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Outdoor Adventure Education (BA, CertHE)

Apply VIA UCAS - Full Time

The BA Outdoor Adventure Education programme is designed to provide an academically rigorous and vocationally relevant degree.

Principally, the programme is designed to integrate the practical and vocational skills necessary to work in the outdoor sector with strong academic understanding and appreciation of broader principles relating to fields of pedagogy, psychology, sociology, wellbeing and philosophy.

Whilst the programme provides an ideal foundation for work within the field of outdoor adventure, it has also proven highly suitable for a range of other employment roles that are emerging within health, education and physical activity more generally.

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Do you speak Welsh?

Modules in this course are available in Welsh. Students are encouraged to pursue as much of their programme through the medium of Welsh as possible.


BA Outdoor Adventure Education
UCAS Code:  3L2N
Apply via UCAS

CertHE Outdoor Adventure Education
UCAS Code:  OAE6
Apply via UCAS

Book an Open Day Request a Call Back International
Contact Name: Denise Leonard

Tuition Fees 2023/24:
Home (Full-time): £9,000 per year
Overseas (Full-time): £13,500 per year

Why choose this course?

  • UWTSD Carmarthen is uniquely placed in terms of access to a range of world-class activity locations.

  • The programme benefits from its own specialist facility for Outdoor Adventure provision: Cynefin.

  • The course has a long and rich grounding in teamwork and collective endeavour.

  • There are numerous opportunities to meet potential employers and other influential practitioners within the field.

  • There are a number of expeditions and overnight activities which require students to work together in demanding and at times hostile situations.

What you will learn

Course Overview

UWTSD Carmarthen is uniquely placed in terms of access to a range of world-class activity locations, such as the Pembrokeshire Coast National Park, the Brecon Beacons National Park and the Gower Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

These areas offer some of the best sea kayaking, coasteering, mountain biking and rock climbing in the world. We are also extremely well placed for hill walking, caving, white-water kayaking and woodland based activities.

The programme benefits from its own specialist facility for Outdoor Adventure provision: Cynefin. This dedicated space offers fantastic opportunities to further develop the programme with enhanced access to resources, improved teaching spaces and on-site facilities that further promote the key objective of integrating theory and practice.

The programme team aim to create an inclusive environment where all staff and learners feel safe, valued, respected and are able to fulfil their potential.

The programme is structured to allow students to engage in seasonal work.

Module Topics

Year One – Level 4 (CertHE and BA)

  • Adventure a Risk Worth Taking (20 credits; compulsory)
  • Contemporary Challenges: Making a Difference (20 credits; compulsory; Graduate Attributes Framework module)
  • Ecology of Adventure (20 credits; compulsory)
  • Facilitating Adventurous Activities (20 credits; compulsory)
  • Learning in the Digital Era (20 credits; compulsory; Graduate Attributes Framework module)
  • The Great Outdoors (20 credits; compulsory).
  • Theoretical Issues in Outdoor Pursuits (20 credits; available to Hobart Williams Smith Summer School students only)

Year Two – Level 5 (BA)

  • Developing your Professional Profile (Placement; CM)
  • Research in Health, Exercise and Physical Education (20 credits; CM)
  • Discovering Outdoor Lifestyles (20 credits; optional)
  • Foundations for High Quality Physical and Outdoor Learning (20 credits; optional)
  • Psychology of Personal Adventure (20 credits; compulsory)
  • Sustainable Journeys (20 credits; compulsory)
  • Understanding Adventure Leadership (20 credits; compulsory).

Year Three – Level 6 (BA)

  • Coaching Pedagogy (20 credits; optional)
  • Critical Incidents in Adventurous Activities (20 credits; compulsory)
  • Curriculum Adventure (20 credits; optional)
  • Independent Project (40 credits; compulsory; Graduate Attributes Framework module)
  • Landscape and Sustainable Recreation (20 credits; compulsory)
  • Perspectives on Outdoor Education (20 credits; compulsory).

The aim of the assessments are to enable students to demonstrate that they have met the aims of the programme and achieved the learning outcomes of each module.

Given the practical nature of the programme, assessments are devised to maximise the link between theory and practice and allow students to demonstrate intellectual rigour and to reflect critically on their own experiences.

