Continued Professional Development

The Continued Professional Development programme is open to all UK and Republic of Ireland Fellows, Affiliates and Members and is designed for all ophthalmologists whether or not they are employed within the NHS.

All healthcare professionals are expected to keep themselves up-to-date through a self-driven series of educational activities relevant to their practice.  For doctors, this is reviewed as part of their annual appraisal process, and records of the learning achieved contribute to the evidence an individual provides for  their revalidation and assessment of fitness to practice. 

What is CPD?

CPD is a continuing process, outside formal undergraduate and postgraduate training, that enables individual doctors to maintain and improve standards of medical practice through the development of knowledge, skills, attitudes and behaviour. CPD should also support specific changes in practice.

An element of ‘value’ is added to the points system of scoring CPD activity. Participants will be expected to record in more detail what they have learnt. The CPD scheme follows a five-year cycle of CPD activity in which it will be necessary for 250 credits to be accumulated. Participants are expected to accumulate 50 credits per annum.

  • Category A: Clinical & Academic: Internal (Minimum 10 points)
  • Category B: Clinical & Academic: External (Minimum 20 points)
  • Category C: Clinical & Academic: Self-directed (Minimum 5 points)
  • Category D: Professional & Managerial (Minimum 5 points)

Individuals are expected to tailor their CPD activity to meet the objectives of their Professional Development Plans (PDPs).

For further information on the CPD Programme contact [email protected].

How does the RCOphth support CPD?

The College provides support for the appraisal of ophthalmologists by: 


The revalidation pages contain information useful to ophthalmologists preparing for appraisal. It also aims to help appraisers understand the significance of the supporting and in setting or reviewing appropriate objectives for a PDP.

More information about revalidation.