The Best Online Sleep Courses

The Best Online Sleep Courses UK (2024)

Last updated: 15.04.2024 Reading time: 9 Min.

So you're looking for a new career as a sleep therapist?

Or perhaps you're only looking to understand your sleep better - and help yourself or loved ones beat insomnia?

No matter your prime driving force, taking a sleep course (or getting a sleep certification) can have a host of benefits.

Here is a list of some of the best online sleep courses you can take to grow your knowledge and help you break into a new field.

Let's dive right in.

person studying and sitting in front of books

Which sleep course should you take?

Of course, there's no easy way to answer this, as it largely depends on why you're looking into taking a sleep course in the first place.

For this reason, we've divided our list of sleep courses into different categories.

  • Sleep courses for individuals: The bulk of these will focus on a basic understanding of sleep and sleep disorders, with the aim of helping individuals sleep better. A few may be more related to specific interests, while others form part of more exclusive coaching programmes. Some of these may also be of interest to professionals who are just getting started in the sleep world.
  • Sleep training courses for professionals: The resources listed here include both free and paid-for additional certifications as well as full-time diplomas for professionals in the sleep and wellness industries. Some of these may also be of interest to individuals looking to expand their knowledge.
  • Sleep courses for parents: These courses are aimed at new parents to help them cope with the sleep needs of their children - and help them sleep better in the process.

Of course, we only list a handful of the most popular English language sleep courses available online - you may be able to find many more offered by individuals or smaller institutions. 🎓

If you're not sure which sleep course to take, it'd be a good idea to look for your topic of interest and then weigh up the cost and time commitment required.

For professionals, taking a closer look at the certifications and accreditations of each course will be important.

Sleep courses for individuals

If you're struggling with insomnia and need a more hands-on approach to dealing with sleep problems, taking a sleep course may help.

Improving Your Sleep

  • Course offered by: Harvard Health Publishing - Harvard Medical School (USA)
  • Prime focus: Helping individuals improve their sleep with information on sleep patterns, treating sleep disorders, and tips for a good night's sleep
  • Cost: £
  • Enrol: Take the Harvard Improving Your Sleep online course

Introduction to Good Sleep for Adults

  • Course offered by: Sleep Action (UK)
  • Prime focus: Individuals wanting to understand their sleep better. Topics covered include sleep patterns, what happens when sleep goes wrong, and how to get a good night's sleep
  • Time commitment: 1.5 hours
  • Cost: £
  • Enrol: Take the Introduction to Good Sleep for Adults course

Science of Sleep and Dreams (for individuals and professionals)

  • Course offered by: New Scientist Academy (UK)
  • Prime focus: The importance of sleeping and dreaming for cognition, mental health, and well-being
  • Certification: Digital Certificate of Completion. This course is CPD-certified.
  • Time commitment: 4 - 6 hours
  • Cost: Free
  • Enrol: Take the Science of Sleep and Dreams online course

Sleep Awareness

  • Course offered by: WA Management (UK)
  • Prime focus: Sleep awareness training for individuals struggling to sleep. Topics covered include why we need sleep, what happens during sleep, reasons for disrupted sleep, using tech to track sleep, and methods for managing sleep
  • Certification: Sleep Awareness Training Certificate available on successful completion
  • Time commitment: 30 minutes
  • Cost: £
  • Enrol: Take the Sleep Awareness training course

Sleepstation (coaching programme only)

  • Course offered by: Sleepstation (UK)
  • Prime focus: Clinically validated sleep improvement programme to help you sleep better through work with coaches
  • Time commitment: Individual coaching sessions
  • Cost: £ (or free access through the NHS)
  • Enrol: Read up on the Sleepstation coaching programme

Sleep Well, Live Better

  • Course offered by: The Insomnia Clinic (UK)
  • Prime focus: Step-by-step programme to understanding and improving sleep using evidence-based and NHS-recommended techniques
  • Time commitment: 4 weeks
  • Cost: £££
  • Enrol: Take the Sleep Well, Live Better course

