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ECPD - what does it mean for Dental Technicians and Clinical Dental Technicians?


What is ECPD?


Enhanced Continuing Professional Development, or ECPD for short, is an enhanced version of the CPD previously in place for all Dental Care Professionals and was introduced by the General Dental Council on 1 August 2018.


Click here to go to the members ECPD area


"I just wanted to say thank you for all the forms and for the PPD, it will make a huge difference having everything on one site and being able toupdate/ edit things the more I understand what is required of me.

The video was also great and I am sure I will listen to it more than once!"


SJ, August 2018

What are the main changes from the current CPD?

There are five important changes you really need to be aware of: -


Consistently meeting GDC requirementsSo, how many CPD hours does a Dental Technician need to do in future?

For Dental Technicians the minimum per 5-year CPD cycle is 50 hours (including recommended topics)
For Clinical Dental Technicians the minimum per 5-year CPD cycle is 75 hours (including recommended topics)


To encourage you to do regular activity, there will be a  minimum of 10 hours CPD for every two consecutive CPD years.


When does ECPD come into effect?

These changes come into effect on 1 August 2018 for all dental care professionals.


What should a Personal Development Plan look like and what is an Activity Log?

You can design your own Personal Development Plan (PDP) and Activity Log if you want but the quickest and simplest approach is to use the templates designed by the DTA which you can find here: - PDP and Activity Log Example


What are the GDC's new learning outcomes?

As you will know, the Standards for the Dental Team set out the ethical principles of dental practice, and in ECPD these standards are at the forefront of CPD planning and activity through four development outcomes; from August 2018 you need to map each of your activities to at least one development outcome. 


Learning outcomes and examples of what kinds of CPD might be mapped to each.


Development Outcome
Example of CPD Content

Learning Outcome

  1. Effective communication with patients, the dental team, and others across dentistry, including when obtaining consent, dealing with complaints, and raising concerns when patients are at risk

Example of CPD Content

  • Communication
  • Consent
  • Complaints handling
  • Raising concerns
  • Safeguarding

Learning Outcome

  1. Effective management of self, and effective management of others or effective work with others in the dental team, in the interests of patients; providing constructive leadership where appropriate;

Example of CPD Content

  • Effective practice management
  • Business management
  • Team working
  • Leadership skills

Learning Outcome

  1. Maintenance and development of knowledge and skill within your field of practice;

Example of CPD Content

  • Clinical and technical areas of study
  • Radiography
  • Cross infection control
  • Medical emergencies and CPR
  • Emerging technologies and treatments
  • CPD on quality assurance for MHRA
  • CPD specific for daily role(s)
  • Upskilling opportunities

Learning Outcome

  1. Maintenance of skills, behaviours and attitudes which maintain patient confidence in you and the dental profession and put patients' interests first.

Example of CPD Content

  • Ethical and legal issues and developments
  • Professional behaviours
  • Equality and diversity training


As before, there is a list of recommended topics which currently looks like this: -


  • Medical emergencies
  • Materials & equipment (dental technicians)
  • Complaints handing
  • Safeguarding children and young people
  • Disinfection & decontamination
  • Legal & ethical issues
  • Oral cancer: early detection
  • Safeguarding vulnerable adults


GDC's 'Plan, Do, Reflect, Record' Model

ECPD Plan, do, reflect, record model

GDC's plan, do, reflect, record model encourages you to proactively think about your professional needs, field of practice and the standards for the dental team before deciding on the right CPD activity for you. In this way, the GDC believes the activity will become more meaningful and relevant to the areas that you feel need to be maintained and built upon.



The personal development plan (PDP) is used to help identify CPD needs for the cycle. Registrants will create a plan for maintaining and developing their skills and knowledge within their field of practice, and how this relates to the GDC's learning outcomes.



Registrants will identify the verifiable CPD activity that best meets the needs set out in their PDP, and then complete CPD activity consistently throughout their cycle. Registrants might find that their field of practice or needs change, and adjust their plan and activity accordingly.



Reflection is an important process for registrants to evaluate the impact of CPD activity on meeting their needs for maintenance and development. Taking some time to review and reflect on their activities allows them to assess what benefits have been gained and how they have implemented learning.



Registrants need record what CPD activity they have completed. A complete CPD record includes the log of activity with learning outcomes mapped to each activity, the personal development plan, and the evidence collected


How to find out more

View the DTA video to find out more or visit the GDC website https://www.gdc-uk.org/professionals/cpd/enhanced-cpd


DTA CPD Position Statement (July 2019) can be read here in pdf format