Professional Development

Professional development activities are a fundamental part of profession performance and quality assurance. The maintenance of continuing competence (knowledge, skills, attitudes, and judgement) are a regulatory requirement and improve quality of care for your clients.

Professional development provided by CDHA offers current, relevant, and evidence-based information to improve service provision, respond to technological advances in dental industry, and support the development of new clinical approaches to care.

Note: All professional development must meet the requirements of your provincial regulatory body and, in many provinces, a post-examination is required as part of the learning. It is your professional responsibility to ensure that the professional development opportunities you select will meet the requirements of your regulatory body.

Professional Development Opportunities

Workshops and Conferences—CDHA offers virtual and in-person workshops on a variety of topics in locations across Canada. The biennial conference takes place on the odd years and, on the even years, CDHA hosts a summit and professional development session. Annual General Meetings are held virtually. Provincial associations also host workshops and annual or bi-annual conferences which provide opportunities for networking and professional development.

Online Courses and Webinars—CDHA provides members with exclusive online courses, webinars, and exclusive pricing for Dental Hygiene Quarterly. In addition, many provincial dental hygienists' associations provide similar offerings periodically for their members.

You could also look to industry or commercial organizations, universities, or colleges for in-person events, online learning, or distance education. Federal government health agencies, departments of health, and interdisciplinary associations also offer professional development that may quality under your provincial/territorial continuing competency program.

Explore more on CDHA’s Oral Health Events Calendar.

Additional professional development opportunities*:

*These additional professional development opportunities have not been vetted by CDHA, nor is CDHA affiliated with or endorse the material presentation within.

Publications—Most provinces/territories recognize the study of, or submission to, dental hygiene publications as part of their quality assurance program. The Canadian Journal of Dental Hygiene (CJDH), the peer-reviewed research journal of CDHA, has current and several years of archived issues online. CJDH is also indexed in the following biomedical databases: CINAHL, EBSCOhost, Gale, MEDLINE ProQuest and Scopus. Dimensions of Dental Hygiene, a US publication, has articles with quiz questions that may be of interest.

Additional scientific self-study opportunities:

Study Groups—Study groups related to dental hygiene practice offer a unique opportunity to network and dialogue with local dental hygienists in your area and may count towards your continuing competency program requirements. Contact your provincial association to find out about groups that may be meeting in your area.

In addition, degree completion and graduate study may also satisfy your provincial/territorial continuing competency program requirements. CDHA strongly supports continuing education and there are several education pathways (transfer credits) between Canadian dental hygiene programs and Canadian and international universities that will help you develop your education pathway and advance your career.

Professional Development Requirements

Each province/territory has different rules concerning the types of professional development activities that are eligible for use towards your continuing competency requirements (education courses, advanced study, study of professional journals, convention attendance, professional meetings, etc.) and how credit is calculated for each activity (hour-for-hour credit, credits per activity, credit as recommended, goal based learning etc.).

It is recommended that you keep records of all professional education activities, including certificates of completion, transcripts, and receipts. Keep the proof of completion with a copy of the form and/or documents you send to the regulatory authority, as well as the proof of receipt sent by the regulatory authority, if provided.

Check out your requirements by visiting the website of your provincial regulatory authority.