This course will provide knowledge and practice in outdoor and adventure leadership. This course is designed to teach three primary components of expedition leadership: group behavior, technical skills, and risk management. Through readings, discussion, and field experience, students will explore the issues and topics related to leadership, group dynamics, decision-making and heuristics, risk management, backcountry travel and etiquette, outdoor education philosophy, teaching principles and techniques. This is a travel embedded course, with required travel occurring during the appropriate semester break. This course also includes certifications in Leave No Trace Trainer and Wilderness First Aid. 




Declared Outdoor Leadership and Education major; OLE 2250; Junior/Senior standing, or permission of instructor


  • Fall
  • Spring


This course is open to Outdoor Leadership and Education majors of all tracks, although it is a requirement for students in the Learning/Leadership, Environmental, Intra/Interpersonal tracks. This course will have a lab fee not to exceed $250

  1. 1. Facilitation Skills: Students will understand facilitation skills and will identify the proper use of communication skills and other soft skills to better work with group members. Students will demonstrate the ability to give positive and constructive feedback to peer facilitators and explain how this feedback can lead to improvement.
  2. 2. Group Development: Students will learn how effective facilitation and leadership creates an environment that enables participants to be active and engaged within the context of their group.
  3. 3. Facilitation techniques: Students will experience, understand, and practice the techniques of facilitating a learning experience in a variety of contexts.
  4. 4. Leadership: Students will explore leadership concepts, definitions, and key elements of leadership. Students will have an understanding of the foundations and theory of outdoor leadership.
  5. 5. Technical Skills: Students will identify and use the safe and proper operation and maintenance of equipment in order to ensure the safety of participants.
  6. 6. Expedition Leadership: Students will demonstrate competency in expedition planning including: menu planning and food preparation, route finding, navigation, gear selection, and transportation logistics.

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