Continuing Professional Development (CPD)
DTA is committed to providing Continuing Professional Development for members, that is accessible and cost-effective.
All registrants of the General Dental Council (GDC) are required to undertake Continuing Professional Development to keep up-to-date.
How much CPD do you need to do?
You must complete, and keep records of, at least 150 hours of CPD over five years. Of the 150 hours, a minimum of 50 must be verifiable CPD, the balance is made up of general or non-verifiable CPD.
What is verifiable CPD?
To count as verifiable CPD, an activity must have:
- concise educational aims and objectives;
- clear anticipated outcomes; and
- quality controls (i.e. you should be given the opportunity to give feedback); and
Additionally, you must get and keep a certificate (or other type of documentary proof) proving you took part in the activity. The certificate should come from the activity provider or organiser, and should show the number of hours you spent on the activity.
Whether or not the activity has quality controls and whether you'll be able to get documentary proof of your attendance/participation are both matters of fact; either there is an opportunity to give feedback and documentary proof is provided, or not. But the questions of whether the activity has concise educational aims and objectives and clear anticipated outcomes are matters on which you must satisfy yourself, using your own professional judgement.
What is General CPD?
General CPD activities are those which contribute to your professional development as a dental care professional, but don't meet all four of the criteria above for verifiable CPD. Examples might include journal reading and private study.
Recommended core CPD subjects
The GDC recommends that all dental care professionals carry out verifiable CPD in three core recommended subjects. The recommended core subjects and suggested minimum number of verifiable hours per CPD cycle that DCPs should spend on them are:
- medical emergencies (at least 10 hours per CPD cycle)
- disinfection and decontamination (at least 5 hours per CPD cycle)
- radiography and radiation protection (at least 5 hours per CPD cycle)*
It is recommended that all dental care professionals do CPD in medical emergencies every year.
In addition, the GDC recommends that DCPs working in a clinical environment carry out CPD (verifiable or general) to make sure they are up to date in:
- legal and ethical issues
- handling complaints
- oral cancer - early detection
- safeguarding children & young people
- safeguarding vulnerable adults
* Instead of radiography and radiation protection, dental technicians can substitute radiography and radiation protection with materials and equipment (at least five hours in every cycle).
Examples of CPD
You might consider the following activities to count towards your CPD. The list is not exhaustive:
- Courses and lectures
- Vocational Training or General Professional Training study days
- Educational elements of professional and specialist society meetings
- Peer review and clinical audit
- Distance learning
- Multimedia learning
- Staff training
- Background research
- Private study
- Journal reading
- Attending conferences
How to record your CPD
If you want your CPD to count towards your requirement, you must record it whether it is verifiable CPD or general CPD. You can use the DTA CPD record card for this.
You do not have to use the DTA form for your CPD records, but whatever method you use, you should ensure that you record:
- Your name and GDC registration number
- Date of course/activity
- Title of course/activity
- Venue (where appropriate)
- The name of the organisation or individual running the course/activity
- Indicate whether you are counting the activity as verifiable CPD or general CPD
- The number of hours you spent doing the CPD activity (you should not include lunch breaks or travel time)
Remember: an additional requirement for verifiable CPD is that you obtain and keep a certificate as proof that you took part in the activity (see above). You might find it helpful to record your verifiable CPD and general CPD on separate sheets, so that activities for which you will need a certificate are readily identifiable.
A template for recording your CPD can be downloaded from the GDC Website or obtained by clicking here (pdf)
Annual CPD returns to the GDC
At the end of every year in each five-year cycle, the GDC will write to you and ask you to fill in a form with a declaration of CPD hours (both verifiable and general) that you have completed that year. Do not send any evidence supporting your declaration. We will write to you if this is required. When making the declaration for the final year of your cycle you will be asked to confirm the previous years declarations.
Further guidance can be found on the GDC website by following this link: https://www.gdc-uk.org/professionals/cpd/requirements
and this link (pdf):
Changes to CPD from 2018
Enhanced Continuing Professional Development is on its way - read more
GDC Quality Controls for Verifiable CPD Advice Sheet
Take CPD Online
Members can click here to take their CPD on this website