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I am required to report my CPD efforts every semester. This lead me this ask this question. However, I find myself spending more time than I would like just keeping track of what I have read.

I guess there is a natural trade off between "doing what you do" and "tracking what you do" but, at present, my time is quite constrained. In order to get more done, and to maintain my focus while doing it, I would like some way to automate the tracking of what I read.

I have been using Mendeley and like it quite a bit. It seems a natural for that software to be able to report what you have read in the past n-months but I do not see that. While I can see everything I have read, I cannot see everything I have read in the past 6 or even 12 months (I can, however, see what I have "added" but I might add an article today but only read it 8 months from now).

Is there anyway to make tracking what you read easier

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This isn't exactly the same, but I think might be a useful solution for you as well: for things like tracking travel planning or publications in process, I maintain spreadsheets for myself that track both each item and the workflow for dealing with it in little chunks over a long period of time. In each spreadsheet, I maintain one sheet per year, so that things don't become too crowded. I then keep all of my key workflow charts open in the background, such that it takes me only about 15 seconds to tab over, make an entry, and return.

Something similar might work for you on tracking CPD. Have a column for the items in you queue, another column for when you actually start reading it, and a third for when you finish reading it. It's not automated, but it's lightweight enough that if you get in the habit of tracking, you should be able to do it with minimal time cost.

  • Actually, this is exactly what I do now...I'm just looking for a way to (a) save a little time, and (b) avoid forgetting to log something. – earthling Apr 30 '15 at 7:59

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