Educating for professional competency and continuing professional development: Implications for undergraduate curriculum and lifelong learning

Thompson, Wendy & Nash, Rose (2016) Educating for professional competency and continuing professional development: Implications for undergraduate curriculum and lifelong learning. In Life Long Learning in Pharmacy 11th International Conference, July 1-4, 2016, Oral Communications – Project / Research Session. (Unpublished)



  • For public safety, at initial registration Australian pharmacy graduates are expected to practice to minimum standards outlined by the National Competency Standards Framework for Pharmacists in Australia (NCS) (1, 2). Ongoing development of practice should then be guided by the NCS and the continuing professional development standards (3). There has been little research nationally to investigate how well pharmacists follow these standards and what educational preparation is required to encourage this process.


  • Explore Australian Pharmacist’s:

    1. Understanding of their CPD standards.

    2. How they use the NCS to inform their CPD practice


  • Using a pragmatist frame and mixed methods approach the authors combined their data from two separate surveys; one focussed on CPD, the other on NCS. Both surveys were administered to Australian pharmacists between 2012 and 2013.


  • The research identified that many pharmacists do not fully understand the CPD standards, including the process of self-directed learning. Furthermore, whilst 86% of pharmacists surveyed knew of the NCS, very few of them utilised them to guide their CPD.


  • The results demonstrated that Australian Pharmacists have found difficulty engaging in the CPD process, require better preparation for self-directed learning tasks and the use of the NCS in the CPD process. As pharmacy education in Australia aims to produce graduates with the required knowledge and skills for internship, we should consider whether it is currently providing enough guidance for these skills (2). Do our undergraduate curriculum and assessment methods encourage optimal CPD processes for our future Pharmacists?

1.Pharmaceutical Society of Australia. 1.4 Requisite knowledge, skills and attributes. 2010. In: National Competency Standards Framework for Pharmacists in Australia [Internet]. [4]. Available from: 2.Australian Pharmacy Council. Accreditation standards for pharmacy programs in Australia and New Zealand (effective from 1 January 2014) 2012 [cited 2013 April 25]. Available from: 3.Pharmacy Board of Australia. Pharmacy Continuing Professional Development Registration Standard 2010 [cited 2011 Jan 20]. Available from:

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ID Code: 98664
Item Type: Conference Item (Presentation)
Refereed: Yes
Divisions: Current > QUT Faculties and Divisions > Faculty of Health
Copyright Owner: Copyright 2016 the Author(s)
Deposited On: 06 Sep 2016 23:17
Last Modified: 06 Sep 2016 23:19

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