Professional Development Helping you go further. Frequently Asked Questions. Unsure of which category you fall into?

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1 Professional Development Helping you go further Frequently Asked Questions Unsure of which category you fall into? The IMarEST guides to IPD and CPD should provide all the information you need. If you are still in doubt please contact for guidance. What is IPD? IPD stands for Initial Professional Development and is the term that describes how a recently graduated marine engineer, marine scientist or marine technologist gains their professional competence in the workplace. The aim of IPD is to provide a structured scheme designed to develop the intellectual and practical skills they will need in order to work safely and effectively in their intended occupational environment, using the techniques and resources appropriate to the level and type of occupation and covering its regulatory, business management and social environment. This professional competence is acquired through an agenda of training and working in a position of responsibility. The graduate trainee will be assisted through this period by colleagues, peers, mentors and the Institute. IPD is structured so that the graduate trainee will know where they are within the IPD programme. As well as undergoing the training and taking on more responsibility, the graduate trainee will need to plan their IPD and monitor their progress. Achievements will be recorded and assessed and trainees will be expected to reflect upon the corresponding competencies gained. IPD is the vehicle to the Professional Review. The primary outcome of the formation process (IPD) for those seeking registration is the development of competence, and the commitment to maintain this competence. The achievement of an academic qualification that satisfies the educational base for registration on one of the Institute s registers (Refer to the IMarEST Definitive List of Registers is but the first step on a career of lifelong development. Just as an individual s academic base is developed in a series of stages to expand both breadth and depth of knowledge and understanding of engineering/scientific/technological principles, so professional development towards registration is designed to provide a structured and coordinated development programme, integrating this knowledge and understanding with the practical applications of the chosen discipline. Initial Professional Development (IPD) includes aspects of engineering, science and technology, business, management and leadership, and broadly based personal development. Where appropriate it may also include additional job-related, non-technical requirements, such as modern foreign languages and training and development skills. It adds to the learning achieved within the education base, addressing specialist applications, extending breadth and depth of knowledge and skills and meeting specific employment and business needs. IPD should provide a balance between preparation for an immediate job-specific role and contribution to breadth of development for the future. IPD may cover a range of options from that of a student sandwich placement, research assistant, long or short-term employment or self-employment. The essence of IPD is the development of competence and commitment. Building on their initial professional development prior to registration, individual engineers, scientists, technologists are expected to manage their continuing professional development (CPD) throughout working life post registration. They take appropriate action to update and enhance those competencies relevant to their job and career interests and anticipate future requirements. Evidence of CPD provides a demonstration of continued commitment to professional competence and is a pre-requisite for transfer to higher categories of IMarEST membership. For further information regarding the demonstration of compentence and commitment please refer to the document IPD- A Guide for Graduates Seeking Registration

2 Members can record their IPD using the mypath professional development tool Why should I take CPD? The job market is changing all the time. You may no longer be able to rely on your employer to identify and satisfy individual development needs. Additionally, you may well move jobs four or five times during your working life. Therefore you need to take ownership of your career and its continuing development. These changes have increased the demands on people in all walks of life to keep documented evidence of their continued competence; and nowhere is this greater than in engineering, science or technology which are advancing so swiftly. In your own best interests you should be developing a personal portfolio of your professional activities and their relevance to your job competence and your career ambitions. By undertaking CPD you will be: a) demonstrating your continuing commitment to your profession; b) developing the good practice of regularly reviewing your professional needs and selecting appropriate learning activities. How much should I do? There is no simple answer to this. It varies from one person to another. The demands of your job and the extent of your personal ambition will determine how much you should do. Always remember that quality is much more important than quantity. The most important aspect of CPD is the amount of knowledge and skill that you acquire, i.e. the learning outcome, rather than the number of hours of study which you undertake, i.e. the input. If you are to maintain sufficiently high standards of professional competence to keep yourself employable you will need to undertake significant CPD. However, when you consider all the activities, particularly at work and in the form of private study that add value to your knowledge, skills and experience, you will realise that quite substantial amounts are readily achievable. What should I do? Again, this will depend upon your job and your personal ambitions, but in simple terms the answer is anything that adds to your personal store of relevant skills, knowledge and experience. Marine engineers, scientists and technologists are employed in a very varied range of jobs and at all levels of responsibility and it is recognised that this will be reflected in their continuing learning needs which will be equally varied. Therefore, there is no limitation to the range of subjects that can be included, although it is recommended that, in order to develop your expertise on a broad front, you may need to undertake CPD in the following areas. a) Developing your technical knowledge and skills in your current field. b) Broadening your technical knowledge and skills into fields parallel to your own, thus enabling you to move into another job should the need or opportunity arise. c) Acquisition of non-technical knowledge and skills, e.g. Management techniques, Communication and presentational skills, Law (Health & Safety, Environmental, Employment), Finance, Languages, thus preparing you to assume wider or greater responsibilities when the opportunities arise. How do I go about it? Professional Development may be achieved in any of the following ways, depending on your circumstances, learning style and the opportunities open to you. a) At home private study, such as distance learning; special projects or structured study,

