ITILV4 Foundation


The ITIL 4 Foundation qualification is intended to introduce candidates to the management of modern IT-enabled services, to provide them with an understanding of the common language and key concepts, and to show them how they can improve their work and the work of their organization with ITIL 4 guidance. Furthermore, the qualification will provide the candidate with an understanding of the ITIL 4 service management framework and how it has evolved to adopt modern technologies and ways of working. The ITIL 4 Foundation examination is intended to assess whether the candidate can demonstrate sufficient recall and understanding of the ITIL 4 service management framework, as described in the syllabus below, to be awarded the ITIL 4 Foundation qualification. The ITIL 4 Foundation qualification is a prerequisite for the ITIL 4 higher level qualifications, which assess the candidate’s ability to apply their understanding of the relevant parts of the ITIL framework in context.

Exam Overview

Material allowed None This is a ‘closed book’ exam. The ITIL Foundation publication, ITIL 4 edition, should be used for study, but is NOT permitted to be used in the exam.
Exam duration 60 minutes Candidates taking the exam in a language that is not their native or working language may be awarded 25% extra time, i.e. 75 minutes in total.
Number of marks 40 marks There are 40 questions, each worth 1 mark. There is no negative marking.
Provisiona l Pass mark 26 marks You will need to get 26 questions correct (65%) to pass the exam.
Level of thinking Bloom’s levels 1 & 2 “Bloom’s level” describes the type of thinking needed to answer the question. For Bloom’s level 1 questions, you need to recall information about the ITIL 4 service management framework. For Bloom’s 2 questions, you need to show understanding of these concepts.
Question types Classic, Negativ e, Missing word, & List The questions are all ‘multiple choice’. For the ‘standard’ questions, you have a question and four answer options. ‘Negative’ questions are ‘standard’ question in which the stem is negatively worded. For the ‘missing word’ questions, there is a sentence with a word missing and you have to select the missing word from four options. For the ‘list’ questions, there is a list of four statements, and you have to select two correct statements from the list.
Question Types Which is a source of best practice?
  • a) Q
  • b) P
  • c) R
  • d) S

Example ‘list’ OTQ:

Which statement about service asset and configuration management is CORRECT?
  1. It does Q
  2. It does P
  3. It does R It does S
    1. 1 and 2
    2. 2 and 3
    3. 3 and 4
    4. 1 and 4
NOTE: Two of the list items are correct. List style questions are never negative. Please see the sample paper for an example of the exam format and content.

Example ‘missing word’ OTQ

Identify the missing word(s) in the following sentence. A [?] defines requirements for services and takes responsibility for outcomes from service consumption.
  1. Role Q
  2. Role P
  3. Role R
  4. Role S

Example ‘negative’ standard OTQ:

Which is NOT a defined area of value?
  1. Q
  2. P
  3. R
  4. S
NOTE: Negative questions are only used as an exception, where part of the learning outcome is to know that something is not done or should not occur.


The table below gives a summary of the concepts that are tested in the exam, and the main parts of the manual in which these are described. The book references refer to the section stated, but not the subsections within that section, unless stated. The verb for each assessment criterion indicates the Bloom’s level (BL): ‘Recall’/‘Define’ indicates Level 1 basic recall and recognition, ‘Describe’/‘Explain’, indicates Level 2 understanding/comprehension
Learning Outcome Assessment Criteria Book References Bloom’s Level No. marks
1. Understand the key concepts of service management 1.1  Recall the definition of: a)     Service b)    Utility c)     Warranty d)    Customer e)    User f)     Service management g)     Sponsor 2.0, 2.2.2, 2.3.1, 2.5.4 BL1 2
1.2 Describe the key concepts of creating value with services: a)     Cost b)    Value c)     Organization d)    Outcome e)    Output f)     Risk g)     Utility h)    Warranty 2.1, 2.1.1, 2.2 and all subsections of 2.5 BL2 2
1.3 Describe the key concepts of service relationships: a)     Service offering b)    Service relationship management c)     Service provision d)    Service consumption 2.3.2, 2.4, 2.4.1 BL2 1
2. Understand how the ITIL guiding principles can help an organization adopt and adapt service management 2.1 Describe the nature, use and interaction of the guiding principles 4.3, 4.3.8 BL2 1
2.2 Explain the use of the guiding principles (4.3): a) Focus on value (4.3.1 – b)  Start where you are (4.3.2 – c)   Progress iteratively with feedback (4.3.3 – d)  Collaborate and promote visibility (4.3.4 – e)  Think and work holistically (4.3.5 – f)   Keep it simple and practical (4.3.6 – g)   Optimize and automate (4.3.7 – 4.3, 4.3.1- BL2 5
3. Understand the four dimensions of service management 3.1  Describe the four dimensions of service management (3): a) Organizations and people (3.1) b)   Information and technology (3.2) c) Partners and suppliers (3.3) d)   Value streams and processes (3.4-3.4.2) 3, 3.1-3.4.2 BL2 2
4. Understand the purpose and components of the ITIL service value system 4.1 Describe the ITIL service value system (4.1) 4.1 BL2 1
5. Understand the activities of the service value chain, and how they interconnect 5.1 Describe the interconnected nature of the service value chain and how this supports value streams (4.5) 5.2 Describe the purpose of each value chain activity: a)     Plan b)    Improve c)     Engage d)    Design & transition e)    Obtain/build f)     Deliver & support 4.5 4.5.1-4.5.6 BL2 1
6. Know the purpose and key terms of 15 ITIL practices 6.1  Recall the purpose of the following ITIL practices: a)     Information security management (5.1.3) b)    Relationship management (5.1.9) c)     Supplier management (5.1.13) d)    IT asset management (5.2.6) e)    Monitoring and event management (5.2.7) f)     Release management (5.2.9) g)     Service configuration management (5.2.11) h)    Deployment management (5.3.1) i)     Continual improvement (5.1.2) j)     Change enablement (5.2.4) k)     Incident management (5.2.5) l)     Problem management (5.2.8) m)   Service request management (5.2.16) n)    Service desk (5.2.14) o)     Service level management (5.2.15) 6.2 Recall definitions of the following ITIL terms: a)     IT asset b)    Event c)     Configuration item d)    Change e)    Incident f)     Problem g)     Known error 5.1.2, 5.1.3, 5.1.9, 5.1.13, 5.2.4, 5.2.5, 5.2.6, 5.2.7, 5.2.8, 5.2.9, 5.2.11, 5.2.14, 5.2.15, 5.2.16, 5.3.1, 5.2.4, 5.2.5, 5.2.6, 5.2.7, 5.2.8, 5.2.11 BL1 5 2
7. Understand 7 ITIL practices 7.1  Explain the following ITIL practices in detail, excluding how they fit within the service value chain: a)     Continual improvement (5.1.2) including: -The continual improvement model (4.6, fig 4.3) b)    Change enablement (5.2.4) c)     Incident management (5.2.5) d)    Problem management (5.2.8) e)    Service request management (5.2.16) f)     Service desk (5.2.14) g)     Service level management (5.2.15 – 4.6, fig 4.3, 5.1.2, 5.2.4, 5.2.5, 5.2.8, 5.2.16, 5.2.14, 5.2.15, BL2 17