Continuing Professional Development

Why do we need it?

Changes in State Registration requirements through the Health Professions Council now involve a mandatory record of Continuous Professional Development (CPD). A recognisable path of professional development and life long learning with help physiotherapists working in sport provide evidence of CPD.

In addition to the initiatives from the CSP, the increase in funding for support services within sport at an elite level has lead to a more professional attitiude to healthcare provision. An increasing number of physiotherapists are now able to persue a career in sport, rather than working in an honorary position as a hobby. This, in turn has lead to more courses providing a variety of levels of qualifications in sports related healthcare, with more individuals competing for employment in this limited workplace. Despite the plethora of clinical courses and ad hoc mentoring and / or clinical supervision provided through members of ACPSM, there has been no obligation to prove professional competence beyond the initial qualifications needed for a licence to practice. ACPSM members can therefore be in a position where they have little proof of the specialised professional competence in which they may have invested considerable time.

How was the structure developed?

It is expected that ACPSM members will participate in the CSP CPD portfolio scheme (2001) and the levels of development have been compiled with this in mind. They should provide guidance to members wishing to persue a career in sport. The additional certificated courses listed are intended to provide evidence of achievement of clinical and professional skills, which will be recognisable, by potential employers such as the UK Sports Institutes and National Governing Bodies.

The development of a definate career pathway towards suitability to work at elite level is welcomed by UKSport and British Olympic Association, who have been involved in the consultation process.

How will this affect my membership?

Membership of the ACPSM will remain open to ALL chartered physiotherapists or student physiotherapists with a pre-registration qualification in Physiotherapy and an interest in sports. However you can further develop your professional interest in Sports Physiotherapy by becoming an accredited member of the ACPSM depending on your experience within Sports Medicine.

How do I start working my way through the CPD Pathway?

This process is easy to do, however needs to be completed on the application form CPD Application Form (53 Kb) only and then emailed to Colin Paterson

Follow these easy steps:

  1. Read the guidelines below for Level 1- 3 but you do not have to worry about which level you might fit into.
  2. Download the ACPSM CPD pathway application form CPD Application Form (53 Kb)
  3. Complete the application form on your computer . PLEASE DO NOT SEND PAPER COPIES
  4. Provide as much information as possible.Remember that you are supposed to demonstrate experiential learning by showing how courses and critical incidences have altered your clinical practice.The assessment panel will assess the content of your application form and decide which level you have achieved. PLEASE NOTE THAT THE ASSESSMENT PANEL WILL ONLY REVIEW INFORMATION THAT IS ON THE FORM. ATTACHED CV’S AND LISTS OF COURSES WILL NOT BE REVIEWED.
  5. When you have completed the form email it to Colin Paterson ( CPD Co-ordinator) [email protected]
  6. As of the 1st Jan 2009 applications will incure a charge. The cost of your inital application will be £45 and then subsequent submissions will cost £15. Cheques should be made payable to ACPSM and sent to Colin Paterson at 24 Steepdene, Poole, Dorset, BH14 8TE. Applications will not be assessed until the monies have been received. This charge will help towards the administration costs and processing of your application.
  7. An assessment of the CPD application forms will be carried out and you will then be informed of the level that you have achieved.

Please click one of the following links for full details about each CPD level & standards.

Interested in Joining?

Full membership is £42.00 per year (an additional one off payment applies for processing applications for CPD levels). Student Membership is £21.00 per year.


Why should you bother to complete the ACPSM CPD application form?

With more ‘therapists’ marketing themselves as Sports specialists it is important that you have something that makes you stand out from the rest and demonstrates that you have a experience of working in the Sporting environment. The ACPSM accrediation levels are internationally recognised by the Internation Federation of Sports Physiotherapists, the British Olympic Association and Sporting Governing Bodies.

For forthcoming sporting events and job opportunities, employers will be using the CPD levels as essential criteria on their job descriptions to ensure that they can be confident in the physiotherapists sporting experience. Without an ACPSM CPD level in the future you may not be able to apply for such working opportunities.

Are you worried about a lengthly application process?

If you are considering filling out an application form but are apprehensive or not sure what information to include, you can now go to the CPD page and download examples to demonstrate the type of information required in a Bronze, Silver and Gold application. Obviously these examples are not exhaustive but should give you an idea what the assessment panel are looking for.

Are you having difficulty finding a mentor? Or do you have a mentor who is not ACPSM member or has not done the CPD levels themselves?

If this is the case it is not a problem that should prevent you from submitting your application form.Ideally your mentor should be an ACPSM member that has more sports experience than you i.e has a higher CPD level. However in the short term it does not matter if your mentor is an ACPSM member that has not applied for the CPD pathway yet. Obviously we would encourage you to try to select an ACPSM member as your mentor, however in some situations this is not possible – i.e lone practioners. In cases like this please state on your application form your circumstances.

Do you need a mentor but not sure where to start looking?

If you are trying to work out how to find a mentor there are a few options available to you:

  • You can look on the Role of Honour to find the name of a physiotherapist. Click here
  • You can search the database to find members who have achieved a CPD level and then contact them to see if they would be happy to act as your mentor.
  • You could contact your Regional Rep to see if they know of physiotherapists in your area who are happy to act as mentors.
  • You could put a request on the Members Forum CPD + Mentor page requesting for a mentor – maybe with an interest in a specific sport.

What first aid / Sport Trauma courses are recognised by the ACPSM as being suitable for Silver and Gold applications?

  • Lubas Medical
  • RFU
  • Lubas Medical – Sports Trauma Managment
  • Canadian Red Cross

Once a year the educational committee will review other such courses on the market and this list will be updated as appropriate with any newly recognised Sports Trauma managment courses.

If you still have questions that need answering try looking on the FAQ (frequently asked questions) page or contact the following committee members:

General queries re applications- Janet Thornton- [email protected]

Specific education issues – Phil Glasgow – [email protected]

Mentor or clinical issues – Colin Paterson – [email protected]

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