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E-learning for sonographers: a key CPD tool

14 October, 2019

Author: Gill Harrison, Associate Professor and Ultrasound Programme Director, City, University of London

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Continuing professional development (CPD) is a requisite for any health care professional and is mandatory for on-going registration with the Health and Care Professions Council, the Nursing and Midwifery Council, the General Medical Council, and the Society and College of Radiographers (SCoR) Public Voluntary Register of Sonographers.

Activities for CPD should be varied, recorded and link to practice development and improving the experience and outcomes for service users. E-learning is one of the many ways that CPD can be undertaken and used as evidence to support your on-going professional development. This short article highlights just a few of the many resources that are available for sonographers to use for CPD and to demonstrate the extent of the on-line CPD opportunities that can be accessed by ultrasound practitioners.

These are in addition to guidelines and learning resources for members from the Society and College of Radiographers (SCoR) and the British Medical Ultrasound Society, as well as the plethora of on-line webinars that are available.

Resources for ultrasound practitioners

  • E-learning for Healthcare has a range of ultrasound modules in the image interpretation section of the site. These range from obstetrics and gynaecological ultrasound to abdominal, vascular and musculoskeletal. All sessions were updated in 2017 and have been written by experts in the field. Modules provide interactive learning resources with images and/or cine clips, questions, activities and examples of ultrasound reports.
  • The NHS National Screening Programme resources, for health care professionals involved in providing screening services, are also on the e-learning for healthcare site. These include the Fetal Anomaly Screening Programme (FASP) and Abdominal Aortic Aneurysm Screening Programme (AAA) resources. Other core skills e-learning is available covering a range of topics such as communication, leadership, research, audit, and quality improvement.
  • The National Bereavement Care Pathway has also included sessions for health care professionals on ‘bereavement care after pregnancy loss or baby death’, which includes delivering difficult news. This, and the sites listed in the bullet points above, can be accessed free by users who have an NHS, university ( or government (.gov) email address.
  • has access to more than 500 free on-line lectures. There are also case studies and articles and a link to, which has resources relating to ultrasound in pregnancy. Topics include ultrasound physics and instrumentation, technique, ultrasound developments and all clinical areas of practice. 
  • The Miscarriage Association has recently released a resource for health care professionals called Caring for women experiencing pregnancy loss: a new e-learning resource. This is an e-learning package with advice on how to have difficult conversations with families about pregnancy loss, but also how to look after yourself and your well-being in the process.
  • There are videos by Dr Susanne Johnson on YouTube, covering gynaecological ultrasound topics.
  • The Fetal Medicine Foundation (FMF) provide free e-learning in obstetrics, with topics including fetal abnormalities, cervical assessment, Doppler, cardiac scanning and invasive procedures.
  • Podcasts relating to articles published in the Journal of Diagnostic Medical Sonography (JDMS) enable the listener to learn more about research published within the journal.

How to evidence your CPD
If you complete an e-learning activity it is important to log the date and activity on a list of CPD activities for the year, to show that you have undertaken a wide range of different activities.

More importantly, you need to reflect on the learning that has taken place, how it has updated your knowledge, what you might do to integrate this new knowledge into your practice, and how it will benefit service users.

The significance of the learning in relation to the provision of high quality, safe and effective clinical, educational and/or managerial practice should be considered in the reflection, as well as the relevance to future workplace demands. 

SoR members have access to CPD Now, which is a tool to record CPD activities and reflections. Questions guide you to reflect on the impact of the learning, so support you when you need to provide evidence of CPD for regulatory body audits, appraisals, or within job applications.

To quote Edmund Burke, “To read without reflecting is like eating without digesting.”

Happy #MUAM learning and digesting.

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