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Continuing Competence Program news

July 14, 2015

“Tell me and I forget, teach me and I may remember, involve me and I learn.”  – Benjamin Franklin

Congratulations to all the pharmacists who submitted their first professional portfolio in the new Continuing Competence Program (CCP). We want to thank you for stepping up to the challenge, taking time to learn about the new program, and embracing it with an open-mind. We have appreciated all of your questions and feedback.  CCP was established based upon your initial input, and your ongoing feedback is important to us as we move forward in maturing the program.

The main objectives of the CCP are to foster meaningful and relevant professional growth while empowering you to continuously enhance your practice.  The program provides you with essential tools to support your professional development while enabling you to take an active approach to learning.

By applying your knowledge and skills and reflecting on your experiences, you are reinforcing your learning and evaluating your practice – ultimately leading to self-improvement and positive changes in your environment.

CCP Survey Results

Thank you to the over 1300 pharmacists who took part in our survey and provided feedback on the Continuing Competence Program. 

82 per cent of pharmacists “strongly agreed/agreed”

“I found this program excellent. It allowed me to better reflect on my learning, which I feel resulted in the information “sticking” better. It was very easy to use.”

“The team that developed this program did an excellent job. I feel better knowing that all my colleagues are engaging in ongoing learning…This program ensures accountability. I think this is long time needed.”

“At first I was unsure about this new system but I have found the format to be very user friendly and quite applicable to my practice setting.  It allowed me to easily incorporate the learning I needed to do for my job into something I could also report to the college.”

“I found that by completing the learning record and implementation record I was more aware of my learning and how it fit into my practice.”

18 per cent of pharmacists “disagreed/strongly disagreed”

“Do not like reflection of learning. I have procrastinated completing this program because of all the steps involved and hassle of completing questions that do not apply to my practice.”

81 per cent of pharmacists “strongly agreed/agreed”

“I thought the portal was a very user-friendly way to record learning and found I was thinking deeper into each activity I did as to how I could use it in my practice.”

“I really like it. It is very user friendly. It is far less cumbersome than the CCP we had last year. I appreciate writing up each course/learning activity because it gives reason to pause and reflect on the usefulness of that activity.”

“I enjoyed the freedom to learn on my own terms. The implementation motivated me to try something new in my practice. The web portal is very easy to use and upload information to. I look forward to keeping better track of My CE’s as the upload is so easy.”

“I found this to be a great way to document my learning activities. It does not take much time at all and is very easy to navigate. I like having everything ‘electronic’”

19 per cent of pharmacists “disagreed/strongly disagreed”

“I didn’t like having to upload documents. It took a lot of time and I am a busy person so did not appreciate that.”


81-84 per cent of pharmacists “strongly agreed/agreed”

“I really enjoyed this experience. It was very clear to understand what was expected of me and the questions in the learning record and implementation record really forced me to evaluate what I had learned.”

“Once I was familiar with the process, the documentation portion was quite simple.  I had no problem at all understanding what was required and how to submit it.  The tutorial gave very good examples on how to complete the program.”

“I found the questions relevant and consistent, easy to follow, helpful for organizing and implementing learning.”

“Having the samples of learning and implementation records, as provided in the tutorial, was very helpful as I was challenged to completely understand some of the questions.”

16-19 per cent of pharmacists “disagreed/strongly disagreed”

 “I think the system will work well now that I have oriented myself to it, but it was cumbersome to complete the first time around.  I think some of the questions in the Learning Record are a bit ambiguous so I’m still not 100 per cent sure I have concisely described what the college is looking for.  I do think it will get easier as we all go forward, as long as the process does not significantly change every few years.”

39 per cent of pharmacists rated the program as “excellent/very good”

“I enjoyed the flexibility of the new program.  I found the ability to apply it to one’s practice environment in an individual manner welcoming.  Being able to submit real life learning in an area of interest provided validity to the program and reduces the anxiety of being evaluated on areas outside of one’s everyday practice.”

