A Simple PDP Guide for Registered Dietitians

The Commission on Dietetic Registration (CDR) requires RDs to create a Professional Development Portfolio (PDP). Do you get confused and overwhelmed with understanding how it all works? You are not alone! Here's a simple break down of commonly asked questions, and what you need to know:

What is a PDP?

Your PDP is just a way of saying, "Here is what I want to learn and how I want to grow as an RD in the next 5 years."

Why 5 years?

CDR has given RDs 5 year cycles in which they are to complete 75 Continuing Professional Education Units (CPEUs).

Your 5 year cycle is June 1, (a certain year) ⟶ May 31, (the year that it is 5 years later). Your 5 year cycle will ALWAYS be June 1 ⟶ May 31.

Your cycle starts on June 1. Pay your CDR dues by August 31 of every year. You'll get an email/mail reminder.

How often do I create a PDP?

You will set up your PDP once every 5 years (at the beginning of your certification cycle) on CDRnet.org. However, you will log your CPEUs continuously throughout the 5 years by going to the "My CDR" tab, and then "Plan and Log".

How do I create my PDP?

Here's what to expect:

Step 1:

Make a Learning Plan.

You will only need to do this once every 5 years. There is no date that you must do this by, however, it is good to do earlier on in your certification cycle. Your Learning Plan is when you will select what you want to learn and how you want to grow in the next 5 years as an RD.

The 3 Parts to Creating Your Learning Plan:

1. The Goal Wizard- A new feature on the CDR website. It is simply a series of questions you are asked that will help you figure out your professional learning goals for the next 5 years.

2. Competency Profile- Your answers to the Goal Wizard will determine this profile/list. It's a list of identified competencies that are relevant to your interests in dietetics. You can think of them as your "goals". You will select which goals from this list you actually want. Which areas do you want to work on in the next 5 years? *Important: you do NOT need to select all of them.

3. Performance Indicators- Once you've selected the competencies/goals you'd like, you will select the Performance Indicators that you want for your Learning Plan. Each competency/goal that you selected has associated Performance Indicators. You can think of these as "narrowed-down goals" that describe a more specific area of growth. These basically determine what CPEUs you will be doing within the next 5 years. The CPEUs that you will do must be labeled with a Performance Indicator that you chose. (*More on this below).

Step 2:

Submit your Learning Plan for review by CDR.

Once you have clicked the boxes for the Performance Indicators that you want, you'll submit it, and your Learning Plan is now sent to CDR to be "approved". You will get an email within 30 days (usually takes much less) saying that it is approved.

Step 3:

Get and Record Your CPEUs.

If you did any CPEUs 120 days or less before you submitted your Learning Plan for review (and you did not include them in your previous certification cycle log) then you can record them on your new "log". You do not have to record these or ANY future CPEUs immediately into your log after completion. As long as they are recorded into your log before your 5 year certification cycle ends, it is okay. However, it is a good idea to record them into your log sooner rather than later so they are not forgotten or lost.

*A note about CPEUs- Every CPEU activity (webinar, course, journal article, etc.) will note the "Performance Indicators" that are met for that activity. You must select CPEUs to complete that meet the Performance Indicators that you have selected on your Learning Plan. You do NOT need to meet EVERY Performance Indicator with an associated CPEU. But, if you complete a CPEU activity that does not include one of the Performance Indicators on your Learning Plan, it will not be counted. The easiest way to find CPEUs that match your Performance Indicators on your Learning Plan is at CPEU.org. You can search and filter for only those CPEUs that offer your specific Performance Indicators on your Learning Plan, and it will pull up an instant list for you of all the CDR accredited CPEUs that match your Performance Indicators. It's a huge time and energy saver.

CPEU certificates- You should receive a certificate of completion after completing a CPEU, from the provider of the CPEU. *CDR requires that you keep all certificates of completion for 2 years after that certification cycle. This is very important, especially if you are chosen for an audit. That means that if you complete a CPEU in year 1 of your 5 year cycle, you will need to keep it 2 years after your cycle, meaning you hold on to it for 7 years. CPEU.org also offers an organized and easy place to upload and store all of your certificates so that you never have to worry about misplacing them. It's a super useful tool to have.

Step 4:

Mid-point review.

This is an optional check-in from CDR. Once you have logged 30-74 CPEUs, a button will pop up asking if you'd like a mid-point review. There isn't much more to it than that.

Step 5:

Submit your log.

Once you have completed all 75 CPEU credits, you'll submit your activity log. It may be submitted any time during your 5 year cycle, as long as it is before your May 31 due date. CDR will review your log and notify you of it's approval. You've completed your CPEU work for your 5 year cycle!

That covers the basics of everything you need to know to successfully create and finish your PDP. I hope you found it helpful and that it gave you an idea of what to expect, and answered any questions you might have had!