International Sleep Research Training Program

World Sleep Society’s International Sleep Research Training Program (ISRTP)
This exciting, multi-year program will provide training to international trainees (i.e., post-doctoral students with PhD, MD, or equivalent degrees) in sleep research. The overarching goals of the program are to prepare sleep trainees from various countries throughout the world for future leadership in basic and/or clinical sleep research. Trainees will be provided formal training on running a sleep lab, performing sleep research, identifying best practices of sleep programs and labs, and understanding sleep business models.

The ISRTP will provide an opportunity for trainees, especially those in underserved countries, to train at major academic institutions so they can acquire sleep research skills from experienced investigators. In turn, the program will foster a cohort of future sleep research leaders who will keep the field of sleep medicine and research vibrant with their ideas, plans, and goals.

We look forward to announcing our partnering institutions of higher learning in 2019!

This educational initiative is supported by Philips Respironics.


Program Objectives

The World Sleep Society will develop and implement a multi-year International Sleep Research Training Program (ISRTP) to provide training to international trainees (i.e., post-doctoral students with Ph.D., M.D., or equivalent degrees) in sleep research. The overarching goals of the program is to prepare sleep trainees from various countries throughout the world for future leadership in basic and/or clinical sleep research. Trainees will be provided formal training on how to run a sleep lab, perform sleep research, identifying best practices of sleep programs and labs, and understanding sleep business models. Trainees will share their findings with others at local, national, and international forums.

Currently, there is not a formalized process to select the best international trainees; most academic sleep centers do not have a formal curriculum or rigorous selection process to choose trainees whom have the best education/backgrounds and/or whom might best benefit from a 1-year comprehensive training program. The ISRTP will provide an opportunity for such trainees, especially those in underserved countries, to train at major academic institutions so they can acquire sleep research skills from experienced investigators. In turn, the program will foster a cohort of future sleep research leaders who will keep the field of sleep medicine and research vibrant with their ideas, plans, and goals.

General Program Overview
The ISRTP will be developed and implemented in two phases.

Phase 1, the Development Phase, will develop the structure and processes for the program, utilizing the experience of the World Sleep Society leadership. An ISRTP Steering Committee will be formed with aims to develop the application processes, create the curriculum, and establish specific measureable short-term and long-term goals over the course of 1 year. Initially, 5 sleep centers at major international academic institutions will be selected and a lead sleep investigator (mentor) at each of the centers will be recruited to join the Steering Committee. The initial 7-member Steering Committee will comprise the program’s 5 mentorship leaders, one member from the WSS Education Committee, and one member from the WSS Examination Committee.

Phase 2, the Implementation Phase, will span 4 subsequent years, and will entail hosting each trainee at each of the 5 sleep centers. The top international trainee will be selected from the pool of applicants based on criteria established in Phase 1. Each trainee will be matched to a mentor at one of the 5 sleep centers, with the goals of gaining research experience, developing new research and clinical skills, and furthering his/her scientific career. Curricula developed during Phase 1 will be used as a standardized process for the subsequent training over the 12-month period. If the trainees also have a background in sleep medicine, trainees will be encouraged to take World Sleep Society’s exam upon completing the program.