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Learner Reviews & Feedback for Initiating and Planning Projects by University of California, Irvine

21,751 ratings

About the Course

The courses in the Introduction to Project Management Principles and Practices Specialization are a recommended precursor to UCI's Applied Project Management Certificate. Successful projects require careful upfront planning. In this course, you’ll learn the key roles and responsibilities of the project manager and project team. You’ll also learn to answer some key questions upfront to help you meet project objectives: What will this project accomplish? Why is this project important? Who benefits from this project? How will we plan for successful outcomes? Upon completing this course, you will be able to: 1. Identify the key characteristics of a project 2. Identify primary project constraints 3. Define the role and responsibilities of the project manager 4. Identify Project Organizational Structures 5. Understand the definition of a Project Stakeholder 6. Identify project stakeholders 7. Identify information needs of the project stakeholders 8. Define responsibility for managing stakeholder and controlling stakeholder engagement 9. Define the purpose of using a project charter 10. Summarize the key elements of a project plan 11. Identify common sources of conflict within a project environment 12. Describe the difference between authority and influence...
foundational knowledge

(842 Reviews)

introductory course

(675 Reviews)

Top reviews


Jun 24, 2020

This course provides some practical situation which enriches my acknowledgment about being a responsible in any project and it also helps me to understand the planning process management proficiently!


Mar 26, 2018

This is absolutely worth everything that I invested into this course. And I do not mind studying it all over again! I recommend it for anyone who wants to learn project management. Thank you Margaret.

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51 - 75 of 4,042 Reviews for Initiating and Planning Projects

By Andrew R

Sep 24, 2015

Course goes over the most basic points, but also allows you (if you are interested) to dive much deeper into the content. Seems it has everything any project manager would want, so definitely worth taking. Would have wanted the questions to be a little more difficult and potentially more questions to help make sure the information was retained. Overall a great course.

By Theresea L

Oct 20, 2020

I enjoyed this course very much, it was lengthy and had a breadth of knowledge that I can use in my journey as a PM. The speaker Margaret Meloni ,had a pleasant demeanor and was easy to follow. The one thing I enjoyed the most was the 3 panelist interview that was shared atthe end of this course, it was refreshing to hear valuable feedback from others in the field.

By Sabir T

Nov 1, 2017

I wouldn't mind having a concrete Project that will follow me from the start (week 1 - course 1) to the finish (week 6 - course 4), specially when it comes to the assignments (which could include quizes, "real life problems", brain storming and what not). I think that would definitely make the (whole) path of these 4 courses more interesting and more valuable.

By Lucas S Q

May 19, 2016

Course content is well-structured and good references are given.

What can be improved is that I want to see how these skills can be applied in real life situations. It'd be great if discussion session can be organized by Coursera, basically coordinate students to form discussion groups and meet at least once a week to discuss the topics covered that week.


Jun 27, 2021

I currently have my PMP certification, but I needed PDUs to renew my certificate. I completed the Project Management Principles and Practices specialization from UCI to achieve the 35 PDUs, but I wasn't pleased with the course overall and had significant issues with the Capstone Project. The three courses included in the Project Management Principles and Practices specialization provide a practical introduction to Project Management. The Professors also discusses problems faced in actual prior projects (i.e. it's not theoretical), how to approach those problems and best practices, which was great.

From my perspective, however, there were a lot of problems with the course:

1. It's not comprehensive. It glosses over a lot of items and unless you are either already familiar with project management applications and/or complete all the supplemental reading, it doesn't entirely prepare you for the capstone project.

2. This is absolutely NOT the course to take if you are looking to understand project management principles to pass the PMP exam. Key components of the exam are only included in the slide decks - and even there are glossed over. So even though you will get the credit to sit for the exam, you will in no way be prepared for the exam. Instead, UCI encourages you to sign up for another course. This might seem like an unfair comment, but recognize that I took one $25 course on another online learning platform that provided me with 80% of what I needed to sit for the exam. I think this should be disclosed upfront in the FAQs to avoid confusion.

3. I was infuriated by my so called peers in the Capstone Project. Of the 8 assignments I reviewed between the practice and final peer review assignments, only ONE met the criteria. There was another which provided a good high level start to the project, but was missing a lot of the details. In general, you could tell people didn't want to invest the time and effort into the capstone project. They simply wanted to complete the bare minimum (if that) in order to get the certificate. I also can't tell you how many submissions I had to flag for spam - and even outright plagirized content. You need to do the work; if you don't want to, you shouldn't take this course.

