Here you will find a list of frequently asked questions (FAQs). If the answer you are looking for isn’t here, and you think it should be;

please drop us a line

Continuing professional development (CPD) is the way in which HCPC Registrants (& anyone else) can continue to learn and develop throughout their careers so they keep their skills and knowledge up to date and are able to practise safely and effectively.

CPD is not just formal courses. A CPD activity is any activity from which you learn and develop. This might include the following;

  • Work-based learning. For example, reflecting on experiences at work, considering feedback from service users or being a member of a committee.
  • Professional activity. For example, being involved in a professional body or giving a presentation at a conference.
  • Formal education. For example, going on formal courses or carrying out research.
  • Self-directed learning. For example, reading articles or books.

Not all non-accredited courses offer attendance certificates. However, in this case if you would like proof of attendance please check your ESR account – as so long as your name was logged correctly on the register, this will be uploaded in most cases (there are a few exceptions). Remember, more importantly, your own personal reflective practice post CPD course is key to ensure you are able to carry any learning forward into practice. This can also be included in your professional portfolio.

For examples of which activities fulfil the HCPC criteria for CPD please download a copy of the CPD Reflective Practice document and refer to page 3.

You may also find some of the following links helpful:

HCPC – CPD & Your Registration

HCPC – Carrying Out and Recording your CPD in Challenging Times

CPD events, courses and e-learning in SWASFT do not normally attract any payment or overtime or time off.

The funding for CPD comes mainly from external organisations including NHS England (NHSE), and as such has strict rules about how it can be spent and what on. One of these is not back-filling staff with the funding. This is to ensure the money is spent directly on education.

There are exceptions, for example- Practice Educator update days, but the funding for this comes from a different funding source, and has different funding rules. (This funding is aimed at making sure students have a better experience – and making sure we have up to date Practice Educators is a key part of this).

We know this is different to some other organisations such as hospital trusts where there may be allocated time to take up CPD, but as you are no doubt aware, we work in a different way to Hospitals. For example, to release someone from a hospital dept. for a few hours is much easier than releasing someone from a DCA . A DCA has to be free at the right time, and once a person is stood down, that resource is off the road. The cost of releasing people for CPD would mean back-filling, (probably on overtime, and paying the person to attend).

Even if the funding could be spent this way, this would cost 2.5hrs (1.5hrs + 1hr) for every hour of CPD, and mean the CPD budget would be almost 3 times smaller.

HEI Module FAQs –

Below are some of the most of commonly asked questions about Higher Education (HE) CPD modules, and partnership modules (partnership modules are HE modules that are run by SWASFT, and accredited and part administered by the Higher Education Institute (HEI / University).

A really important thing to remember is that partnership modules (e.g. UoP The supervision of Clinical Practice, and UoP Mentorship module) are bound by exactly the same academic rules and procedures as other HE modules. Just because it’s being taught in SWASFT by a member of SWASFT staff, the processes are exactly the same.

All these FAQs apply to partnership modules. 


I’m enrolled on the module – now what?

It is important that once you have your student reference number and you can access the relevant modules site that you do so. You will need to look at the links and guides offered that will help you doing the programme or module you have booked on.

Usually, the universities give you access to on-line portals and email accounts; it is advised that once enrolled and set up, you should aim to log-on to the portal once a week to receive important updates and instructions. This will also allow you to navigate the site and find out where things are; for example where you submit your module work, as in some universities the summative assessment will be via Electronic submission so you must make sure you are familiar with the system. The module page will also have some useful resources to help you during your module.

I can’t make a taught session as my shift has changed or I’m off sick. I told ROC, so that’s sorted isn’t it?

No! ROC, GRS, OO’s, Line Manager’s will not tell the module lead as this isn’t part of the role. They won’t know what module you are on or who to contact. Your module is your responsibility as an adult learner.

It’s really important if you can’t make it that you at least email the module lead so they know you won’t be there. Sometimes this is key for the other learners (mainly your colleagues) if there are group activities planned.

