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Have a question? It may be answered in the Frequently Asked Questions, but feel free to ask us and we'll be back to you as soon as we can. You can also email us at

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Here's a quick reference guide to some of the questions most frequently asked by users of the CLP. For a more complete list of instructions, go to the CLP Help group in The Commons.

CLP - sounds great. What is it?

The CLP is a website to help NPS employees, volunteers, and partners learn the information and collaboratively practice the skills they need to improve their performance on the job. We go beyond “classes” to include informal learning resources (like best practice reference docs) and collaborative discussion groups with your colleagues. Here’s a short video which gives an overview of the CLP.

While the video gives the basics, what people are often really asking when they ask that question is “what is the difference between the CLP and DOI Talent or other tools we already have? Here’s a news post which explains the difference between the CLP and DOI Talent.  We’ve got a few (highly visual) reference guides to explain the difference between the CLP and and InsideNPS.

I'm new to the CLP. How do I get started?

To get started on the Common Learning Portal you’ll want to log in, update your user profile, review the etiquette that is expected of users in the Commons, and browse the Knowledge Park. You may just discover some things you didn’t even know you were looking for!

If I need CLP help, how do I get it?

If you need some help using the CLP, first review the information in the CLP Help group. You may find the answer to your question. If the answer’s not already there, start a new topic and ask your question – someone may be able to help you. If your question doesn’t get answered by the group, you can submit a question via the Contact Us form. When all else fails, email us at

I have a disability and have a problem accessing information on the CLP. What do I do?

The National Park Service (NPS) is committed to making facilities, programs, services, and employment accessible for visitors and employees with disabilities. If you experience any difficulty accessing the information on the Common Learning Portal, please email us at or contact us via our online form. We will try to assist you as best we can. This may include providing the information to you in an alternate format.

How do I list a training on the CLP?

If you have an educational resource such as a training, checklist, or educational video which should be listed on the CLP, we’d love to hear about it. Contact us via the online form or email

When should I start a new Commons group?

Would you like to start a conversation, but you’re not sure the existing Commons groups include your specific interests? Anyone can start a Commons group by following these instructions, but before you start a group:

  • Search the existing list of groups to ensure there isn’t already a group in place.
  • Make sure that you have the time and energy to moderate the discussion in your group.
  • For more questions to ask yourself before starting a group, join the conversation.

Got any tips for communicating in the Commons?

We’ve got a lot of tips and tricks in the CLP Help group but here are a few of the best:

  • Use the Quote feature – When you’re replying to someone else, quote them in your reply to give your reply more context.
  • Organize your discussion into Topics – Rather than just a messy wall of comments in the order in which they were posted, use the topic feature to organize your discussion.
  • Tag specific people in your topics and replies – They’ll get an email and a notification in the CLP.

I found something that's broken on the CLP. What do I do?

The CLP is never going to be finished – we’ll be making iterative improvements for the whole life of this website. If you’ve found something that needs to be improved, let us know about it via the CLP Updates & Maintenance group in the Commons.

Can I get a CLP Team Member to speak about the CLP to my park, program, or interest group?

Absolutely. Submit a request and become a champion of the CLP! Everyone who submits a request earns the unique CLP Champ badge.

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