4. I also encountered difficulty posting my certificate to the PMI (Project Management Institute) website. I wish the Provider ID were on the certificate and the name of the course exactly matched what was in their directly. I almost selected the wrong course, which would have given me fewer PDUs

As a result, I would not recommend this course, except to those who are curious to learn more about project management - but not necessarily wanting to sit for the exam.

By Hermione F

Aug 22, 2016

I found this course disappointing. Whilst the presenter, Margaret Meloni, was enthusiastic and pleasant to listen to, the content was very sparse indeed. A large part of the content each week was simply reading a presentation which you could get from a book. I would expect an online course to be more interactive, have more videos, and more varied content. I found the case studies (where you had to imagine a real life situation and select a decision) useful - there was one of these per week when I think there could have been more, perhaps three a week. The course would also have been improved by the use of peer assessment on the assignments. This would have made them feel more worthwhile and that someone else was actually reading them.

By Diaa A

Feb 18, 2022

The course is mostly a read out of the PMBOK with quizzes that verify that you memorized what was in the slides rather than actually understood it.

The final exam was just a collection of all the previous quizzes with the exact same questions repeated.

By Elham L

Jun 26, 2021

The quality of videos were low most of them have so many issues, also the content is more fit a 2 hour short course rathen than a course. Overal, the quality was not even close to other courses I have taken in courseara

By Tyler N

Oct 29, 2015

This class is taught a terrible pace and is very old-school in it's thinking. It was pretty painful to get through actually

By Rafael P V

Jul 10, 2020

It said I could earn a certificate of completion... I paid and all and didn't get anything! I'm really disapointed.

By Mukhtar K

Jun 6, 2020

In addition to luck, the most important factor that determines the success of man is his perspective on life. Carol Dweck of Stanford University says that the common feature of successful people is their perspective on life. These people are focused on continually improving the opportunities and abilities given to them. They see life as a journey of "learning", "growth", "development", "maturation". For this reason, they are always focused on development and self-renewal (Growth Mindset) Others think that the opportunities and abilities given to them in life are fixed. These people with a fixed mentality think that they will complete life with the innate opportunities and abilities given to them. Therefore, they believe that it is not necessary to strive to learn and progress (Fixed Mindset). However, life proves the opposite. The reason for the failures of the very talented, well educated children of the wealthy families is the “fixed mentality” they have. This mindset prevents them from learning, developing, growing, maturing and being successful.

I learned a lot thanks to coursera, thank you to everyone who contributed

By Carmen

Nov 21, 2020

This basically taught me the baseline of project management. As a project manager, myself, I know I needed to take a step back and get back to the basics in order to prove my worth in my position and in the field I am taking. The information I got from this course made me realize a lot of the lacking things I have as a project manager such as in the initiation and planning phases. Taking this course as part of one of the Project Management specializations that UCI's offering, I really learned a lot from this course. Ms. Meloni was able to incorporate the "by the book knowledge" from PMBOK and her personal experiences (positive and negative) in every module. Each module was concise and straightforward, but there were bonus videos wherein Ms. Meloni gave her practical insights from her experiences as a project manager. To UCI and Ms. Meloni, thank you very much!

By Abdulai K

Oct 9, 2020

Thanks to everyone who in diverse ways support me through the course in this online platform, it help me greatly in improving my knowledge. I understand all the Videos Lectured from MARGARET MELONI and also the Discussions from the panelist MARTY WARTENBERG,NEIL SAHOLA, KAREN NGUYEN.

I remain grateful to Coursera team and also Directorate of Sciences and Technology(DSTI) for the initiative. I also thank my course directors and tutors for their insight in impacting knowledge in me, I learnt a lot from this course and that is already an addendum in my experience.

Special thanks to MARGARET MELONI for her patience and presentation of valuable materials and video lectures through out the course.

I finally appreciate all useful website and references of reading materials in this course.

Best regards

Abdulai Kamara


Sierra Leone

West Africa.

By Braves A G

Sep 24, 2020

Initiating and Planning Projects by University of California, Irvine taught me a new skill set of knowledge applicable to my overall career and self-development. The topics are all relevant and delivered professionally by the subject matter experts. The discussions and activities are well organized for learners to gain a better understanding of the course.

