Project Management

Certified Business Analysis Professional (CBAP®)

From the The Big Time Blog
Managing any project successfully is all about Team Work combined with years of Accrued Expertise. It is an asset to have an educational background that compliments your field of expertise but "education" without "experience" is like an "arrow" without a "bow." You can never make a perfect shot with a temporary arrow unless you have a permanent bow called: "Life's Experience." Remember, you can never teach experience but you can always teach from experience.

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I am glad to announce that I passed the CBAP Exam on May 05, 2019. It was a journey full of unexpected challenges both on a professional and personal levels. 


IIBA Resources: BABOK V3 is the only resource and is more than enough. 

Course: IIBA mandate that you take a course that includes a moderator or facilitator, even if it is online. 

IIBA Application: It is pretty straight forward (Similar to PMI's Applications) except for the fact that if you were not chosen for audit, your application will be approved immediately. Application Fee = $125 + Exam Fee = $325 for Members plus applicable taxes (Membership is optional and will cost you $125 which you will save on the exam fees). 

Study Time: At a normal pace, I would say 2 months (2 - 4 Hours / Day) should be enough. The material is very dense, the language is not easy and there is lots of info to take in so cramming won't help. Compared to other exams, I found this exam material the most difficult to study. One important thing to mention, if you are a PMI-PBA, it won't help much in your CBAP. 

Simulation Exams: One great resource for simulation exams was Watermark Learning. They have a great questions bank and although the exam questions are very different, still, Watermark's simulation exams provide you with great ideas and explanations. It is worth also noting that their fees were reasonable as well (It was about $129 USD for 2 months access). There aren't many simulation exam resources for the CBAP but Watermark is certainly one of the good ones. Passing the exam without going through some simulation exams, regardless of the source, would be difficult. 


Level of Difficulty: The level of difficulty is comparable with PMI-PBA but the style of questions is totally different.

Exam Questions (General): The exam is 120 Questions and the timing is 3.5 Hours. All the exam questions were scenario based  some of which were short, others were very lengthy (At least 35%). The lengthy questions are one page questions that have lots of info and the scenario will cover 3 - 4 exam questions. 

Exam Depth: The exam tests your understanding of Business Analysis very deeply beyond any text book. You need to ensure you fully understand all principles, processes, models, techniques and so on. 

Exam Language: The language of the questions and answers was moderate. You might end up reading the question and answers multiple times. 

Exam Time: Time is important to watch. Although you are given 3.5 hours to answer 120 Questions, some might think it's plenty of time but in reality, it is not so watch your time. 

Elimination Strategy: You will find it easy to eliminate two answers but very difficult to chose between the remaining two. You need to deeply think of every word in the questions and answers to properly get to a conclusion in terms of which choice is the best. 

Good Luck to all future Aspirants !

Posted on: May 08, 2019 02:24 AM | Permalink

Comments (31)

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Congrats Rami!

Next strike! Unbelievable! Congratulations and thanks for sharing your experience. You are such a role model in so many ways, wow!

Congratulations on passing the exam and sharing some helpful tips.

Congratulations Rami !!
Thanks for sharing valuable experience.

Congrats Rami. Its a great certification. Also, its great that you outlined your journey, very much helpful and inspirational for us all. Thanks

Thank you all, I very much appreciate your kind words and glad you found this summary useful !

Congratulations Rami !
I've passed IIBA CBAP exam some years ago. I felt the same hurdles so thank you for written and sharing them with the community.
At that time CBAP make sense, but since PMI has PBA, i've doubts about the cost-benefit.
There are some differences, minor in my opinion.
It's difficult to have both certifications valid, especially CBAP. IIBA website changed, for the worse, less content (webinars), most of them are payed.

Best regards

Joshua, thank you and you as well !

Tiago, I hear you but maintaining both should not be difficult as you can record hours you spend on BA activities for both (Example: BA Virtual Conference that happens annually).

There is huge difference between CBAP and PBA and I personally did benefit from both but found PBA Guide much more organized and easier to absorb than the CBAP.

Congrats, you are champion in certifications. Thanks for sharing the tips

Congrats... One more feather on the cap

@Priya, @Ashutosh: thank you for your kind words, appreciate it.

Congrats, Rami and thanks for sharing your experience.

Congrats Rami, truly Inspiring. Thank you for lessons learned

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