Are you looking for a training course in cosmetic medicine, but you’re unsure which course is best for you?
In this article we discuss six (6) factors that you should consider before selecting a training program in cosmetic medicine / aesthetic medicine.
The term “Aesthetic Medicine”, otherwise known as “Cosmetic Medicine”, refers to non-invasive medical treatments that are utilised primarily for the purpose of providing patients with an improved aesthetic physical appearance and/or condition. Aesthetic medical treatments may be used to simply enhance a person’s innate beauty, or they may be used to address a patient’s concerns relating to a pre-existing medical condition, such as scarring, acne, rosacea, pigmentation, vascular defects, and many other medical conditions which affect appearance. Procedures used under the aesthetic medicine umbrella include the use of dermal fillers, anti-wrinkle muscle relaxants, lasers, intense pulse light (IPL) machines, and more.
A medical practitioner who performs aesthetic / cosmetic medicine may be referred to as a “Cosmetic Doctor”, “Cosmetic Physician” or an “Aesthetic Medical Practitioner”.
The six (6) factors we believe are important when deciding which course is right for you include the type of training, the ratio of trainers to registrars, the units of study, the assessment format, the offer of student support, and whether or not the course has been accredited or recognised in any way.
Below we discuss each of these factors in more detail and explain why they are each important.
A course that has been recognised by the government or an authoritative body that you can trust, will give you piece of mind about the course content and delivery. Selecting a recognised training program is the best way to future proof your efforts as recognised courses are more likely to be kept up-to-date and appeal to employers and specialty organisations with whom you may wish to align.
In Australia, education and training is regulated by the Australian Government Department of Education through the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF). The AQF is split into 10 levels, with levels 5-10 representing higher education awards including a doctoral degree (level 10). For more information about the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF) please click HERE.
The Cosmetic Physicians College of Australasia in partnership with Niche Education Group have compiled a highly comprehensive cosmetic medical training program; “The CPCA’s Registrar Training Program”, which is being developed in line with the Australian Qualifications Framework. 52900WA Graduate Certificate in Cosmetic Medicine (available now) is the first stage of the CPCA’s Registrar Training Program and represents the first Australian nationally accredited qualification in cosmetic medicine, being recognised at AQF level 8. This means that you and your employer/organisation can be assured that this course will be delivered by Certificate IV qualified trainers, includes a rigorous assessment process beyond multiple choice, and provides you with the support you need both as a student and after you graduate. Furthermore, by successfully completing 52900WA Graduate Certificate in Cosmetic Medicine you will be on the pathway to CPCA Fellowship and you will be awarded a digital credential for use on your web pages and digital networking accounts.
Ideally, any training you do in aesthetic medicine will encompass a mix of both theoretical knowledge and hands-on practical training. The more comprehensive the course, the more you can feel confident in your skills and knowledge at the end of your training.
The CPCA’s Registrar Training Program covers both theoretical knowledge and hands-on practical training. The theoretical portion of the Graduate Certificate is accessible online and can be completed in a relatively “self-paced” manner. Following successful completion of the theoretical portion, the registrar will undertake 5 full days of practical training over three weekend blocks in Sydney, Melbourne, and Perth. For those wishing to dive deeper into cosmetic medicine, a Graduate Diploma is currently under development. This will build upon the Graduate Certificate (52900WA) by delving deeper into cosmetic procedures at an advanced level (i.e., medical indemnity band 2). Successful completion of the Graduate Certificate will be a prerequisite to the Graduate Diploma.
When considering an aesthetic medical training program, it is important to assess the units of study, or the topics covered by the course. Again, the more comprehensive the course, the more prepared you will be to practice cosmetic medicine.
52900WA Graduate Certificate in Cosmetic Medicine consists of 5 units of study covering not only cosmetic neurotoxins and various dermal fillers, but also best practice protocols and industry-relevant requirements as stipulated by Ahpra. This course will delve into the nitty-gritty of advertising in aesthetic medicine and thoroughly explore facial anatomy and human physiology as applicable to cosmetic injectables. For more information about the units of study covered by 52900WA Graduate Certificate in Cosmetic Medicine head over to https://cpca.net.au/graduate-certificate-in-cosmetic-medicine/ and be sure to follow the unit links under the “Curriculum” tab.
It’s always harder to get the information you need when you are studying amongst a large cohort of students and that is why we recommend checking the ratio of trainers to registrars for any course that you are considering.
The hands-on practical training provided within the Graduate Certificate in Cosmetic Medicine (52900WA) is delivered and assessed with a ratio of 3 registrars to 1 qualified trainer and assessor. The theoretical components are delivered online in a self-paced manner, so you can take your time and absorb all the information at a rate that best suits you. If you have any questions, the CPCA and Niche Education are always there to provide you with support, and that doesn’t suddenly stop as soon as you graduate.
Have you ever enrolled into a course only to find the information brief and the assessment surprisingly effortless? This can leave you feeling dissatisfied and unfulfilled, and that’s why we believe that the assessment format is another important factor that you should consider when selecting a training course in cosmetic medicine.
The assessments for 52900WA Graduate Certificate in Cosmetic Medicine encompass a range of assessment methodologies, not just multi-choice exams. As a nationally accredited qualification, assessment processes must ensure academic rigor, which cannot be achieved with MCQ exams alone.
Not all courses provide additional support for their current or past students, however, this is one requirement under the Australian Qualifications Framework (AQF), and another factor we recommend considering before you select a training program in cosmetic medicine.
In addition to the student support offered through the CPCA’s Registrar Training Program, current CPCA membership is required for enrolment into the Graduate Certificate (52900WA); this means that you can also lean on the College cohort for support. In addition to the private CPCA chat forums and CPD meeting invites, you will also have access to a myriad of other learning and networking opportunities via the CPCA Member Benefits program. More information about our College is available HERE and you can read more about becoming a member of the CPCA HERE.
More information about CPCA Membership is available here. All new members are admitted to the College as Corresponding Members. Applications for Corresponding Membership are processed within 1-2 business days, and are as simple as:
1. Filling out your contact information.
2. Providing your AHPRA or MCNZ Medical Registration Number
3. Uploading your head & shoulders photograph and passport or drivers’ licence.
4. Completing a CPCA Applicants Declaration Form.
5. Paying the annual membership fee of $825 incl. GST.
Click the “Apply Now” button below to begin your application for Corresponding Membership.
This Australian nationally accredited qualification in cosmetic medicine will provide registered medical practitioners with the foundation knowledge and skills to successfully fulfill the role of Cosmetic Doctor. This course caters for both new and practicing cosmetic doctors with Recognition of Prior Learning credits available to eligible candidates. Standard delivery of this course will require approximately 6 hours of study per week, over approximately 12 months.
For more information and to enrol to study the Graduate Certificate in Cosmetic Medicine (52900WA) please visit https://cpca.net.au/graduate-certificate-in-cosmetic-medicine/.