Pearls is available free of charge to CFPC members, family medicine residents, and practice-eligible exam candidates. Please select the correct portal by selecting your membership type.

What is a Pearl?

A Pearl is an evidence-based practice reflection exercise. It is a self-directed, self-managed continuing professional development activity that facilitates the integration of new knowledge and skills into practice.

The semi-structured Pearls™ template guides you through a five-step inquiry and reflective process. This process helps you to find valid, reliable and relevant answers to your clinical questions; as well, it prompts you to develop a plan for putting new information ‘to work’ in your practice.

Best of all, Pearls is available free of charge to:

A special version of Pearls has been developed specifically for practice-eligible exam candidates: Pearls.CE.

The Principles

Several guiding principles were followed in developing Pearls:

  • It should be largely self-directed – allowing physicians to complete exercises at their own pace
  • It should be practical - allowing physicians to explore information that is relevant to their practice
  • It should be challenging - allowing members to examine their current practices, knowledge and ability to provide evidence-based care
  • It should be reflective – allowing members to assess the impact of their decisions after an elapsed period of time

We also wanted Pearls to challenge some of the traditional beliefs about CME…

In traditional CME, physicians attend didactic presentations or read books and journals in a rather unsystematic way. Physicians are often presented with a quantity of largely unfiltered information – and from this information, they might extract only a few key items that could benefit their practice. Research has shown that few practice-based changes are made as a result of this type of CME. A more effective way to integrate new information into your practice is to begin with a specific practice question.

How does it work?

The Pearls submission form is designed to guide physicians through a reflective inquiry and learning process. There are five steps to complete.

  • Step 1: Formulate a specific question relevant to your practice.
  • Step 2: Perform a literature search to identify evidence-based information to answer the question.
  • Step 3: Evaluate the information by critically appraising the key article(s).
  • Step 4: Make a practice decision based on this information.
  • Step 5: After an appropriate period of time has elapsed, evaluate the impact of this decision on your practice.

Want to complete Pearls exercises online? Learn more about ePearls.

You are in control

You choose the question and implement clinical decisions based on the results of your independent literature search. You establish the pace of learning - determining when to initiate the activity and when to complete the reflective component.

Once completed, submit your Pearls form to the CFPC for review. Pearls is not a “pass or fail” activity; however, the CFPC reserves the right to withhold credit for incomplete submissions or for submissions that do not meet the requirements stated on the submission form.

CFPC Members: Once reviewed, you will receive three Mainpro-C credits and three bonus Mainpro-M1 credits for each completed Pearls exercise. The CFPC will send confirmation that your submission has been received and processed by email or mail.


Detailed instructions on how to complete a Pearls exercise are available online. Please visit the Pearls Resources and Submission Forms page for everything you need to get started.

Please note that there is no cost for participating in Pearls.

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