How to Host a Professional Development Clinic

How to Host a Professional Development Clinic

Professional Development Clinics

While the preparation of coaches through the NCDP is a major part of our clinic program, we also encourage Professional Development Clinics. These clinics can focus on a variety of topics and can be held online in addition to in-person instruction. Topics can range from teaching and theory, how to start and manage club programs, coaching youth, high school, and collegiate programs, or focusing on the methods of a distinguished coach.

A Professional Development clinic can be designed to serve any level coach and can last anywhere from one hour to several days on a local, regional or national stage. USFCA-approved PDCs provide approved CEUs required to maintain any level of NCDP coaching license. CEUs from a Professional Development Clinic are accepted by USA Fencing.

Beginning in the 2023-2024 Fencing Season, all PDC applications will be charged a $25 processing fee.

All clinics submitted in a timely manner will receive the benefits of full USFCA national marketing. Applications submitted less than thirty days before the start date of the clinic will receive base USFCA marketing.

Steps to Organizing a Professional Development Clinic

  1. Choose the subject and/or presenter for the clinic, which would best appeal to your fencing community
  2. Consult the appropriate fencing calendars and select a date(s) for the clinic
  3. Develop a syllabus and clinic schedule
  4. Prepare a marketing image (must be landscape) to upload with your clinic application.
  5. Prepare a brief clinic/course description that is used for marketing.
  6. Fill out the USFCA Clinic Application and pay the $25 processing fee.
  7. Conduct the clinic and direct participants to fill out the Participant Evaluation Form
  8. At the conclusion of the clinic, be sure the organizer submits the Host Evaluation Form to the USFCA to ensure all participants are awarded the appropriate number of CEUs.

How to gain official USFCA approval for your clinic:

Choose your Presenter and/or Subject Matter

Professional Development Clinics can focus on a variety of topics or feature an elite coach. These clinics can be  face-to-face or online seminars/presentations.

Select the Date

Plan your clinic well ahead of time. Planning is critical to the success of your clinic. We strongly recommend you begin well in advance of your event. Check the national, regional, and local fencing tournament schedules to avoid conflicts. Coordinate with your coach developers and start promotion months in advance to ensure good attendance.

Develop a Syllabus and Clinic Schedule

Coordinate with your coach developers to assist with the development of a syllabus and clinic schedule. A syllabus template can be downloaded here. All information on the sample template is required, although additional information may be added.

If you plan to administer practical exams at your clinic, be sure to download the necessary forms located in the Documents folder called Practical Exam Materials on the USFCA website. All examiners must take the Examiner Certification Course and be certified to give practical exams. This course is available online under the Testing and Courses link. You must provide attendees with information about the exam process on the syllabus and be familiar with the process to help assist attendees.

Your course description, syllabus, and publicity should clearly state attendees must pass the online written USFCA Moniteur or Prevot exam prior to the clinic start if they plan to take a practical exam. Practical exams will not be given if they have not passed the written exam. Attendees should bring with them proof of USFCA membership, email confirmation that they have passed the online exam, and proof of payment online for the practical exam(s). Candidates must also be SafeSport Certified and have a current background check in their profiles on the USA Fencing website. Exam fees must be paid online at the USFCA website and not to clinic organizers.

Prepare a Marketing Image

When you fill out the clinic application, you will need to submit an image for marketing purposes. The image must be in landscape format. It will be used on the USFCA website, mass emails, and social media sites to market the clinic.

Course/Clinic Description

When you fill out the clinic application, you will need to submit a brief description that will be used for marketing purposes. It will be used on the USFCA website, mass emails, and social media sites to market the clinic.

Fill out USFCA Clinic Application

Prepare your syllabi, marketing image, and other information before starting the clinic application. Fill out the online Clinic application form. This form will not allow you to edit once submitted. 

Your application will automatically go to the Professional Development Committee for peer review. It takes 5-7 business days for approval of a clinic application. If your application is incomplete or does not meet USFCA standards for coaching clinics, the PDC will notify the organizer of the items that need addressing before approval. 

Once your clinic application is approved, it will be posted immediately on the USFCA website. An email blast goes out to the membership, and the clinic is posted on USFCA’s social media accounts. Clinics submitted 30 days before the clinic start date will receive additional national marketing.

If you make any significant changes to the clinic after it is approved, such as an additional day, a change of curriculum, a new coach developer, or a cancellation of the clinic, you MUST notify the USFCA Education Manager, David Sierra in a timely manner. Any changes that, in our opinion, would affect the value of the clinic can result in the rescinding of USFCA sanction.

Participant Evaluation

Allow the last fifteen minutes of your clinic for participants to login to the USFCA website (on their cell phones) and fill out the online Participant Clinic Evaluation Form

Host Evaluation and the Awarding of CEUs

At the conclusion of the clinic, the organizer must complete the online Host Evaluation Form within five to seven business days of the conclusion of the clinic. Clinic participants and presenters are awarded continuing education hours based on this document.

Practical exam results must be reported within three days of the conclusion of the clinic for examiners to receive their honorarium. 


The Professional Development Committee is requesting submissions for our USFCA video library. We encourage USFCA clinic organizers to submit videos of individual lesson presentations, group class presentations, and lectures from their clinics. Submit videos here USFCA members may refer to the “videos” section on the USFCA homepage for the preferred format. This is not a requirement.

Thank you for hosting a USFCA PDC clinic. If you have any additional questions or need help with your clinic, please contact the Education Manager, David Sierra, or the USFCA Executive Director, Vinnie Bradford.