“I like that it “makes” us do useful and practical continuing education to better our practice.  I was a bit apprehensive at first, but now that I am finished I believe it is a very useful program and I think will help me become a better pharmacist!  Tutorial was easy to understand, and even thought the process of entering and submitting everything is time consuming I believe it to be worthwhile.”

50 per cent of pharmacists rated the program as “good/fair”

“I think it is reasonable to have pharmacists explain what they have learned, and why. Additionally it is reasonable that we should demonstrate how we have applied our learnings.  This system will help pharmacists be organized and set realistic goals and applying them to practice.”

“I think this program is a much better way of evaluating pharmacists as opposed to writing multiple choice exams. I think next year, I will be much better and more prepared to complete the implementation records now that I know what is expected. This year felt like a fairly steep learning curve and quite a drastic change from the previous competence program.”

11 per cent of pharmacists rated the program as “poor”

“Cumbersome, overly complicated and took far too long. I often do CEs as I see a need but I am not always in a position to document. Very time consuming to go back and review key learning points.”

Updates to the CCP portal

“The secret of getting ahead is getting started.” – Mark Twain

The 2015-2016 cycle is now activated and you may start to plan and document your learning activities. Over the past few weeks, we have been reviewing your comments and making improvements to the CCP portal based on your feedback. We will continually listen to your feedback and make enhancements to the program as appropriate. Here is a summary of some of the changes:

Your Feedback


Improvements to portal

“The portal was confusing especially at the beginning”

We have simplified the instructions provided in the CCP portal.


“I find the wording in both the Learning Record and Implementation Record slightly confusing.”

We have reworded and revised some of the questions found in the Learning and Implementation Records. We have also added and revised a number of help bubbles to help clarify the questions.


“I was initially confused and thought that I was required to complete all of the self-assessment tools.”

The self-assessment section has been reformatted to clearly differentiate between the required and optional items.


“There is not enough space to fully capture all the key points covered in an activity.”

The character limit for Question five in the Learning Record has been increased. Note: You only need to list your key learning elements. This may be a summary of what you’ve learned or specific information you wish to highlight.


“I believe implementation log should not be limited to CEU done within the year, but it should be expanded to include other years.”

In the Implementation Record, we have added an optional box where you may reference learning that was completed in a previous CE cycle. However, CEUs completed in the previous CE cycle do not count towards the minimum one CEU requirement.

You are still required to complete one hour of learning related to your implementation objective within the current CE cycle. Perhaps you could review your notes, or read a related journal article to supplement your learning.


“It would be more helpful to show me which questions I have missed in the learning records to make it easier to enter in my records.”

We are currently working on adding a function to highlight questions still requiring a response. This functionality is planned to roll-out in the summer for both the Learning and Implementation Records.


“It was inconvenient to have to sign in 3 times! Easier access would be appreciated.”

We are currently working on a streamlined login process anticipated to be available this summer.

Prescribed activity for the 2015/2016 CE cycle

As a reminder, every year, all pharmacists on the clinical register are required to:

  1. Complete at least 15 CEUs during the CE cycle and document each learning activity on one or more Learning Records;
  2. Implement at least one CEU worth of learning into their practice and document this on an Implementation Record; and
  3. Complete any required learning that has been assigned by the Competence Committee.

For the 2015/2016 CE cycle, pharmacists must complete the Jurisprudence Self-Assessment tool. This self-assessment tool will test your jurisprudence knowledge and help you identify potential learning needs. The Alberta College of Pharmacists will NOT be monitoring or keeping track of your self-assessment results. This is for your own continuing professional development.

Jurisprudence is not only about drug schedules and prescription regulations – it is about your everyday pharmacy practice, patient care, and prescribing. As a pharmacist, it is your responsibility, regardless of where you practice, to be aware of and understand the current Standards of Practice, Code of Ethics, and federal and provincial legislation that pertain to pharmacy practice.