Certificate Of Personal Development (CPD) 

It is anticipated that sessions in this scheme will be delivered online until further notice.  Some may be temporarily suspended due to the highly interactive nature of the content. 

There are three titles in this scheme:  Communication, Personal Effectiveness and Leadership. 

To achieve a Certificate of Personal Development (CPD) you need to meet the following criteria:

  • Download the Personal Progression Record applicable to each programme, from this website.
  • Before attending each workshop state on the record why you wish to attend that particular title.
  • Attend and actively participate in 5 workshops (units) in the group you have chosen.  Each workshop is between 90 minutes and 2 hours duration.
  • Upon completion of each workshop state on the record what you have learnt.
  • Send the record to SDS@cf.ac.uk when you have been alerted on having completed 5 workshops.

We keep records of your attendances and following completion of 5 units you will be asked to complete a short optional evaluation.  Doing so provides us with very important feedback. 

You may work towards achieving these over several semesters or even academic years. 

Each certificate is signed jointly by the Pro Vice Chancellor, Student Experience & Academic Standards and the Head of Training & Development, Skills Development Service. 

There are three subject areas in this scheme.

  1. Communication (download the progression form here) 
  2. Personal Effectiveness (download the progression form here) 
  3. Leadership (download the progression form here)

Click on a group heading to find out more

Group 1: Communication

To be an effective verbal communicator the following competencies should be sought:

  • Ability to keep feelings and opinions neutral especially when under pressure  
  • Assertiveness
  • Confident in making presentations
  • Empathetic and tactful customer skills
  • Negotiation to mutually succeed in transactions
  • Sensitive listening
  • All workshops in this group will be delivered through Microsoft Teams and some will involve short follow up exercises.

Assertiveness - “Say what you mean, mean what you say”

Assertiveness - an essential skill for everyday interactions. Do you ever wish you had that little bit more self-confidence to be able to delegate or make yourself heard? This unit explores the different kinds of behaviours which have an adverse effect upon working and personal relationships. It also aims to help improve your confidence so that you will be able to state your points in a firm but assertive way.

 

Business Communication Skills – “Saying the right things at the right time” 

The emphasis on communication skills relates to the growing importance of the customer. All businesses have customers, internally and externally, and being able to both behave in a professional manner and communicate the correct information in user-friendly language is considered to be of vital importance to the service being provided. A recent survey showed that employees performed badly in areas such as “going the extra mile”. This unit concentrates on how communication plays its part so that you will be able to overcome difficult customer behaviour and bring transactions to successful conclusions.

 

Having Challenging Conversations – “It doesn’t have to be this awkward”

A difficult or challenging conversation is one where you have to manage emotions and information in a sensitive way. These could be related to addressing the behaviour of a peer, investigating complaints as a leader or dealing with grievances. This workshop helps you develop the skills and techniques needed so that you can face those difficult conversations not with trepidation, but with confidence.

 

Negotiation Skills – “Get what you want, when you want”

Many of you will encounter situations such as wanting to be able to get the best room in your student house or persuading your tutor to defer an assignment deadline. In future you may have to persuade a manager or client. This unit aims to improve your negotiating skills so that you can set goals, plan and converse in order to get more of what you want and less of what you don't want.

 

Practical Presentations – “Preach what you practice”

This unit can be claimed in one of two ways:

  • By signing up to a Practical Presentations session and delivering a 5 minutes presentation to your fellow students, then taking part in the audience while the other students present. This will be followed by feedback and completion of a self-reflection. This is a handy experience if you have a presentation to make later in your studies or in preparing for same at a job interview.
  • By proving a presentation took place as part of your academia or work experience. You will need to complete a self-reflection and obtain a witness testimony from your supervisor or assessor and send both to the Skills Development Service.

 

Sales Skills – “Building & retaining custom for your business or department” 

Everyone needs to be able to use selling skills. Providing information in the correct fashion about what your job, department and organisation is all about to interested personnel is absolutely vital if you want them to engage with you. This workshop therefore focuses on the consumer journey and how the seller must adapt their style and approach for different consumer needs. We will also explore consumer legislation as part of after-care responsibilities.

