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A guide to obtaining your CPD points

Everything you need to know about getting your CPD points

Continuing professional development (CPD) is a statutory requirement for all fully qualified optometrists, dispensing opticians and contact lens opticians. All full registrants must earn a minimum number of CPD points by the end of each cycle to stay on the registers. 

The previous CET scheme went through a significant overhaul before being relaunched as a CPD scheme on 1 January 2022. 

CPD is a points-based scheme, running over a three-year cycle, to ensure practitioners develop new skills and maintain and revalidate existing ones, as well as reflecting on practice.

How do I get CPD points?

You can gain points from reading articles, watching videos and attending lectures and discussion workshops and peer review sessions, either virtually or at face-to-face events. The number of points earned for completing a particular CPD activity depends on the level of engagement required. For example, peer review sessions and workshops provide more points than attending a lecture or completing article-based CPD. You can obtain all of your CPD points through AOP events or OT CPD in any given year. 

How many points do I need?

Your specific CPD requirements will depend on your mode of practice.

Example table format for AOP
Optometrists Dispensing opticians Contact lens opticians Therapeutic optometrists
Minimum of 36 points in total
Minimum of six points per year

Minimum  of 36 points in total
Minimum of six points per year

Minimum of 36 points in total
Minimum of six points per year

Minimum of 54 points in total
Minimum of six points per year

At least 18 points must be gained through interactive CPD At least 18 points must be gained through interactive CPD At least 18 points must be gained through interactive CPD
At least 18 points must be gained through CPD
Gain at least one point in each of the four core domains per cycle Gain at lease one point in each of the four core domains per cycle

Gain at least one point in each of the four core domains per cycle.

A minimum of 18 points must be gained in the speciality CPD domain and a minimum of 18 points in the four core domains

Gain at least one point in each of the four core domains per cycle. A minimum of 18 points must be gained in the specialty CPD domain and a minimum of 36 points in the four core domains
Optometrists must participate in at least one peer review activity per cycle and complete a reflection statement afterwards

Dispensing opticians must participate in at least one peer review activity per cycle and complete a reflection statement afterwards

Contact lens opticians must participate in at least one peer review per cycle covering the specialty CPD domain and provide a reflection statement afterwards 

Therapeutic optometrists must undertake at least one peer review per cycle which must be completed with other therapeutic optometrists covering the specialty CPD domain and provide a reflection statement afterwards

Create a personal development plan (PDP) at the start of the cycle in the MyCPD section of the GOC's website Create a personal development plan (PDP) at the start of the cycle in the MyCPD section of the GOC's website Create a personal development plan (PDP) at the start of the cycle in the MyCPD section of the GOC's website

Create a personal development plan (PDP) at the start of the cycle in the MyCPD section of the GOC's website

Complete a reflective exercise with a peer towards the end of the CPD cycle based on your PDP Complete a reflective exercise with a peer towards the end of the CPD cycle based on your PDP
Complete a reflective exercise with a peer towards the end of the CPD cycle based on your PDP Complete a reflective exercise with a peer towards the end of the CPD cycle based on your PDP  

Points are calculated pro-rata depending on the date you registered with the GOC

Your CPD points requirement for the year is calculated on a pro-rata basis, so if, for example, you are newly qualified or returning to work and joined the register part way through the current cycle, your points will be adjusted.

Domains

You are required to cover a specific range of domains (outlined below), depending on your mode of practice.

Example table format for AOP
Optometrists Dispensing opticians Contact lens opticians Therapeutic optometrists
Professionalism logo
Professionalism logo
Specialty: Contact lens opticians logo
 Specialty: Optometrist/AS/SP/IP logo
Communication logo
Communication logo


Clinical practice logo  Clinical practice logo     
 Leadership and accountability logo Leadership and accountability logo     

What are registrant-led and provider-led peer review?

A registrant peer review consists of an activity where one registrant takes the role of leader and a small group discusses their own anonymised cases. See Setting up a peer review group.

Provider-led peer review requires registrants to review specific cases or topics in advance by a CPD provider, often in a larger group led by facilitators, with delegates split into smaller discussion groups.

What is a reflection statement?

Following either type of peer review, registrants need to complete a reflection statement within the GOC's MyCPD section of the website to capture the learning covered in the session.

How can I check my progress?

CPD providers, including OT and the AOP, will not upload CPD points to the GOC when a registrant passes an exam or attends an event with points associated to it. In the new CPD education scheme, the GOC has stated that it is the responsibility of the registrant to upload and declare their CPD points. Therefore, we no longer upload points to your GOC MyCPD system. Please log in to your MyCPD system with the GOC to declare your points. You can watch OT’s video detailing how to do that here.

If you have not met your requirements by the end of each cycle, this may affect your GOC registration status and your future permission to practise. Find out what happens if you do not meet your CPD points.

Can the AOP help me get points?

We offer a comprehensive range of free CPD for all modes of practice. We have a programme of webinars, along with online and face-to-face peer review events and offer over 100 points at our annual 100% Optical event. We also offer an extensive range of CPD points per year covering all domains via OT.

Obtain CPD points now

While the majority of CPD can be claimed for free, some CPD activity is paid for. Find out more on our position on CET grants and claiming for CET funding.

OT explains: What you need to know about the new CPD cycle