BA Outdoor Adventure Education
The Outdoor Adventure Education programme is a blend of theoretical and practical modules designed specifically to meet the growing career opportunities within the outdoor sector. Additionally many of the skills developed are transferable to a wider range of careers beyond outdoor education, for example, the uniformed services, youth work, teaching and service industries.
Throughout the programme the emphasis is on exploring the relationship between sound theory and good practice.
The course is progressive in nature. Initially students are provided with foundation skills both within academic skills and practical activities. Subsequently this foundation together with on-going support enables students to engage positively with challenges of both a physical and intellectual nature. The outcome is that students develop as critically aware and reflective individuals able to deal proactively with the dynamic and challenging situations that are commonplace in abroad range of current and future working environments.
During the first year, 10 subject areas are studied to provide a sound base of knowledge and understanding of key areas along with a foundation of personal outdoor skills. These areas include introductions to the philosophy and theory of outdoor education, expeditions studies, personal safety and risk management in the outdoors, coaching and facilitation and introduction to natural environment.
In the second year of study, students have the opportunity to select from optional modules focusing on areas such as curriculum adventure, health and the outdoors and environmental issues. Students also organise and complete a work placement and lead an expedition.
The final year of the degree is composed entirely of 20 credit modules, allowing students to further focus on a chosen field, such as the environment, curriculum, coaching pedagogy or health. The degree culminates with students writing a dissertation or critical portfolio relating to their chosen specialist areas within outdoor education. The final year culminates in a student planned and peer expedition.
Most of the modules have a practical element. As such students will have the opportunity to participate in a number of practical activities such as: canoeing, kayaking, climbing, hill walking, mountain biking, gorge walking, coasteering, cave exploration, conservation work, river swimming, bushcraft, surfing and scrambling.
The BA Outdoor Adventure Education is studied on the Carmarthen campus, which offers a friendly and very personal learning experience. All the lecturing staff are based on campus and are easily accessible for tutorials to support your studies. Lecturing staff are Fellows of the Higher Education Academy, are accredited by the Institute of Outdoor Learning and have Masters Degrees or Doctoral qualifications. Additionally all Outdoor Education staff have extensive practical experience and hold a broad range of governing body awards.
The campus is only 15 miles east of the Brecon Beacons National Park and the fantastic mountain bike trails of Brechfa. More biking is just down the road at Afan Argoed. For water lovers we have a partnership with a local paddle sport centre with excellent access to recreational and competitive equipment and coaching. The nearby Gower peninsular and Pembrokeshire Coast National Park offer unrivalled opportunities for coasteering, surfing, sea kayaking and sea cliff climbing. On campus Outdoor Education students enjoy free access to the swimming pool, health suite and climbing wall. The Students’ Union provides an extensive array of sporting clubs and leisure activities.
Whilst students inevitably develop personal technical skills, the emphasis is on academic outcomes that relate more to core skills such as communication, problem solving, reflective practice and personal organisation. As such the programme employs a wide range of progressive assessment tasks that test students in different ways. Within the final year students design and conduct their own research project or critical portfolio in a specialist area of their choice.
Those applying for the course are expected to have a keen interest in outdoor activity and some experience of the outdoor environment. Typically students will have completed ‘A’ levels or a BTEC National Diploma in an area relevant to the course, achieving 240 UCAS points. However, mature students with significant relevant experience are also encouraged to apply.
Outdoor Adventure Education graduates from Trinity Saint David pursue a broad range of career paths. Many enter onto graduate placements with outdoor education centres, become self-employed or start up their own businesses, whilst others enter graduate schemes with environmental organisations or services such as the army or the police. Several students have been taken on as employees following successful work placements with the youth service and local outdoor centres. Others have successfully undertaken postgraduate study on our Master’s degree in Outdoor Education or have completed PGCE courses and are now teaching in primary or secondary schools.
In addition to achieving a degree, students have several opportunities to gain training and accreditation through various governing body award schemes. These include: indoor and outdoor climbing, mountain leading, paddle sports, mountain biking, coasteering, lifeguarding, caving and sailing. Many of these courses are heavily subsidised and supported by our extra curricular programmes of skills development and expeditions. Recent expeditions include: trekking in Nepal, winter skills in Norway, rock climbing in Sardinia, Spain (El Chorro), and Greece (Kalymynos), canoeing in Scotland, sea kayaking in the Isles of Scilly, coasteering in Guernsey and mountain biking in the Alps.
The programme is further enhanced with our established partnerships with universities in Norway and Canada, which offer an outstanding opportunity to study abroad for a semester in the second year. We also have a very strong relationship with the Urdd and often use their Glanllyn Outdoor education centre in Snowdonia.