This paper is an update of a paper prepared for the June 2002 IPMA Conference in Berlin. It contains content from various training materials developed for the World Bank. The current paper is copyright to Robert Youker, © 2007.
Published here January 2008.

Introduction | Document #1: On-the-Job Tasks for the Project Manager 
Modules 1-3 | Modules 4-6 | Module 7 | Modules 8-9 | Modules 10-12
Document #2: The Project Manager's Duties | Document #3: Typical Elements in a Project Charter

Module 7: Planning and Scheduling with the Critical Path Method

This Module's activities are divided into three subsections: Planning, Scheduling, and Using computers


  • Review the WBS, responsibility matrix, and master summary schedule.
  • Select the appropriate planning tool: activity list, bar chart, or network diagrams (precedence, arrow, and PERT).
  • Generate a list of activities for each summary activity and assign responsibility.
  • Estimate the duration of each activity.
  • Establish the sequence of activities.
  • Prepare a precedence network diagram.
  • Determine the critical path.
  • Calculate float (slack).


  • Calculate resource requirements.
  • Schedule float activities.
  • Compare the results to the original schedule and resource constraints.
  • Evaluate risks based on expert advice and experience and modify the schedule accordingly.
  • Identify discrepancies and opportunities and escalate to management.
  • Determine if the project can meet the target completion date specified in the project analysis report and, if not, decide on the best strategies to reduce duration.
  • Revise master summary schedule.

Using Computers

  • Apply selection criteria to choose the right tool.
  • Set up the computer tool (modify defaults).
  • Read and interpret sample output reports.
  • Match different types of reports with different users and purposes.
Modules 4-6  Modules 4-6

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