Celebrating 20 years of the WISDOM Centre

In the beginning ...

The WISDOM Centre was launched in January 1997, with a grant from the NHS to undertake action research into the provision of online medical education. This initial grant was followed by a series of further commissions from the Department of Health and the NHS to develop software and learning platforms.

This was the first project in the UK to apply the developing technologies of the Internet to medical education, and as such marks the starting point for today’s online educational environments.

Research and education in digital education

In 2002 the Centre gained funding from the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) to undertake a broader programme of research into health care in the digital age. We also were part of a scoping exercise to establish the NHS University.

Alongside these research activities, the WISDOM Centre has also developed resources for medical and health care education and training. Since 2000, we have provided training in clinical governance, health informatics, risk management, managing change and research methodology. Until the end of 2016 WISDOM held a contract with the Health Education England (the NHS’s workforce development arm) to deliver training in clincial governance to specialist registrars. We now operate as an independent online medical education website, and deliver training to medical professionals and others around the world.

The WISDOM team

The original WISDOM team were:
Nick J Fox (now honorary professor, University of Sheffield and WISDOM director): principal investigator.
Chris Roberts (now professor of medical education, University of Sydney): co-investigator.
Pat Lane (sadly no longer with us): project adviser.
Elaine Dolman (now works for NHS East Midlands): research officer.
Alan O’Rourke (now lecturer, University of Sheffield): research officer.

Other WISDOM collaborators include:
Trefor Roscoe: medical educator and GP.
Katie Ward: research officer 2002 - 2005.

New Developments

The WISDOM Centre continues to develop. In 2016 we launched our sister site Social Research WISDOM which provides training in social research methodology.

We are proud of our work over the past 20 years supporting health and medical professionals in the UK and around the world, and look forward to our continuing work to deliver education and training in the future.

Nick Fox
WISDOM Director