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Inspiring Your CPD - March 2018

26 03.18

Ethical Practice

This month the newsletter addresses a topic of significant importance to all CDI members and the Institute itself.

Normally the CPD Newsletter starts with an encouraging and permissive statement offering ideas without compulsion. This one is different. Core to your CDI membership is your commitment to ethical practice as guided by the CDI’s Code of Ethics. As we approach the season of membership renewal for many, it is timely to reflect on what this means for you, and how the Institute supports your practice.

The CDI Code of Ethics covers the professional behaviour and practice required of all CDI members and informs the public of the ethical principles to which all CDI members adhere. The Professional Standards Committee has developed a framework and case studies, which underpin many of the activities that follow.

Resources related to ethical practice are in the ‘About’ section of the CDI website, and in the CPD Resources area of the Members’ Area of the website, where resources are arranged according to the National Occupational Standards: Career Development (NOS:CD). Ethical practice is covered in:

NOS02: Reflect on, develop and maintain own skills and practice in career development


Twelve principles

If you can’t immediately call to mind the twelve principles of the CDI Code of Ethics, maybe it’s time for a quick refresher visit.


Framework for ethical decision-making

Principles have to be put into practice. ‘As we practise resolving dilemmas we find ethics to be less a goal than a pathway, less a destination than a trip’ (Rushworth Kidder). We have created a Framework to aid members in their own work situations.


Principles into (hypothetical) practice

We have also published nine case studies each of which comprises a dilemma, and more importantly a careful consideration of possible approaches to the dilemma presented. These approaches are structured to follow the Framework, and therefore offer worked examples of how you might use the Framework in your own work situation.


Your own CPD activity

The Framework and the case studies both offer many opportunities for reflective CPD. Just reading them is valuable. Recalling a recent work dilemma and reviewing it through the structure of the Framework would develop your capability to use the Framework ‘on your feet’ next time the need arises. Creating a time for discussing with peers your own past dilemma, a current situation, or a hypothetical situation, supports your personal development. Any of these can be recorded on your CPD record.


Research ethics

Some situations require a more customised approach. Many career professionals undertake research and evaluation projects, in which they should additionally be guided by the British Educational Research Association (BERA) Ethical guidelines for educational research.


Topical issues 1: the Prevent strategy

Any career conversation raises questions about people’s ambitions, so it is possible that career professionals will become aware of a client’s interest in activities that fall within the remit of the Prevent strategy. Our Professional Standards Committee has developed resources specifically addressing our own professional activities. The website page Understanding Fundamental British Values & Applying the Prevent Duty: a guide for careers practice includes a link to a profession-specific guide, and links to a free introductory e-learning package.


Topical issues 2: data protection

Confidentiality is one of the twelve principles of the CDI Code of Ethics. It includes data management, which is subject to the new General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) which becomes operational across Europe, and beyond, in May 2018. If you work in a larger organisation, you are probably receiving briefings on this. If you work as a sole trader or within a small organisation, there is introductory information from the Information Commissioner’s Office. GDPR requires a change of mindset, away from mere compliance into an attitude of ‘privacy by design’.


Finally …

If the above activities feel like a lot of words to read and absorb, remember our free webinars. CDI members Valerie Rowles and Liane Hambly engage in a conversation: Ethical practice: how to make it a reality when you are an independent career coach or consultant. Although it has a specific target audience, there is much wisdom there for all of us.


Using our LinkedIn groups

We have a LinkedIn group for all members, and groups that are relevant for each home nation and for the Community of Interest groups. Start (or contribute to) a discussion; keep contributing for several days.

National groups Northern Ireland | Scotland | Wales

Community of Interest groups Careers Education | Independent Coaches and Consultants | Learning Difficulties and Disabilities | HE Advisers | Research. Visit the Communities of Interest.


Recording and reflecting on CPD

Remember that reading, talking and reflecting all count towards your CPD hours as long as you write a short reflective report in the My CPD section of your ‘My Portfolio’ record.

If you are on the Register then undertaking 25 hours of CPD each year is a condition of your registration. Even if you are not on the Register, undertaking CPD helps you to adhere to the Continuous Professional Development principle in the CDI Code of Ethics.


Useful Tips

Accessing the Members’ Area in order to record your CPD

To access this area click Login (at the top of the screen) and use your Members’ Area username (your email address) and password. Then click on Members’ Area, and choose Professional Register which includes the CPD Resources area and your personal CPD record. You can also access the Register directly by using the Professional Register link on the home page.

In September 2017 we launched an updated version of this part of the site which now provides a CPD recording system which is much easier to use.

The site includes the facility to Request a new password. Remember that for the system to work well, you need to keep your details up to date and ensure that CDI emails are not directed to your spam box.

For any questions relating to CPD Recording please contact:


Dr Lyn Barham,
Project Associate (Research)

(If you have any questions relating to this email please contact