St John Ambulance

Contact Us Login Donate

CPR to the Rescue with Faster Training

St John first aid training - trainer and students

CPR is shown in movies often and most of the time, it shows an unrealistic miracle in incorrect first aid techniques. Currently, only 1 in 10 Australians survive cardiac arrests but this statistic can be reduced by having more people provide CPR in a timely manner.

One thing to know is that movie CPR scenes will not prepare you to perform first aid at your best when needed. Similarly, the traditional first aid training of listening to a Trainer lecture all day will get you certified, but is it really the most engaging or effective way to learn something so fundamental as how to save a life?

We have had feedback that it would be great if our training was faster and more enjoyable but still delivered to the high quality standards people expect from St John. Training should be all of that plus the confidence to use first aid when needed in the real world on loved ones, colleagues and in public.

This is why we have developed a complete suite of game-changing training delivered via immersive screens and virtual reality, for teaching CPR. We’re calling it SJx – a first-person digital experience created to improve confidence that enables bystanders to act in emergency situations. By digitising the experience with video and VR technology, CPR training is even faster than before, as this type of technology better supports memory recall by using visual cues.

Why Combine Training with Virtual Reality and Video?

Whether delivered through VR goggles or through a 6-metre-wide immersive screen at our training centre, technology that immerses the student in another place can allow for the student to temporarily leave the real world and enter our virtual first aid scenario world.

Our new and innovative SJx training method can deliver, using VR, a CPR course for 4 people in one hour, which cuts up to 2 hours from the original CPR course. If students prefer not to use VR goggles, a CPR course can be delivered using large screens (video enhanced) in just two hours.

Today, St John first aid training is supported by new technology to solidify student learning and information retention. SAVO Group found that just 7 days after traditional training, the average employee will have forgotten 65 percent of the material covered, which increases to 90 percent after six months.

By designing innovative technology to immerse the student in a realistic environment with simulated first aid scenarios, students are more engaged, and retention of material is statistically superior. Research also shows that students perform 8 per cent higher on average in questionnaires when trained through VR, with a 5 per cent increase in retention rate. With our SJx CPR course, either via Virtual Reality or Video Enhanced delivery, students have an integrated assessment through the VR technology or their own device which streamlines and speeds up the training.

Why Does SJx Better Support Learning?

The Cone of Experience theory states that we remember 10% of what we read and 20% of what we hear. Yet we remember 90% of what we do. Research also shows that VR students are 20 per cent faster to react compared to those who trained via traditional methods, as the virtual world is more successful at arousing emotions that incentivise students to learn and retain knowledge.

Of the 6,434 cardiac arrests in Victoria in the 2017/18 year, only 37 per cent received CPR from a bystander. With this enhanced delivery, our expectation is that more bystanders will be confident to provide CPR to a greater number of people in need. Our goal is for 90 per cent of sudden cardiac arrests to receive CPR by 2023. Being trained through SJx will better prepare students and achieve these goals for the Victorian community.


6 Key Benefits of SJx training:

  • Reduced training time – staff are able to return to work sooner
  • Superior learning techniques
  • Improved student outcomes and confidence
  • Improved ability to recall training in a real-life emergency situation
  • Time savings with no paper-based tests
  • Full accreditation to Nationally Recognised standards

This training is ideal for those who prefer learning via a “learning by doing” method, rather than sitting in a lecture-style environment. Our training is fully compliant with the Australian Skills Quality Authority and all options are delivered by industry-leading trainers for an experience that creates confidence in the student to perform first aid should they ever need to.

What People Are Saying About SJx:

It was very good, very clear and lifelike, you could look right around and you felt like you’re actually there in front of that patient in the carpark.
Great new approach to training. Shorter, concise and accurate.
I would highly recommend it. It really enhances the training.
You are able to put yourself into the situation right there and then.

Award Winning First Aid Training

We're thrilled to announce not just 1 but 2 wins for St John Ambulance Victoria in the Australian Business Awards 2020 for our first aid training product SJx:

The training innovation has delivered benefits to many parts of the community, including:

  1. Students: SJx delivers a more streamlined learning experience to embed knowledge, they are also better able to fit shorter training commitments around a busy work and life schedule
  2. Businesses: when it comes to a 50% time saving with SJx, this represents significant wages saved for businesses in training their staff, with no loss of quality in the outcome
  3. Community: less time in training means more people willing and able to undertake training, resulting in more confident first aiders in the community

This acknowledgment through these 2 awards has well and truly cemented St John as the real leaders in the first aid training industry and demonstrated a recognition of the digital transformation occurring throughout the organisation.

We urge the wider public to experience the SJx difference themselves and book into a course today.


Suitable for both people in workplaces and members of the public who would like a comprehensive first aid course.

St John first aid training


Learn the skills to perform life-saving (CPR) on an adult, child or infant who is unconscious and not breathing normally. 


St John has a range of​ training locations across Victoria.