Udemy (various sleep courses for individuals and professionals)

  • Courses offered by: Udemy (USA)
  • Prime focus: A range of sleep-related courses available, including "Restoring Deep Sleep to Enhance Your Health", "Learn Optimal Sleep to Improve Your Health, Energy, and Mind", and "Yoga for Insomnia"
  • Certification: Udemy courses are not accredited, but a Certificate of Completion may be available
  • Time commitment: Course-dependent
  • Cost: £
  • Enrol: Browse Udemy sleep courses online

Understanding Insomnia and Improving Sleep

  • Course offered by: NHS (UK)
  • Prime focus: Helping people who are suffering from prolonged sleep difficulties understand insomnia and improve their sleep
  • Time commitment: 2-hour weekly group sessions for 5 weeks
  • Cost: Free, but you will need to be referred by your GP or mental health worker
  • Enrol: Read more about the Understanding Insomnia and Improving Sleep course

Understanding Sleep

  • Course offered by: Royal Society for Public Health (UK)
  • Prime focus: Introduction to sleep as a public health issue, with a focus on healthy sleep and improving sleep routines, how alcohol and drugs affect sleep, and sleep disorders
  • Certification: CPD-accredited Certificate of Completion available
  • Time commitment: 3 hours
  • Cost: Free (but certificate purchasing available)
  • Enrol: Take the RSPH Understanding Sleep course

Sleep training courses for professionals

Whether you're already working in sleep-related fields or are looking to get started, these courses can help you get ahead.

Circadian Clocks

  • Course offered by: Ludwig Maximilian University of Munich via Coursera (Germany, course in English)
  • Prime focus: Undergraduate introduction to chronobiology and circadian rhythms
  • Certification: Coursera certificate
  • Time commitment: 13 hours
  • Cost: Free (but certificate purchasing available)
  • Enrol: Take the Circadian Clocks online course

ESRS webinars

  • Webinars offered by: European Sleep Research Society
  • Prime focus: On-demand and upcoming webinars on a variety of sleep-related topics, primarily geared towards those professionally active in sleep-related fields
  • Time commitment: Approximately 1-2 hours per webinar
  • Cost: Free
  • Enrol: Watch ESRS webinars online

Healthy Sleep (for professionals and individuals)

  • Course offered by: Division of Sleep Medicine - Harvard Medical School (USA)
  • Prime focus: Covers a range of sleep basics, including why sleep matters, the science of sleep, the role of genetics and ageing in sleep, and tips on dealing with sleep disturbances. This course is part of Harvard's Sleep and Health Education Programme to help individuals and professionals understand the importance of good sleep and help recognise sleep problems.
  • Time commitment: Interactive website with a variety of information. Time commitment depends on topics of interest.
  • Cost: Free
  • Enrol: Explore the Harvard Healthy Sleep public education online course

Holistic Sleep Coaching Programme

  • Course offered by: Holistic Sleep Coaching (UK)
  • Prime focus: Aimed at helping sleep coaches who work directly with families, with a focus on sleep biology, cycles, hygiene, routines, safe sleep, naps, health challenges, mental health, sensory differences, creating sleep strategies, and more
  • Certification: Certification accredited by Open College Network [1]
  • Time commitment: 14 weeks (there is also a condensed 1-day version available - more info at Holistic Sleep Coaching Mini-Course)
  • Cost: £££
  • Enrol: Apply for the Holistic Sleep Coaching programme

Oxford Online Programme in Sleep Medicine (post-graduate)

  • Course offered by: University of Oxford (UK)
  • Prime focus: Sleep medicine
  • Certification: PgDip or MSc
  • Time commitment: 2 years
  • Cost: ££££
  • Enrol: Apply for the Online Programme in Sleep Medicine programme

