Topic Name Description
Course Syllabus Page Course Syllabus
1.1: Introduction to Projects Page What is Project Management?

This short video will get you started on the right foot in this course. As you watch, think about everything you will learn to put in your "project management arsenal". Good luck in the course!

Page What Is a Project?

Read this introduction, which will help you understand what actually constitutes a formal project. What goes into the making of a project? How many times have you been involved in a project that followed these parameters?

Page Roles within a Project

Read this page with the aim of gaining a high-level understanding of the different positions and roles within project management.

1.2: The Evolution of Project Management Page History of Project Management

Read this chapter on the history of project management. Why does the history of project management matter to you? What can learning about the history of project management teach you about your future as a project manager?

Page Project Management: Past and Present

Read this chapter to get a sense of how project management principles and project management roles are applied throughout a variety of disciplines and fields.

1.3: Operations vs. Project Management Page Total Quality Management

Read this article on operations management and the concept of implementing organization-wide processes by using total quality management (TQM) guidelines.

1.4: Project Management Overview Book Introduction to Project Management

Read this chapter, which will provide you with an overview of project management and define projects and project management. The differences between project management and operations management are also explored. While this text uses information technology projects as examples, the principles are the same for managing any type of complex project and activity. Attempt the exercises at the end of each section.

Page Defining Project Management

Read this article, which defines the term project management. When have you experienced being a part of a project?

Page Managing a Project

Read this chapter to get a handle on what project managers must juggle. Project managers consider needs and priorities, budgets and timelines, quality and documentation, team dynamics, and organizational structure, among many other challenges.

Page An Overview of Project Management

Watch this lecture, which is the second part of the series that you watched earlier. This lecture differentiates between project management on one hand and production or operations on the other hand. It expands on this distinction by going into more depth about project management.

1.5: Project Leadership Skills and Roles Page What is Transformational Leadership?

This is a simplified introduction to leadership in organizations and project management. Of the four qualities of transformational leaders put forward in this video, which two are the most important as they relate to project management? Are there other qualities that characterize transformational leaders? If so, what are they? What types of qualities do you like to see in the managers you have worked for?

Page Managing People

Read this section, which covers managing and leading people during project execution as well as how to build effective teams.

Page Research and Stakeholder Analysis

Learning how to practice good stakeholder design is important to the success of any project. Why? What are some of the negative consequences of not practicing good stakeholder design?

1.6: Profiling a Project Book Project Profiling

Read this chapter, which gives an overview of how to create a snapshot of the project to create an outline of the project's tasks. Attempt the exercises at the end of each section.

Page Project Appraisal
Watch this video, which covers how to evaluate a project's potential to be effective. Companies use certain methods to choose the right project and prepare a project feasibility report. In developing a project feasibility report, you have to consider whether the project is worthwhile by evaluating economic, financial, and technical factors. This lecture will go through the process of project identification, appraisal, and selection. You will learn how to calculate the net present value (NPV), internal rate of return (IRR), payback period, loan return capability, and so on. This will help you understand how to create an initial assessment of a project's viability.
Page More on Project Appraisal

Watch this video, which covers the financial appraisal of projects:

  • estimation of the cost of the project and its timing;
  • estimation of the likely revenues during each period;
  • the cost of capital;
  • the planning horizon of the project;
  • the risk in the project as evidenced by the worst and best values of costs and revenues;
  • benefit/cost ratio of discounted cash flows;
  • debt service coverage ratio; and
  • a company's reputation in terms of assets, liabilities, and record of previous repayments, etc.

This video demonstrates how to successfully create an initial assessment of a project's viability.

1.7: Project Management Success or Failure Book Managing Project Risk

Read these sections, which discuss how to manage project risk to ensure the success of a project and how improper management can lead to project failure.

Page Basic Principles and Scope

Read this section, which covers the ten axioms for project success, the importance of documenting the critical path of a successful project, and assessing scope to ensure successful outcomes.

2.1: What Is a Project Life Cycle? Book Project Phases and Organization

Read this chapter, which reviews organizational structure and the phases of a project. At what stage of a project are problems most liable to grow and have long-lasting negative consequences? Be sure to complete the exercises at the end of each section.

