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CPD HOURS: 5 WAYS TO COMPLETE YOUR SOLICITOR CPD

Solicitor CPD hours are compulsory – there’s simply no avoiding them but they aren’t something to dread. Far from it. The world of legal training has moved on in line with advances in technology and there are now plenty of engaging and fun ways to expand your knowledge and develop your career without it seeming like a chore.

Solicitor CPD hours on blackboard

If you are a solicitor or a Registered European lawyer (REL) practicing or employed in England and Wales then you will need to complete a certain amount of continuing professional development each year. CPD as you no doubt are aware is a legal training scheme set out by the Solicitors Regulation Authority.

Solicitors or lawyers that work 32 hours or more in a week are required to complete at least 16 hours of CPD per year. If you work part-time hours then the amount of CPD will be reduced.

If you fail to comply then it could well lead to disciplinary procedures so it is essential to complete your CPD. Although it is a requirement, it is a great way for you to progress your legal career in the areas that interest and inspire you. Choose wisely.  We look at 5 of the most effective ways to complete your solicitor CPD hours:

In-house legal training

The best thing about in-house training is that all you need to provide is a room and the people. There is no need to arrange any travel or spend time away from the office as it all happens in your office. An independent highly-qualified external course leader comes to your offices at a convenient time with everything needed. They can deliver a tailored course, matching your exact needs, or one that has already been designed to cover a specific topic. All course materials combined with innovative learning strategies make it an excellent form of training.

A number of people can complete the training at the same time making it a cost efficient way of completing CPD hours. The benefits of face-to-face training when it comes to technical legal topics or skills cannot be underplayed. Questions and dialogue amongst the whole group means that it is an engaging and thorough way to learn. MASS Training offer a number of in-house legal training courses including the College of Law Diploma course and are also experienced at tailoring courses to meet your specific needs. Follow us on Twitter @MASSTraining to keep up-to-date with our latest courses and offers.

Coaching/ Work-shadowing

Another form of face-to-face training that qualifies towards your CPD hours is coaching or work-shadowing programmes. With a little time and planning you can set up a coaching programme, where an employee takes timeout to mentor a colleague. It is a good way to complete CPD hours as it benefits both parties. The sessions need to be carefully planned and structured, over half an hour long and have a key focus on professional development.

Similarly, work-shadowing programmes can be set-up where one employee follows another as they complete their work over a period of time. Again it is important that it is structured so that both parties can get something out of the process. A feedback session or reflexive learning on the shadowing activity should be completed afterwards.

Online

From structured sessions like the ones we provide at MASS Training or simply viewing approved videos are ways of claiming CPD hours online. In order to complete the full amount of compulsory CPD hours, it is important to have a plan in place. MASS Training offer an online legal CPD course that is an engaging and fun way to contribute to your CPD scheme.

With anything Online, it is important to be engaged as the distractions of the internet are well-known. You must ensure that time spent is productive – a high level of interactivity is a great way of making the learning stick. Many online training courses will encourage you to apply the new knowledge so that it consolidates your learning.

Webinars

A Webinar is a combination of web and seminar and is an increasingly popular way of completing legal training online. These web events are a great way of completing CPD hours as they are available from your office or even from the comfort of your own home. All you need to benefit from a webinar is some spare time and a laptop, computer or tablet making Webinars ultra-convenient.

Webinars allow specialists to share their knowledge in an engaging and structured way. Your firm can receive industry-specific training through presentations, videos, web pages or other multimedia content with audiences that can be located anywhere.  There are plenty of ways to make the Webinar interactive and engaging to facilitate lasting learning. Webinars can provide a whole range of valuable content targeted to your audience.

To find out more about Webinars, check out our Webinar Infographic that we produced.

Writing on law or practice
If you have a passion for words and essay writing then this could be a good option for completing your CPD hours. It is time-consuming but it can help bring positive attention onto your firm. You can write an essay on law or practice for publication in a law book or a journal, an Internet site, or for a client. You can also write for newspapers and magazines regardless of whether they are legal publications or not.

MASS Training

Let us know what legal training you’ve completed and your best and worst CPD stories – we’d love to hear them. Give us a call on 0117 925 9612 to talk through the full range of legal training options that we provide.  You can also visit here to find out about all your legal training options.

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