If you've earned your PMP certification, you now have to maintain your credentials by participating in professional development activities. This is from the PMI Web Page on Maintaining Your Credential:

Congratulations on earning your PMI certification!

Now that you are a credential holder, you need to adhere to PMI’s Continuing Certification Requirements (CCR) program. To follow the program, participate in professional development activities to earn professional development units (PDUs) to maintain your credential.

What are some free or inexpensive methods that could help earn PDU's?


8 Answers 8


The possibilities are nearly endless. I earned a good half my PDUs through free resources.

Now before I list my suggestions, I do need to make a caveat. This March (2011), PMI updated their PDU guidelines and condensed their categories. I'm still coming up to speed on them, but from what I've studied so far, most of the suggestions still apply.

Self Directed Learning: Up to 30 PDUs can be gained this way. - Reading articles, books, or instructional manuals; watching videos, using interactive CD-ROMs, Podcasts or other source material. I highly recommend Cornelius Fitcher's PM Podcast. He's a great interviewer and covers excellent topics. - Having formal discussions with colleagues, coworkers, clients or consultants. Most chapters have networking events. In the Silicon Valley there are breakfast sessions where PMs meet and discuss various topics. 1 PDU for the price of a cheep IHOP breakfast and you get to talk with other PMs. -Being coached or mentored by a colleague, coworker or consultant (If you served as a coach or mentor to someone else. (Remember, you need to be able to be audited on this.)

Creating New Project Management Knowledge: Authoring books, published articles, podcasts. Giving a webinar, speech, being an SME in a panel discussion.

Voluteer Service: Pretty much any service to your PMI chapter. Doing project work for a Non-Profit

Being a project manager: And the reward for the easiest PDUs is the 15 PDU you can earn for doing your job. If you hold a job as a PM, you can earn up to 15 PDUs.

With three years to earn your PDUs it is completely possible to earn 100% of your PDUs without paying one cent.

If anyone would like specific suggestions for any of these categories, feel free to contact me directly.


  • The answers to this question should be directed at the community, not me specifically. I appreciate your very detailed answer, but let's keep out the greeting and the signature as explained in both the FAQ and this meta question. Let's keep this site inline with the goals of the Stack Exchange network. Thank you.
    – jmort253
    Commented Apr 24, 2011 at 18:23
  • So from reading the documentation you listed, does this mean that there is a maximum number of PDU's that can be earned from creating new PM Knowledge, such as by posting new content on this Q&A site? Is 45 PDU then the maximum that one can earn from asking and answering questions here?
    – jmort253
    Commented Apr 24, 2011 at 18:31
  • @jmort253 this site falls under Category C (self-directed learning), and has a limit of 30 PDUs for PMPs.
    – ashes999
    Commented Apr 25, 2011 at 10:50

I posted about this before; one of the best free ways to eearn PDUs (in category C -- self-directed learning) is to spend time on the PM Stack Exchange website (i.e. this site). You can use RescueTime to track hours; I've claimed around 4-5 PDUs already from this method. (You can read more details in my blog post here.)

Other than that, PDUs generally cost about $10 each (that's the most cost-efficient I've seen) if you purchase materials.

I find most of mine through free online sources (webinars, articles, etc.) Starting this cycle, I also plan to claim as many as possible by contributing (writing PM-related articles/books).

Check the PMI website for the guidelines, which keep changing, and to keep on top of the limits of what you can claim (eg. max of 45 PDUs for writing PM-related materials).

  • Do you mind posting the references to your article and to any other resources you think might help others earn credit for posting questions and answers here? Thank you, this is very helpful.
    – jmort253
    Commented Apr 25, 2011 at 3:15
  • @jmort253 done; I've added a link to my article.
    – ashes999
    Commented Apr 25, 2011 at 10:49
  • Adding a reference link to the meta topic on earning PDU's from creating content on this Q&A site: meta.pm.stackexchange.com/questions/144/…
    – jmort253
    Commented May 6, 2011 at 6:09

One of the inexpensive ways to collect PDUs for your PMP is to listen to or watch podcasts and webinars. There are many which are free of charge.

Basically, there are two types -- the one type is provided by the PMI's R.E.P. -- they'll give you type A PDU, and the others give you type B PDUs. Still, webinars have to be somehow related to project management. One site which collects many links to free or inexpensive PMP PDUs is http://www.pdu4free.com.

I hope that it'll help you to maintain you PMP.


One great way not yet mentioned is a formal mentoring program offered by a local chapter. I know that the Southern Ontario Chapter (Toronto, Canada) and Technology Triangle Chapter (Waterloo, Ontario) both offer programs that get you between 40-60 PDUs over the course of a year.

It requires that you have regular (usually weekly) meetings (in person or by phone) with your mentor. You get a lot of great advice, built a great relationship, and get tons of PDUs.

Highly recommended.

[edit] Unfortunately most of the links are behind login screens, but if you're a member of PMI-SOC, go to http://www.soc.pmi.on.ca/displaycommon.cfm?an=7 and click "Mentoring Program".

Various other chapters' mentoring programs:

Probably best to contact your local chapter to see what they offer.

  • Hi, thank you for this answer! +1 Do you have a hyperlink or more information that you can attach that could help someone get started or find something similar in their area?
    – jmort253
    Commented Dec 14, 2011 at 17:14

My suggestion is to partecipate as volunteer at PMI and PMI Chapters initiatives. It's free and really useful: it is possible to learn a lot participating to PMI communities!


As a Project Manager, you can earn 5 PDU every year and 15 PDU within a CCR. There are lot of REP provide free webinars, Each webinar will worth of 0.5 PDU to 1.5 PDUs.






More link from this website



read this to know: http://www.pmi.org/Pages/Ten_Ways_to_Earn_PDUs.aspx Most convenient way is to take courses by REPs and it helps in enhancing your knowledge too. You can try Simplilearn if interested in taking courses by REP.


At some point you will have to take a course to get the required PDU's. Prodevia offers course for a reasonable price.

  • 2
    Hello, not to disagree with you, but I've met several PMP in Silicon Valley that have aquired their PDUs without a single paid PDU. You are not required to take courses to get PDUs. It's a convienant way, but not required. Commented Apr 25, 2011 at 19:38

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