The Academy
CPA Parliamentary Academy

Online Courses

How does it work?

The CPA Parliamentary Academy online curriculum currently comprises of two programmes: 

  • CPA Parliamentary Professional Development Certificate
  • CPA Parliamentary Service Professional Development Certificate

To be awarded either certificate, a student must complete and pass all relevant courses within the certificate programme. For the CPA Parliamentary Professional Development Certificate, students should complete courses 101, 102, 103 and 104. For the CPA Parliamentary Service Professional Development Certificate, students should complete 01, 02, 03, 04 and 05. Once all of the relevant courses have been passed, the student should contact the CPA Headquarters Secretariat to receive the overall programme certificate. 

However, students also have the option to just take a standalone course. Once passed, students will be issued automatically with a single course certificate. 

Although each programme and course has been designed specifically for either Parliamentarians or Clerks and officials, the programmes and courses can be taken by either group if they wish. 


 

Who can Apply?

The CPA Parliamentary Academy online courses are currently available to Parliamentarians and parliamentary officials from active CPA Branches only.

All courses are free to the above Members.

The online courses will be available to non-CPA Members in the future. Please look out for more information over the coming months.

 

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CPA Parliamentary Professional Development Certificate

Courses 101 - 104

101 - Induction for New Parliamentarians

This course is designed for newly elected or appointed parliamentarians. Throughout the course you will explore and gain a deeper understanding of the complex role of being a parliamentarian. You will be introduced to key themes including the remits of a Member of parliament and what it means to be a parliamentarian in the 21st century. In addition, this course will cover the basics of starting your new role with specific information on Human Resources, maintaining a work life balance and how to engage with your constituents. By the end of this course you will possess the tools to undertake your new role with a wealth of knowledge and confidence.

Course Level: Beginner

Course Length: 12 modules

Course Time (approx.): 4-5 hours

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Copyright UK Parliament

102 - Legislative Process

In this beginner level course you will learn about how parliaments, and in particular parliamentarians make laws. In this course you will explore how, when, and why legislation is made and how you can make amendments. This course covers in detail both pre and post legislative scrutiny which will provide you with the knowledge of how to propose, scrutinise and amend a Bill in your parliament. Finally, you will cover other forms of legislation such as Emergency Legislation, which is relevant in the wake of the global COVID-19 pandemic. Upon completing this course, you will have a detailed understanding of the legislative process and how to effectively make laws. 

Course Level: Beginner

Course Length: 9 modules

Course Time (approx.): 3-4 hours

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103 - Scrutiny, Accountability and Oversight

This course covers the many varied ways that scrutiny is conducted within parliaments, committees, and oversight bodies. From Public Accounts Committees to Audit Institutions, this course gives a detailed look at the types of scrutiny and accountability available to parliaments. This course also examines the role of scrutiny and accountability in the chamber by advising how to hold the government accountable during debates. By the end of this course you will have a clear understanding of the benefits and best practices of scrutiny within varied parliamentary and non-parliamentary settings.

Course Level: Beginner

Course Length: 8 modules

Course Time (approx.): 3-4 hours

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104 - Representation, Advocacy and Education

The Representation, Advocacy and Education course covers a range of topics relevant to contemporary parliaments and it explores the broad question of what is the role of a parliamentarian? You will also look at advocacy work within your role and how-to best advocate for your constituency, from gathering expert advice, to asking questions, and delivering rousing speeches. Furthermore, this course looks closely at engaging with your community such as working with higher education institutions and the benefits of public outreach and education. By the end of this course you will have an understanding of various engagement channels and how to best utilise them, as well as techniques for making your voice heard.

Course Level: Beginner

Course Length: 7 modules

Course Time (approx.): 3-4 hours

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CPA Parliamentary Service Professional Development Certificate

Courses 01-05

01 - Administration and Management of Parliament

In this course you will learn about the complex systems of administration and management that make parliaments effective institutions, but also effective employers. This course covers the importance of Human Resources as well as ethics and standards within parliament. You will also explore the topic of financial management which looks at parliamentary budgets and financial accountability. By the end of this course you will possess a clear understanding of administrative and financial aspects of working within a parliament.

Course Level: Beginner

Course Length: 11 modules

Course Time (approx.): 4-5 hours

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02 - The Committee System

This course will provide an overview of the committee system within a parliamentary context. The course includes information on the various types of committees and their remits, the role of committee Chairs, Members and staff. Broken down into a number of modules and lessons, and including video presentations from leading global experts, the course provides an opportunity to learn about the ways in which committees can be most effective. The course features a range of case studies and resources taken from across the Commonwealth, providing a unique breadth of knowledge on the various types of commitee and their function in different jurisdictions. Although the course has been tailored for newly appointed clerks and officials, the course is suitable for anyone new to the committee system. 

Course Level: Beginner

Course Length: 10 modules

Course Time (approx.): 4-5 hours

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Copyright UK Parliament

03 - Parliamentary Procedure: The Basics

In this course you will hear from former and current clerks and parliamentary staff to explore key concepts within parliamentary procedure, including parliamentary privileges, powers, and immunity. You will also learn about the separation of powers and the role of the Latimer House Principles, which are essential reading for any new parliamentary officer. By the end of this course you will have a firm understanding of the complex nature of parliamentary processes through expert guidance and first-hand experience.

Course Level: Beginner

Course Length: 8 modules

Course Time (approx.): 3-4 hours

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04 - Building Relationships

This course covers a crucial aspect of any parliamentary staff member’s role and that is navigating, managing, and cultivating relationships. You will learn how to build effective relationships with Members, Presiding Officers as well as Ministers and Government Officials. This course will also provide guidance and tips on working with and engaging young people in the parliamentary process. Upon completing this course, you will have the knowledge and skills to work effectively with a range of internal and external stakeholders, while also exploring the importance of building relationships with colleagues and other parliamentary staff.

Course Level: Beginner

Course Length: 8 modules

Course Time (approx.): 3-4 hours

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05 - Strategy, Business Planning and Monitoring and Evaluation

This course will allow you to develop a better understanding of corporate governance through a contemporary lens that gives a detailed explanation and guidance on the role of monitoring and evaluation, creating business plans and the importance of risk management. This course gives clear and accessible definitions for concepts that play a vital role in the everyday workings of a parliament. By the end of this course you will be familiar and comfortable with these topics and possess the knowledge to put forward business plans and monitoring and evaluation strategies.

Course Level: Beginner

Course Length: 5 modules

Course Time (approx.): 2-3 hours

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