6 and other BABOK® V1.6 references as needed.
  • Review and compare techniques cited in the BABOK® V1.6. Know when and in which situations to use them (strengths, weaknesses and alternative techniques).
5.      Individually conduct a self-assessment on specific topics. Identify your weak areas and beef up your knowledge on those topics. In addition, familiarize yourself with the jargon used in each knowledge area. This preparation can take from one to three months of part-time study, depending on your study group progress and level of experience.
Glenn R. Brûlé, Executive Director, Client Solutions, ESI International, is author of CBAP®   Exam: Practice Test and Study Guide, First Edition.
This entry was published on Jun 01, 2009 / Diane Johnson. Posted in CBAP. Bookmark the Permalink or E-mail it to a friend.
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