College of Traditional Chinese Medicine Practitioners and Acupuncturists of British Columbia

Framework for Career-Span Competence

The graphic below illustrates visually the evolution of a registrant’s abilities over time. A recognition of career-span development is fundamental to the Practice Support Program.

Career-Span Competence Diagram

The transition from novice practice to developed practice is gradual one, but nevertheless very significant for both the TCM practitioner and the client.

Characteristics of Novice Practice: The practitioner…

…is driven primarily by an external knowledge base (information & skills learned in school)
…makes decisions in a structured but relatively inflexible manner
…may struggle to adapt to client context and practice context

Characteristics of Developed Practice: The practitioner…

…possesses a substantial personalized knowledge base (drawn primarily from experience) that supplements external information
…makes decisions in a faster and more fluid manner (uses pattern recognition & cues)
…readily adapts to client context and practice context

Fourteen Career-Span Competencies have been established, applicable across the career-span. Strong support for the competencies has been expressed by the registrant body, and agreement that they cover all aspects of practice.

The broad nature of the competencies means that they map out differently ‘on the ground’, practice setting by practice setting; this is a strength of the career-span competency approach in that it requires the registrant to take responsibility for determining specific applications according to their practice situation.

While practice consistent with the Career-Span Competencies is an expectation across the career span, the level of performance relative to them can be expected to increase as a registrant proceeds into developed practice.

When it is fully developed, the Practice Support Program will utilize various assessment methods to help registrants determine their level of compliance with the Career-Span Competencies and their progress across the career development spectrum. Assessment information will support a reflective approach to TCM practice that enhances practice-based learning and professional development.