Life Beyond the Cubicle: eLearning Resource

The project title “Life Beyond the Cubicle” aims to emphasise the existence of individuals, families, and friends before and beyond consultations with healthcare professionals.

The eLearning materials have been developed by a small Co-Creation Group of ten people with lived experience as patients, family carers, and clinicians from Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust. This process has been crucial to ensuring that the materials reflect the experiences and aspirations of those with lived experiences as well as the learning needs of clinicians.


The eLearning materials consist of the following modules:

  • Introduction (includes guidance on how to use this resource)
  • Module 1: Why do families and friends matter?
  • Module 2: Assumptions and expertise
  • Module 3: Feelings and fears
  • Module 4: Confidentiality and Information Sharing
  • Module 5: Safety planning
  • Resources for family and friends

The modules are interactive. Each module includes films, audio, and scenarios, along with questions for reflection and pointers to good practice.


The resources consist of two components:

  1. An eLearning resource designed to enable healthcare professionals working with adults to reflect on effective ways to engage families and friends when assessing and treating a service user during an acute mental health episode. The emphasis is on encouraging and helping healthcare professionals to listen to families, learn from them, involve them, inform them, and support them. There are a series of modules, using films and audio as stimulus materials, designed to work through the key challenges of engaging families.
  2. A handbook for facilitated group-based training using the stimulus materials from the eLearning package. This aspect of training enables richer dialogue and discourse between healthcare professionals to promote deeper reflections on experience and consideration of the facilitators and barriers to effective and authentic family involvement, with a view to taking positive action when back in practice.


The materials are being piloted in Oxford Health NHS and Berkshire Foundation Trusts and feeder universities during Autumn 2023. We expect around 100 clinicians from a variety of services and roles to test the modules at this stage, including inpatient, crisis, psychiatric liaison, and community teams. Student nurses are also being invited to test.

This pilot will collect feedback and the materials will then be revised, before being offered to up to 6 NHS Trusts to test in Winter. It is this second phase of testing that will be externally evaluated.

Those Trusts selected to include in this second phase of testing will be expected to work with the external evaluator and to provide monitoring and feedback information to the project team. The Trusts will be offering the testing of materials as a Quality Improvement project, not as a research project.

Final revisions will take place following this second phase of testing and evaluation, and the materials will then be published by NHSE and made available to health and care professionals.