Fulfilling your CPD requirements
As in most professions, doing continuing professional development (CPD) is obligatory for our Chartered Members . Doing CPD helps you to stay competent, professional, capable and resilient as an architect. CPD enables you to achieve better outcomes and better businesses. CPD also helps you to contend with disruption and to face current and future challenges as well as learn new skills and specialisms.
Your annual CPD obligations as a RIBA Chartered Member
- undertake at least 35 hours of learning - this equates to only 45 minutes per week
- half your CPD should be structured, unless your circumstances prevent that. Structured CPD will have learning aims and outcomes, and will be taught, face-to-face, online or by distance learning
- 20 of the 35 hours must come from the ten mandatory RIBA Core Curriculum CPD topics: two hours per topic per year. The ten mandatory topics have now changed, find out more
- acquire at least 100 learning points. The points reflect your assessment of what you got out of the activity
- record and keep track of your CPD activities using the RIBA online CPD recorder
The RIBA regularly audits member records to check compliance.
We don't ask for, expect to see, or oblige you to acquire CPD certificates.
Assigning learning points is about getting you to reflect on the personal and professional impact of each CPD activity. You assign the points yourself, on a scale of one to four:
- one point: you learned little
- two points: your awareness increased generally, through a one to two hour activity
- three points: you gained a great deal of detailed insight, through a half to one day activity
- four points: you acquired expertise or specialist knowledge on a subject, from a course of two days or longer
What counts as CPD?
What you can do for your CPD as a RIBA member is very liberal and flexible.
For an activity to count towards your 35 hour CPD requirement we only ask that you can learn something from the activity which is relevant to you as an architect and professional. CPD can be structured or informal. Structured CPD will have clear learning aims and outcomes, which will have been assigned by the course provider. You should aim for half of your CPD to be structured unless your circumstances prevent it.
CPD doesn't have to come from, be accredited by, or approved by the RIBA to count. You won't ever need to ask us whether something counts: if you think it's valid, then do it.
Don't forget that the lessons learned from relevant voluntary activity can also count as self-directed CPD.
The RIBA categorises CPD using the following five learning levels:
Less than 30 min
Microlearning is informal learning which is often self-directed and delivered in very short, digestible chunks. Examples could be reading (articles, documents, policy papers), short videos, podcasts, info-graphics, web research, internal knowledge transfer, tool kits, instructional games, organised Google hang outs or discussions on Twitter.
Up to two hours of structured CPD activity
General awareness is structured CPD - it is just enough to keep you generally up to date and competent. Examples of general awareness CPD activities include RIBA CPD Providers Network seminars or CPD Roadshows, RIBA Online CPD, or short CPD from other sources. Having general awareness of a topic will not mean you will be expert in it.
Detailed knowledge CPD
Up to half a day of structured CPD activity
Detailed knowledge should give you a higher level of expertise than if you had only a general awareness. It’s about practical applied knowledge of the subject area achieved through learning and experience and consequentially being able to advise others of the implications. This knowledge level could be maintained and enhanced by attendance at courses or conferences (whether face to face, online or distance). You can gain this level by attending, for example, the RIBA’s national core CPD seminars.
Structured CPD of one or two days duration on specific topics
Deep knowledge, whether face to face, online or distance, will give you a more detailed understanding and awareness of a topic, although not at specialist or advanced level. Choices include seminars, workshops, conferences, organised factory tours and similar, from the RIBA or from others.
Courses of three days or longer on specific topics
Courses of three days or longer, often leading to specialisms. This can be maintained and enhanced by courses leading to certificates, diplomas or degrees. The RIBA offers RIBA Career Learning advanced knowledge courses such as our Conservation and Principal Designer courses. You can also undertake three-day courses and diploma, certificate and post graduate courses from universities, colleges and academic providers.
For questions and advice about your CPD obligations and how to fulfill them, contact firstname.lastname@example.org