IF the module lead is aware you are going to miss the session, they can plan around this and show you where the materials are for that session. (It will be on the learning management system (LMS) / module page for that University), and depending on your situation, help you plan how you will catch up.

At the very least, it’s professional and polite to let someone know you aren’t going to turn up.

What is the module page all about?

The Module Page will offer you links to the Universities Library Services where you will find referencing guides and access to articles and documents that will help you. These resources include study guides, guides on writing academic assignment, reading effectively, note taking, how to submit your assignment and so on.

Why hasn’t the University emailed me?

The Universities will communicate with you via their own e-mail system, so it is essential that you set up your university account straight away so that you can access e-mails and send e-mails to your module tutor. They won’t contact you via your SWASFT email.

Where are my results and academic transcript?

If you are on a partnership module and the module tutor is a Trust staff member then they can be communicated with via the Trust e-mail system; but please be aware that module result, and e-mails regarding your academic transcripts etc. are always sent via the university e-mail system.

Where is my module certificate?

The stand-alone modules results are recorded on an academic transcript and not a certificate. Normally you will have to print out the transcript yourself, it will not be sent as a paper copy.

The transcript will be available on your university e-mail account following the next Exam Board after you have received your module result. *This may be several months after you have completed your module and been told your initial result.*

Only if you are on a pathway / programme (e.g. PG Cert  / BSc) will there be a certificate. This would normally be sent to you following the Exam Board following your module result.

I’ve asked for a referral, how do I know if it has been accepted?

If you have a referral, have to re-submit or submit an Extenuating Circumstance Form you will need to keep an eye on your university e-mail account, as the decisions made and resubmission information will be sent via that system.

I have extenuating circumstances. Can I just tell the module lead / Tutor?

The need for an Extenuating Circumstance (EC) must be communicated as soon as possible so that the required form and evidence can be sent to the university and they have time to process it. As soon as you know there is an issue talk it through with your tutor and then, following their advice, submit the form to the e-mail address detailed in the instructions. Whilst your tutor can assist you it is not their decision to give you the EC so if needed this should be followed up with the university office you sent the EC Form to in the event of a delay.

Please note information on the result of your application will be sent to your university e-mail address not your trust e-mail address.

I don’t know what to do next, where do I start?

You are an adult learner and so the responsibility for your studies and all associated aspects lies with you. The module tutor is there to help you but you must ensure that you read all the information provided in the student guidance documents, as the information you need is often contained within them. You should ensure that you read any Student and Module/Programme Handbooks provided, as they will help you to navigate the university systems.

If you have any concerns or questions, make sure you communicate with the module lead or tutor as they will be able to offer support or signpost. Remember, everyone wants you to succeed, and the best starting point is to try to be as  organised as possible and come prepared for your first lecture.

I want to complain. Who do I complain to?

Complaints should be made to the module lead in the first instance, and then if needed to the university itself; normally this is to the main office involved in the administration of the module. The contact details will be provided in the module handbook. The university usually acknowledges written complaints within 3 working days and then investigates them; this process can take between 1 to 3 weeks. Complaints are formally reported upon to the Dean’s office, and each university has its own full complaints process and students can ask this information on the process if required. Please note there is a deadline and process for making an appeal. These details are always sent with your results from Award Board following your submission date.

How do I find out what my written work should be structured and contain? What are the rules?

All universities provide details of their academic requirements and this information includes how the module work is to be submitted and in what format. They also tell you what you can and cannot do in your written work, and how you should write and submit your work. The guidance will also tell you about word counts, the required information that must accompany your work and what you need to do in the event of an EC, withdrawal from the module, referencing, plagiarism etc. You need to ensure that you read the module handbook provided as non-adherence to the instructions could lead to a referral or failure of the module.

I’m having trouble with my University account. Can’t SWASFT IT help?

No. If you have any issues with your university account then you will need to speak to someone in the university IT Department. The contact details can be found on your module site. The Trust IT department will be unable to help you with this. The university IT department can help you with access to the website and your module, any password or account issues, use of Apple computers and digital learning etc.

