APM PMQ or PRINCE2 project management qualification?

APM PMQ and PRINCE2 are the two leading knowledge based project management qualifications in the UK. But which one is right for you? Here are some factors to consider.

APMP or PRINCE2 document





Accrediting organisation

Association for Project Management (APM) – 20,000 members based professional organisation

APMG-International – private global accreditation company working under contract to the Cabinet Office

Syllabus source

APM Body of Knowledge (52 topics outlined in BoK published by APM

AXELOS's PRINCE2 Manual published by TSO c. 300+ pages.

Quality assurance

APM’s internal structures and alignment to International Project Management Association (IPMA) Level D qualification

UKAS accredited with authoring and review panels drawn from consultants and industry


Held in high esteem by industry because it is broad and rigorous. Principally UK based with c. 4,000 per year taking APMP. 

Huge international volume of c. 100,000 per year.  High pass rate has reduced its reputation in recent years.

Professional membership

Free membership after taking the examination


Syllabus focus

Principles based principally with some techniques around 37 topics including life-cycles, organisation, risk, change, issues, earned value, leadership, sponsorship, communication, negotiation etc.)

Process based (e.g. starting, initiating, directing, controlling and closing) principally with seven themes – business case, organisation, quality, plans, risk, change, and progress.

Study time

Recommended 40-60 hours

Recommended 30-50 hours


3 hours written paper in English. 10 questions from 16. Pass rate c. 75%

Multiple languages.  Foundation 1 hour 75 multiple choice questions. Pass rate 99%+

Practitioner 2.5 hours 8 objective choice questions.  Pass rate c.90+%

Open exam centres

Four time per year in UK.  No remote proctoring.

Every month plus on demand plus remote proctoring.

Cost of a single place including examination on a public classroom based course

£1,000 - £1,500

£750 - £1,250


APM PMQ is right for you if your organisation or its clients do not use the PRINCE2 methodology and you are interested in a broader more rounded and more highly regarded qualification from a  professional membership based organisation that you may wish to join.

PRINCE2 is right for you if your organisation or its clients use the methodology for its project management or you want a method focused project management qualification that is more widely known both in the UK and in some overseas countries, and is easier to pass and is slightly cheaper.


APMP or PRINCE2 document

Further information

Click here to request a call back, email back or further specific information or contact Erica Gassor on 01635 524610

APM PMQ explained

APMP explained

PRINCE2® Practitioner explained

PRINCE2 explained