Emphasizing Soft Skills in Continuing Competence
Professionals are required to conduct themselves in a manner that is appropriate and consistent with the written and unwritten standards of their profession. Professionalism can be demonstrated in the way a professional executes both their clinical skills and their soft skills. Soft skills, which include behaviours that relate to communication, ethical conduct and leadership, are recognized to have an impact on how the patient/client perceives the professional, as evidenced for example, in patient satisfaction surveys. It is increasingly evident that soft skills (or gaps in these skills) are related to patient complaints and subsequent disciplinary actions by regulators.
The College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario (CRPO) recognizes that psychotherapists rely on soft skills to establish and manage effective therapeutic relationships. Indeed, a defining competency of the psychotherapy profession – safe and effective use of self – relies on highly developed soft skills in order that the competency can be performed consistently even in challenging conditions.
We will share a continuing competence assessment methodology that highly emphasizes soft skills, explaining how this transfers to interview-based, written, and case-based examinations.
1. Recognize the value of assessing soft skills in continuing competence.
2. Explore a step-by-step process for creating soft skills assessment tools that provide members/candidates with formative feedback.
3. Apply this methodology to a case-study conducted by CPRO.
Originally presented: October 2018
Lene Marttinen , Manager, Quality Assurance, College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario
Leanne Worsfold, Director, Quality Programs and Test Development, iComp Consulting Inc.