Domain 1:

Knowledge, Skills & Performance

Core Element A (Continuing Professional Development) is required for every appraisal.

Examples of supporting information include course certificates, and a CPD logbook. If you do not use one, an example learning log spreadsheet is available for download at the bottom of this page.

Core Element A: CPD (required every appraisal)

Examples of supporting information include course certificates, and a CPD logbook. If you do not use one, an example learning log spreadsheet is available for download at the bottom of this page.

Knowledge, Skills & Performance

On the online appraisal form in Domain 1, the first two parts of Domain 1 are standard for all GPs. You are asked to:

  • Review last year's learning
  • Propose a learning plan for the year ahead

Use the links in the form to guide you through this. You will also find reflective templates relating to your learning activities through these links. The example learning log spreadsheet offered allows you to record your learning and count credits if you wish to use it.

General Guidance

The learning that you do over a year will be a mixture of planned education, designed to meet your educational needs (your development plan); totally unplanned and spontaneous learning; and learning which is undertaken because you want to do it, it interests you, but without having a clear-cut objective. The benefits derived from learning can be maximised by reflection upon the learning after the event, and can frequently lead to the identification of new needs.

The GMC have stated that CPD activities must be appropriate and relevant to the specific needs and scope of a doctor's area of practice. The GMC advice indicates this will usually be informed by specialty specific guidance from the Medical Royal Colleges and Faculties. The Academy of Royal Colleges which includes the RCGP have suggested that a doctor should normally achieve 50 CPD credits on an annual basis.

You should present supporting information that reflects that you:

  • Have taken part in a number of Relevant Educational Activities over the past year and have reflected on these.
  • Have identified Learning Needs and acted to address them.
  • Are planning to address current learning needs.

This way of demonstrating educational activity allows maximum flexibility, to suit those of all learning styles. For instance, a doctor who prefers to learn by taking part in courses may present evidence of completion of a diploma, while his/her colleague who prefers to learn by personal study can demonstrate that he/she has learned by presenting the outcome of the learning (such as a protocol, guideline or management plan).

Remember too that we can learn informally in a variety of ways. These can include:

  • looking up the answer to a query
  • new information in a consultant's letter
  • informal discussion with colleagues
  • teaching
  • informal reading

The extent to which this unplanned learning is of value will depend on its relevance to what you do, and on your ability to put it to use and be able to recall it and use it on subsequent occasions. You should try to maintain some record of informal and unplanned learning which can help to make it more effective.



Sample Learning Log

If you have your own preferred method of recording your learning, by all means continue to use it.  The sample Learning Log below is intended as a guide for those who do not normally track their learning electronically.

This Excel spreadsheet is designed to help the user record their Learning Activities throughout the year. Save this spreadsheet to your computer (right-click > Save target as) and work on this as you go throughout the year.  Upload the final version to SOAR when the time comes for your appraisal. Make sure you check the worksheet "Examples and Tips" for guidance.

Related Documents

Learning Log sample (macro-less version) | File Size: 41.5 KB | Date Updated: 17/09/2015

An online CPD log has been added to SOAR so you can enter your CPD entries directly, rather than using this spreadsheet. However, if you wish to use the spreadsheet instead, please note the following instructions: This Excel spreadsheet is designed to help the user record their Learning Activities throughout the year. Save this spreadsheet to your computer (right-click > Save target as) and work on this as you go throughout the year. Upload the final version to SOAR when the time comes for your appraisal. Make sure you check the worksheet "Examples and Tips" for guidance. Although originally designed specifically for GPs, it can also be used by consultants (just ignore the impact scoring).


This page was last updated on: 15/05/2015