Speaking & Presenting – “Happy talking, talking, happy talk” 

Designed to make you aware that good speaking and presentation skills are essential in all environments. Most graduate jobs today will require a presentation as part of the interview process so this is a skill well worth mastering. This unit covers preparation, the route of your talk, speaking techniques and creating a positive attitude towards your presentation. The overall purpose of this unit is to help you increase brevity, confidence and fluency; attributes which help keep you going when undertaking presentations. The session thus provides practice to help you get your message effectively across to your audience.

 

Group 2: Personal Effectiveness

Personal Effectiveness is about you having the "get up and go," a "can do" attitude and a sense that you can make things happen. These are essential must haves for working effectively in any organisation.

 

All workshops in this group will be delivered through Microsoft Teams and some will involve short follow up exercises

 

Building Resilience

Graduate Training Programmes are rewarding, though not easy. You’ll need patience, energy and a positive mindset to persevere through the difficult times. Not to mention tenacity and versatility to overcome the obstacles you’ll face. Resilience and self-evaluation skills like these are key competencies that are required in lots of different industries- from consulting, to teaching, to medicine, to the creative arts, the list is endless! Join us in this skills session to learn how to build your resilience gradually, recognise your stress indicators and develop self-evaluation skills – essential for the graduate marketplace and beyond.

Coaching Skills – “Helping others to help themselves” 

When you are coaching, whether you regard it as such or not, you are likely to develop a special relationship with the other person. This unit aims to help you mentor, motivate, and inspire others without harming their self-esteem. It will help develop sensitive skills and techniques so that you can show someone that every little piece of effort is a significant step in leading to greater achievement. This workshop is designed to use your personal effectiveness to help others become effective. “When selecting candidates, we look for people who will have a positive impact on others.” (Ed Fox, Barclays Bank). 

 

Commercial Awareness – “The world of work and your role in it” 

A CBI survey recently found that 35% of employers were dissatisfied with the business and customer awareness of graduates. Put simply "commercial awareness" is the ability to view situations from a commercial perspective. It is an understanding of what makes any business or organisation successful and the factors that influence this success. Graduates from all disciplines need to show business awareness of their market, not only to beat the competition for jobs but to perform in that role and deliver value for money. By attending this workshop, you will learn simple steps you can take to help you become commercially aware during your time at university and so that, when the time comes, you’re all set to wow employers and turn that dream job into a reality.

There will be a short follow up exercise to complete which will be checked by SDS staff and fed back to you.

 

Linkedin & Networking

Join our LinkedIn and networking skills session for insider tips directly from graduate recruiters on using this powerful networking and job-hunting tool. You’ll also learn how to build meaningful connections and develop your professional brand to make sure you’re putting the very best version of yourself out there.

 Motivation – “Re-light your fire” 

Why are we able to accomplish some tasks with relish yet abhor others? Why do we sometimes lose interest in something initially considered important? How can we be driven to accomplish those things we don’t like doing? This unit is an interactive journey to help you understand how to create drive and energy in order to raise your standards and accomplish all tasks with enthusiasm.

 

Developing Your Positive Image – “Promote your best self”

Promote your best self. What is a personal brand? What should it look like? If one doesn't feel proud of oneself it is very difficult to get that "person-prefect" image across in conversation with others.  This workshop includes the importance of positive self-talk and its relationship to self-esteem. You will learn how to quantify your assets so that you’re able to sell yourself to an employer in a concise and confident way.  Finally, you will learn how to reflect and own the experiences gained from activities undertaken.

 

Introduction to Managing Projects - “Instigate and oversee your idea”

Heard the statement "Never confuse what I do for business with what I do for pleasure?" Chances are you will have planned a birthday event or had sole responsibility for arranging a trip/holiday full of activities and options for everyone. Therefore, most people have probably been involved in some form of project even if it might not have been viewed under such a title. So from a personal effective business point of view, this workshop will take you through the roles required that make up a project team, and a prominent tool to help you schedule, monitor progress and ensure that your project is ultimately successful. The time of the workshop will be shorter than advertised with a follow up exercise to complete.

Time Management – “Time is on my side - NOT” 

Ever wondered why you’re always doing that essay, assignment or research write up at the last minute, or you’re always late for meetings? This workshop is designed to help you prioritise and organise your life so you can get the most out of all of your commitments. The content covers how to work smarter rather than harder, the question of doing the right things or doing things right, how to prioritise and how to overcome procrastination.

