Reflective exercise

Registrants need to carry out and document a reflective exercise towards the end of the cycle. This is where registrants reflect on their personal development during the cycle through a discussion with a peer. 

The reflective exercise allows registrants to gain insights about their practice to improve the way they work and/or the care they give to their patients, as well as to prepare in advance for the next CPD cycle.   

It is part of the continuous learning and development expected of registrants as a professional throughout their career. 

When should the reflective exercise be carried out?  

The reflective exercise should be carried out towards the end of the cycle once all or most CPD requirements have been met. This will also allow registrants to have a more meaningful discussion about progress against their personal development plan (PDP) and learning requirements. 

What should the reflective exercise consist of?  

Together with a peer, registrants will discuss reflections on their progress against their PDP and CPD requirements, and reflect on their professional practice more generally over the course of a cycle. Registrants should also think about what other CPD activities they need to carry out for the remainder of the cycle (if any) and plan ahead for the next cycle.  

If a registrant has carried out different CPD to what is set out in their PDP that is fine, so long as all requirements have been met and the reflective exercise sets out clearly why different learning has been undertaken to that originally planned. 

The discussion can take place either in person, via video call or telephone. The discussion must be logged and documented on MyCPD.    

Who counts as a peer?  

There are a number of options for peers:  

  • another optometrist or dispensing optician 
  • a registrant’s employer 
  • another healthcare professional regulated by a statutory body (such as an ophthalmologist, orthoptist, nurse, physiotherapist, pharmacist etc). 

A relative, close friend or an employee would not be considered a peer. 

How do registrants log and document their reflective exercise?  

Registrants will need to complete and submit a form on MyCPD documenting the discussion that took place. For the 2022-24 cycle, the ability to submit this will become available from July 2024 on MyCPD.  

However, registrants can have their discussion before this. The Reflective Exercise Guidance Template mirrors the form that will appear on MyCPD from July. It allows registrants to have the discussion now – so long as they have met all or most of their CPD requirements – and they can simply copy their reflections to the MyCPD form from July. 

The GOC will randomly review a selection of written reflections to ensure compliance.