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After recommendations from our working group, we will be introducing a new version of the Common Placement Assessment Form (CPAF). Although the new version is still a work in progress, we are aiming to have it ready to use for the 2024/2025 academic year.

We will be hosting drop-in webinar sessions to demonstrate the changes and launch the new form.

Our first webinar, with the CSP health inequalities team, will focus on domain 6 (individuals, communities and populations), and how marking can be evidenced.

The webinar link will be emailed to all registrants the day beforehand.

Please look out for future events being advertised in the education news and CSP e-bulletins.


The Common Placement Assessment Form (CPAF) was launched in September 2021 as a standardised way to assess all physiotherapy learners on placement throughout the UK. Before this there were more than 40 different placement assessment forms in use across over 50 UK universities offering pre-registration physiotherapy programmes.

This made it harder for practice educators to take students on placement from different universities. In addition, many existing forms were not applicable across all four pillars of physiotherapy practice – clinical, education, leadership and research – limiting the much-needed exposure to diversity in placement settings to which the profession aspires. CPAF has created one form, which could be used by all learners and across all pillars of practice.

Next steps for CPAF

CPAF has been widely implemented and successful for assessing students in a standardised way. However, we recognised that there was a requirement to pause to reflect on the journey so far and consider the next steps in CPAF's ongoing development.

In 2024, CSP created a working group to review CPAF and recommend adjustments to ensure the form meets the evolving needs of today's students and practice educators. The working group has representatives from all four nations including higher education institutions (HEIs), practice educators and students. The working group has now met three times and has given these recommendations to the CSP:

  • Reducing the marking required. Moving to a form where the practice educators will give one mark per learning domain. The learning outcomes in each learning domain have been combined to make it clearer for the practice educators to mark.
  • Rewording learning domain 6 (individuals, communities and populations) to make it easier to understand for both students and practice educators.
  • Moving to a marking rubric for each level of practice, which is applicable for all 10 learning domains. This will make the marking less complicated.
  • Updating the resources. The resources for this version of CPAF will focus on examples and ideas for marking each domain to help students and practice educators
  • Making the form more user friendly. The CSP are commissioning a learning technologist to review the form in order to make it easier to use. We are also working with our HEI partners to ensure it is accessible for all.