Page The Project Life Cycle

Read this article, which details the processes involved in carrying out the tasks in the various phases that help the organization meet the project's objectives.

Page The Life Cycle of a Production System

Watch this lecture, which covers the life cycle that is typically followed by project and product management.

Page The Classic Six-Stage Project Management Model

Read this article, which will help you understand the sequential flow of a project and how it differs from the traditional project life cycle. Communication is a vital component of this model. What is the benefit of good communication for a project? How can communication be improved among members of virtual teams using this model?

2.2: Initiation Phase Page Project Initiation

Read this chapter, which discusses the first phase of the project management lifecycle. We will discuss this in more depth in Unit 4.

2.3: Planning Phase Book Project Planning

Read this chapter, which discusses the planning phase of the project lifecycle. What are some of the pain points in this part of the project management process? What tools do project management professionals typically use to plan projects?

Page Planning

Read this section, which discusses the planning stage of the life cycle, including budgeting, allocating resources, scheduling, and creating the project plan.

Page Planning and Status Tracking

Although this video is brief, it gives a thorough summary of the majority of the PMBOK-G and PRINCE2 approaches to planning in project management. This video is skills-focused, so be sure to take notes.

2.4: Execution Phase Page Staying on Track

Read this section on project execution and keeping resources on track throughout the project life cycle.

Page Project Life Cycle Phases

Read this chapter, paying particular attention to the section on the execution phase, which may also be called the implementation phase. All the planning a project team did in the previous phase is set in motion in this phase.

Page The Six Phases of Project Management

Read this section as a review of the phased approach to project management. Did you know some organizations opt not to follow a phased approach to project management? Can you think of why this might be? Pay attention to the implementation and follow-up phases since they are new.

2.5: Closure Phase Page Project Completion

This chapter demonstrates how to close out projects effectively. Can you think of any other important steps to closing out a project that are missing here?

Page Project Closure

This chapter presents some of the same information as the previous resource but includes key takeaways and a section on remembering to celebrate your success upon closing out a project!

2.6: Project Success vs. Failure Page Why Projects Fail

Read this article and the two case studies linked at the end. Have you ever had one of your projects fail? What did you do about it?

Page How to Create a Successful Project Team

Think about the characteristics of an effective team, as described in this video. Can you think of an additional quality or two that could improve the effectiveness of a team? What about project teams specifically – how are they unique?

Page Types of Communication

The benefit of good communication to successful project management should be clear to you. We discover daily how technology is bringing teams closer, whether virtual or not, from email and video conferencing to text messages and in-person meetings. What is your preferred communication tool, and why? Think about what you consider to be your "best practices".

Page Defining Risk

In this section, you have the opportunity to explore risk in project management through the experiences of three different designers.

Page Risk Management Planning

Properly planning for and managing risk is a huge predictor of the success of a project. When trouble comes, and it likely will, how do you get out of it? This chapter has some tried and tested methods. How will you track the issues, and what will you do to address them?

3.1: Establishing the Proper Organizational Structure Book Organizational Structure

Read each of the four sections of this chapter on organizational structure. Having a basic understanding of organizational design will help you strategize risk management, project initiation, leadership, and more. What is the most important aspect of understanding organizational design you would take away from this section? Why?

Page Project Organization

This chapter aims to give an overview of organizational structure from several points of view, including culture, communications, and management. Consider the convergence of cultures between team members, stakeholders, and you, the project manager. How do you engage the team? What issues can adversely affect the project when dealing with different cultures and expectations?

Page Organizational and Behavioral Issues

Watch this video, which covers the organizational issues that management must discuss before starting a project and strategies for identifying and preventing these issues to prevent project failure. How might the point of view of the professor differ from yours, culturally? What effect does technology have in this area?

3.2: Working with Individuals Page Working with Individuals

As you read, note how a project management professional's communication style, personality type, and leadership style can affect how they interact with the project team members. What communication style or personality type do you prefer in a manager? Is there a certain type of leader you work best with? Think about the type of communicator and leader you would like to be.

Page Managing Projects through People

Read the first section of this chapter on why people management matters to the successful delivery of projects. This chapter demonstrates the importance of managing people for the success of a project. You will read other sections from this chapter later on.

