Educational initiatives can improve care delivery and the experience of living in residential aged care for people with dementia. This review aimed to determine the impact of nurse and care staff education on measures of functional ability and quality of life for older people with dementia living in care homes.Systematic review.Search of on-line databases in English between January 2000 and January 2017.Three reviewers used data extraction and critical appraisal tools of the Joanna Briggs Institute to determine methodological quality of research.Thirty-two studies met the initial inclusion criteria and 13 were retrieved for full appraisal. There was limited impact of nurse and care staff education on residents' agitation, anxiety, mood and quality of life. The most consistent improvement in functional ability due to education may be in the execution of activities of daily living. More successful programs included multi-faceted components (e.g. hands on support, clinical auditing) in conjunction with didactic teaching. There is a need for more rigorous and well-designed studies to test interventions.