A Program Evaluation and Review Technique (PERT) is a graphic organizer that can help you plan your project and keep to deadlines. The PERT diagram includes completion times for all sub projects, with numbered milestones that progress from left to right across the chart. The lowest numbered node is the beginning of the project; the highest numbered node is the end. The PERT chart also determines the project start and end times.
List each sub project with an estimated time line for completing them.
Sort the list of sub projects such that no sub project comes before a prerequisite on the list. For example, digging the foundation and running the electrical wire are both sub project in the construction of a new home, but it’s not possible to run wiring before the foundation is dug, so digging the foundation goes first.
Number each of the sub projects, with the first sub project being the lowest number, and the last sub project being the highest number.
Draw a diagram with each of the listed sub projects, starting on the left with the first sub projects, and going farther right for dependent sub projects. Draw arrows between sub projects that are prerequisites for other sub projects.
For major projects, with many sub projects, you might consider using one of the many available PERT Chart software applications instead of drawing the diagram by hand.
- Net MBA: PERT Projects
- Concordia University: PERT Chart
- Handbook of Research Methods: a Guide for Practitioners and Students, Natalie L. Sproull, 2002
- For major projects, with many sub projects, you might consider using one of the many available PERT Chart software applications instead of drawing the diagram by hand.
Stephanie Ellen teaches mathematics and statistics at the university and college level. She coauthored a statistics textbook published by Houghton-Mifflin. She has been writing professionally since 2008. Ellen holds a Bachelor of Science in health science from State University New York, a master's degree in math education from Jacksonville University and a Master of Arts in creative writing from National University.