Page Project Representation

Watch this video, which covers how to select the right personnel for project implementations and tips on identifying the right people and resources such as facilities, funding, and other needs to carry out project tasks.

Page Involving the Right People

This video focuses on how to get buy-in from your team members and stakeholders. Part of that is how you make hiring decisions. Can you think of some examples from your work or volunteer experience where you had to make a teambuilding decision?

3.3: Working with Groups Page Working with Groups and Teams

Creating a good working team with a group culture that benefits all members is vital to a project team's smooth functioning. Think about times when you had positive or negative interactions with team members on a project. What can you attribute these moments to? How was the project ultimately affected? Attempt the exercises at the end of the chapter.

Page More on Managing Projects Through People

Read this section, which discusses how to build an effective team of high performers for successful project implementation.

Page Team Building and Leadership in Projects

Watch this lecture, which discusses the importance of identifying the right resources in project teams, team-building tactics, and the effect of leadership on outcomes.

Page Effective Teamwork and Collaboration

This video posits that one of the benefits of building diverse teams is interdisciplinarity, or the thinking and creating across disciplines that can happen when team members have diverse perspectives, points of view, or backgrounds. Can you think of any additional benefits of this kind of collaboration? Are there drawbacks?

3.4: Communication Tactics Book Communication Technologies

Read this chapter and attempt the exercises at the end of each section. This chapter discusses how communication technology can facilitate faster and better communication among project team members. Pay attention to the learning outcomes listed at the outset of each section. After you read, revisit these outcomes and ask yourself if you have achieved them.

Page Identifying and Involving Stakeholders in a Project

Read this article, which discusses why project managers must communicate effectively. Spend some time on the activity. Record your reflections in your notes.

Book Teamwork and Communication

Read this chapter and attempt the exercises. Use the learning objectives at the top of each section to frame the chapter. Although some of the information about teams will be a review, note how communication surrounds all of the factors of a project manager's success.

3.5: Conflict Resolution Book Managing Conflict

Read this section, keeping in mind that there is a difference between constructive conflict and conflict that can damage teams and projects. Have you noticed this distinction in any organizations you have worked for?

Page Dealing with Problems

Managing conflict can mean more than just settling disputes among the project team members. Project managers may have to settle conflicts with their clients. In this section, you will consider the project manager's role in settling issues around competing interests, making decisions to revise previous decisions, and dealing with the client's concerns.

Page Political Behavior

Read this section, which discusses why political skills will be necessary to make deals and resolve conflicts with stakeholders who project managers may have little formal authority over.

Book Conflict Resolution to Project Success

This article examines five strategies for solving common disagreements: confronting, dominating, compromising, accommodating, and avoiding. Pay attention to the literature review.

4.1: Project Selection Page Framework for Project Management

This chapter gives a more detailed introduction to the Project Management Body of Knowledge (PMBOK). You will also learn about the work of the Project Management Institute (PMI), the organization that authors and maintains the PMBOK. Pay attention to the final section on project management offices (PMO).

Page Project Initiation

This video discusses the first of the five process groups defined by the PMBOK Guide, which is initiating the project. The other four process groups are planning, executing, monitoring/controlling, and closing. You will see other videos about the remaining four process groups later in this course. Note that this video is titled incorrectly on YouTube; it actually refers to project initiation rather than implementing a PMO.

Page Project Charters

The majority of this chapter will be a review for you. Feel free to skim the information you already know, but pay attention to the section on project charters and examine the example project charters and template at the bottom of the page.

Page Project Charter Template

The project charter is a statement of the scope, objectives, and participants in a project. It provides a preliminary delineation of roles and responsibilities, outlines the project objectives, identifies the main stakeholders, and defines the project manager's authority. It serves as a reference of authority for the future of the project. You can download this document to see an example of a project charter.

4.2: Project Scope and Baseline Page Project Scope

Read this section and attempt the exercises at the end. At what point should the scope of a project be defined?

Page Elements of Time Management

Read this section for a work breakdown structure and graphic representations of component activities and responsibility in a project. Attempt the exercises at the end of the section.

