Continuous Professional Development (CPD)

As a teacher or trainer in the Further Education and Training sector it’s important to remain in good professional standing. By keeping up to date with your subject specialism and approaches to teaching and learning you can continue to develop professionally. This is known as Continuous Professional Development (CPD).

When you become a member of SET—and when you renew your membership each year—we ask you to agree to make a commitment to your own CPD. SET members can:

  • Record CPD within the My SET dashboard, identifying actions you will take to apply your learnings.
  • Reflect on CPD activity and review progress - identify the impact on your practice with others.
Groups Working Together At SET Conference Session

Examples of CPD

There are a wide range of formal and informal activities that can count as meaningful development. The main examples of CPD are:

● reading relevant journal articles or reviewing books
● taking training courses or formal development or study
● peer review, mentoring or shadowing
● online learning, including engagement in discussion forums and blogs
● viewing and reviewing television programmes, documentaries and the internet.

Examples of CPD activities

  • peer coaching (coaching others and being coached in your subject or vocational area)
  • subject learning coach or advanced learning coach training
  • mentoring new colleagues
  • peer review and observation
  • peer visits to community organisations or partners
  • work shadowing
  • team teaching
  • leading team or department self-assessment
  • carrying out and disseminating action research
  • designing innovative feedback mechanisms (learners and peers)
  • chairing team meetings
  • constructing professional dialogue and learning conversation opportunities
  • being an active member of a committee, board, or steering group related to teaching or your subject area
  • sharing ideas and resources with other teachers and trainers through My QTLS
  • curriculum design, development and validation
  • reading and reviewing books or journal articles
  • updating knowledge through the internet, television, or other media and reviewing these with a group of professional colleagues.
  • gaining Skills for Life qualifications to train in supporting and embedding literacy, numeracy and English for Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL)
  • gaining further qualifications in your subject or industrial expertise through accredited courses
  • industrial updating through visits, placements, secondments or shadowing
  • being a member of a special interest group or another professional body
  • taking on examiner, verifier or assessor responsibilities
  • attending briefings by awarding bodies and colleagues
  • presenting at a conference in your subject area
  • supervising research
  • subject learning coaching training
  • leading project development in your subject area
  • writing reports and papers to inform your colleagues
  • planning or running a staff development activity
  • organising trips, residentials and work placements
  • reading the latest journal articles for colleagues
  • updating knowledge through the internet, television and other media
  • public service and voluntary work
  • networking with other subject specialists through My QTLS.

How much CPD should I do?

Following the removal of the further education (FE) workforce regulations in 2012, it is no longer a requirement for all teachers and trainers in the education and training sector to make a declaration of their CPD each year.

In line with most other professional bodies, SET expects members to remain in good professional standing by staying up to date with their subject specialism and approaches to teaching and learning. As a SET member, you are asked to agree to make a commitment to your CPD when you renew your SET membership each year.

SET does not have a points system or minimum number of hours of CPD that members must achieve. A wide range of formal and informal activities could count as meaningful professional development. You just need to be able to answer "yes" to these questions:

  • Have you undertaken professional development activities this year?
  • Have you reflected on the learning you have gained from these activities?
  • Have the activities and the reflection made a difference to how you teach or train?
  • Can you show evidence of this difference and the impact it has made to learners, colleagues or the organisation in which you work?


Tracking your CPD

There are four ways to keep a track of your CPD:

  • Self-assessment - use our online tool to assess your professional skills, knowledge and understanding against the Professional Standards.
  • Professional Development Plan (PDP) - based on the outcome of your self-assessment you can plan to work on areas relevant to your practice and anticipate the outcome for your learners.
  • Record your CPD within your My SET dashboard, identifying actions you will take to apply your learnings.
  • Reflect on your CPD activity and review your progress - identify the impact on your practice with others.

Find out more about tracking your CPD within your My SET dashboard.

Group Of Teachers In A Meeting With A Laptop

Searchable resources library SET CPD resources

SET has a number of online resources to assist you with your CPD activity, including articles, webinars and podcasts.

View resources