Achieving your FBDO qualification is a great accomplishment and one to be celebrated. However, this is just the start of your journey as an eye care professional. Continuing professional learning and development will assist you in planning a fulfilling and exciting optical career.

After your initial registration with the General Optical Council (GOC), you are required to maintain your registration-level skills by attending and participating in GOC-approved continuing professional development (CPD).

The GOC’s CPD scheme is divided into 3-year periods, over which you should accrue 36 CPD points, of which at least 18 must be ‘interactive’, ie by attendance at meetings and discussions. The scheme runs in three-year periods, and the current three-year period will end on 31 December 2024. By the end of 2024 you must have gained CPD points equivalent to the number of whole months that you will have been on the GOC register as a qualified dispensing optician.

For example, if you are added to the GOC register on 1 September 2022, you will need 28 points by December 2024. At least half of the total number of these need to be interactive CPD points.

CPD points can be gained in a number of ways. ABDO have pledged to offer, as part of the membership fee, at least the minimum GOC CPD requirement over the 3-year period. You will find CPD articles in Dispensing Optics journal each month, which you can complete online. There will be free CPD events advertised in the event section of the ABDO website for different ABDO Regions. You may attend CPD in any Region, but please check the CPD as there is a chance this may be repeated. There are also other ABDO/ABDO College events which offer CPD, but there may be a charge for these.

Getting started with CPD

  • Details of the GOC CPD scheme can be found on the GOC website. Log into ‘MyGOC’ and set up your MyCPD access. You cannot set up MyCPD with a GOC student registration number.


Click here to access the GOC website

  • Attend GOC-approved CPD events, such as attending ABDO regional CPD events and completing CPD articles in Dispensing Optics journal.
  • To find out about CPD events :
    a. Visit the events pages on the ABDO website.
    b. Look in the diary sections of The Optician or Optometry Today if you have access to them.
    c. Use the ‘Search for CPD’ tool in the MyCPD area of the GOC website.

Make sure that the CPD you choose has dispensing opticians included in the target groups. There is no retrospective approval.

  • Ensure that you sign attendance lists and give your GOC number. The provider of the CPD will provide you with a certificate of attendance/completion.
  • In 2022 the CPD scheme changed so you are now responsible for the upload of your own CPD points. You will need to upload your certificates obtained from CPD events or online to the GOC website. You are required to complete CPD in all of the four domains during the current cycle.
  • Check ‘MyGOC/My CPD’ to view full details of your points’ record. This is the ‘evidence’ which the GOC will check in order to confirm your eligibility for continued registration. However always keep a separate record of CPD completed.

The GOC have full details of their CPD scheme in their ‘CPD – A guide for registrants’, which can be read here.

You can contact the ABDO CPD Office if you would like any advice on CPD:

Unit 2, Court Lodge Offices
Godmersham Park

Telephone: 01206 734 155


For further regulatory information about registration with the GOC and your mandatory requirements please visit the ABDO advice and guidance pages: A&G R1 and A&G R5.