Demonstrating the impact of CPD

9 Dec 2019 | by Hayley Dunn

How much CPD are you required to complete?

Depending on your level of ISBL membership (except for corporate membership), we are all required to complete a certain number of hours of continuing professional development (CPD) (see table below).  ISBL fellows are required to do 35 hours and it must be recorded on ISBL’s portal to maintain your status and demonstrate your continued commitment.

ISBL Membership Types

Part of the fellowship application requires evidence of ongoing commitment to, and impact of, CPD. CPD comes in many forms, and as stated in the Fellowship Application Form, ISBL recognises a variety of examples of qualifications, training and CPD:

“Eligible CPD can include: continuing education (part time, full time, distance learning) leading to qualifications; attending seminars, courses or workshops, including online courses and webinars; attending networking events; attending conferences and exhibitions; in-school training; coaching/mentoring; preparation/presentation of papers or workshops for conferences, meetings or publications; work shadowing, secondments, or on-the-job training; private study (e.g. reading school business management-related books or journals).”

Fellowship applicants will gain half marks for undertaking mandatory or statutory CPD. Therefore, to score higher, the panel will need to see evidence of breadth and depth of CPD. Give careful consideration to what you have learned and how you subsequently applied this knowledge. 

It is vital you demonstrate that you have regularly participated in CPD during the last three academic years. That shows you are not only maintaining your knowledge and skills but developing them too. By providing a concise Personal Development Plan, you can outline your activities and actions, consider your needs for the future, and discuss the impact of your learning. 

When I think back to my time undertaking formalised learning with the Certificate in School Business Management (CSBM), one of the key points for me was learning ways to say a lot with a few words. Those word counts really make you think about what details are going to give the best answer you can formulate and how to effectively self-edit. I always had too many words and had to keep editing until I got down to the word count.

It was a good skill to learn and has impacted on how I subsequently wrote application forms and governor reports, always looking for accurate and concise statements. It is a vital skill to develop. 

How can you record your CPD?  

The best example CPD logs I have seen include dates, timings, activities completed, their relevance and are well-evidenced. You can clearly see when an applicant has a strategic and well-planned approach to their professional development. They complete regular statutory training, identify their knowledge gaps and development points and find CPD to meet their needs. 

It might be useful to think about how you capture your ongoing learning. Here is a tip about recording learning points from ‘This Book Means Business’ by Alison Jones. The next time you read a book or go to an event, you could try this approach:

  1. Draw a table, putting the title of the event or CPD activity at the top.
  2. In the left-hand column write your notes and leave the right-hand column blank for now.
  3. After completing the event/ book/ activity, in the right-hand column under the

heading ‘So what?’, detail what you are going to do with the information recorded in the first column. How is it going to impact on your practice, your school, your pupils?

Here is an example of what this can look like in practice, with an extract of the notes I made from reading ‘Dare to Lead’ by Brene Brown.

CPD Record

Book: Dare To Lead

Author: Brene Brown


So what?

Page 54/55 New meeting minutes process.

Everyone takes their own notes.

One person volunteers to capture the minutes, which are narrowed to:

·         Date

·         Meeting intention

·         Attendees

·         Key decisions

·         Tasks and ownership

1.       Use the headings when taking my own meeting notes

2.      I Used my notes and thoughts to write a reflective blog post about meetings:


Our professional development is not always formalised learning or following a straight pathway. There are a range of formal learning activities and self-directed study that you can undertake. Think of it as drawing your own map and track what your professional development journey looks like, recording each new skill development, its application and its impact.

As we approach the time when we need to complete this year’s CPD logs, I hope these tips and ideas will help you record your development and planning for the year ahead. If you would like further information see ISBL’s CPD Policy.