Recording Attendances

You are responsible for managing your learning including ensuring you confirm punctual arrival and completion of each online workshop, so that we can keep a copy of your attendance. It is recommended that you keep copies of all the exercises, activities and notes featured in each of the units. In this respect it is important that you attend each workshop on time and commit to both the learning and activities throughout. We reserve the right to refuse entry to any workshop where late arrival will mean a significant part of same won't be fulfilled. It will be necessary for you to keep the Personal Progression Record (mentioned at the top of this page) updated before and after each workshop. Once you have completed 5 units in the same group you will be asked to send in your completed PPR.

 

Certificates are issued in e-format and will be emailed to you around 1-2 weeks after receipt of your PPR. You can print the e-certificate at a library, University print centres or print it off yourself.

 

We will invite you to complete an optional online evaluation which provides us with some key information appropriate to the units undertaken.

Group 3: Leadership

All University students must gain leadership skills, says a recent report. 70% of employers believe leadership modules should be integrated into all degree subjects to boost employability. So we have these here for you - don't delay.

Increase your certification credibility: SDS has teamed up with the Institute of Leadership & Management who can accredit your Leadership certificate thus approving our award as external certification under the umbrella of one of the UK's major Leadership development organisations. See full details under the Externally-certified Courses & Sessions on this website./p>

 

All workshops in this group will be delivered through Microsoft Teams except Team Briefings which is in self-study format and will be emailed to you.

Due to the fact that we are currently delivering these sessions digitally, there will be short follow up exercises to complete and a professional discussion with SDS staff to review your exercises. You will be informed at the workshops.

Leadership Styles – “Be a leader not a follower” 

This unit covers the roles and functions of leadership, the different types of leader and how to develop leadership qualities and characteristics within you.  At the end of this sesssion you will have identified your own leadership style and learnt to adapt according to the situations you face.

 

Leadership In Difficult Situations – “It doesn’t have to be this way” 

Many people are put off from aspiring into a leadership role because they fear possible confrontation and adverse reactions from the members of staff they will be responsible for. Others handle these situations indifferently resulting in a bad working environment. This workshop will help you understand effective supervision and how to it can help smooth the transition from team member to team leader. You will also learn some tips to overcome some interpersonal challenges you may face in the leader role.

 

Problem Solving – “I don’t know what all the fuss is about” 

How do you react when you encounter a problem? The most successful individuals, departments and organisations change the word problem into “opportunity.” You will be entering environments where the buck will stop with you. This workshop introduces you to a range of methods which help identify the sources of problems, provide both theoretical and practical advice to help solve them and help you learn how to reflect upon the successful outcomes of problems faced.

Teamwork – “Play your best role” 

The ability to work effectively with others is one of the key competencies that graduate recruiters prioritise, so it's important to complement leadership potential with examples of how you thrive in a team. Teamwork is thus effective when qualities which individuals possess are harnessed in order to contribute to team success. During this interactive unit you will have the chance to take part in a team challenge and provide the chance of reviewing how effective teams should work. You will also look at all the “roles” required to make the “ideal” team in order to understand the benefits of team dynamics..

Team Briefing (e-learning)  - “They never told me that”

More and more organisations recognise the value of passing on vital information to subordinates in an effective fashion. Team briefing is about good face to face communication between three parties – the manager, the team leader and the team. This unit will inform you of how to select appropriate material and the actual briefing process so that you will feel authoritative, confident and competent when leading team meetings. As this unit is completed in e-learning format there won’t be any dates and times advertised but you will be emailed the link upon request or once you have completed the other 4 workshops in this group.

Completed in self-study format. For a copy of the turorial and exercise email SDS@cf.ac.uk


Recording Attendances

You are responsible for managing your learning including ensuring you confirm punctual arrival and completion of each online workshop, so that we can keep a copy of your attendance. It is recommended that you keep copies of all the exercises, activities and notes featured in each of the units. In this respect it is important that you attend each workshop on time and commit to both the learning and activities throughout. We reserve the right to refuse entry to any workshop where late arrival will mean a significant part of same won't be fulfilled. It will be necessary for you to keep the Personal Progression Record (mentioned at the top of this page) updated before and after each workshop. Once you have completed 5 units in the same group you will be asked to send in your completed PPR.

Certificates  are issued in e-format and will be emailed to you around 1-2 weeks after receipt of your PPR.  You can print the e-certificate at a library, University print centres or print it off yourself. 

We will invite you to complete an optional online evaluation which provides us with some key information appropriate to the units undertaken.