The history of AQR is steeped in education and skills development. Since its inception it has offered a multitude of courses and helped hundreds of members to progress and gain confidence in the vast array of principles and subject matters involved in qualitative research.

In this ever changing, complex and demanding industry, however, there is a growing desire among employees and employers to ensure that the skill sets within their organisations develop on a continual basis. This has led to a strong desire for a more structured approach to learning, where evidence of progress is definable by meeting clearly specified career, professional and business objectives.

Part of AQR’s Education Sub-Committee’s role, therefore, is to design a program of learning that is indeed relevant to the development needs of the individual and the employer and secondly, that they have a recognised form of evidence of having undertaken Continuing Professional or Personal Development activities and a report of the learning value of those activities.

This is where Continuing Professional Development or ‘CPD’ can provide enormous benefit. CPD is the term given to the commitment to lifelong learning, clearly a fundamental principle of the AQR.

here are currently over 300 institutions, societies and organisations in the UK that have continuing professional development policies for their members, equalling a total membership of circa two million.

AQR is currently seeking independent CPD certification across all of our training courses, programmes and activities — in fact, CPD assessors will be scrupulously poring over all of our well loved AQR activities to see if they meet their strict criteria in 2008. Should we be successful, it will provide the membership with enormous added value as a formal recognition of the AQR’s unique position in ongoing qualitative education.