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What makes Outdoor Adventure Leadership and Management at Worcester special?

Our Outdoor Adventure Leadership degree will prepare you for an exciting career in the outdoor industry. We offer a diverse range of optional modules, so you'll be able to tailor your degree and explore your interests. You'll also develop your professional portfolio of practical skills, by applying your learning to sessions in the field.

The programme is taught by our highly experienced team of staff, drawn from a range of outdoor adventure backgrounds. Our graduates have worked around the world as wilderness guides, outdoor educators, leaders in adventure travel companies and schools.



Key features

  • 100% overall student satisfaction in the National Student Survey 2020
  • Course approved by the Institute for Outdoor Learning
  • Excellent facilities, both on-site and with the natural resources in the locality, including the Brecon Beacons and the Wye Valley
  • Course content developed collaboratively with employers through our Employers Advice Group, ensuring your skills are a perfect fit for a career in the outdoor industry
  • Run in association with Herefordshire and Ludlow College (Holme Lacy Campus)
  • Gain a range of relevant outdoor qualifications from Mountain Training and British Canoeing

Register your interest

Enter your details below and we will keep you up to date with useful information about studying at the University of Worcester.

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Top 20 for student experience

We're in the top 20 for student experience in the Sunday Times Good University Guide 2022.

“My course offers great opportunities for the development of key skills needed for working in the outdoor industry. As well as academic studies, I get to take part in a range of exciting outdoor activities, including kayaking, canoeing, hill-walking and climbing.”

Tom Folker

Institute for Outdoor Learning logo

This Higher Education course is approved by the Institute for Outdoor Learning.

100% satisfaction logo

This course received 100% overall student satisfaction (NSS 2020)

Entry requirements

What qualifications will you need?

UCAS tariff points

Entry requirements

96 UCAS Tariff points (for example, CCC at A Level), and GCSE English Language and Mathematics at Grade C/4 or above. A Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS, formerly known as CRB) may be required.

Shortlisted applicants may be invited to interview.

Other information

If you have any questions about entry requirements, please contact the Admissions Office on 01905 855111 or email for advice.

Further information about the UCAS Tariff can be obtained from the UCAS website.

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Course content

What will you study?

Our courses are informed by research and current developments in the discipline and feedback from students, external examiners and employers. Modules do therefore change periodically in the interests of keeping the course relevant and reflecting best practice. The most up-to-date information will be available to you once you have accepted a place and registered for the course. If there are insufficient numbers of students interested in an optional module, this might not be offered, but we will advise you as soon as possible and help you choose an alternative. 

Year 1


  • Foundations of Outdoor Adventure
  • Water Based Personal Skills
  • Land Based Personal Skills


  • Weather and Climate
  • Introduction to Motor Learning and Skill Acquisition
  • Optional Language modules

Year 2


  • The Research Process (Outdoor Adventure Leadership and Management)
  • Scientific Approaches to Outdoor Adventure Performance
  • Facilitation and Reviewing in Outdoor Learning


  • Water Based Coaching
  • Land Based Leadership
  • Work-Based Learning (Outdoor Adventure Leadership and Management)
  • Optional Language modules 

Year 3


  • Dissertation
  • Expedition Studies
  • Contemporary Issues in Outdoor Adventure
  • Outdoor Adventure and Diverse Populations
  • Environmental Approaches to Outdoor Adventure


  • Advanced Facilitation and Reviewing in Outdoor Learning
  • Outdoor Activities and the Natural Environment
  • Negotiated Learning Project (OALM)
  • Adventure Tourism
  • Work placement in Outdoor Adventure (Outdoor Adventure Leadership & Management)
  • The Sports Entrepreneur

A student view on Outdoor Adventure Leadership and Management at Worcester

Teaching and assessment

How will you be taught?

The University places emphasis on enabling students to develop the independent learning capabilities that will equip you for lifelong learning and future employment, as well as academic achievement. A mixture of independent study, teaching and academic support through the personal academic tutoring system enables you to reflect on progress and build up a profile of skills, achievements and experiences that will enable you to flourish and be successful.


