Standard 2 of the Care Certificate is all about personal development.
This means actively planning your learning and career progression, keeping up to date with standards and continually increasing knowledge and understanding.
Many of the assessment criteria in this standard are the same or similar to the Level 2 Diploma Unit Personal Development in Care Settings. To avoid repetition, where there is overlap there will be links to the corresponding Level 2 Diploma question.
- 2.1 Agree a personal development plan
- 2.1a Identify sources of support for their own learning and development
- 2.1b Describe the process for agreeing a personal development plan and who should be involved
- 2.1c Explain why feedback from others is important in helping to develop and improve the way they work
- 2.1d Contribute to drawing up own personal development plan
- 2.1e Agree a personal development plan
- 2.2 Develop their knowledge, skills and understanding
- 2.2a Describe the functional level of literacy, numeracy and communication skills necessary to carry out their role
- 2.2b Explain how to check their current level of literacy, numeracy and communication skills
- 2.2c Describe how a learning activity has improved their own knowledge, skills and understanding
- 2.2d Describe how reflecting on a situation has improved their own knowledge, skills and understanding
- 2.2e Describe how feedback from others has developed their own knowledge, skills and understanding
- 2.2f Demonstrate how to measure their own knowledge, performance and understanding against relevant standards
- 2.2g List the learning opportunities available to them and how they can use them to improve the way they work
- 2.2h Demonstrate how to record progress in relation to their personal development
- 2.2i Explain why continuing professional development is important
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In summary, sources of support for your learning and development can include:
- Other colleagues
- Formal training
- Supervision, appraisal, observations etc.
- Own research (e.g. library, Internet etc.)
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In short, creating a Personal Development Plan (or PDP) involves sitting down with your line manager and discussing the things that you are good at, the things that you think you need to improve and what learning and/or training could help you fulfill your job role more effectively.
You will set yourself targets with defined deadlines and review them regularly.
2.1c Explain why feedback from others is important in helping to develop and improve the way they work
Feedback can be a very important learning tool as long as it is given and received correctly.
Feedback can be either positive or negative but it should be constructive – personal attacks and unfounded criticism do not help anybody.
Similarly, if you become defensive or brush off any criticism directed at you, you are relinquishing and opportunity to learn.
You can ask for and receive feedback from anybody that you work with professionally. This can include the individuals that you care for, their family and friends, co-workers and other professionals.
However, your main source of feedback will be from your manager, who will work with you to improve the way you work.
For example, if you inadvertently fill in some paperwork incorrectly, your manager should bring this to you attention and perhaps offer guidance on how to avoid making the same mistake in future.
It is only by receiving feedback that we can learn and develop.
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You should have had a meeting with your manager to discuss and create your own PDP.
You can evidence this by using a witness statement from your manager and a having a copy of your PDP.
This is very similar to the previous assessment criteria.
Having discussed and drawn up your PDP with your manager, you simply have to agree with it.
This can be a verbal agreement or you may be asked to sign your PDP.
2.2a Describe the functional level of literacy, numeracy and communication skills necessary to carry out their role
Although the functional level of literacy, numeracy and communication skills necessary to carry out a role in the health and social care sector is rather basic, some people may struggle to reach the standard to carry out their role effectively.
A basic command of the English language is required, including correct spelling and grammar. There will be a lot of paperwork to fill out and it is important that it is legible and understandable by anyone that reads it. The job also requires a lot of reading from company policies to care plans and it is important that you are able to comprehend the information supplied.
Numeracy is also very important as you will often be handling client’s money. Regular balance checks will need to be completed as well as booking money in and out. Administering medication and doing drug stock checks may also be part of your role and you may need to measure out meds or convert from grams/milligrams/micrograms.
You should also be able to communicate effectively both with the individuals that you support and other professionals. Some individuals may require specialised communication, so you may need to learn new skills to be able to converse with them.
Fortunately, most employers understand that some of their employees may require additional support in literacy, numeracy and communication and will have resources available to help get them up to speed.
All individuals should have an initial assessment to check their current levels in literacy, numeracy and communication skills. These could run internally by the organisation or externally by outside agencies. There are also several online resources that can be used to check current levels.
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In a nutshell, you will have to think back to a learning activity you have experienced and describe how it has helped to improve your knowledge, skills and understanding.
For example, you could say that you went on a food hygiene course and learned the correct handwashing method.
2.2d Describe how reflecting on a situation has improved their own knowledge, skills and understanding
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You will need to describe how reflecting on a situation in your own work role has contributed to the improvement of your knowledge, skills and understanding.
For example, you may say that you reflected on the events leading up to an individual presenting challenging behaviours and believe that too many changes to their routine in a short space of time was a contributing factor to their meltdown. In future, you decide that for this individual you will only introduce necessary changes gradually.
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You will need to describe a time when feedback given to you helped develop your own knowledge, skills and understanding.
For example, this could be a client that is hard of hearing explaining to you that they cannot hear what you are saying if you have your back to them. You learned from this and since then have always ensured that you are facing them when you speak to them.
2.2f Demonstrate how to measure their own knowledge, performance and understanding against relevant standards
2.2g List the learning opportunities available to them and how they can use them to improve the way they work
This will vary between individuals but anyone that works in the health and social care sector will have access to several learning opportunities.
On the job training including the induction process gives you the opportunity to learn whilst you earn.
Also, all employees new to the care sector will be expected to complete the Care Certificate (as you are doing now) and this offers a lot of opportunities to learn.
There are also other qualifications that you can work towards, including Care Diplomas at Levels 2,3,4 and 5.
Your employer should arrange for you to do training either internally within the organisation or run by an external agency.
All of these learning opportunities offer the chance to learn new skills and increase knowledge and understanding.
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You should keep your PDP updated and review it regularly.
You should also have Continuing Personal Development (CPD) record in your personnel file that keeps track of all of your formal learning and copies of any certificates you have earned.
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To summarise, legislation, standards and best practices can change regularly so it is important to stay up to date.
In addition, it is important to keep challenging oneself and learning new skills.