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Welcome to the Communities of Practice Resource Kit!

Communities of Practice (CoPs) are working to strengthen public health as members learn, share expertise, and work together on solving common problems in their communities’ domains. The Communities of Practice Program, in its role of supporting CDC and the broader public health community in implementing CoPs, developed this resource kit to provide potential and current community leaders and members with information about CoPs and tools for community development. The resource kit defines the CoP approach and provides templates and guides that can be used to develop a new community or enhance an existing community. Within this kit, you will find guidance for all stages of CoP development—from planning to evaluation!

Your feedback will help improve this resource kit by identifying needed resources and suggesting areas for enhancement. Please send your feedback by e-mail to ostltsfeedback@cdc.gov.

The CoP Resource Kit contains the following sections:

  • Introduction to Communities of Practice — Learn about the theory behind CoPs, the CoP approach, benefits of joining a CoP, roles and responsibilities within a CoP, and success stories from current communities.
  • Launch a Community of Practice — Learn how to plan and launch a CoP.
  • Sustain a Community of Practice - Learn how to encourage ongoing participation and sustain a CoP over time.
  • Evolve a Community of Practice - Learn how to manage your CoP over time to ensure you are continuing to meet your objectives and your member’s needs.
  • Evaluate a Community of Practice — Recognize the importance of evaluation and how to successfully conduct an evaluation of your CoP.
  • Glossary — Discover explanations of terms related to CoPs.
  • References — Review the sources used to develop this Resource Kit and a selection of other books, web sites, and information related to CoPs.
  • Resources — Explore resources, such as templates, guides, and examples of documents commonly used by new and existing CoPs. Each template is downloadable and allows you to modify as necessary.

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