PEP Course Description and Curriculum Learning Objectives



  • At least 17 years old.
  • High School Diploma or GED; copy of your Diploma is required with Application.
  • Certified in CPR by the AHA or Red Cross
    • First Sleep is an Authorized Provider with American Red Cross to provide CPR training.  If interested, please let your school representative know that you would like to obtain your CPR certification through First Sleep.  Additional fees apply.

Course Description:

This course of instruction prepares individuals for entry-level jobs as a polysomnographic technician, a.k.a. sleep technician. Graduates may find suitable employment with sleep disorder centers. Students will learn the basics of performing the typical operational tasks as a sleep technician as well as adult and pediatric sleep studies performed within a hospital based or free-standing sleep disorder center. Upon completion of this program students will be able to understand the role and scope of the sleep technician within a sleep center, educate the patient on basic elements of sleep related disorder, perform patient hookups, perform diagnostic sleep studies, perform therapeutic sleep studies with the use of positive airway devices such as CPAP and BiPAP, perform daytime hypersomnia studies such as Multiple Sleep Latency Tests (MSLT) and Maintenance of Wakefulness Tests (MWT).

Student Will Learn to Do:

  1. How to appropriately greet the patient when they arrive at the center, how to interact with patients throughout the encounter and how to take a comprehensive sleep history with and without using Sleep Questionnaires.
  2. How to measure the head using the 10-20 electrode placement system and how to start recognizing the earmark differences between sleep stages.
  3. How to properly prepare the patient’s skin for EEG electrode placement on the scalp, near the eyes, on the chin/jaw and the chest. How to connect the wires to the sleep equipment and then how to start recognizing the earmark differences between sleep stages and the difference between a normal sinus rhythm and cardiac arrhythmia.
  4. How to apply appropriate sensors for effort, airflow and blood oxygen/carbon dioxide monitoring and how to connect the sensor to the sleep equipment. The student will learn how to perform a full hook up of a routine polysomnogram.
  5. How to define and recognize the obstructive apneas, obstructive hypopneas, Respiratory Effort Related Arousals (RERAs), snoring as well as central apneas, central hypopneas, periodic breathing episodes like Cheyne-Stokes Breathing. How to define and recognize hypoventilation/hypoxemia. How Continuous Positive Airway Pressure (CPAP) works and about the many different interfaces that can be available to the patient during the study and at home. The student will also learn when, how and why to adjust the pressure during a study and under what conditions would a split night study be performed.  The subject will also discuss the protocol relating to decannulation studies, which are performed on patients with a tracheotomy in place to bypass the upper airway.
  6. How to explain to the patient how Positive Airway Works and the difference between Auto-PAP, CPAP and BiPAP, how to desensitize the patient to PAP during orientation, how to place an interface on the patient and take it off, how and when to adjust the pressures, how and when to initiate CPAP during a split night study, how and when to switch between Auto-PAP, CPAP and BiPAP during a study, how and when to initiate/stop supplemental oxygen during a study. How to educate the patient on the alternative options to PAP therapy for treating sleep disordered breathing.
  7. How to properly apply the different EMG electrodes on the patient and monitor the EMG tracing within the recording montage, how to define and recognize movement disorders such as PLMD and bruxism, how to define and score periodic limb movements, how to differential between sleep disordered breathing events or true neurological movements not associated to a sleep disordered breathing issue, how to review and read a polysomnographic report and how the many indices are calculated for reporting.
  8. How to differentiate between nocturnal parasomnia and nocturnal seizures, how to define and Narcolepsy and all its clinical features, how to set up a patient for and perform a MSLT test and MWT test.
  9. How to identify common clinical manifestation of issues relating to insomnia, seizures, circadian rhythm disorders and/or behavioral/psychiatric related issues, how to recognize and eliminate artifact from the different tracings in a sleep study, how to manage emergencies and when to escalate the response to outside help, how to independently hook up a patient for a routine polysomnogram with our without the use of positive airway pressure.
  10. How to define and score using the pediatric scoring rules, how to interact with the pediatric patient and their caregiver, how to recognize the clinical features of common sleep disorders children can have, how to describe the typical management for children suffering from sleep disordered breathing, narcolepsy, circadian rhythm disorders and behavioral related sleep disorders.

Requirements for Graduation:

The student must attend at least 90% of the course and pass the final exam. A score of 70% or better is required on the final exam. The student will be allowed two retest of the final. The student must complete all requirements within 12 months of starting the Polysomnography Education Program (PEP) course, if not completed within the original course schedule.

Fine Print:

Course offered by First Sleep School are the sole property of the First Sleep School, therefore any unauthorized distribution of course material is strictly prohibited. Any students who violate the terms and conditions of use for First Sleep School’s owned material will lose further access privileges and will not receive any refund.

Any questions or concerns regarding this disclaimer may be directed to or by phone at 866-790-2813, ext 700.