You are taught through a combination of workshops, lectures, seminars, outdoor and laboratory practicals. Workshops take a variety of formats and are intended to enable the application of learning through discussion and small group activities. Seminars enable the discussion and development of understanding of topics covered in lectures, and laboratory practicals are focused on developing subject specific skills and applied individual and group project work. The outdoor focussed practicals will be based in a variety of locations, locally and further afield, and are focussed on developing the skills and knowledge required to safely and effectively lead and coach a variety of adventurous activities. In the first two years, you will develop an understanding of the scientific and professional context of outdoor adventure activities, with the chance to gain skills and experience in both water and land-based activities.

In addition, meetings with personal academic tutors are scheduled on at least 4 occasions in the first year and three occasions in each of the other years of a course. You have an opportunity to undertake a work based placement during the summer break in-between years 1 & 2, and a further placement module in year 3. There are opportunities for a semester overseas during year 2, Minnesota in semester 1 and Norway in semester 2. In the final year, you will conduct an Expedition Studies module and a research project in an area of your choice, as well as choosing from a range of modules to suit your interests in areas such as environmental approaches, working with diverse populations, understanding contemporary issues as well as specialist modules in adventure tourism, forest schools and advanced approaches to facilitation.

Opportunities exist to gain additional, optional, National Governing Body Awards in a range of adventurous activities.

Please visit the Outdoor Adventure Leadership and Management Facebook page.

Contact time

In a typical week, you will have around 12-16 contact hours of teaching. The precise contact hours will depend on the optional modules selected and in the final year you will normally have slightly less contact time in order to do more independent study. Throughout year 1 and semester 2 of year 2, there are full-day off-site practical modules, which will include overnight trips away. In year 3 there is a 5-day expedition.

Independent self-study

In addition to the contact time, you are expected to undertake around 24-28 hours of personal self-study per week. Typically, this will involve, reading journal articles and books, working on individual and group projects, undertaking research in the library and online, preparing coursework assignments and presentations, undertaking further adventurous activity practice and preparing for examinations.

Independent learning is supported by a range of excellent learning facilities, including the Hive and library resources, the virtual learning environment, and extensive electronic learning resources.

Teaching staff

Students will be taught by a teaching team whose expertise and knowledge are closely matched to the content of the modules on the course. The team includes senior academics and professional practitioners with industry experience,Teaching is informed by the research, consultancy, and majority of course lecturers have a higher education teaching qualification or are Fellows of the Higher Education Academy. You can learn more about the staff by visiting our staff profiles.


The assessment strategy for Outdoor Adventure Leadership and Management is designed to assess the students' knowledge and skills across practical, theoretical and work based learning. The strategy at all levels includes written assessments to assess subject knowledge and the exploration of ideas; reflective assignments to enable students to engage with and lead their own learning and personal development; and presentations to support student development in terms of delivery skills and sharing of knowledge. In addition there are practical assessments throughout the programme of study that assess personal ability, leadership and coaching across a range of outdoor adventure activities. There are opportunities at level 5 and 6 for students to undertake a work based placement, where students are assessed on their ability to apply knowledge and skills developed through the programme of study to reflect on professional practice.

At level 4 the assessment is weighted towards personal skill based practical assessments; individual written assignments; reflective writing with a focus on skill development; and group presentations. At level 5 the practical assessments are focused on delivery and leadership of outdoor adventure activities, written assignments that require application of a wider range of knowledge, paired or individual presentations and reflective writing with a focus on professional practice. At level 6 there are a wide variety of assessment options with a strong focus on research based written work and individual presentations.


You will receive feedback on practice assessments and on formal assessments undertaken by coursework. Feedback on examination performance is available upon request from the module leader. Feedback is intended to support learning and you are encouraged to discuss it with personal academic tutors and module tutors as appropriate.

We aim to provide you with feedback on formal course work assessments within 20 working days of hand-in.

Meet the team

You will be taught by a teaching team whose expertise and knowledge are closely matched to the content of the modules on the course. The team includes senior academics and professional practitioners with industry experience.

Teaching is informed by the research, consultancy, and the majority of course lecturers have a higher education teaching qualification or are Fellows of the Higher Education Academy.

Programme specification

For comprehensive details on the aims and intended learning outcomes of the course, and the means by which these are achieved through learning, teaching and assessment, please download the latest programme specification document.

