The idea behind using a range of activities to support your learning is that it is designed to encourage you to participate fully in your own development and add a richness to your learning. If all you ever do is go to a conference every year, go to hospital work related staff development and regularly read the Journal of Visual Communication in Medicine you will have a limited range of activity.
Your personal development plan, together with your appraisal, should help you to know what you need to work on for your CPD for your current and future practice. There may be some obvious choice of learning activities available locally or nationally but several types of activity require us to be self-motivated so we develop our own learning.
In a previous paper we asked you to think about personalizing your learning through activities that best suit your learning style here we are going to look at different types of learning activities. As part of the Academy for Healthcare Science's (AHCS) requirements, for Continuing Professional Development (CPD), we need to engage in a mix of learning activities.
 Bryson, D. (2009) Personalising your learning. Journal of Visual Communication in Medicine 32(3 & 4): 105-107.
Main types of activity
The AHCS lists four main types of activity that can help support your learning and professional development, CPD activities could include the following:
Work-based learning for example, reflecting on experiences, considering feedback from service users, being a member of a committee and so on.
Professional activity for example, being a member of a specialist interest group, mentoring or teaching others, being an expert witness, giving presentations at conferences and so on.
Formal education for example, going on courses, doing research, distance learning, planning or running a course and so on.
Self-directed learning for example, reading articles, reviewing books and articles, updating your knowledge through the internet and so on.
Other activities for example, public service.
Task 1 Using the list of activities listed for a conference put alongside them the type of activity from the list
Task 2 Looking at the activities you have undertaken over the last year or plan to do over the next year write a heading or title for the activity under each heading.
- Understanding the different types of activity involved in Continuing Professional Development (CPD).
- Plan how to use a range of learning activities as part of your year's CPD.