The 12 days of CPD activity

A seasonal slant to the year’s learning and development to help you plan for the New Year

The 12 days of CPD activity

After a recent CSP meeting to discuss objectives and key messages for 2019 I later reflected on how much things have moved forward since I took on this role in 2015.

At that time, the three key messages from our team could be distilled as:

  1. What is CPD? 
  2. Why do you need to ‘do’ CPD?
  3. How do you survive the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) audit?

As time has gone by, the philosophy of continuing professional development has become the norm within the profession, allowing our team to change focus. In large part, this is because pre-registration physiotherapy programmes do such an excellent job of embedding the mind-set and the accompanying requisite skills in the student population. That’s great because it means that, as a team, we rarely need to go back to basics. When graduate physiotherapists enter the workforce, they’re already aware of the need to evidence their professional development. They understand why this is important for high-quality patient-centred care and, crucially, have had practice in how to go about it. And increasingly as physiotherapists take on more leadership roles, those in their services/teams, including support workers, are being managed by people who understand their obligation to support that development.

Challenges ahead

Although that learning mindset is embedded, it is always useful to pause and remind ourselves of what resources are available, particularly as life and work seem to get busier, with more demands and tighter deadlines in an increasingly challenging environment. 

We’re at that point in the year when we’re naturally taking stock of the past 12 months and making plans for the year ahead. Even so, I’m always surprised by just how much CPD activity goes on over the Christmas and New Year period. CSP ePortfolio use always spikes twice a year, once in the months leading up to the HCPC audit (no surprise there), and then again over the festive period. While the rest of the country is eating mince pies and enjoying a glass of mulled wine, the physiotherapy workforce is busy reflecting and action-planning into the New Year. Students take note: you may be focused on essays, presentations, OSCEs or preparing for placements in the Christmas break, as the learning never ends.


With this period of reflection and forward-planning in mind, we would like to offer a reminder of the resources and templates available through Frontline’s archive and the CSP ePortfolio to help you prepare for any challenges that may lie ahead.

Because the profession is in such a different place, we’ve been able to broaden our CPD support over the last few years to help you think strategically about your careers and providing ways to help you develop as leaders. You’ll have noticed the focus across the CSP shift towards leadership and career development. The launch of the mentoring tool of the Leadership Development Programme have been phenomenal

This change in direction has been reinforced by the Frontline CPD articles designed to help you put ideas into action and realise your goals. All these articles are still available via the CSP website and while they may have been penned over the last three years, they’re still relevant. You’ll find them in the Frontline archive.  If you view this article online we’ve gift-wrapped 12 of these archive articles for you to help you re-imagine your career in 2019.   

You may remember the Your Career series started in the 19 July 2017 edition, it skipped a month then ran monthly from 6 Sept 2017. Support Workers will find their two-parters in 2 May and 6 June 2018.  Our popular Leadership series ran monthly from 4 Feb 2015 and the mentoring article kicked off the CPD series last year (4 Jan 2017).

And finally, the CPD activity below offers a reminder of the templates available to help you record your reflections and plans, whatever your ambitions for the future. You’ll find twelve great templates for use throughout the festive season and beyond within the CSP’s ePortfolio. 

You can access the ePortfolio by logging on to the CSP website. The templates can be found by clicking on the ‘access the ePortfolio and then the orange ‘access CPD Resources’ link.

The activity will help you structure and record your reflections and forward planning for the New Year.  I wish you a happy and reflective end to 2018. 

‘Tis the season to reflect

You’ll find a range of templates within the CSP ePortfolio to support your reflection.  They are grounded in different reflective theories and are designed to help you record formal and informal learning opportunities, identify gaps/strengths/weaknesses so that you can move forward into 2019. They are all downloadable and editable, so you can customise them if they don’t quite work for you.

In keeping with the festive season, I’ve borrowed the 1909 Frederic Austin arrangement of a certain well-known carol to provide a reminder of what’s available. 

On the Twelfth day of CPD activity, CSP gave to me …

12.  What, So What, Now Whats?
11.  Gibbs’ prompts for structured debriefings 
10.  Learning from formal events 
9.   Learning from critical appraisals 
8.  Learning from doing 
7.  Learning from success 
6.  Learning online 
5.  Action plans! 
4.  Planning your learning 
3.  SWOT Analyses 
2.  Peer reflections 
and a Learning from Work-based activity

Author: Nina Paterson, CSP education adviser

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