Seal of approval for short courses

The CSP is introducing a scheme to endorse postqualifying programmes that do not currently attract academic credit.

Clinical interest and occupational groups and other providers of continuing professional development opportunities can apply for their programmes to be reviewed against rigorous criteria. Programmes meeting the requirements receive CSP endorsement. Providers can then use the CSP logo for marketing purposes. Jenny Carey, CSP education adviser, said the aim was to improve the quality of postqualifying learning opportunities. While many courses might not be suitable to attract academic credit,  Ms Carey said they formed a very valuable support to members’ CPD, including in clinical areas such as continence and hydrotherapy that were not generally taught in depth at pre-qualifying level. ‘Endorsement confirms CSP confidence in a programme’s educational quality and its value as a CPD opportunity for members,’ she added. Programmes must comprise at least 36 hours and include assessment of participants’ learning against defined outcomes. They must also be evidence based and relate explicitly to patient, service and practice needs, for example through being mapped to the knowledge and skills framework. One of the programmes to be endorsed, following the 14-month pilot exercise to test the endorsement process and criteria, is on pelvic floor examination and assessment for urinary incontinence, run by the Association of Chartered Physiotherapists in Women’s Health. Course tutor Teresa Cook said: ‘I am hoping the endorsement will give us an advantage over the competition if clinicians and managers see that it has extra value, and I hope that it will help participants to get funding.’ Other programmes include the foundation programme in aquatic therapy, run by the Aquatic Therapy Association of Chartered Physiotherapists, and the specialist postural stability instructor training programme, run by independent providers Later Life Training. Mike Maynard, chair of ATACP, said endorsement ‘validates what we are doing day to day in the delivery of the programme, with the knowledge that we are providing a high quality learning experience’. For Later Life Training, Dawn Skelton said: ‘Approximately half of all our students on the PSI course are physiotherapists or rehabilitation/technical/physiotherapy assistants. CSP endorsement means physiotherapists have the extra value not only of completing a nationally accredited qualification, but also the ability to accrue relevant points to add to their CPD. As (providers of) one of the first courses to undergo this process, we wholeheartedly recommend others to follow suit.’ The Society is currently piloting arrangements to endorse programmes relevant to physiotherapy support workers and will also be testing out a new ‘quality mark’ for learning opportunities that do not include participant assessment. It already has well-established processes for considering postqualifying programmes with HEI links for endorsement. Further information Contact Jenny Carey, tel 0207 306 6606
Louise Hunt

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