Book Project Schedule Planning

Read these chapters, and pay particular attention to the material presented on the work breakdown structure (WBS). WBS is a common tool that project managers use to decompose big, daunting tasks that entire teams or organizations are responsible for into manageable, approachable tasks that individual team members may be expected to complete.

Page Plan and Scope Management
As you read this article, think about which process group is best associated with setting the scope of a project. What do you think it is?
Page Setting Up a Baseline

Watch this video to learn how to set up and use a project baseline document. You may need to employ this type of documentation in your own career.

Page Schedule Baseline

Read this resource, which focuses on optimizing using project resources and time required to complete a project.

4.3: Project Planning Tools Page Project Planning

Watch this video. Although it is called "Project Initiation", it is about project planning.

Page Activity Networks and Critical Path Analysis

The critical path is a crucial concept in project management. This video shows how to use activity networks to calculate the earliest and latest completion times for various project activities and how to determine which activities lie on the critical path.

Page Computers in Project Management

Watch this video, which presents various technology tools that aid in effective project management. As you watch, think about a problem a virtual team might face and propose a technological solution to that issue.

Book Project Time Management

Read these sections and attempt the exercises at the end. This chapter discusses the scheduling aspect of project management and introduces technology and tools that help project managers stay on track. While this text uses information technology projects as examples, the principles are the same for managing any type of complex project.

Unit 4 Discussion and Assessment Page Example Project Charter

Using the same project that you used for the activity in Unit 2, create a sample project charter using the template in this article.

5.1: Project Control and Reporting Page Project Execution

Watch this video. Note that the video is titled incorrectly on YouTube; it discusses project execution rather than project planning.

Page Project Monitoring and Control
As you watch this video, think about the type of controls you will put in place in your next project. Can you identify the principles discussed in this video in any previous projects you have worked on? How does effectively monitoring a project allow you to succeed?
Page More on Project Monitoring and Control

Watch this lecture, which discusses how to track and control projects and production lifecycles with PERT/cost.

5.2: Project Quality Book Managing Project Quality

Read this chapter and attempt the exercises at the end of each section. This chapter discusses quality assurance and quality control. While this text uses information technology projects as examples, the principles are the same for managing any complex project. How do you manage project quality? What do you look for? Are there differences depending on the industry or sector, such as IT vs. manufacturing?

5.3: Managing Risks Book Project Risk and the Project Complexity Profile

Read this section, which discusses how to manage project risk to ensure the success of a project and how improper management can lead to project failure. Attempt the exercises at the end.

Book Risk Management

Read this article, and pay attention to the section on attitudes toward risk. Think about your industry. Is it risk-averse or open to taking smart risks? What about you, personally?

Page Decision Trees and Risk Evaluation

Watch this video, which discusses how to evaluate risks and use decision trees.

Page What Is Risk Management?

Read this article, which defines risk management and how it relates to the information systems process. This topic can be generalized to all types of projects.

6.1: Project Implementation Page Project Execution

Read this section, which discusses project execution.

Page Implementation

Read this section on implementation. Think about the key things to keep in mind during this phase.

6.2: Acceptance of Deliverables and Client Approval Book Understanding and Meeting Client Expectations

Read these sections, which discuss how to define client expectations and how to determine the proper organizational structure to deliver an acceptable project. The client brings their own set of expectations to each project. How can you manage a disruptive client? A passive-aggressive client? What are the tools you can use for each situation, and what are the commonalities? Attempt the exercises at the end of each section.

6.3: Project Procurement and Closure Book Project Procurement and Closure

Read this chapter, which discusses the procurement and closure aspect of closing out the project and delivering it to the client. Attempt the exercises at the end of each section.

Page Project Closeout

This reading discusses the final stage of the project management lifecycle. As the project draws to a close, you must define the closeout process. What areas are you comfortable with, and what do you need to work on as you "close out" your study of project management in this course? Can you make a closeout plan for your time taking this course?

Page Project Closure

Watch this video, which discusses how to close a project and close project contracts.

Page Project Completion and Review

Watch this lecture, which discusses how to close a project. The review of the project is an important time for self-reflection and think about opportunities for improvement.

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