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What is Continuing Professional Development (CPD)?

What counts as CPD?

CPD can be both formal and informal and can cover a variety of activities.

You can download our CPD brochure and watch our pre-recorded CPD webinar to find out more.

To make it easier to remember, we’ve created the acronym TWAVES:

We encourage members to use reliable CPD resources, however, CPD activities do not need to be approved or accredited and don’t have to be provided by the IET (but you are, of course, encouraged to make the most of your membership).

Why bother with CPD?

Writing down your goals, taking action, and tracking your progress (creating an annual CPD record), can enable you to:

  • Take ownership of your development, achieve goals and explore what interests you  
  • Improve your confidence by undertaking new CPD activities and looking back at what you have achieved
  • Innovate within your field of expertise by applying new skills and knowledge
  • Find fulfilment in your current job and realise how much you have contributed
  • Increase your earning potential and progress to other roles using your CPD record as a summary of your learning and development 
  • Demonstrate your commitment to professional standards and set a good example within your community.

Please also note that all professionally active members are required to undertake and record CPD under the IET’s Rules of Conduct and those who are professionally registered are also compelled to do so under the Engineering Council’s CPD code.

Ready to record your CPD?

Take a look at our guide on getting started with Continuing Professional Development.

How much CPD should you complete?

CPD takes time but you can make it worthwhile. It is up to you how you go about it, depending on your professional objectives and obligations, aspirations, interests, needs, skills gaps, circumstances etc.

We recommend that professionally active members undertake at least 30 hours of CPD (at least 10 hours if partially active) per calendar year taking into account a variety of activities (TWAVES), both technical and soft skills, planned and unplanned CPD activities. Estimating CPD hours is subjective.

Individuals decide how many hours of learning they feel they have gained from a given activity. A fully retired or no longer professionally active member isn’t required to undertake CPD.

However, please note that retired members who are involved in volunteering related to engineering and technology are still considered professionally active and therefore required to undertake and record CPD (volunteering activities can count towards CPD).

How should you record your CPD?

It is up to you where you record your CPD but we do encourage you to use Career Manager, our professional development tool, which is available to you for free as part of your membership benefits. It is also useful if you are looking to apply for Professional Registration and/or Fellowship.

Career Manager enables you to:

  • Plan, record and review your CPD on an ongoing basis
  • Provide some basic information and upload your existing CPD record from a different source if you already record it using a different system
  • Submit your annual CPD Declaration and review your progress via CPD Dashboard

A standard CPD record covers: name & type of activity, start and end date, target date if applicable, number of CPD hours, a short description and reflection (lessons learnt).