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What is Knowledge Areas in PMBOK?

How the PMBOK got its name is largely related to how it categorizes key aspects of a project, which are termed as “knowledge areas.” There are nine knowledge areas. Knowledge areas are organized by their role in a project. For example, core areas are considered to be the pillars of a project. Changing one aspect of a core area will have direct consequences on other core areas. For example, if a project is modified to include more functionality, then time, cost, and [sometimes] quality factors shift to accommodate changes to scope. This is known as the triple/quadruple constraint. On the other hand, there are knowledge areas that are supportive to project success factors, but are not seen as foundational. These are called facilitating functions. Lastly, what ties all knowledge areas together is integration management, or coordinating all components of a project.

Core Knowledge Areas

  • Scope Management
  • Time Management
  • Cost Management
  • Quality Management

Facilitating Knowledge Areas

  • Communications Management
  • Human Resources Management
  • Risk Management
  • Procurement Management

Coordination Knowledge Area

  • Integration Management
  • Stakeholder Management

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