Sleep Consultant Accredited Practitioner Diploma

Sleep Counselling Online

  • Course offered by: Sleep Action (UK)
  • Prime focus: Aimed at professionals working with children and young people with additional support needs
  • Certification: Certification dependent on satisfactory completion of first sleep counselling case
  • Time commitment: 39 hours
  • Cost: ££££
  • Enrol: Take the Sleep Counselling online course

Sleep: Neurobiology, Medicine, and Society

  • Course offered by: University of Michigan - Michigan Online (USA)
  • Prime focus: Scientific and cellular-level understanding of the biological, personal, and societal relevance of sleep, with a focus on the neurobiological basis of sleep control, sleep disorders, and the societal relevance of sleep
  • Certification: Not eligible for UM credits, but you can get a certificate if taken via Coursera
  • Time commitment: 12 weeks
  • Cost: Free (but certificate purchasing available)
  • Enrol: Take the Sleep: Neurobiology, Medicine, and Society online course

Sleep Well Academy (various sleep courses)

  • Course offered by: Sleep Well Academy, in partnership with The Sleep Charity [2] (UK)
  • Prime focus: A variety of topic-specific courses for professionals working in the health and sleep industries, focusing on sleep for both children and adults. Some courses are by application only, and there may be prerequisites.
  • Certification: CPD-credited.
  • Time commitment: Course-dependent
  • Cost: £ - £££
  • Enrol: Browse the Sleep Well Academy online courses

Sleep courses for parents

New parents often struggle with the sleep needs of their babies, but luckily there are some courses specifically designed to help.

Baby & Toddler Sleep Courses For Parents

  • Courses offered by: Teach To Sleep (UK)
  • Prime focus: Empowering parents to help their babies and toddlers sleep better by identifying sleep needs and accommodating these into daily routines. Multiple courses for different ages are available.
  • Time commitment: Course-dependent
  • Cost: £
  • Enrol: Take one of the Teach To Sleep courses.

Baby Sleep Training Course

  • Course offered by: Little Z's (USA)
  • Prime focus: Step-by-step programme to help babies aged 4 - 16 months get better sleep, with continued support for parents
  • Time commitment: 2 weeks
  • Cost: ££
  • Enrol: Take the Little Z's Baby Sleep training course

Child & Baby Sleep Expert Courses

  • Courses offered by: Andrea Grace (UK)
  • Prime focus: Expert help that shares evidence-based, practical advice and strategies to help parents and young children get a good night's sleep. Two different courses (Gentle Sleep Course 6 - 18 Months & Early Waking Course 4 Months - 5 Years) are available
  • Time commitment: Dependent on the course taken
  • Cost: £
  • Enrol: Take an Andrea Grace Sleep Expert course.

Children's Sleep Consultant

  • Consultancy offered by: Amy Jones (UK)
  • Prime focus: Helping parents navigate children's sleep and identifying sleep disorders. Amy offers a bespoke service with a variety of approaches to the family's needs, and also offers support for children with additional needs.
  • Time commitment: Various options are available
  • Cost: £ - ££
  • Sign up: Do one of the Children's Sleep Consultant package

Just Chill Baby Sleep (various courses according to age groups)

  • Course offered by: Just Chill Baby Sleep (UK)
  • Prime focus: A variety of courses are offered, including "Early Days & Foundations of Sleep (0 - 5 months)", "Sleep Success (6 - 9 months)", "Sleep Success II (10 - 18 months)", "Sleep Success III (1.5 - 4 years)", and "How To Sleep Better For Parents"
  • Certification: These courses are designed for new parents only, but course material is science-backed and approved by the MAMA Academy, Made for Mums, and Bambini
  • Cost: £ (bundle offers also available)
  • Enrol: View the Just Chill Baby Sleep courses

Newborn Sleep

  • Course offered by: The Mummy & Daddy Sleep Consultant (UK)
  • Prime focus: Aimed at expecting parents or those who have just given birth to learn the foundations of baby sleep and safe sleeping guidelines according to The Lullaby Trust [3]
  • Cost: £
  • Enrol: Take the Newborn Sleep online course

The 5 - 24 Month Collection

  • Course offered by: Taking Cara Babies (USA)
  • Prime focus: A collection of 3 online courses to help you and your baby achieve 10 - 12 hours of sleep a night, conquer naps, and deal with bumps along the way
  • Time commitment: 20 hours
  • Cost: ££ - £££ (courses available independently or as the full collection)
  • Enrol: View the Taking Cara Babies 5 - 24 Month Collection baby sleep courses

Do you have a sleep course to add?