I need help from my tutor! My assignment is due!

If you need your Tutors support, help and guidance then please ensure that you contact them via e-mail in the first instance; this will allow them to set time aside to help you. In order to help them provide them with a few dates and times when you can be available so that they can ensure they can work around your shift patterns and work commitments and their other obligations.  If you want them to review your work try not to send it too close to the hand in date, as this means that any commitments they may have could prevent them from helping you effectively, and in the deadlines set.

What do I need to ensure before I submit my work?

When handing in your work you need to check that you have included all the aspects required including:

  1. Your work is in the stated correct format and font; this is dependent on the university.
  2. Your registration number is included on the front cover or as a footer as required by the relevant university.
  3. You have ensured the word count is provided and within the set parameters; not all universities have a 10% leeway above or below policy the set word count, and this could affect your final mark.
  4. Your name is not on the document as the work is normally anonymous; check your university requirements.
  5. You submit the work in the required time frame (unless you have an EC) using the correct links provided on the module web site.
  6. You have included all required elements the module requirements.
  7. You have not broken the requirements of anonymity set by the university.
  8. You have referenced all the experts used to prevent plagiarism.
  9. You have not described any areas of practice that could break the patient or staff safety rules.
  10. You have proof read the submission to check spelling, grammar and flow. Read it out aloud to yourself and that will help you with the flow, as if the reader cannot understand what you are saying it will affect your final mark. Spelling mistakes are an unnecessary inclusion and can affect your final mark.
  11. You have adhered to the required referencing format, e.g. Harvard. The university normally provide a referencing guide in their Library Resources and it will show you the correct formatting for the different types of references or the on line resource Cite then Right may help at

If I am on a course or module that has either changed to ‘NOW ONLINE’ or you signed up to one advertised as ‘VIRTUAL’; you might be wondering how it will work and how will I join?

Joining Instructions (JI’s)

You will be sent a meeting invite in your joining instructions email when you book the course – please make sure you check the email you applied with’s spam folder, as the SWAST email filter doesn’t always like automated emails. For some courses you may be sent the link on the morning of the course day, please check the advert of the course. (See below- ‘How do I join the course?’)

If you haven’t received any JI’s and you are sure you booked, please get in touch – A common problem is that you have typed your email adress incorrectly and your JI’s will have hit a dead end. We can easily check and change that, but won’t be able to check every entry so you will need to let us know.  

You may also have been sent joining instructions a while ago that refer to turning up at a physical location, and be wondering what is going on. (Sometimes I may not have caught up with re-writing all the adverts and JIs if things have changed * ). If you aren’t sure- just drop me a line  

*Hopefully this won’t happen any more as we have pretty much caught up- but I’m leaving this here just in case 

What will it be like?

It’s not like an e-learning course where you will be watching videos and clicking through learning. The course will be similar to being in a classroom, but it will be a virtual classroom. You will be able to see and hear around 9-10 people at a time on screen, the tutor will be able to share presentations and a whiteboard, and can ask you questions and set group work. You may even be put into virtual break out rooms for group work.

Like a normal classroom, you will be expected to be there on time and also be available for the whole session. Although you will have a lot more short breaks – as it is surprisingly draining for both Tutor and student.

Uniform is not required, try and find a quiet room without interruptions or distractions.  Head phones with a microphone also a good idea to keep your noise down.

More tips can be accessed here:
Student Tips for Participating in Online Learning
How to I join the course?

When your course is online- you will be sent a meeting invite as above in the JI’s or near the start date, normally a day or 2 before.

This invite will be sent to the email address you registered with – If it’s your SWAST email account you can easily access it from home or your phone – (Not sure how ? – User guide here)

Once you have the link you will need to join the meeting at the correct time.

We have made a couple of user guides and a video that can be accessed here:

Joining from a computer – PDF
Joining from mobile or table – PDF


Zoom Video tutorial

Using MS Teams is becoming more frequent as we transfer from using Zoom on a regular basis. This means that you will need to become familiar with how to use MS TEams and how to resolve any errors you could come across.

