Putting your portfolio together
Ambulance CPD putting your portfolio together
It may be that time where you have been called up by the HCPC, or you may have to put together a portfolio of evidence to support your CPD for the year. Here we have put together what we think is a good way to approach your portfolio building with some handy tips so you can fully demonstrate your work throughout the year:
Building your CPD Portfolio…
- Any mandatory CPD courses
- Any volunteer CPD courses
- Any times you’ve been a mentor or had to mentor a student
- Any CPD activities you’re apart of (clubs, memberships, websites)
- Any secondments you’ve done throughout the year
- Any business or personal ventures which have included CPD activities
- Any logs or reflections you’ve done on jobs throughout the year
- Any skills or practice lists
- Any courses you’ve attended for university, or further development
- Any volunteer roles you’ve been involved in
- Any first aid charity work you’ve done
With this list of activities together you will have a good idea of the range of work you can present. You can also assess whether the work is plentiful, enough, or lacking. If it is lacking, now is your time to do additional work to allow for a comfortable level of content to be available to present in your portfolio. However, if you are a full time Paramedic, we feel it would be a rare situation after going through all the list above that you would find yourself lacking in evidence to present.
Structuring your CPD Portfolio…
With your list of activities, the next step is to structure them within your portfolio.
Within your portfolio you should have different sections for; CPD courses, reflections on jobs/scenarios, skill use, certificates, CPD hours, etc…
We feel by structuring your portfolio into different content sections, not only does this keep everything looking professional and tidy, but it also helps demonstrates a wide and varied range of competencies and evidence.
Go through your list of evidence and place them into different sections or categories.
Putting it together…
Now that your evidence is structured, you need to present each piece of evidence and demonstrate the learning gained. Some of your evidence may already have this, such as with a reflection or skill review. Other pieces you will have to add these on to further demonstrate your learning. For example, you may have a certificate from a course you attended. Just presenting the certificate in your portfolio is OK, but you can do much more with it. Put an introduction for the course, what it was and where it was held. Discuss why you went and what content was covered. Discuss what you learned from attending the course and how this has affected your practice. Include the certificate as evidence of your attendance.
To demonstrate further learning, you could also include a reflection or review on a certain part of the course. There may be new information you weren’t aware of, or a new skill that interested you. By reflecting or reviewing, you look further into the subject, and you demonstrate your capability of further learning. At the end of each evidence piece, do a summary on the learning you gained, how it is going to affect your practice, and put a total for the number of hours you spent on that piece of evidence.
Do this for every evidence piece and you will demonstrate clear learning and progression with all pieces.
A lot of people find referencing hard but with a little practice and time, you’ll find it easy. Referencing shows that you have researched and used/looked at other sources of information to back your findings and evidence in your portfolio. This positively demonstrates that you have spent time researching, and that your are an evidenced based practitioner.
Remember this isn’t work for university, your referencing doesn’t have to be perfect every time. Search for common referencing styles and then use them in your work.
By following some of these strategies, you can put together a portfolio which demonstrates a varied range of evidences. By presenting the evidence, demonstrating your learning, and summarising at the end, you can show that you have gained in knowledge and skill, and you demonstrate that you are doing CPD.