15 Aug 2017

All About PRINCE2 Version 2017 (6th edition)

Posted by PRINCE2 Canada

This latest evolution of PRINCE2 has been developed in close consultation and collaboration with project-management professionals (practitioners, organizations, the AXELOS accredited community, academics) from the widest possible range of sectors and cultures. PRINCE2 has always been rooted in real-life experience. This update, which once again consolidates a wealth of knowledge gained in the workplace, can be trusted to provide practical, authoritative and relevant guidance to anyone managing a project in today’s environment.

What are the main changes to PRINCE2?

The PRINCE2 update will see a new edition of the PRINCE2 manual, plus updated training materials and Foundation and Practitioner examinations. This update does not change any of the fundamentals of the method – PRINCE2’s overall structure of seven principles, themes and processes remains unchanged. But the emphasis and treatments within these have shifted.
The main changes to the guidance are a greater emphasis on the following areas:

  • tailoring PRINCE2 to the needs of organizations and project environments;
  • the principles that underpin PRINCE2;
  • a greater link between the themes and principles;
  • the restructuring of the ‘Themes’ guidance to accommodate specific examples of tailoring;
  • the practical application of the method and guidance, with numerous examples, hints and tips.

What are the changes to the exams and certification process?

As you can see in the table below, the PRINCE2 Foundation exam has less questions now and requires a pass mark of 55%. As for the PRINCE2 Practitioner exam, the type of questions has been reduced to two and there are also less questions.

The validity period for a PRINCE2 Practitioner has been reduced to 3 years, but candidates who succeed in passing the Practitioner exam version 2017 now have two options for renewal of their certification, either retaking the Practitioner exam or continuous assessment.


I am a Practitioner under version 2009, what happens to me?

Rest assured, your current PRINCE2 Practitioner certificate will remain valid until the end of its 5-year period, after which you can re-certify under version 2017 by taking the PRINCE2 Practitioner exam. But it’s well worth familiarizing yourself with the updates.

How does the Re-Registration process work?

The revised PRINCE2 2017 update Practitioner certificate is valid for 3 years. There are 2 ways in which a candidate can maintain their qualification:

  • Retake the exam at the end of the 3 years, or
  • Subscribe to AXELOS membership within 3 months of passing their Practitioner exam. On signing  up to the membership program, they will immediately be awarded a PRINCE2 digital badge. They must then maintain their digital badge for the 3-year period by remaining in membership and logging 20 CPD points each year to maintain their badge. At the end of the 3 years, if their badge has been maintained for that period, they will be issued a new certificate with an extended expiry date of 3 years. This process will then be repeated to maintain their certificate.
  • To support candidates who want to remain current, AXELOS will be including one year’s PRINCE2 Membership with every PRINCE2 2017 update Practitioner exam. Once a candidate successfully passes their exam AXELOS will contact them with details of how to activate their membership and claim a digital badge.

What are CPD points?

CPD stands for Continuous Professional Development. One point represents one hour of activity/study. These can be obtained through:

  • Professional experience where you have applied the learning from your certification in the workplace. This could be in preparing documents such as a business case, a PID, a risk register etc. or it could be from mentoring a junior colleague. 5 CPD points from the 20 required in a year must be obtained from professional experience.
  • Training and qualification gained from undertaking training (there does not need to be a formal qualification at the end of the course or need to be an AXELOS qualification but it must be relevant to your certification)
  • Self-study – time spent reading relevant articles, case studies or listening to webinars. Community is divided into 2 categories: passive is time spent reading community content, such as LinkedIn or AXELOS community discussions and community active is time spent actively participating in such discussions or writing blogs for the community.

What happens if I forget to log my CPD points or allow my membership to lapse?

Your digital badge will expire and your certification will expire according to the date on your certificate. You will receive a subscription renewal notice a few weeks ahead of your expiry date and this will also inform you if you need to record further CPD points for your badge to be extended on renewal. You can re-join membership later and claim a digital badge but the new badge will not be back-dated.

Can I submit multiple years of CPD points to remain current?

No. CPD must be claimed equally across each of the 3 years, therefore equaling 20 points per year. If you fail to log the 20 points in any given year the digital badge will expire at the point of subscription renewal, even if you renew the subscription. It is important that candidates see CPD as an activity they undertake on a regular basis rather than cramming into the final year.

I have a Foundation certificate under version 2009, can I upgrade to Practitioner under version 2017?

Yes. If you register for our Practitioner Upgrade package, we will send you a new manual as well as preparation material to get ready for the Practitioner level class.

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