The Cambridge Diabetes Education Programme (CDEP) - online education tool

CDEP is a competency-based online diabetes learning tool that supports all levels of healthcare practitioners demonstrate their diabetes knowledge and skills relevant to their role.

A variety of diabetes topics are available which in total currently amounts to 30 hours of diabetes study time. New content is developed on an on-going basis and is launched once it has been rigorously tested. CDEP also supports professional revalidation by displaying study time accrued on the certificates, providing opportunity for reflection as well as offering a secure portal to collect practice-based feedback.

CDEP is based on the UK diabetes competency frameworks which help structure the nature and level of diabetes skills required by all healthcare staff to support safer patient care, improved outcomes and reduce the financial burden of diabetes.

  • TREND: An integrated career and competency framework for diabetes nursing
  • Diabetes UK: An integrated career and competency framework for dietitians and frontline staff
  • Diabetes UK: Podiatry competency framework for integrated diabetes foot care

To align CDEP with the structure of diabetes competency frameworks, there are 5 levels that healthcare practitioners can register at, according to their role. CDEP is suitable for all levels of healthcare practitioners, who have any form of contact with people living with diabetes, from unregistered assistant and support service roles to nursing, medical and allied healthcare professional roles.


Level 1 = core (minimum level for working, in any capacity, with people living with diabetes)

Level 2 = intermediate (roles that have regular contact with people living with diabetes)

Level 3 = diabetes specialist (roles that directly support people managing their diabetes)

Level 4 = diabetes expert (roles that intensively support complex patients with diabetes)

Level 5 = diabetes consultant (roles that are responsible for managing a specialist caseload as well as leading service design, workforce planning, business case development, etc.)

CDEP is designed to be done in ‘bite-sized chunks’. Users can log in when and where they can and do a few competencies within a topic – one can take as little a minute to do. Once a competency is finished, it will automatically be saved, so no work will be lost if people dip in and out when they have a spare moment!

Currently there are 15 topics available – providing a total of 30 hours of diabetes study time. Once a topic is successfully completed a certificate and reflection sheet is automatically generated with the CPD time allocated to that topic.

Foundation topics – CDEP recommends that all users complete these topics in order to demonstrate competencies in these fundamental areas of diabetes care:

  • What is Diabetes
  • Hypoglycaemia
  • Hyperglycaemia
  • Oral Therapies
  • Injectable Therapies
  • Promoting Self-care
  • Nutrition
  • Blood glucose and ketone monitoring
  • Foot care

Other topics – these topics maybe more relevant to some staff than others depending on their area of work or interest:

  • Screening, prevention and early detection of Type 2 Diabetes
  • Nutrition and Physical Activity (QoF DM13 requirements for non-dietetic practitioners)
  • Pregnancy: Pre-conception Care
  • Managing Diabetes in Hospital
  • Managing Diabetes in Residential and Nursing Homes
  • Carbohydrate Counting and Multiple Daily Insulin Injection Dose Adjustment (Diabetes Specialist level and above only)


Please visit the website to register.


If you require any further information, please contact: Candice Ward, Lead CDEP educator at [email protected]

Information leaflet:

Click here to download a PDF


“The learning validated my current knowledge and practice. Makes me feel more secure that I am delivering good quality and up-to-date info to patients.” Diabetes Expert Level

‘Informative, useful and makes you think more about the theory behind what we advise.”

“A useful way to fit study into a busy lifestyle - small chunks that can be accessed when free!”

“CDEP helps health professionals to treat people with diabetes effectively.” Diabetes Specialist Level

“Very thought provoking course, with lots of great literature. The competency tests at the end of each topic really helped me to take in the information I had read. Wonderful course, would strongly recommend to colleagues.” Intermediate Level

“I find this a useful tool for updating and checking knowledge on the management of diabetes”

“The subject was broken down into nice easy to manage bite size chunks that helped me retain the information.” Core Level