3 which may involve reading, watching TV and video tapes and / or listening to radio programmes and audio tapes; writing papers for presentation or publication. b) At work where, simply by day to day activities, relevant knowledge and skills are acquired by on the job learning and / or company provision. c) At events such as presentations, lectures, seminars, conferences and also formal courses of study, whether or not they lead to an examination. Remember, the activities that count are those that are relevant to your learning needs. Why should I keep records? It is strongly recommended that you maintain a personal portfolio. This will assist you in a number of key aspects related to your career. a) You will be able to provide documented evidence of your commitment to your chosen profession and of your continued competence. b) It will act as an excellent reference, both in the up-dating of your Curriculum Vitae and in recalling details of topics you have studied. c) It will be a most useful aid in your career development, providing a means by which you can plan, record and review your relevant activities. How should I keep my records? There are number of ways in which this may be done but the most usual is, quite simply, an A4 ring binder containing a) your Professional Development Plan based on your identified needs; b) your Professional Development Record detailing specific activities that have contributed to your CPD. c) certificates showing the competencies or qualifications you have gained; examples of work which demonstrate your competence; of projects / courses etc you have undertaken and your resultant developing etc. d) other relevant CPD documentation. Section 3 of this document explains the CPD process whilst a template Professional Development Plan and Record Form is provided in Section 4. This will enable you to maintain, by a series of brief entries, a simple record of your learning activities for each year and plan for the next. Maximising the benefits Like many things in life, CPD can be organised so that it is carried out [almost] automatically. The Institute can help in advising you how to maintain your CPD effectively. The important thing to bear in mind is that it is a continual process of planning, completing activities, assessment of those activities and review/feedback back to the plan. You will need to set up a system that encompasses these four core stages. Many employers have a bespoke system in place that performs this function satisfactorily; members can adopt such a system or use the system provided by the Institute. Members are encouraged to include their employers in the CPD process, ideally it should be a partnership that will benefit employee, employer and the company. The annual appraisal interview is the ideal time to plan development targets and assess progress. Notwithstanding it should always be remembered that the detail of CPD is very much the individual s property and one should not rely on the Company (Personnel) system, it may not be maintained properly and is of no support if you no longer work for them. Section 3 explains these four core stages in detail. However, when completing your CPD plan [in order to achieve the necessary knowledge, skills understanding and attitudes that need to be acquired or developed] you must take into account:

4 a) your employer's business objectives b) your own career intentions, short and long term, c) your relevant personal interests d) the requirements of the Institute. You will also need to consider the actions that need to be taken, with responsibilities and time scale, to meet the identified needs. The plan should be developed, where possible, in conjunction with the employer. Account should be taken of the guidance provided by the Institute for the preparation of CPD plans. Record CPD activities and achievements so that progress towards implementing the plan and maintaining professional competence can be demonstrated. The benefits should be evaluated. The plan should be reviewed regularly (at least annually). How can a Mentor help? A mentor is a more experienced and knowledgeable person who gives dispassionate and objective support and guidance to a learner [or mentee]. To be effective the mentor should not be in a position of authority over the learner. The most important functions of a mentor are to provide positive feedback, offer encouragement and adjust expectations. Contact with a mentor can be useful in that he or she is someone you can turn to who has knowledge and experience of your situation and no interests to consider other than your own. Being a mentor can be very rewarding and a valuable CPD activity in that it provides a valued outlet for all the wealth of knowledge and experience that has built up over a career and provides an occasion to help others take advantage of some of the opportunities and avoid some of the pitfalls that you as a mentor may have encountered along the way. In terms of Continuing Professional Development, a mentor can be particularly helpful with the following; a) Conducting a Skills Audit/Gap Analysis b) Determining the knowledge and skills required for a particular job or role c) Setting development objectives d) Assessing learning experiences e) Deciding what should be the next steps f) Offering encouragement and providing motivation to persist with a CPD activity g) Suggesting alternative CPD activities h) Identifying CPD providers Individuals should initially seek access to a mentor within their own workplace. Alternatively, the Institute may be able to provide a useful contact who can advise you on how to go about planning and achieving your professional development objectives. Both of these sources of support have advantages and disadvantages and you should consider carefully what you require from a mentor. It is expected that mentoring will be particularly useful to those taking responsibility for their own CPD for the first time, those in the early stages of their careers and those contemplating a career change. Who should check IPD and CPD records are updated? Your IPD/CPD record can be checked at any time by ing a report either to a mentor, line manager, membership application referee or another person of your choice. You should not submit your report to the IMarEST membership department until you are ready to transfer your membership, apply for registration of revalidate your CSci registration. What should I do when I believe my record is complete?

5 If you are a first time applicant or you are wishing to transfer your membership from Member to Fellow you will still need to complete the relevant application form. You should use the competency based report from Mypath to complete your application making sure you have thoroughly read the requirements given in the relevant application guidelines. Applicants seeking further advice about Professional Development should refer to the Professional Development How 2 website - This website is created by the Professional Development Partnership, which consists of the IMarEST, RAES, IET, IMechE and IOP and is aimed to give general advice to all applicants seeking Professional Registration.

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