The objective of this paper is to examine some theory that appears to make a contribution to the Generic Instructors Courses (GICs) offered by the Advanced Life Support Group and the Resuscitation Council, UK. Accordingly, it is not an empirical study: rather it is a critical assessment of the contribution made by studies in adult learning to what is perceived and generally presented as an atheoretical course. The course will be described and four contributory theories--experiential learning, group dynamics, situated learning and reflective practice--will be briefly explored. The paper will observe that each of these makes a contribution towards an understanding of the achievements of the GIC. The paper will conclude with a number of recommendations for some small-scale empirical work.