Clicking on the image below will take you to a guide on how to use MS Teams, including information on workaround fixes for SWASfT devices.

If for any reason the PowerPoint does not work for you, please Click Here to access a PDF document of the PowerPoint.
How do I find a mentorship course?

You can use the search function – type in mentorship- or click here to go to the Student & Practice Educator page 

Several options are available – All meet the criteria & are accepted for NQP portfolio & the CoP.

Functional Skills

The government funds functional skills tests for most people that have never achieved them to help employment prospects. This is mainly farmed out to private providers who are paid to provide them at no cost to the learner.

 A great start is to browse the Functional Skills Provider Directory  OR a quick google search for free functional skills brings up quite a few offers, most have the same eligibility. Normally it’s mainly:

  • Do you have level 2 qualifications in this subject already
  • Are you a UK national ( have you been living in the UK for 3 years or more)


It may be easier to look at larger organisations who may be easier to work with and more reliable, but there are lots of small companies put there doing a great job.

There are also loads of free courses they can access out there– there are 100s of L2 qualifications for free there on 100s of subjects (not all health). We sign post to some we have found on the e-resources and online learning page., but this is only what we’ve had time to post, Google is your friend for free e-learning courses and qualifications!

Click here to go to the Online Learning Resources page 

CPD modules from Higher Education Institutes (HEIs) are mainly drawn from Health & Care Degree (BSc) or Masters (MSc) programmes. The programmes are made up of modular courses that add together to give enough credits to claim the award at the end.

Click the image below to see a Higher Education Qualification credit map

HE credit map

They are sometimes offered as a CPD module so people can either study a particular subject they are interested in as a standalone subject, or people can ‘module gather’ at their own pace and claim a generic award when they have enough credits. (If you don’t complete all the specific modules specified for a Programme, you cannot claim that award, but you can claim a generic award). e.g. You could complete a mix of modules from a Nursing degree and a Paramedic science degree; with enough credits then claim a Health & Social Care BSc. But you would need to complete the compulsory modules listed in the Nursing / Paramedic Science degree, and complete the placement to claim the specific degree. You would still have a valid BSc, just not in that specific subject, (and you would not be able to register as a professional in that field).

When it comes to a Masters pathway or programme, you have entered the realm of the Post Graduate. This can be different at different HEIs. Some will allow you to start a MSc pathway without a BSc, other will require you to have completed a BSc.

Some allow you to use a proportion of BSc credits towards a post graduate qualification, but you will need mainly MSc credits. This will depend on the HEI and the pathway.

Once you begin on a Post graduate (PG) pathway, you can ‘cash in’ your credits and ‘step off’ the pathway at certain points. You can stop and claim a Post Graduate Certificate (PG Cert), then a Post Graduate Diploma (PG Dip), and then finally a full Masters award (MSc).

*Bear in mind that if you do step off/ cash in credits they are considered spent, you can’t then rejoin the pathway to continue towards MSc. e.g. If you claimed a PG Dip at 120 credits, you can’t get back on the pathway and add another 60 credits and complete your  MSc. You would need to start again and do a further 180 credits.*

Then, if you still have a family life and any sanity left, you can start looking at a Post Graduate Doctorate (PHd).

We have recently seen a change in the way we are funding CPD, with a decrease in restrictions. This gives us more flexibility to procure different things, but there isn’t a mechanism to fund bespoke requests.

If you have a bespoke request, please go to your line manager in the first instance, as we will be looking to consult with specialist unit and department managers to collate staff requests so we can make bulk purchases. Unfortunately, funding one off requests for 1000’s of staff would be beyond our capability to do in an fair and timely enough way. 

Stick with it, it’s a bit complex! If you want to know more, just give us a call- we are always happy to chat.

Nearly all of the funding for CPD (especially high cost courses like HE modules) comes direct from other organisations like Health Education England (HEE), or local Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs).

