PHR Practice Test

If you need help studying for the Professional in Human Resources (PHR) exam or just want some more information about what the exam is like, you’ve come to the right place.

Click below to take a free PHR practice test!

Exam Eligibility

Before you can register to take the PHR exam, you need to meet at least ONE of the following requirements:

  • You need a high school diploma and at least four years of experience in a professional HR position.
  • You need a bachelor’s degree and at least two years of experience in a professional HR position.
  • You need a master’s degree (or higher) and at least one year of experience in a professional HR position.

If you meet one these requirements, you’re set to begin the registration process!

What’s on the Exam?

Questions: 115
Time limit: 2 hours

First, let’s talk about the questions on the exam. There are 115 multiple-choice questions total, but only 90 of the questions will count toward your score. Why is that?

Unscored Questions
The 25 unscored questions on the exam are called “pretest” questions. These are added to the exam to determine if they’re good enough questions to add to future versions of the test.

The trick is that you won’t have any way of knowing which questions are scored and which ones are pretest. They will appear just like the scored questions throughout the test.

The time limit for the exam is 2 hours. There aren’t any scheduled breaks, but you’re free to take restroom breaks as needed.

The exam is split into the following seven sections:

14% of the exam

  • Interpret and apply information related to the business environment and the industry’s best practices
  • Understand what role cross-functional stakeholders play in the company
  • Recommend and implement the best practices to mitigate risks with lawsuits or internal or external threats
  • Determine the significance of data when recommending strategies and policies
  • Reinforce the ethical and behavioral expectations of the company

14% of the exam

  • Apply US federal laws and organizational policies to adhere to legal and ethical requirements in hiring
  • Identify and implement sourcing methods and techniques to attract talent
  • Manage the talent acquisition lifecycle

10% of the exam

  • Implement and evaluate career development and training programs, including providing resources and guidance on professional growth and development opportunities
  • Contribute to succession planning discussions with management by understanding and providing relevant data
  • Administer learning and development programs designed to achieve desired outcomes by the organization

15% of the exam

  • Manage and communicate total rewards programs to foster employee engagement and enhance employee experience
  • Implement and promote awareness of non-monetary rewards
  • Implement benefit programs
  • Monitor and sustain US federally compliant compensation and benefit programs

17% of the exam

  • Measure and advise on functional effectiveness at each stage of the employee lifecycle and identify alternate approaches as needed
  • Support the implementation and communication of organizational programs to enhance employee participation and engagement
  • Support the organization’s performance management strategy by completing appropriate steps in order to achieve organizational goals and objectives
  • Support performance and employment activities

20% of the exam

  • Understand and apply knowledge of programs, US federal laws, and regulations to promote outreach, diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI)
  • Support workplace programs related to US federal health, safety, security, and privacy laws and regulations
  • Provide interpretation and ensure compliance to organizational policies and procedures
  • Process and support the resolution of employee complaints, concerns, or conflicts and escalate as needed
  • Promote techniques and tools for facilitating positive employee and labor relations with knowledge of US federal laws affecting union and nonunion workplaces

10% of the exam

  • Utilize and manage HR database content and technologies
  • Assess and communicate information obtained from HR databases
  • Promote and maintain security best practices

How to Register

Once you’ve ensured that you meet the eligibility requirements, you can register for the exam.

To get started, you’ll need to create an HRCI account on their website. From there, you can fill out and submit an application, which includes a $100 application fee.

When your application is approved, you’ll be given instructions on how to register for the exam and set up a testing appointment. You’ll need to pay the $395 exam fee during the registration process.

PHR Study Guide and Flashcards

Get practice questions, detailed study lessons, and complex subjects broken down into easily understandable concepts.

PHRStudy Guide

Exam Scores

The exam is scored using a scaled scoring method. Here’s how it works:

For every question you answer correctly, you get one point added to your raw score. At the end of the test, your final raw score will be converted to a scaled score. This scaled score will range somewhere between 100 and 700.

A passing score is a scaled score of at least 500.

The reason your raw score is converted to a scaled score is because everyone who takes the exam is given a slightly different set of questions. Since everyone has a different arrangement of questions, and because some questions are harder than others, converting your raw score to a scaled score ensures a more even playing field.

Retaking the Exam

If you didn’t get a passing score on your first try, that’s okay! You can retake the test after a mandatory 90-day waiting period.

Online PHR Prep Course

If you want to be fully prepared, Mometrix offers an online PHR prep course. The course is designed to provide you with any and every resource you might want while studying. The PHR course includes:

  • 61 Lessons Covering Every Topic
  • 1,000+ PHR Practice Questions
  • More than 350 Digital Flashcards
  • Money-back Guarantee
  • Free Mobile Access
  • and More!

The PHR prep course is designed to help any learner get everything they need to prepare for their PHR exam. Click below to check it out!



How many questions are on the PHR exam?


The exam contains 115 questions.


What is the time limit for the PHR exam?


The exam is timed at 2 hours.


How difficult is the PHR exam?


The PHR exam is considered to be difficult but straightforward. The pass rate is currently 60%.


How long does it take to get PHR exam results?


You should receive official results within 48 hours of testing.


How much does the PHR exam cost?


The combined application fee and exam fee is $495.

Self-Assessment Module

One of the most important parts of preparing for a test is determining which topics you need to brush up on as you study.

Click below to get started with a self-assessment of your knowledge!