CPD Accredited Ultrasound Training
Continued Professional Development – CPD – has two main purposes.
(1) It demonstrates that the course you are attending has been properly structured.
(2) It awards you CPD points.
The first point is important, but note it only assures you of the overall structure of the course and compliance with certain standards, such as anti-discrimination and inclusivity policies. It does not mean that the content of the course has been checked by anyone qualified to do so.
The second is a moot point. Breeders do not collect CPD points and submit them every year, and vets and vet nurses also no longer need points from CPD-accredited courses, because the Royal College now advocates self-declaration for CPD hours. This means that a vet can obtain as many CPD points from reading a book in a library as she can from attending a CPD-accredited course.
Does CPD accreditation mean anything?
CPD accreditation is a great string to your bow if you are a general training company, but for companies and individuals teaching AUA-accredited courses, it offers no added benefit. You should not, therefore, use the presence or absence of a CPD mark to inform your decision of whether or not to attend a course. Instead, look at who is teaching it. What are their qualifications and experience in that subject? Would you learn to drive from a driving instructor without a license?
CPD accreditation companies are profit-making Ltd companies. They make a lot of money from giving out as many CPD badges as possible. In addition, not all of them are created equal. You can get some CPD agencies which are very thorough in their checks and will work with you to actively improve the delivery of your course. There are others, however, where you can just pay a fee, upload your content online, and receive your badge within 24 hours. There is no way for a member of the general public to know which route anyone displaying the CPD badge actually went down.
The Animal Ultrasound Association is a CIC; a Community Interest Company. Its activities and the work it has done to further ultrasound education and animal safety are declared to the government every year, and are freely and publicly available. The AUA is run by accredited sonographers – people who are far more qualified to judge what should be in an ultrasound course than a CPD agency with no knowledge of ultrasound.
There is still value in introductory ultrasound courses taught by non-specialists, but if you wish to advance in your ultrasound education and ultimately attend a level 2 course, you may ultimately need to be retrained. Level 2 ultrasound is and should only be taught by a specialist obstetric sonographer. Why would you pay money for anything less?
How else can I verify the quality of a course?
Watch this video below on how you can research for yourself, for free and in just a few minutes, the qualifications of the company or individual offering you training.
May 13, 2022
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