Continuing Professional Development (CPD) FAQs


1. Is CPD mandatory for members of AICPT?

By joining AICPT you are making a commitment to your ongoing professional development as a professional trainer in order to ensure that you have the necessary knowledge and skills to meet the challenges of an ever changing world. The AICPT Code of Practice for members and Certified Practising Trainers (CPT) state that adherence to the code, which includes an ongoing commitment to self-development, is a fundamental requirement of AICPT membership.

2. So do I have to provide evidence of my CPD?

We recommend that all AICPT members maintain a record of their CPD plans and activities. If you wish to become a Certified Practising Trainer (CPT), you will be asked to submit evidence of your CPD to support your application since all Certified Practising Trainers are required to undertake at least 32 hours of appropriate continuing professional development (CPD) annually and to maintain CPD records.  Certified Practising Trainers need to submit their records for assessment.

3. How should I approach CPD?

We recommend that good CPD is based on the following 4 stage cycle of Reflection, Planning, Action and Evaluation:
Sometimes learning can occur unexpectedly through experience, i.e. it may start at the Action stage rather with Reflection, but it is essential that all professional trainers regularly reflect on how their knowledge and skills need to be updated and plan how they will achieve this.
Please see our Guide to Good CPD practice for more details.

4. How should I record my CPD?

AICPT members can record their CPD using the AICPT’s CPD templates and provide evidence that all 4 stages of the CPD cycle.
Recording options include:

•    Development Action Plan - this covers the Reflection and Planning stages of the cycle
•    Personal Development Record - this covers the Action and Evaluation stages of the cycle.
AICPT’s CPD report templates - the two report formats described above can be downloaded as Word documents for you to complete manually or electronically:
•    Development Action Review (Reflection and Planning)
•    Personal Development Record (Action and Evaluation).

CPD records prepared for other professional bodies - if you are already keeping CPD records to meet the requirements of another professional body then you may be able to use these to record your CPD in respect of your professional trainer skills or management in training skills as long as they provide clear evidence that they cover all stages of the CPD cycle.

Records completed as part of your organisation’s processes for appraisal, performance development review (PDR) or personal development planning - these may be submitted if these appropriately evidence compliance with the CPD cycle or a part of it. These records will need to be clear in evidencing CPD compliance; if they need interpretation you may need to extract relevant information and present it in another format – for example, using the report templates mentioned above.

Certified Practising Trainer (CPT) needs to submit their CPD records for assessment in an electronically or manually completed format.

5. What counts as CPD?

Anything that increases your knowledge and skills in a way that makes you a more effective trainer and training leader or manager can be considered valid CPD. An effective CPD activity must have a clear learning outcome (an output) that is independent of the activity itself (the input). It is not just about attending formal training courses. Informal learning gained through experience in the workplace can also be extremely important, as can self-directed learning. Valid CPD activities can include the following:
•    Attending events
•    Conferences
•    Seminars/webinars
•    Exhibitions
•    Networking events
•    Structured learning
•    Embarking upon, working towards and completing a qualification
•    Training courses, including in-company programmes
•    Tests
Informal or self-directed learning
•    Reading journals, books, research papers etc., e.g. from AICPT journals
•    Viewing multimedia resources e.g. videos, e-learning etc., e.g. from AICPT resources
•    Coaching and mentoring
•    Experiential or “on-the-job” learning
•    Voluntary and other activities.

We recommend that effective CPD should be multi-faceted, i.e. include a range of different activities that include self-directed study and opportunities to learn from other people in both formal and informal settings.

6. How do I gain CPD hours?

AICPT’s approach is to focus on the impacts and outputs from CPD rather than on inputs. What this means is that we are interested in what has actually been learnt or achieved by completing development activities rather than in measuring them in terms of the hours they took or by awarding points for completion. For example, you may attend a training course that is two days long from which you learn something new. AICPT measures CPD in terms of hours.

7. How much CPD should I do?

As explained above, AICPT’s approach to CPD is output rather than input based and so we are not prescriptive as to how much time or effort is put input CPD for members. What we expect is that members give due consideration to all four stages of the CPD cycle outlined above and evidence that they have done so.

All Certified Practising Trainers (CPT) are required to undertake at least 32 hours of appropriate CPD annually to maintain CPD certification.
The format of the CPD report templates referred to above gives an indication of AICPT’s expectations regarding scope and level of detail of these processes.

8. If I’m asked to submit my CPD records how much time will I have to do this?

We ask for records to be submitted within 30 days of our request. If records are not received after AICPT has sent reminders and taken reasonable steps to contact the individual concerned then, in the absence of any reasonable mitigating circumstances, we would remove Certified Practising Trainers status and downgrade the individual’s membership accordingly.

9. How exactly should I submit my evidence, if asked to do so?

Submissions should be in an electronic format that can clearly show that the four stages of the CPD cycle outlined above have been considered.
We recommend using the two AICPT templates:
•    Development Action Review (Reflection and Planning)
•    Personal Development Record (Action and Evaluation).

10. How will my CPD records be assessed?

Our assessors will be looking for clear evidence that all four stages of the CPD cycle have been considered so that there has been:
•    Reflection on development needs
•    Planning of activities to meet these needs (although not all learning has to be planned)
•    Action in the form of a variety of developmental activities
•    Evaluation of the learning outcomes of these activities and their impact at work

For more information we suggest you read our guidance on good CPD practice

11. What happens if my CPD records are assessed as not having met AICPT’s requirements?

If CPD records submitted do not, in our assessor’s view, meet AICPT’s requirements then the assessor will contact the Certified Practising Trainer (CPT) concerned and explain their reasons. The individual will then be asked to re-submit their records taking into account the assessor’s feedback. Should a second submission still fail to meet AICPT’s requirements, and in the absence of any reasonable mitigating circumstances, then we would remove Certified Practising Trainer (CPT) status and downgrade the individual’s membership accordingly.