New Resources for the Role of Professional Development Associate

Do you have people who support the work of your education department? They may have titles of administrative assistants, secretaries, instructional design specialists, web designers, or any number of other names. How are they oriented? What evidence-based standards guide their work? How do you know what contributions they are making to the success of your department? Do they feel that their contributions are important and valuable, or is it “just a job?” We often feel that these individuals are the “glue” that holds the department together, but the role has never been clarified or recognized.

Recognizing the disparity of how these roles are currently implemented, ANPD has engaged in a number of activities over the past year to improve the recognition and value of these key individuals. The first step was naming and defining the position. The title “Professional Development Associate” was approved by the ANPD Board of Directors, and the role is defined as “an individual who contributes to the overall functioning of a continuing education/professional development department in a substantive, measurable way.” Webinars have been held to develop knowledge and skills of individuals in these roles, and a full-day pre-convention workshop was offered for professional development associates as part of the 2018 ANPD Annual Convention. A similar pre-convention workshop will be held on March 31 at the 2019 ANPD Annual Convention in Phoenix, AZ.

Two new resources are now available for you and your professional development associate:

  1. ANPD's Human Resources Toolkit for the NPD Practitioner is now available in the ANPD online store. This toolkit includes a definition and description of the role; alignment of the expectations of individual in the role with the current edition of the Nursing Professional Development: Scope and Standards of Practice (Harper & Maloney, 2016); a sample position description; and an evaluation template that is evidence-based and tiered to reflect novice, competent, and expert levels of performance.
  2. Professional Development Associate is now a membership category for ANPD. Your support team can benefit from full membership in the association, including access to extensive support resources, educational materials, and other information.

Investing in professional development and standardizing role expectations will increase the effectiveness of your team in providing quality professional development opportunities for nurses and other members of our healthcare teams! 

Click here to become a Professional Development Associate member of ANPD.

Click here to purchase the Human Resources Toolkit for the Professional Development Associate.

Click here to register for the Professional Development Associate pre-convention workshop at the upcoming 2019 ANPD Annual Convention.

Reference: Harper, M. G., & Maloney, M. (2016). Nursing professional development: Scope and standards of Practice (3rd ed.). Chicago, IL: Association for Nursing Professional Development. Retrieved from

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