Personal Development Planning for nurses


When does it need to be completed?

Ideally a good PDP should be completed for a five-year period, and should be reviewed and revised on an annual basis during that time - although many people use them as live documents, adding to and building on them throughout the year. 

For example, if you carry out CPD, and are reading an article, you may want to write up a short reflective account, answering the following questions:

Did you feel it was a good piece of work?

Did it prompt you to want to change anything? 

Has it enhanced your knowledge?

Will you change anything because of it?

The reflective learning cycle, shown here, can be a useful aid to identifying aspects of how you learn from your experiences - both good and bad.


When carrying out new techniques and processes (or updating existing ones), try to use the reflective learning cycle. Ask yourself these questions:

What do I think went well or was good?

What did not go as well? Did it meet my expectations?

Why did it not go well (if appropriate)? 

How could I have done it differently? What would have made it better?

How will this affect me in future? Will I change my practices, or not?

Write down your statements and see if this structured approach has helped you to self-reflect in a positive or negative way. Has it helped your personal development? Or have you decided that it does not impact on you at all?


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