How to Study for the CPSD™ in 10 Steps

  1. Set goals and create a time line to study and take your CPSD™ Exam and either CPSM® Exam 1 (Current CPSM®s or C.P.M.s only take CPSD™ Exam; skip to step 8). We recommend you start with CPSM® Exam 1 as it helps you be more prepared for the CPSD™ Exam. Then, register and schedule your exam(s) so you stick to your schedule and are less likely to get sidetracked.

  2. Take the CPSM® Diagnostic Practice Exam Exam 1 practice test to find your weak areas.

  3. Use your score report from the Diagnostic Practice Exam (or from a previous exam) to develop a study plan to target areas you need to strengthen — areas in which you scored less than 75 percent. The score report references where to find the explanations in the CPSM® Study Guide, the ISM Professional Series and a few other resources. Make sure you take the time to match your results to the justifications and follow the bibliographic references that tell you where to find detailed explanations.

  4. Use the CPSM® Exam 1 Study Guide, an expanded outline of the exam content, to get familiar with the exam specifications, and get examples of the testing format and styles of questions. It briefly explains the content tested in the exams within the context of each task category.

  5. Use the ISM Professional Series — Foundation of Supply Management, volume 1. It is where you want to go for more detailed explanations of the exam task areas that were weak in your score report.

  6. If needed, take another practice test from the Diagnostic Practice Exam to make sure you understand the concepts and improve your scores in weaker areas.

  7. Still need more? Take a CPSM® Review Course. They are available in three formats to fit your schedule — online, self-study workbook or face-to-face seminars. Check out the ISM seminar catalog and your affiliate for schedules.

  8. As needed, adjust your goals and time line for the CPSD™ Exam. Then, register and schedule your exam.

  9. Take the CPSD™ Online Exam Review course or complete the CPSD™ Exam Review Self-Study Workbook (same content). ISM and some of its affiliates periodically offer face-to-face exam review courses (content similar to online and workbook). Check the ISM seminar catalog or your ISM affiliate for schedules.

  10. Use the CPSD™ Course Content Outline from the online course or self-study-workbook as a guide. Check off each concept as you review and understand it. Make sure to complete all the exercises, knowledge checks and the post-test within the course to prepare you for the style of questioning in the exam.

Bonus items: