CME Content Development

What We Require in Your Content Development Process

In creating a CME educational activity, we encourage you to reach out to our office for any support or guidance you may need.  However, we do require that all CME activities must meet the minimum requirements of:

  • Be designed to make change in the are of competence; performance; or patient outcomes
  • Address professional practice gaps of physicians. The practice gap is defined as the difference between current and best practice.
  • Use needs assessment data to plan the activity and can document the source of the needs assessment data.
  • Have content that matches the intended learners’ current or potential scope of practice is developed in the context of desirable physician attributes; and is delivered using educational formats appropriate for the setting, objectives and desired results of the activity.
  • Be in compliance with the ACCME’s Standards of Integrity and Independence.
  • Evaluate the effectiveness of the learning intervention in meeting the objectives.


Needs Assessment Data

Needs assessment is a systematic process for determining and addressing needs, or “gaps” between current conditions and desired conditions or “wants”. The discrepancy between the current condition and wanted condition must be measured to appropriately identify the need. The need can be a desire to improve current performance or to correct a deficiency.

A needs assessment is an important part of the planning process, often used for improvement in individuals, education/training, organizations, or communities… It can be an effective tool to clarify problems and identify appropriate interventions or solutions… Gathering appropriate and sufficient data informs the process of developing an effective program that will address the target audiences needs and wants.

Needs assessment data, whether obtained by conducting a survey, developing a matrix, or researching electronic resources, etc, will provide planners with an insight into the underlying gaps in professional practice.

A needs assessment can assist in:

  • Identifying the educational needs, professional practice gaps, and or barriers to care of your target audience,
  • Sharpening a program’s priority-based strategic improvement plan, and
  • Refining learning objectives that are specific to the goals of an activity.


Speaker’s Content Slides

  • Presentations must not use logos or trademarks, although factual references to companies, products and services in generic font are permitted; however, educational materials that are part of a continuing medical education activity cannot contain any advertising, trade names or product group messages.
  • Presentations shall not use the names, images, biographies, or other recognizable features of patients without prior express written permission. (Data or materials that are
    ‘anonymized’ or otherwise modified to prevent recognition of individuals are permitted.)


Additional Information for Content Selection and Peer Review


Types of Educational Activity Formats

The ACCME  learning formats offered.

  • Live Course
  • Regularly Scheduled Series
  • Enduring Material
  • Journal CME/CE
  • Manuscript Review
  • Test-Item Writing
  • Committee Learning
  • Performance Quality Improvement
  • Internet Searching and Learning
  • Learning from Teaching
  • Other/Blended Learning


Additional Guidelines for online or virtual formats