Meet The Team

lee pritchard 2

Lee Pritchard

Lee Pritchard is Course Leader for the BSc Outdoor Adventure Leadership and Management (OALM) programme. Holding a BEd (Hons) in Outdoor and Science Education and an MSc Coaching, he has worked extensively in the outdoor adventure field both in the UK and overseas.

He is, amongst other things, a mountaineering instructor, Level 4 kayak coach and Forest School practitioner.

In addition to working on academic and practical aspects of the OALM programme, with a focus on practical skill development, the outdoor industry and expedition leadership, he is involved in the delivery of Mountain Training awards, leading expeditions overseas, climbing as often as possible, and running trips for students to the mountains of Scotland in winter and the French alps in summer.


Colin Wood

Colin teaches Outdoor Education and Work-Based Learning at undergraduate and postgraduate levels. He is involved in research in both areas and leads the innovative MA in Outdoor Education, which supports outdoor professionals wishing to study in their workplace.

Previously, Colin taught at Herefordshire College of Technology and before that had a long career in Outdoor Education working in senior posts around the world for a variety organisations. Colin's work spanned corporate development, outdoor recreation, sail training and expeditionary learning including leading numerous jungle expeditions.


Where could it take you?


Our Outdoor Adventure Leadership degree will prepare you for a range of careers in the outdoor industry. Previous graduates have secured work in a range of settings, including:

  • Local authorities
  • Outdoor centres
  • Commercial activity centres
  • Trek leaders at holiday companies
  • Development training organisations
  • Higher Education
  • Self-employment
  • Teaching

Alternatively, you may wish to continue to postgraduate study and other professional qualifications.

Two students are walkng next to each other and smiling

Careers and Employability

Our Graduates pursue exciting and diverse careers in a wide variety of employment sectors.

Find out how we can support you to achieve your potential.

A mature student's view on Outdoor Adventure Leadership and Management at Worcester


How much will it cost?

Full-time tuition fees

UK and EU students

The standard fee for full-time home and EU undergraduate students enrolling on BA/BSc/LLB degrees and FdA/FdSc degrees in the 2022/23 academic year is £9,250 per year.

For more details, please visit our course fees page.

International students

The standard tuition fee for full-time international students enrolling on BA/BSc/LLB degrees and FdA/FdSc degrees in the 2022/23 academic year is £13,400 per year.

For more details, please visit our course fees page.

Part-time tuition fees

UK and EU students

The standard tuition fees for part-time UK and EU students registering on this course in the academic year 2022/23 are £1,156 per 15-credit module, £1,542 per 20-credit module, £2,312 per 30-credit module, £3,083 per 40-credit module, £3,469 per 45-credit module and £4,625 per 60 credit module.

For more details, please visit our course fees page.

Additional costs

Students will need to provide their own hill walking and backpacking equipment including tents and sleeping bags. Trips away as part of mandatory modules incur no extra cost.

Some of the qualifications on offer will incur additional costs, but these are offered at a greatly reduced rate.

Every course has day-to-day costs for basic books, stationery, printing and photocopying. The amounts vary between courses. If your course offers a placement opportunity, you may need to pay for a Disclosure & Barring Service (DBS) check



Finding the right accommodation is paramount to your university experience. Our halls of residence are home to friendly student communities, making them great places to live and study.

We have over 1,000 rooms across our range of student halls. With rooms to suit every budget and need, from our 'Traditional Hall' at £111 per week to 'En-suite Premium' at £189 per week (2022/23 prices).

For full details visit our accommodation page.

Sports Scholarships

At Worcester we are committed to supporting elite and talented sports performers who are dedicated to both sporting and academic success. Our sports scholarships are available for a range of team and individual sports. For further information, visit our sports scholarships pages.

How to apply

How do you apply?

Applying through UCAS

Outdoor Adventure Leadership and Management BSc (Hons) -  XN92 BSc/OALM

UCAS is the central organisation through which applications are processed for entry onto full-time undergraduate courses in Higher Education in the UK.

Read our How to apply pages for more information on applying and to find out what happens to your application.



Get in touch

If you have any questions, please get in touch. We're here to help you every step of the way.

Lee Pritchard

Course Manager