A variety of formats are used for coursework and practical assessments, including:

  • Portfolios
  • Practical teaching/coaching
  • Essays
  • Journals
  • Presentations
  • Digital Media
  • Blogs
  • Academic interviews.
Graduate Attributes Framework

This Framework aims to develop your professional skills and competence alongside your academic subject knowledge. You’ll study up to 40 credits per level throughout your programme from the Graduate Attributes Framework.

The Graduate Attribute modules are designed to enable you to develop, and evidence, a range of career-focused skills related to your subject area. These skills include digital competency, research and project management, as well as such personal competencies as communication, creativity, self-reflection, resilience and problem-solving. 

Outdoor Adventure, Cynefin and Graduates Success

Explore Outdoor Adventure Education at UWTSD Carmarthen

Key Information

Entry Criteria

96 UCAS points or subject to interview. We also welcome applications from mature students (21 or over) with relevant outdoor experience.

Career Opportunities

There are numerous opportunities for students to gain experience of different employment roles within the sector.

There are close ties between the programme and the relevant professional and governing bodies, with a number of strong partnerships with local businesses and third-sector organisations. As such, students are well placed to relate their studies with the wider communities of practice.

The programme includes opportunities for students to gain a number of governing body awards at different levels, in a range of activities. These awards require students to register with the relevant governing bodies and to maintain logbooks of experience.

Additional Costs

'Other than providing a personal first aid kit, river knife and some basic outdoor clothing there are currently no mandatory additional costs to this programme.

Student Quotes

Erin Smith (First year student 2018)

“I have had more adventures in three months at Trinity than I have in the rest of my life”.

Peter Savage (Graduate) owner of Savage Adventures

"While still a student on the UWTSD Outdoor Adventurous Education programme I established Savage Adventures, knowing the level of skills and opportunities students are provided during their time there I am always reassured when hiring a UWTSD graduate. Having the ability to demonstrate practical skills is a necessity in the outdoors but understanding the underpinning theoretical reasons and self-reflections of outdoors is often overlooked. While we are not the largest employers in the area, Savage Adventures was made from passion for the outdoors and we ensure this by using inspiring outdoor professionals from UWTSD programmes."

Damian James (Graduate)

“As a graduate of the UWTSD Outdoor Education programme myself, I am always reassured when recruiting UWTSD graduates. Experience shows they will have the necessary practical skills, but also a keen understanding of the fundamentals of outdoor learning and therefore the ability to reflect upon their own practice. Swansea Council is one of the largest employers of outdoor professionals in the south west Wales area and many of its cohort is made up of UWTSD graduates”

Samantha Newbury (Graduate)

"My name is Samantha Newbery and I recently graduated from the University of Wales Trinity Saint David Carmarthen Campus, with a BA in Outdoor Adventure Education. 

I found that the course has a good balance between academic classroom work and outdoor experiences. This structure helped prepare and develop me to become an outdoor instructor. Throughout my three years the lecturers inspired and challenged me with their wide range of knowledge in both the academic and instructing aspects of outdoor adventure education, and they have continued to facilitate my personal development as an outdoor educator.

Through the course structure and delivery I have gained knowledge and skills that have enabled me to both participate and instruct a range of outdoor activities and advance my career since graduating."

Bursary / Scholarship Information

You may be eligible for funding to help support your study.  To find out about scholarships, bursaries and other funding opportunities that are available please visit our Scholarships and Bursaries.

Study Abroad Opportunities

The Outdoor Adventure Education programme is enhanced with our established partnership with the University of South-Eastern Norway which offers an outstanding opportunity to study Nordic Backcountry Skiing and Outdoor Leadership for a semester in the second year. 


Please visit our Accommodation pages for more information.

Further Information

Although high levels of personal fitness and ability are not necessary, this programme depends on students being able and willing to actively participate in a wide range of adventurous activities.

At times it necessitates working at height, in deep water, at night, underground and for extended periods of time in adverse weather conditions. The venues are often remote and immediate emergency medical and other facilities might not be readily available.

Students need to be able to communicate effectively without technological adaptations, be able to make sound judgements and be able and willing to understand and follow safety instructions.

Whilst staff attempt to be inclusive and some activities can be reasonably adjusted, there are limits to the accommodations that can be made without deviating from the fundamental nature of adventurous activities.