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PRINCE2® Themes - the basics


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The information contained on these pages is taken from our classroom presentations and workshops.
They are not designed as 'stand-alone' preparation for either the PRINCE2 Foundation or Practitioner examinations.

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What is 'a Theme'

The Oxford English Dictionary tells us that a 'theme' is:

— An idea that recurs...in a work of art or literature
— The subject of a talk, piece of writing...
— A topic...

 

What is a PRINCE2 Theme?


The PRINCE2 Themes are really nothing more than the dictionary definition
of the word. There are 7 separate 'topics', or to be more accurate
'areas of knowledge', and these 7 different themes are:

  • Aspects of a project that must be addressed continually
  • Designed to link together effectively
  • Always applied - all 7 (slight adaption (tailoring) can be applied*)
*Tailoring is covered in a separate workshop.

 

The 7 PRINCE2 Themes


Even people only slightly familiar with PRINCE2 will probably have seen a list of the themes in a publication or training material, so a brainstorm to list the 7 themes usually does not take long to produce the following:

prince2 themes brainstorm

 

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prince2 themes foundation info

The PRINCE2 Themes 'answer a question'!


At the Foundation level it will help you to understand how each of the themes work if you think about
questions that the PRINCE2 Themes could answer.

As simple examples think about the following list:

Theme Question Example
Business Case Why...? Why are we doing the project...? Why will the benefits help us...?
Organisation Who...? Who is responsible for...? Who has the role of...?
Quality What...? What is the project scope...? What will the project create...?
Plans How...? How much time is planned for...? How much money is there for...?
Risk What if...? What if a risk is found? What if an opportunity is found?
Change What is the impact...? What is the impact of...issue? What is the impact if we change...?
Progress Where? Where are we now...? Where do we want to go...?

 

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prince2 Themes practitioner info

 

Management Products (documents) connected with each theme


Not only is a good working knowledge of where and when management products are used during a project, it will also help you save valuable minutes in the Practitioner examination if you can understand which management products are connected to the different PRINCE2 Themes.

It is not essential to memorise the following table, but being familiar with it will be very helpful.

Theme Management Product Cross Reference Where found
Business Case Business Case
Benefits Review Plan
Completed in Practitioner Workshop Completed in Practitioner Workshop
Organisation Team Structure
Communication Management Strategy
Quality Quality Management Strategy
Project Product Description
Product Description
Quality Register
Plans Project
Stage
Team
Exception
Risk Risk Management Strategy
Risk Register
Change Configuration Management Strategy
Configuration Item Record
Issue Register
Issue Report
Progress Checkpoint Report
End Stage Report
End Project Report
Work Package

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A Question of...PRINCE2 Themes


prince2 themes questions

So what do you need to know? What else will be useful for the Foundation and Practitioner examinations?

The Practitioner level needs a lot more knowledge than can be covered in this short introduction, but for the Foundation level you should be able to at least answer the following:

Question 1: On a project planned for less than 1 week, which themes can be dropped? answer_logo
All 7 PRINCE2 Themes must always be applied.

Question 2: Which of the 7 themes is the “why“ ? answer_logo
The Business Case answers the question why.

Question 3: What do PRINCE2 Themes describe? answer_logo
They describe aspects of the project continually addressed. [several answers are possible]

Question 4: What questions does the Progress Theme answer? answer_logo
The Progress Theme answers questions like: Where are we now?,  Where are we going?

 

 

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