Continuing Competency Program (CCP)

What is continuing competence? Continuing competence is the ability to continually enhance and expand your knowledge, observable behaviors and performance of skills to practice safe, competent and ethical care.

In our evolving health care system, nurses must continually enhance and expand their knowledge and abilities to maintain a level of competence equal to their role, responsibilities and practice setting. As a Licensed Practical Nurse, you have a professional and legal responsibility to ensure that your practice and conduct meet current health care demands.

The Continuing Competency Program (CCP) offers you an opportunity to engage in activities that contribute to the development of nursing competencies that achieve optimum personal and professional growth throughout your career. Annual assessment of competence will help you to determine personal strengths and areas you would like to strengthen through self-reflection, lifelong learning and the integration of learning into practice. CCP provides a formal means to address learning needs, set a realistic timeline, participate in learning at every opportunity, and successfully complete a learning plan each year.

CCP is a mandated by the Health Professions Act (HPA), Section 50 (1) (2a), 2000. Under HPA, every regulatory college supports their members in meeting their learning needs and professional obligations. Your commitment to both your profession and CCP reflects your pledge to lifelong learning.

The 5-Step Model of CCP

Continuing-Competency-Program-5-Step-Model

The CCP is based on a 5-step model. To clearly understand the complete program, it is beneficial for nurses to follow each step every year prior to Registration Renewal. Each step plays a key purpose in the CCP and for ease of use the steps align with the nursing process.


Tools for CCP

There are several new and updated documents to support Licensed Practical Nurses in understanding and applying the principles of CCP:

Completion of these tools is optional but highly recommended to fully understand CCP. They will help guide you through the 5-Step Model of CCP and create your mandatory Learning Plan required for Registration Renewal with CLPNA.

RELATED – Competency Profile for Licensed Practical Nurses

If you have questions, please contact the CLPNA at profdev@clpna.com, 780-484-8886, or 1-800-661-5877 (toll free in Alberta).

Frequently Asked Questions

What is a Continuing Competency Program (CCP)?

The Continuing Competency Program (CCP) offers you an opportunity to engage in activities that contribute to the development of nursing competencies that achieve optimum personal and professional growth throughout your career. Annual assessment of competence will help you to determine personal strengths and areas you would like to strengthen through self-reflection, lifelong learning and the integration of learning into practice.

Why does CLPNA have a CCP?

The Health Professions Act (HPA) states that all health professions through their regulatory body, “must establish, by Regulation, a continuing competency program” and it “must provide for regulated members to maintain competence and to enhance the provision of professional services” Health Professions Act, Section 50 (1) (2a), 2000. Licensed Practical Nurses have been regulated under the HPA since 2003.

Is the CCP mandatory?

Yes, Licensed Practical Nurses are expected to assess, maintain, and/or enhance competence through life-long learning. Annual participation in the CCP demonstrates commitment by members of the profession to maintain and/or improve knowledge and skill.

Why annual assessment of competence?

Annual assessment of competence is a necessary process of determining your areas of strength and identifying any learning needs through self-reflection. In our evolving health care system, nurses must continually enhance and expand their knowledge and skills to maintain a level of competence commensurate with their role.

What is the Competency Profile?

The Competency Profile for Licensed Practical Nurses of Alberta, 3rd Edition (2015) describes the Licensed Practical Nurse knowledge, skills, attitudes, and judgments, ranging from novice to expert. The Competency Profile states which competencies are expected of the new graduate and the Licensed Practical Nurse who has advanced education and experience. The role of a Licensed Practical Nurse in Alberta varies depending on the setting, job description, and agency policy while the Competency Profile clearly defines all the competencies performed by Licensed Practical Nurses.

All the identified competencies are within the Alberta Regulations 2003, Health Professions Act, Licensed Practical Nurse Regulation and within the Licensed Practical Nurse scope of practice. The Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice are congruent with the Competency Profile.

How is the Competency Profile for Licensed Practical Nurses in Alberta related to the CCP?

The Competency Profile is the foundation for the CCP and should be used annually as a key assessment tool. The Licensed Practical Nurse uses the Competency Profile to identify the specific competency or area of practice he/she wishes to further develop. The chosen competency then becomes the learning objective on the learning plan.

How is the CCP related to the Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice?

The Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice describe the desirable and achievable level of performance expected of nurses, against which actual performance can be measured. Standards are necessary to demonstrate to the public, government, and other stakeholders, that a profession is dedicated to maintaining public trust and upholding the criteria of its professional practice. The Code of Ethics and Standards of Practice provide a framework for the CCP.

What is a Learning Plan?

A Learning Plan is an outline of how you will meet your learning goals. It should include:

  • A minimum of two specific learning objectives, from the Competency Profile, to provide overall direction for learning
  • Resources or strategies for meeting the objectives such as; books, videos, articles, workshops, in-services, conferences, courses, etc.
  • A timeline for completing the learning plan.
  • Success indicators outlining how you will know that you have met the learning objectives and how this learning has changed your practice.

When should I start the CCP process?

The CCP process is continuous and begins as soon as you obtain registration with the College, with learning completed throughout the year and goals revisited and assessed annually in conjunction with Registration Renewal. It is recommended that you familiarize yourself with the CCP before you begin your assessment and create your Learning Plan.

Is it important to maintain my CCP Records?

CLPNA recommends that you maintain learning/education records for a minimum of four years; however, many keep learning/education records for their entire career. CLPNA can request copies of verification of learning records during the annual Continuing Competency Program Validation (CCPV) process.

What CCP Records are important to keep?

Licensed Practical Nurses should retain the Guide, Reflection Tool, Self-Assessment Tool, Learning Plan and records of learning as part of their learning records. Your learning records becomes part of your Professional Portfolio, which can hold records of all professional education you have completed.

Your Learning Plan should be reviewed regularly and used when establishing your next year’s Learning Plan. Employer learning records, education certificates, or transcripts should be saved for future reference.

There are now two ways to track your learning. The Record of Learning is an online tool in your CLPNA member profile that can be used to document and record all continuing education you complete any time during the year. The Record of Professional Activities (PDF) form can also be used to track what you learned, how you completed the learning, and a summary of the completed learning. All of these learning records are necessary to complete annual registration renewal and the CCPV.

How can I get more information regarding the CCP and the assessment process?

Contact the CLPNA at profdev@clpna.com, 780-484-8886 or 1-800-661-5877 (toll free in Alberta).