The majority of the funding has certain restrictions placed on how it can be spent. Sometimes these can be ring-fenced to certain staff groups or geographic areas.  e.g. Glos. CCG funded a bid a few years that could only be spent on staff in the Glos. CCG area. We had a successful bid for SPUEC development, that could only be spent to develop SPUECs. etc. Funding often also has exclusions, such as the money cannot be spent on capital assets (such as expensive, large pieces of training equipment, AV systems), backfill etc.

The main CPD funding (as of 2021) comes direct from HEE and we as a Trust can allocate this in certain directions. The main themes and topics/ modules are chosen using a few different factors.

  • Staff survey- ‘You asked, we listened’ type surveys to gather requests for the type of CPD and the subjects.
  • Previous demand- We know in terms  of modules and courses what is oversubscribed from last year, and we try and put on as much as we can of these courses
  • Dept. needs – certain groups and departments have particular specialist needs, and asked what they want for their staff.
  • TNA – Training needs analysis – through the year , the L&D dept. works with Quality, Ops, and Clinical directorates to see where we need to improve or increase learning on new and emerging topics. This feeds into development days , mandatory training, and also feeds into CPD. We don’t just offer CPD to the TNA, but it is an element.
  • What is available – After all this has been done, we ask the main providers what they can give us- this is harder than it sounds, as all Trusts and local organisations who receive HEE funding are doing the same us as and then buying modules and courses. Most HEIs will share out the spaces between organisations.

For example-  if there were 50 places of MIMIC at:

UWE SWAST by 20, UBHW buy 20, and 10 are left for private individuals. If you looked as UWE’s website you would still see on that spaces are available to buy/book – But SWAST cannot but these for you or give you the funds to buy them as an individual as we have had our allocation. 

Sometimes there are also opportunities to bid for funds for certain topics – These opportunities can happen quickly, and the money may be confirmed last minute, so we have to be really flexible when it comes to how we administer it. So you may see last min offerings with 1st come 1st served  on them. This might not seem very fair, but when we have to use the places or lose them, we would rather we get them filled than let them go to waste. This also happens if we have places that suddenly become available due to cancellations e.g. someone has left the Trust, is now LTS, or have gone on maternity leave. These things happen more often than you think when dealing with large groups of people!

SWAST bid for these funds in competition with other trusts and health and social care organisations. The bids we put in are for certain topics, like upskilling staff in to a particular level (BSc), or work force transformation, (e.g. creating more advanced skills in a certain clinical area). Sometimes funds are a one off, tied to a certain national project, sometimes they come round more than once. Either way, it is hard to plan around as most is subject to national plans and initiatives. The bids normally have to specify what modules we are going to fund, and once these have been chosen (usually from a list provided to us by funding organisation and the Higher Education Institutes (HEIs), we have to stick to the modules chosen, so can’t fund bespoke ones on request.

As well as bids, HEE has certain aims and goals to fulfil. For example, in 2018 it wanted to ensure that as many Paramedics as possible were working towards or had a BSc. These goals will guide the restrictions set on the funding. i.e. that pot of money couldn’t be used to fund MSc level modules, as the goal was to up-skill staff to BSc level.

HEE are guided by central government, Department of Health, NHS England & NHS Improvement and other national institutions. Often, if the Government changes direction on a certain health topic or policy, this has a direct effect on the funding available to HEE, and also their goals and targets change with it. This can feed down to us in terms of a sudden injection of cash for a certain topic, or the removal of funding for what may have been a regular CPD topic for a few years. e.g. If the Government want to produce more registered AHPs, there may be an increase in funding for access and bridging courses, and Level 6 (BSc modules). If the Government decides it needs more ACPs (Advanced Clinical Practitioners), you may see a sudden increase in funding for ACP programs or apprenticeships.

This may happen very quickly as there is a big push from above to make it happen, and then the organisations and HEIs have to quickly change tack to fit it into existing plans.

