The Quality Assurance Program of the College of Dental Technologists of Ontario (CDTO) is founded on the belief that all members (RDTs) are competent oral health care professionals committed to performing within the scope of the dental technology practice. RDTs conform with all relevant regulations and Standards of Practice. They are also committed to supporting quality care by proactively taking the responsibility to maintain and improve their professional practice on a continuous basis.
Click here for an Overview of the Quality Assurance Program
The Quality Assurance Program
The QA Program is designed to be supportive and educational in nature by providing all Registered Dental Technologists (RDTs) with a framework for professional development, and peer to peer encouragement, learning and collaboration.
The QA Program is overseen by the QA Committee, a statutory committee of the CDTO. With operational support from staff, the Committee monitors Member compliance with the program, reviews and takes action on assessment reports as required, and makes determinations regarding practice enhancement and remediation.
The goal of the Quality Assurance Program is to:
- promote continuing competence and continuing quality improvement among the membership,
- address changes in practice environments, and
- incorporate standards of practice, advances in technology, changes made to entry to practice competencies and other relevant issues in the discretion of the Council.
- ensure all RDTs regularly demonstrate that they meet the baseline competencies in all areas of the dental technology practice
- ensure the baseline requirements of the standards of practice will be raised and new standards will be introduced to reflect innovation and changes in the profession over time
- ensure an environment is created for RDTs to strive for continuous improvement
Overview of QA Components and Tools
The Quality Assurance Program (QAP) comprises of the following key components and tools:
- Continuing Education and Professional Development (CEPD)
- Peer and Practice Assessments
- Professional Development Profile (PDP)
- Summary of the Professional Development Profile (SPDP)
- Guide to obtaining CEPD credits
Self-Assessment is a tool for Members to reflect on their practice. Reflecting on their practice assists the Member to identify their priorities for continuous improvement of their professional knowledge, skills and judgement as they relate to the College’s Standards of Practice and code of ethics and assists them in identifying their learning goals and appropriate CEPD activities for the year ahead.
After reflecting on their own strengths and areas for improvement, members will then formulate their professional development goals and plan on activities that would enhance or develop their knowledge, skills or judgement.
Learning goals should be SMART (Specific, Measurable, Attainable, Relevant and Timely). A well-written goal contains an action or outcome that will assist in determining when the goal has been achieved.
Embedded within the PDP forms is the self-assessment tool. Members will use the Professional Development Portfolio (PDP) forms to complete their annual self-assessment.
2. Continuing Education and Professional Development (CEPD)
All Members are required to participate in CEPD activities to ensure their knowledge, skills and judgement remain current and responsive to changes in practice environments and advances in technology and continue to meet the Standards of Practice set by the College.
Members are required to obtain a minimum of ninety (90) CEPD credits every three (3) years and must document their participation in professional development activities in their Professional Development Portfolio (PDP) and their Summary PDP (SPDP). CEPD credits are earned through participation in a variety of learning activities, giving Members the flexibility to choose the learning approach and activities that best meet their learning goals.
The College has developed the Professional Development Guidelines to assist members in selecting appropriate professional development activities. The guidelines will also inform members in the amount of CEPD credits earned for undertaking such activities.
3. Peer and Practice Assessments
Through Peer and Practice Assessment, the College determines (by means of an on-site visit) how well an RDT is applying the Standards of Practice in their everyday practice. It is also an opportunity for RDTs to learn from and engage with a Peer Assessor, who is a volunteer of the College, so that they may further develop their professional knowledge, skills and judgement.
Each year, a percentage (between 2%-5%) of the College’s membership is randomly selected to take part in a Peer and Practice Assessment. Other members may also be required to undergo an Assessment if they have been referred because of deficiencies in their PDP.
The Assessment includes:
- A start-up meeting
- A tour of the laboratory
- Review of records (i.e. prescriptions, procedure manuals, invoices, maintenance records)
- Observation and interviews to assess performance against the College’s Standards of Practice and guidelines
- A summary meeting to discuss findings, review assessment documentation
All those required to take part in a Peer and Practice Assessment will be notified in writing by the College. Members are required to participate in the QA program each year and to co-operate with the QA Committee, College staff and Peer Assessors.
4. Professional Development Profile
The Professional Development Profile (PDP) is a tool for members to:
- identify learning and performance improvement needs
- set goals and to plan for activities to achieve these goals
- record their professional development activities and track their credits
The PDP forms house the self-assessment forms as well as learning goals and tracking of professional development activities. Members must maintain records in their PDP of their professional development activities and, if requested, submit these to the College. Completed PDPs, including certificates of attendance must be retained for six (6) years from the date of the most recent activity described in the portfolio.
The College will randomly select between 2-5% of the membership each year to review the members PDP. The College will review the learning goals set by the member and review the professional development activities undertaken by the member within their 3-year cycle. Members will be asked to provide proof of completion for all professional development activities.
5. Summary Professional Development Profile
The Summary Professional Development Profile (SPDP) is a summarized version of the PDP that includes the learning goals the member has developed and the record of the members professional development activities undertaken to meet the goal.
At the end of each three (3) year cycle, Members must submit their SPDP forms to the College for review by August 31 of the third year. This provides the College with an opportunity to ensure the member’s ongoing compliance with the program, and to ensure the member is continually striving for professional development.