Dental Board of Australia - Continuing professional development (CPD) resources
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Continuing professional development (CPD) resources

Continuing professional development (CPD) is how dental practitioners maintain, improve and broaden their knowledge, expertise and competence, and develop the personal and professional qualities required throughout their professional lives.

Dental practitioners are required to meet the Board’s Continuing professional development registration standard, in effect since 1 December 2015 (see below).

The standard applies to all dentists, dental specialists, dental hygienists, dental therapists, oral health therapists and dental prosthetists, except those who hold one of the following types of registration:

  • non-practising registration
  • limited registration in the public interest
  • limited registration to sit an examination, or
  • student registration.

The Guidelines on continuing professional development provide information on how to meet the standard (see below).

Dental practitioners are required to complete a minimum of 60 hours of CPD activities over a three-year CPD cycle.

Each three-year CPD cycle covers three registration periods. The start and end dates of the three-year CPD cycle have changed as follows:

Current CPD cycle

1 December 2022 to 30 November 2025.

Next CPD cycle

1 December 2025 to 30 November 2028.

CPD during the COVID-19 pandemic

During 2020 and 2021, the COVID-19 pandemic may have affected registered health practitioners’ ability to carry out CPD.

Although many CPD activities can be delivered flexibly and in COVID-safe ways, the Board understands that there may be practitioners who were not able to carry out sufficient CPD in those years. Due to the exceptional circumstances of COVID-19, if a practitioner can't meet the CPD standard during the 2019-2022 CPD cycle because of the COVID-19 pandemic, then the Board won't take any regulatory action. You can read more in the Board’s news item about the current CPD cycle.

For practitioners who have not been able to meet the Board’s CPD Registration standard for the CPD cycle 1 December 2019 to 30 November 2022 the Board encourages you to make up the shortfall in hours during the next CPD cycle.

COVID-19 updates and frequently asked questions can be found on Ahpra’s website.

Reflective practice tool

The Board has developed a reflective practice tool to help dental practitioners reflect on their individual knowledge and skills and how they relate to their current practice. The tool can help plan CPD and the Board recommends using it regularly to reflect on current practice.

Time taken to complete the tool may be claimed as CPD. To find out more and to download the tool, go to the ‘Know your scope’ information hub.

Further information

For further information, please refer to the documents below or contact our Customer Service Team on 1300 419 495.

Document name  PDF  Accessible format  Document date 
Dental continuing professional development registration standard  PDF (193KB) Word version
1 December 2015 
Dental guidelines on continuing professional development 
Note: Programs to extend scope for the dental profession were phased out and expired on 18 December 2018.
PDF (285KB)  Word version
1 December 2015 
FAQ - Continuing professional development  PDF (146KB)  Word version
November 2019
Page reviewed 30/01/2024