Occasionally, we are offered a certain amount of places with an HEI (such as UWE or UoP) on named courses. e.g. ‘ SWAST have been allocated 10 places on ‘PACR at UWE at BSc level only’ , or,  given a list of modules and asked to choose a set number of places.  Again, there may be certain restrictions on these. e.g. for that offering, all the places had to be BSc level and no MSc level, to fit with the HEE goal.

The Practice Educator update payments, update days, mentorship courses etc. come from another external funding stream entirely. Again this has certain restrictions on what it can be spent on, and so can’t be used for other projects, and is manly directed at things that improve the student and educator experience.

A lot of short courses, & individual CPD events are actually run on a shoestring and goodwill. Normally these are set up by SWAST staff who are passionate about a subject (often in their own time), combined with local external contacts such as friendly Doctors and other specialists. These external people give up their time, & often bring funding to the event from their side. SWASTCPD support these events with marketing & organisation, but rarely have any funding to contribute.

e.g. The Glos. Silver Service 2020 multi-disciplinary event for 200 people with 10 speakers and a free hot lunch was delivered for £0 to SWAST. The only cost was my time. All the funding came from sponsors and goodwill volunteers.

Other Short courses & places on short courses are offered to us by external organisations who want to promote their message & increase multi-disciplinary training. (Such as some of the Cornwall & RDE PROMPT places).

This is why it is imperative that you don’t cancel courses at the very last minute or just don’t bother turning up. We have lost some great free CPD providers when SWAST staff no-show repeatedly, they soon lose interest in working with us. Most courses are also oversubscribed, so when your place isn’t filled, someone else (your colleague) has missed out.

All this has to be balanced against the delivery of L&D core business, which is an enormous undertaking for our dedicated L&D staff, delivering training and quality assurance to you. (No mean feat, as there’s loads of you, and only a few of them!)

If you have applied for an HE Module, (and it isn’t a short notice / ‘1st come, 1st served’ offering), then the process will be as close to possible as the process outlined here

A lot of CPD modules are drawn from Health BSc or MSc programs that are then offered as standalone professional courses. The subject matter is often aimed at, and expects a pre-requisite level of knowledge, experience, and most importantly, access to situations and experiences that a Registered Clinician has or can obtain.

This is written into the module specification by the HEI, and they won’t be able to enrol you on the module without proof of this.

It is correct that most of the modules offered by SWASTCPD are aimed at Registered Clinicians. We do try and source modules to give as many people access as possible, but our funding mainly comes from Health Education England, and they specify how the funding they give us is used.

For example, one of the main focuses after the Band 6 uplift of Paramedics has been to upskill Paramedics to degree level, to encourage those without degrees to upskill, and to ensure that the workforce skills move towards matching the banding. We are also bound by the CPD programmes offered by HEIs , which often don’t have much available for non-registered staff that would fit the criteria from HEE.

First you will need to ensure the CPD Event is suitable, & gain someone’s permission to put the event on. This isn’t as hard as it sounds!

If you want to know WHY you need to do this and shouldn’t just crack on and do it ( better to ask forgiveness than permission etc.etc.) >Click Here

Contact your a local Lead Paramedic, Practice Placement Educator, Operations Officer, Learning & Development Officer, or Clinical Development Officer & run it by the to see what they think.

When you have approval, you will need to do several things.

You will need to have a valid risk assessment for the event, EVEN FOR CLASSROOM EVENTS – BUT ESPECIALLY IMPORTANT FOR ANY EXERCISES (guidance and forms can be found on the SWAST Intranet here. Many are already written or can easily be adapted so it isn’t hard). Here is a Generic training room Risk Assessment example that can be adapted.

When you have a suitable risk assessment in place download this form,CPD EVENT BOOKING FORM & complete all the details, & attach the risk assessment you will be using, and send it all into us.

We can then help you promote & advertise the event, (if you want us to).

If you are an LP, PPED, LDO, OO, CDO & your are unsure of the process , or want to discuss the event with us, please get in touch with the CPD Lead or drop us a line.

Waiting lists and why they don’t work for us

For all courses and modules we take bookings for – (as opposed to those events and courses where the tutor takes and manages bookings themselves) – we have a list of applicants.

