Continuous Professional Development for Dual Professionals: Introducing CPD in a University Setting
Although the National Committee of Inquiry into Higher Education in 1997 (NCIHE, 1997) reported that the aim of higher education should be “to sustain a learning society”, it is only recently that the Higher Education Academy (HEA) in the U.K. has published its Professional Standards Framework. As teachers, we advocate and are actively involved in ‘lifelong learning’ for others, but how many of us actually practise it? Reflective practice, continuous improvement, and knowledge management should be more than areas of curriculum. It has been argued (Dexter, 2003) that effective teaching requires ongoing learning, research and reflection, through Continuous Professional Development (CPD). Many teachers in HE act as dual professionals and undertake CPD for their subject profession. HEA professional standards now offer a formal framework for the ‘teacher’ professional. The HEA has initiated a pilot study into CPD and The University of Derby is part of this pilot. It has developed a CPD policy, including a practice cycle, a strategy for resourcing and a framework for recording, building in opportunities for evaluation of the process. An action research project is being undertaken to explore issues relating to CPD introduction. This paper will be presented as ‘work-in-progress’ and report on initial findings.
Keywords: Continuous Professional Development, Action Research
Dr. Barbara Dexter
Senior Teaching Fellow, Faculty of Business, Computing and Law, University of Derby