While we make an effort to keep our list of the best sleep courses up to date, it's likely that we may have missed some newer offerings.

If you run or have recently taken an out-of-this-world sleep course, please pop us a message via our Contact Us page.

Frequently asked questions

  • What is a sleep course?

    A sleep course is an educational programme designed to provide knowledge and understanding about various aspects of sleep.

    These courses can vary in content, duration, and target audience, but generally, they cover topics related to sleep health, sleep disorders, sleep science, and sleep hygiene.

  • What content does a sleep course cover?

    Sleep courses, especially ones designed to improve sleep quality and understanding of sleep health, typically cover a range of topics.

    These may include:

    • Understanding sleep, including the basics of sleep, the sleep cycle, and the different stages of sleep
    • The importance of sleep for physical health, mental health, and overall well-being 
    • Common sleep disorders, such as insomnia, sleep apnoea, restless leg syndrome, and narcolepsy
    • Tips and best practices to improve sleep hygiene, such as creating a conducive sleep environment, establishing a regular sleep schedule, and understanding the impact of diet and exercise on sleep
    • The basics of CBT-I (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy for Insomnia), an evidence-based approach to treating insomnia without medication
    • The impact of technology on sleep
    • How sleep patterns and needs change with age
    • Strategies for dealing with sleep challenges related to work schedules and travel
    • Techniques such as mindfulness, meditation, and deep breathing exercises to aid sleep
    • Exploring how diet and nutrition can impact sleep 
    • Understanding the effects of various medications and substances on sleep 

    Some courses may also dive into related subjects, such as the science of dreaming, or provide real-life case studies.

  • Who are sleep courses aimed at?

    Some sleep courses are geared towards healthcare professionals and offer detailed medical or scientific insights into sleep, but many are also designed for the general public and focus on practical tips for better sleep.

  • Why should I take a sleep course?

    Completing a sleep course can help individuals understand and improve their own sleep patterns. 

    For professionals, a sleep course can enhance their ability to treat and support patients with sleep disorders or help them explore entirely new fields.

  • How do I become a sleep coach in the UK?

    There is no legal requirement for a certificate to become a sleep coach in the UK, but obtaining relevant certification can greatly enhance your credibility, knowledge, and skills. 

    Here's a closer look at the process:

    • Relevant background: While not mandatory, a background in health, psychology, nursing, or counselling can be beneficial for a career in sleep coaching.
    • Certification programmes: There are various certification programmes available that offer training in sleep coaching. These programmes often cover sleep science, coaching techniques, and specific approaches to dealing with sleep disorders. Completing a certification programme can provide you with the necessary knowledge and tools to effectively help clients.
    • Professional development: Continuous professional development is important. This can include attending workshops or seminars and taking courses related to sleep science and coaching.
    • Membership in professional bodies: Joining professional bodies related to sleep medicine or coaching can provide network opportunities, access to the latest research, and add to your professional standing. Examples include the British Sleep Society [4] or the British Association for Counselling and Psychotherapy [5].
    • Building experience: Practical experience is crucial. This could involve working under experienced sleep professionals or gradually building a client base and gaining experience through practice.

    You could also further your focus by zoning in on a specific target group, such as specialising in sleep coaching for babies or children.

  • References



Editor & Certified Sleep Therapist

Nicky is an experienced writer and editor with numerous qualifications. As a certified sleep coach, her interests lie in understanding how sleep problems arise from hormonal and environmental issues, particularly as part of stress and anxiety management.

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