After the list is full, or the deadline has passed for HE modules, we then allocate those people places. (See the application process for HE modules here)

We then have a list of all the people allocated a place, all the people who didn’t get a place, (but we know wanted one), and have already indicated they could make the date/s for THAT event or module. We also have their details (including contact details) all laid out for that date and event/course.

If someone then withdraws and can’t make it, we go down the list of oversubscribed applicants and offer it to the next person in line either by application score, date of application, or a combination of both (see the scoring process here for HE modules– events are in order of application date) dependent on the type of event or module.

This works for HE modules, and we  take on the extra work for this as each place costs an average of £800 -£1000. We have finite capacity to do this , so this isn’t feasible for short courses or events.

If we had waiting lists for short courses or events  – we would have to set up a separate page/spreadsheet for EACH event and EACH date, then take all the details by email or over the phone for all of these. Every time we were about to go to advert with a new course, we would have to:

A) Contact everyone on the waiting list to see if they were interested

B) If could make the dates

C) Still worked for us/ in the same role/ off sick / on MAT leave

D) Liaise with managers to see who should get the place

We would also have to go down the list in order, and not be able to move on until people responded to us chasing them which could / does take weeks.

This would take forever.…and we just don’t have time to do that as well as administer the courses.

*The difference between a waiting list and going down the oversubscribed list is we know the people who originally applied can make the dates and are available- and they have already gone through a scoring process and had their scores approved by their management team*.

It also wouldn’t be fair to all those people who had gone through the normal process and taken the time to apply via the normal route, some of which go to considerable effort to improve their score and map out their development needs on Career conversations and LDRs. If you aren’t sure how to improve your score – read the application process for HE modules here and download the scoring criteria. If this doesn’t make sense, just get in touch and we can advise you.

Sometimes, funding comes to us at the very last minute, as organisations (as above) ‘find’ surplus funds that they need to be spent. This is often due to other external projects they are managing ending early / coming in cheaper than expected.

The surplus is often offered to us at the last minute if we can spend it. It often comes with certain conditions, such as – we must deliver the training by a certain date so they can account for the money / we must have everyone enrolled by a certain date so they can account for the money.

Although this isn’t ideal for us or you in terms of trying to arrange the courses and giving notice to book on the courses; we would rather take the funding and do our best to get development and education out short notice than turn it down.

Sometimes, other Trusts such as Hospital Trusts, have places that they were allocated,/ have funded, but for some reason they haven’t been able to fill the places, or people have left or withdrawn. We sometimes get offered these places, and we say yes if they are suitable for Ambulance staff. The places are often very late in the day before the module starts as they try to fill them up to the last minute.

Sometimes, a module or course we have offered hasn’t filled as well as we have expected, or people have withdrawn. We then offer the module as a 1st come 1st served place as we don’t have time to process the applications in the normal way before the course starts.

With all the last minute places, if we don’t fill them they will be lost and not refunded; so we think it’s better to get someone on than go through the normal application process and lose the place.

There are 3 people in the CPD ‘Team’ (in the office)

This is what we do:

  • Manage the website
  • Manage the Facebook & Twitter feeds
  • Manage the CPD Admin email account
  • Manage our email accounts!
  • Manage all the course venue bookings
  • Manage the funding bids
  • Manage the University liaison (purchasing modules & dealing with the admin.)
  • Manage the applications for all courses & modules
  • Manage all the queries & questions by email, phone, and social media.
  • Go to meetings, meetings, meetings
  • Liaise with all the course providers, tutors, and LDOs
  • Manage occasionally to have Lunch & have some relaxing Annual leave

We really do try our best to get back to you as soon as we can, but sometimes (especially when it’s busy) we get a bit snowed under. Please feel free to chase us more than once if you don’t get a reply, as we are not always in the office to answer the phone. If you don’t get a reply from email, try the phone, Twitter, or FB.