I really appreciate University of California, Irvine and Coursera for granting me financial aid in completing this course. This opportunity gave me a life-changing learning experience.

Completing the course is worth the time and effort. Highly recommended to all learners to take this course.

Thank you Initiating and Planning Projects team! Thank you University of California, Irvine!

Thank you Coursera!

By Charlene G

Dec 16, 2016

This course was very informative and new to me. At first I thought it was going to be a great challenge because it was different, but after reading the PMBOK and doing the required quizzes I got a better understanding of what I was doing. I was able to mirror what I was learning to things I encountered daily while working at the construction company and this provided a great point of reference and made it all seem real. I will definately be completing the full course available. Happy that I attempted this and enjoyed doing it..

By Kristine R

Sep 23, 2020

High level of video and reading material. One of the best courses I’ve taken on Coursera. Be advised through, the time reference for the reading material is rather misleading; due to the volume of information in each reading module, reading through it all and taking notes (which you will need in order to pass the module and final exam) will definitely take you longer than the stated 10 mins. Overall, a great course that’ll definitely be useful in my pursuit of a career as Project Manager.

By G V

May 11, 2020

This course is unique way to improve professional skills to imbibe the basic contents of project management for professional development of Young project managers. Especially I would like to thank Margaret Maloney ,Course instructor for her patience and simple language to explain and make understand each and every phase in project planning and also thanks for the panellist interview with

Marty Wartenberg ,Neil Sahota ,Karen Nguyen for sharing their experiences.

By Maureen T

Feb 11, 2022

Great course if you need an introduction into the art and science of project management! Course material is engaging, interesting, and comprehensive with mediums ranging from presentation slides, to animated case study videos, and lecture videos. This course teaches the foundations of project management, and even sprinkles interviews at the end (week 6) with active project managers from varying fields to talk about their experiences of managing projects plus tips and tricks.

By Fadrigalan, G E L

Oct 11, 2020

The instructor had a clear and energetic delivery which allowed for people with short attention spans such as I to remain focused on the topic. The arrangement of the module also provided a step-by-step learning process that makes the technical terms easier to understand as you go through the course. Overall I'm very thankful that this is my first experience in an official online class as it has given me hope that future online classes would be as high quality as this one.

By Minna T

Jun 5, 2020

It was an exciting opportunity to follow an online course such as this one. This was my first online course experience. It worked so well. It has been planned and organised very effectively conducted by the course instructors, especially Ms Margaret Meloni. Her vedios and the introduction to PMBOK were informative. Doubly contended about having put my COVID-19 lockdown days to achieve something useful from home. A big THANK YOU. Wish to follow more courses soon.

By Susan H

Sep 4, 2020

I really had no clue how much I had to learn about Project Management. I thought because I'd spent a number of years doing project management on the job, I'd be flying through the courses easily. What I discovered was basically a new language with practicable and meaningful applications that deepened my appreciation for the materials and courses. I have so much to learn (hope this is always the case anyway) and look forward to future courses in this arena.

By Jennifer D S

May 4, 2016

Amazing in it's simplicity! It allowed me to understand the core concepts of Project Management without all the fluff that exists in some on campus courses. Truly designed with the professional in mind. Quick, simple, comprehensive, all with a very professional appearance. I especially appreciated the real life examples and the case studies Melonie presented. They really helped me better understand the principles she was trying to explain.

By Tamrat W

Mar 20, 2017

I have been working in various indigenous and international based Humanitarian community development projects for over ten years. Working in these organization has given me the opportunity to attend training organized both at home and international levels. compare to all training I attended, I found yours really exciting and helpful to person like me who have ambitions to enrage in project planning,design and implementation.

By Ying L

Nov 25, 2015

Love the Bonus video part of the course! The course has a simple structure and helps you work through the key factors in Project Management efficiently. I recently began to work on a project. With the ios App and self-paced course, I can learn the course while I am commuting between work and home in one week. I plan to work on stakeholder registry and WBS with team members to bring the concepts into practice. Big applause to Meloni!

By Smit P

Nov 22, 2019

A good course .

I am pursuing my bachelor's in Computer Science and this is my first course in PMP and hence find it very informative from my perspective since I don't have any prior knowledge of Project Management .

Very informative , Lot of material for reading is provided with good examples for application of the knowledge.

I guess most the CS or Engineering students would find it Very informative . It is Worth taking the Course