Scheme for Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

Closed 28 Nov 2021

Opened 18 Aug 2021

Feedback updated 21 Apr 2022

We asked

  • The Building Safety Bill will give ARB new powers to monitor the training and development architects carry out throughout their careers. We’ll use this to implement a CPD scheme that will encourage architects to maintain and develop their competence to practise.
  • ARB invited views on the proposed principles to underpin that scheme.
  • The survey comprised of six questions.
  • Two were ‘closed’ multiple-choice questions, with the remaining four using an ‘open’ free-text element where respondents could give more insight into their views. The questions are reproduced in order below:

Question 10: To what extent do you support each of the four proposed principles for our CPD scheme?

  1. Improve the overall competence of the profession
  2. Tailored by architects to their own practice and needs
  3. Proportionate and deliverable
  4. Avoid duplication where possible

Respondents were invited to select one of the following options for each principle: Strongly support, Support, Neither support nor oppose, Oppose or Strongly oppose.

Question 11: Are there any key points missing from the principles?

Question 12: What type of learning and development (this could include formal or informal) have you found most useful in your practice?

  1. Self-directed reading
  2. On the job learning
  3. Training delivered by an external provider
  4. Other type of learning and development

Respondents were invited to select one of the following options for each type: Very useful, Somewhat useful, Not so useful, Not applicable

For ‘other’, they were invited to write a response into an open text box.

Question 13: Please tell us about any barriers you have observed that have prevented you or architects you know from undertaking good quality CPD?

Question 14: Do you have any examples of particularly good or innovative CPD?

Question 15: Is there anything further you would like us to bear in mind as we develop the monitoring scheme?

You said

  • We received 763 unique responses to the survey, drawing from across the profession with responses from different sized practices and architects at various stages in their careers.
  • Each of ARB’s proposed principles received high levels of support. The most popular of the four principles was supported by 91% of respondents, and the least popular was still supported by a majority 81% of respondents.
  • There was strong support for informal learning and development, reflected also in high levels of support for ARB’s principle that architects should be able to tailor CPD to their practice, and the principle that the scheme should be proportionate.
  • Roughly one in ten architect respondents expressed the view that they would appreciate and benefit from flexibility to decide when they undertake and record CPD.
  • Responses made it evident that not all architects are able to access all types of CPD equally.
  • Two thirds of respondents raised concerns about accessing good quality CPD.
  • One third of respondents raised (unprompted) the topic of how CPD should be recorded or monitored, often with a rationale for reducing the administrative burden for architects complying with the new scheme.

We did

We produced an analysis report of the survey, which has been discussed and approved by our Board. This report is available here

  • We intend to create a scheme that offers flexibility and will avoid creating restrictions about the type of learning and development architects undertake.
  • The feedback from respondents about potential barriers to undertaking CPD demonstrates alignment with ARB’s principle that the scheme should, where possible, avoid placing any additional financial costs on architects.
  • Any desire for flexibility will need to align with the logistical requirements of monitoring compliance with the scheme, which is likely to run on an annual basis for efficiency.
  • We will engage with other professional bodies that run CPD schemes to investigate whether it would be possible to allow architects to record CPD activities in one place that ARB can access and monitor, providing that record complies with ARB’s scheme requirements.
  • We will develop detailed proposals for the scheme and publicly consult on it prior to introducing it, which will be in 2023 at the earliest.

Published responses

View submitted responses where consent has been given to publish the response.


This survey closed on Monday 29th November 2021. ARB will now be analysing responses and will publish a report of our findings in 2022. 

The Architects Registration Board (ARB) is the regulator of the architect profession. Architects play a vital role in creating a built environment that is safe, sustainable and where everyone in society can live well.

ARB’s duties are set in legislation and require ARB to:

  • Maintain the Architects Register, the definitive record of all UK architects
  • Set the education and training requirements for architects, by recognising the qualifications necessary for joining the Register
  • Ensure only appropriately qualified applicants from the UK and overseas join the Register
  • Set and enforce the professional standards expected of UK architects
  • Take action against those who call themselves an architect illegally.

Anyone using an architect’s services, or a building designed by one, has the right to expect that architects will maintain and develop their skills, knowledge, experience and behaviours on an ongoing basis throughout their career. 

Why your views matter

The Building Safety Bill introduced into Parliament in July 2021 is intended to give ARB powers to monitor the continuing professional development (CPD) of architects.

We are consulting you on the proposed principles for ARB’s scheme to monitor CPD, which we have developed following research amongst architects and stakeholders. We want to understand your views on these principles and on how ARB can effectively support the profession with a new scheme.

What happens next

The results of the survey will help shape our plans as we develop the scheme. Before we finalise and introduce the scheme we will share our detailed proposals for formal consultation next year.


  • Anyone from any background


  • Continuing Professional Development
  • Competence