The Contact form goes to the CPD admin email account, and it’s best to use this rather than email cpd admin direct, as it prompts you to add info so we can answer your question easily. (Like course dates, location, the name of the course etc.) You wouldn’t believe how many emails we get saying things like ‘ Hi, when is my course again?’ (and nothing else).

It really helps if you add as much info as possible so we can find your information for you!

Please note – this list is updated every few months – but if the info is incorrect please let us know and we will change it

Click here for a Google maps list of venues

Contact us via the Contact page or use the details at the bottom of this page. (Please be specific and detail what is wrong).

We try hard to get it right, but we do make mistakes!  We would love it if you let us know so we can fix them ASAP!

All course locations are shown on the course advert page via the ‘INFO & BOOKING’ button

The reason it isn’t open to APs, Techs, ECAs, (non-frontline) Nurses, Mental Health Prac. is that it is taught from a lead clinician viewpoint, utilising skills and drugs that you would not be able to use. The priority for the Trust is to get as many frontline clinicians through the course.

We need to ensure we had enough places for our clinicians as the PROMPT course supports us in our offer of core skills training. The course content is within a Paramedic’s / Ambulance Nurse’s scope of practice.

We do appreciate that ECAs would benefit, but the course goes above the core skills and competencies of an ECA; and whilst we acknowledge for them to have an awareness is good,  we would be concerned that a non-registered clinician could take away skills and end up in a position where they feel they should perform these skills out of their supported scope of practice. We don’t want to place people in a risky position like this. 

**UPDATE – The Online Platform is now available to SWAST (UoC) Paramedic Apprentice Students**

Uniform is not required for HE Modules unless specifically requested for a practical element.

If a course requires uniform for practical elements, it will be specifically mentioned in the course advert page via the ‘INFO & BOOKING’ button’

To book on a Funded short course; go to the How to apply for Funded short courses page

To apply for funding for an HE Module ; go to the How to apply for an HE Module page

To book on a CPD Event ; go to the CPD Events page

SWAST only has a very small budget for CPD, and most of the funding comes from external bids from government organisations such as Health Education England and Clinical Commissioning groups. SWAST bid for funding to develop our staff, and the funding does not cover the cost of covering your shifts.

(Please note expenses and travel costs are not covered either)

There are lots of free online sites that can help you build a CPD portfolio. A popular one is and the College of Paramedics also have lots of info (but you will need to join!).

The HCPC also has a lot of advice on what you need to do to maintain your CPD portfolio and what the standards are, including some sample portfolios. hcpc CPD

The CPD Reflective Practice document is designed to assist you with your CPD portfolio. Simply download a copy, book onto some courses and complete the questions as you attend each activity.

If the course you wish to attend has a fee attached, you should contact the course provider to discuss payment. We only advertise paid courses for other providers that may be of interest for SWAST staff. The CPD department does not take payments.

We are very keen to receive any feedback, comments, photos about courses you’ve attended or the website. Feedback can be given in a number of ways;

All feedback will be acknowledged and reviewed by the CPD Admin Team. On occassion we may ask you if we can use positive comments or photos you’ve sent us in order to further advertise and promote the relevant course. Where negative feedback is provided this will be reviewed and if possible changes will be made and improvements will be implemented.

Please ensure you advise us of any cancellations with as much advance notice as possible so we can offer your place to someone else.

If you booked the course directly on the website, please contact us as soon as possible at Contact us here

If you booked the course with an external provider, check the course advert page or your confirmation e-mail for the course administrators’ contact details.

Unfortunately, we cannot do this on your behalf & nor can any SWASFT lecturers do this for you – it must come direct from the student as an adult learner as this is your personal information. To find out how to do this, please speak directly with the relevant university admissions department prior to completion of your course.

For staff studying at University of Plymouth: For you to receive proof of attendance following completion of any University of Plymouth academic modules; students will need to access their university e-mail account and open their result e-mail, as this will contain a link to the page where they can obtain an academic transcript. You will not receive a certificate from the university.  Please note this will only be available after the exam board in either June or November.