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Training

Training of Assistant Practitioners

The Training Manual has been prepared by The College of Podiatry to ensure uniformity of Assistant Practitioner training nationally. Every newly appointed Assistant Practitioner who registers for the training programme will each have his or her own manual. It will be used in addition to the practical training.

The manual is intended to give underpinning theory alongside the practical training of Assistant Practitioners. The only way these skills can be acquired is by instruction from supervising HCPC registered podiatrists. It is impractical to attempt to include more than the level of reference to practical training in this manual.

The learning aims are identified at the start of each section of the manual. It is advisable to work out a programme of study time / learning activities, so that work, life and study have an appropriate amount of time dedicated to them. Some sections are larger than others and will, naturally need longer to work through. All sections have topics for the Assistant Practitioner and supervising podiatrist to discuss. Additionally, ITC tasks and interesting facts are placed throughout the document, to add to the written information provided. At the conclusion of each section, self-assessment tasks will enable the Assistant Practitioner to judge their learning and a structured page to allow for reflection.

The focus of each section is threefold:

  1. Attainment and assessment of knowledge

  2. Application of knowledge to clinical practice (within the appropriate scope of practice)

  3. Reflection upon the learning experience / clinical practice


Each section has points for discussion between the Assistant Practitioner and the supervising podiatrist and these should take place during scheduled tutorial / meeting times, allowing progress to be mapped and knowledge to be embedded. These discussion points may include interesting patient cases, a small research exercise (fact finding, using the internet, reading an article etc.). In addition to this, self-assessment tasks help Assistant Practitioners test their knowledge on that particular subject. Supervising podiatrists may wish to set more questions / tasks using the manual as a guide.

Reflection is an important aspect of practice and will have a presence throughout the manual. An introduction to reflection and reflective practice is provided to aid in the development of this skill. Contemplative thought and discussion with the supervising podiatrist and other colleagues may aid in this valuable process. 

The training manual includes a competence section to be signed by the supervising podiatrist and Assistant Practitioner when an assistant has demonstrated competence in each particular area of work. This section must be presented to the external examiner at the time of the final assessment.

The training manual has been compiled to provide the underpinning theory for Assistant Practitioner training and to act as a reference for future practice.

Please note there is no deadline to complete the training by, however 500 clinical hours must be completed before the Assistants can be submitted for the Final Assessment.

If you require any guidance during training please contact:

Email: assistantpractice@scpod.org