Continuing professional development (CPD) and lifelong learning are core tenets of most healthcare disciplines. Where undergraduate coursework lays the foundation for entry into practice, CPD courses and offerings are designed to aid clinicians in maintaining these competencies. CPD offerings need to be frequently revised and updated to ensure their continued utility. The purpose of this qualitative study was to better understand the CPD needs of members of the University of Toronto’s Department of Radiation Oncology (UTDRO) and determine how these needs could be generalized to other CPD programs. Given that UTDRO consists of members of various health disciplines (radiation therapist, medical physicists, radiation oncologists, etc.), eleven semi-structured interviews were conducted with various health professionals from UTDRO. Inductive thematic analysis using qualitative data processing with NVivo® was undertaken. The data was coded, sorted into categories, and subsequently reviewed for emergent themes. Participants noted that a general lack of awareness and lack of access made participation in CPD programs difficult. Members also noted that topics were often impractical, irrelevant, or not inclusive of different professions. Some participants did not feel motivated to engage in CPD offerings due to a general lack of time and lack of incentive. To address the deficiencies of CPD programs, a formal needs assessment that engages stakeholders from different centers and health professions is required. Needs assessments of CPD programs should include analyzing elements related to access, how to utilize technology-enhanced learning (TEL), determine barriers to participation, and understand how to better engage members.
This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.
Buy single article
Instant access to the full article PDF.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Subscribe to journal
Immediate online access to all issues from 2019. Subscription will auto renew annually.
Tax calculation will be finalised during checkout.
Horsley T, Grimshaw J, Campbell C (2010) How to create conditions for adapting physicians’ skills to new needs and lifelong learning. WHO Regional Office for Europe, on behalf of the European Observatory on Health Systems and Policies, Copenhagen
Schneeweiss, S. 2005. CPD 2015 – leadership, innovation, and community engagement. https://www.cpd.utoronto.ca/ar15/ Accessed 29 April 2019
University of Toronto Department of Radiation Oncology. 2014. The transformative agenda–roadmap to 2017. http://www.radonc.utoronto.ca/sites/default/files/Strategic%20Plan%20Final.pdf Accessed 29 April 2019
University of Toronto Department of Radiation Oncology. 2017. Continuing education. http://www.radonc.utoronto.ca/continuing-education Accessed 29 April 2019
University of Toronto Department of Radiation Oncology 2019. Our history http://radonc.utoronto.ca/our-history. Accessed 29 April 2019
Marionopolous S, Dorman T, Ratanawongsa N, Wilson L, Ashar B, Magaziner J, Miller R, Thomas P, Prokopowicz G, Qayyum R, Bass E (2007) Effectiveness of continuing medical education. J EviRep Technol Assess 14:1–69
Ong IL, Diño MJS, Calimag MMP, Hidalgo FA (2018) Developing a valid and reliable assessment of knowledge translation (KT) for continuing professional development program of health professionals. PeerJ 6:e5323
Ong IL, Diño MJS, Calimag MMP, Hidalgo FA (2019) Development and validation of interprofessional learning assessment tool for health professionals in continuing professional development (CPD). PLoS One 14(1):e0211405
Olson CA (2012) Twenty predictions for the future of CPD: implications of the shift from the update model to improving clinical practice. J Contin Educ Heal Prof 32(3):151–152
Davis DA, Rayburn WF, Smith GA (2017) Continuing professional development for faculty: an elephant in the house of academic medicine or the key to future success? Acad Med 92(8):1078–1081. https://doi.org/10.1097/ACM.0000000000001777
Future of Medical Education in Canada Continuing professional development project (FMEC-CPD) (2019). Supporting learning and continuous practice improvement for physicians in Canada: a new way forward. Retrieved from https://www.fmec-cpd.ca/wp-content/uploads/2019/04/FMEC-CPD_Synthesized_EN.pdf. Accessed 27 May 2019
Hughes K (2018) The use of twitter for continuing professional development within occupational therapy. J Furth High Educ:1–13. https://doi.org/10.1080/0309877X.2018.1515900
Lawson C, Cowling C (2015) Social media: the next frontier for professional development in radiography. Radiography 21(2):e74–e80
Kitto SC, Bell M, Goldman J, Peller J, Silver I, Sargeant J, Reeves S (2013) (Mis)perceptions of continuing education: insights from knowledge translation, quality improvement, and patient safety leaders. J Contin Educ Heal Prof 33(2):81–88
Wareing A, Buissink C, Harper D, Gellert Olesen M, Soto M, Braico S, van Laer P, Gremion I, Rainford L (2017) Continuing professional development (CPD) in radiography: a collaborative European meta-ethnography literature review. Radiography 23:S58–S63
Scott KM, Baur L, Barrett J (2017) Evidence-based principles for using technology-enhanced learning in the continuing professional development of health professionals. J Contin Educ Heal Prof 37(1):61–66
Berndt A, Murray CM, Kennedy K, Stanley MJ, Gilbert-Hunt S (2017) Effectiveness of distance learning strategies for continuing professional development (CPD) for rural allied health practitioners: a systematic review. BMC Med Educ 17(1):117. https://doi.org/10.1186/s12909-017-0949-5
Gesme D, Wiseman M (2010) How to implement change in practice. J Oncol Pract 6(5):257–259
Curran V, Sargeant J, Hollett A (2007) Evaluation of an interprofessional continuing professional development initiative in primary health care. J Contin Educ Heal Prof 27(4):241–252
Lown BA, Kryworuchko J, Bieber C, Lillie DM, Kelly C, Berger B, Loh A (2011) Continuing professional development for interprofessional teams supporting patients in healthcare decision making. J Interprofessional Care 25(6):401–408
Paradis E, Whitehead CR (2018) Beyond the lamppost: a proposal for a fourth wave of education for collaboration. Acad Med 93(10):1457–1463
This research was supported with a grant from UTDRO.
This study received approval from the Research Ethics Board at the Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre and University of Toronto.
Conflict of Interest
The authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.
Springer Nature remains neutral with regard to jurisdictional claims in published maps and institutional affiliations.
About this article
Cite this article
Zereshkian, A., Wong, R., Leifer, R. et al. Continuing Professional Development Needs Amongst University of Toronto’s Department of Radiation Oncology Faculty. J Canc Educ 36, 118–125 (2021). https://doi.org/10.1007/s13187-019-01607-1
- Continuing professional development
- Radiation oncology
- Technology enhanced learning
- Needs assessment
- Qualitative study
- Distance learning
- Competency based education