Real World LearningReal

The Future of Outdoor Learning in a Changing World

The conference took place in the UK 6th to 8th November 2014. Keynote presentations were given by Justin Dillon, Peter Higgins and Elena Blackmore; you can view copies of their presentations below.

Justin Dillon

Peter Higgins

Elena Blackmore

During the conference we explored the Real World Learning model through six workshops. Reports on each workshop are below:

Hedgehog Camp

School in the Woods


Disaster in Jizera Mountains

Learning Polygon

School Farming


Details below here are no longer current and only for information.

The conference will reveal a new model for outdoor learning that effectively combines values, science and competencies. The Real World Learning approach demonstrates why outdoor learning is an essential element to becoming resilient in the face of a changing world.

What will you get from attending?

  • Keynote speakers will share their thoughts and inspiration.
  • Workshops will enable participants to test out new ideas and practical approaches, and apply them to forest schools, field studies, bush craft and other outdoor learning approaches.
  • Outdoor activities to take away use in your own centre or school.
  • Forums to debate the latest developments across Europe.
  • Exchange of ideas and creativity to inspire and inform...tell Europe what you are doing.
  • Meet leading outdoor learning organisations from the UK, Germany, Italy, Czech Republic, Slovenia and Hungary.

Keynote Speakers

We are delighted to announce our three keynote speakers:

  • Peter Higgins - Peter holds a Personal Chair in Outdoor and Environmental Education at Moray House School of Education at the University of Edinburgh.
  • Justin Dillon - Justin Dillon is a Professor of Science and Environmental Education and Head of the Science and Technology Education Group.
  • Elena Blackmore - Elena Blackmore is a researcher at the Public Interest Research Centre, working on a number of projects centred on the role of values in society. Elena co-authored The Common Cause Handbook and Common Cause for Nature.

For more information on our keynote speakers click here.


Integrating values and science into outdoor learning

Practical research shows that the values we promote have a significant impact on environmental behaviour. Workshops will explore how we build a values perspective into outdoor learning whilst still delivering scientific understanding.

Approaches to Outdoor Learning

A series of workhshops will explore how to deliver effecitve outdoor learning approaches the integrate science, competencies and values, and explore tools that help us prepare more effective outdoor learning programmes.

Open Workshop Sessions

We will be launching a call for workshops from participants...more details soon.

Conference Programme

Our draft conference programme is now available here.

Who should attend?

This conference is for anyone involved in outdoor learning or wishing to develop programmes for schools and adults: education providers, teachers, centre managers, education decision makers.


The conference fee includes four nights full board accommodation and all conference materials

€250 or £210

Click here for more information.

To register your interest in the conference, please fill out the online form.