How to Decide What CPD is Right For You?
We have all heard and been told that our dental degrees are just the licence to start learning and while we have to do some CPD to fulfill our requirements for registration, dentists who want to excel and want to continue to learn and improve will always seek out CPD.
There are many reasons for taking CPD and this reflects in the huge variety of courses you see listed on CPD Junkie. The obvious reason for taking CPD is to learn. Learn a new clinical skill, learn to communicate, and learn to run a dental practice.
Beyond the obvious, CPD connects us with a community of dentists, serves to motivate and can even offer up a chance to travel.
How to Choose What Dental Courses are right for you?
As with most things, it is easy to get overwhelmed when it comes to choosing the right CPD. So how do you decide what course is right for you? This is a big topic and if there was one distinct and clear answer then we would all simply follow that path. In general there are two main schools of thought when it comes to this; the doubling down on your strengths school of thought and the expanding your clinical scope school of thought. Both of these approaches have merit and both of these approaches are superior to the alternative which would be taking CPD without a plan just to fill your requirements.
The doubling down approach involves taking courses in areas of strength to expand skill within these disciplines to allow you to take on exceedingly more challenging cases. Over time, an approach like this would translate to you becoming a dentist with a special interest in these areas. For example you are in general practice and notice that you really enjoy and are good at root canals and so you decide to focus most of your CPD investment into endodontic courses.
Conversely, the expanding your clinical scope approach involves reflection about your current clinical abilities and determining the areas where you are weakest and deciding to take CPD in these areas to improve. This approach would make you a better generalist and allow you to be quite well rounded in terms of your clinical skills. A jack of all trades, master of none approach.
When it comes to deciding what CPD to take there are several factors you should consider and before making any big investment it would be wise to have thought these through:
- What types of procedures do I enjoy and want to get better at?
- What procedures do I find challenging and want to become better at?
- What types of procedures would serve my patients’ needs the best?
- What are my long term plans clinically?
- How do I plan on implementing what I learn at the CPD event back into my day to day practice?