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Information for Licensed Members

Continuing Professional Development

Continuing Professional Development (CPD) refers to the engagement in activities which maintain and enhance professional knowledge, skills, and judgment throughout a veterinarian’s career. 

There are a multitude of activities outside of organized continuing education that contribute to continuing professional development. These include self-directed learning activities, such as reading journals or College publications, independent research, presentations that you gave, courses taught, writing material for publication, consulting with peers, rounds, mentoring, and engagement in the work of professional associations or regulatory organizations.

The College categorizes CPD activities into the following types:

Organized Learning Activities

A1 Courses, conferences, wet-labs, seminars, and workshops
A2 Training and studying for supplementary credentials 
A3 Online learning modules and webinars
A4 Presentations given and published material written
A5 Other organized learning

Self-directed Learning Activities

B1 Consulting with peers, participating in rounds, and mentoring
B2 Reading professional publications and reviewing other media
B3 Independent research
B4 Contributions to professional organizations
B5 Other self-directed learning

An essential component of effective continuing professional development is reflection on the value of the activity as it relates to your professional development and your practice. Questions to consider include: “What is my professional development goal related to this activity?”, “What was the takeaway message?” and “How will I change my practice?”

Reporting of CPD activity is a mandatory component of annual licence renewal.  Based on the average number of hours licensed members report each year, the College recommends that veterinarians complete at least 50 hours of CPD each year, or 150 hours over a three-year period.

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The CPD Activity Log is now available to veterinarians in the Professional Practice Portal.  

Using the CPD Activity Log, veterinarians can log CPD activities that they have completed, assign activity codes to each activity, and indicate learning outcomes – from a mobile phone, desktop, laptop or tablet.  The log will provide a summary of the total number of hours logged for each activity type, and this information will be pre-populated on the online Annual Renewal Form.  

Frequently Asked Questions

Below are a few of the questions, and answers, that the College frequently receives concerning Continuing Professional Development.

What CPD information am I required to report to the College?

As part of the Annual Licence Renewal process, veterinarians are required to report the number of CPD hours they completed for each activity type during the preceding 12-month period ending on the 31st day of October.  This information is collected on the Annual Renewal Form.

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What is the reporting period for CPD activity?

CPD hours are calculated and recorded based on a reporting year of November 1st to October 31st.

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How many hours of CPD do I have to complete?

Based on the average number of hours members report each year, the College recommends that members complete at least 50 hours of CPD each year, or 150 hours over a three-year period.

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I just received my licence from the College. Do I have to complete 50 hours of CPD in my first year as a licensed veterinarian?

Many newly licensed veterinarians choose to prorate the recommendation of 50 hours of CPD each year, or 150 hours over a three-year period, based on the number of months they will have been licensed for during the reporting period.  This is entirely acceptable.  CPD hours should not be reported for activities completed before a veterinarian receives her/his licence.

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How many hours of CPD does the activity I completed count for?

The real time spent pursuing each learning activity is recorded.  If a veterinarian spends 2 hours reading veterinary journal articles about a new treatment option, 2 hours are recorded.  If a veterinarian spends 2 hours at an evening seminar, 2 hours are recorded.

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How do I differentiate CPD activities from work-related responsibilities?

CPD includes activities you pursue to maintain your professional competence, keep up with innovations and advancements, or develop expertise in a new area or scope of practice.  CPD activities do not include routine work-related responsibilities.  A key way to differentiate CPD activities from routine professional responsibilities is that CPD activities lead to professional reflection and to identifying the impact the new information may have on your practice.

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I am a veterinarian working in non-clinical practice and part of my job is mentoring and consulting with peers. Should I log and report those work hours as CPD?

Generally speaking, mentoring and consulting with peers would not be considered CPD activities when they are part of a veterinarian’s routine work-related responsibilities; however, these activities may be logged as CPD when they lead to professional reflection and to identifying the impact that the new information may have on your practice.  

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I am an intern, resident, or post-graduate student. What activities related to my program of study should I log and report as CPD?

Internships, residency, and post-graduate program activities would fall under CPD activity category A2, training and studying for supplementary credentials; however, activities would be considered CPD only when they contribute to professional development/learning and are not related to the time spent carrying out the clinical duties of a veterinarian within the context of the internship or program. 

Veterinarians should make an assessment as to what percentage of time was directly related to professional development beyond just doing clinical work.  For example, time spent on research, presentations, posters, or studying could be considered a CPD activity, and time spent in clinic would be considered a “work”-related activity and not CPD. 

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What tools does the College provide to assist me with recording and reporting my CPD hours?

The CPD Activity Log is available to veterinarians in the Professional Practice Portal.  

CPD Activity Log

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CPD Questions?

Megan Callaway
Principal, Quality Assurance & Improvement
mcallaway@cvo.org

CPD Activity Log

The CPD Activity Log is now available to veterinarians in the Professional Practice Portal