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Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

CPD is a combination of approaches, ideas and techniques to help you manage your own learning and growth so that you can maintain your existing skills and improve in your role. It's about where you are, where you want to be, and how you plan to get there.

CPD is a systematic activity that individuals can use to maintain and develop the knowledge and skills needed for effective, professional practice. It can be used to demonstrate to professional bodies and employers that you are doing this. It provides a framework within which staff can participate in lifelong learning. It is a systematic, ongoing, cyclical process of self-directed learning, involving the processes of reflection, planning, action and evaluation. Put simply, CPD is the way professionals continue to learn and develop throughout their careers so they keep their skills and knowledge up-to-date and are able to work safely, legally and effectively.

Recognised learning activities include a range of learning methods, professional audit, work shadowing, action learning, computer-based learning etc. However each regulatory body treats CPD in a slightly different way. CPD is an essential part of re-registration and revalidation for public health professionals.

Read more about CPD on the websites of the following regulatory bodies:

  • Health Professions Council (HPC)
  • Faculty of Public Health (FPH) 
  • Chartered Institute of Environmental Health (CIEH)
  • Royal Pharmaceutical Society of Great Britain

You can also find out what CPD is and what you need to do on the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development (CIPD) site. Have a look at a range of tools that can help you record your CPD. You can also download templates and view CPD examples.

For public health specialists, the Faculty of Public Health provides a CPD Guidance Document.

For those who wish to improve their performance as commissioners, there are is a Personal Learning for Commissioning Tool.

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