EDST 498X: Outdoor Learning

July 4 – July 21 (Monday to Thursday)   |    1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Format: Hybrid – online and in-person with an overnight trip*


The course aims to introduce teachers to Outdoor Learning in relation to curriculum, pedagogy, practical experiences, place/land-based learning, and professional responsibilities, such as risk management. The course is premised on Jacotot’s concept of Universal Teaching and invites you/us to explore, through scholarship (episteme), skill (techne), and practical wisdom (phronesis), outdoor learning praxis towards enhancing and motivating your development of y/our outdoor “teacher identity”. The course includes opportunities to design, plan, teach, and assess interdisciplinary, local outdoor learning experiences, including consideration of critical and emancipatory themes. The course invites you/us to explore how teachers (ourselves as teacher) might address diverse learning needs of children and schools through time spent outdoors, particularly during and post the COVID-19 pandemic. Cochran-Smith (2003) wrote of inquiry as “stance”, a position taken by learners and teachers. Using inquiry approaches, you/we are invited to deconstruct past experiences and assumptions around being and learning outdoors and form new knowledge and habits of practice, within a safe and supportive community of learners that deepens your emerging Local Outdoor Teacher Identity and Stance (LOTIS).

Course schedule

July 5-8: online, asynchronous
July 12-14: 1 -4 p.m.
July 15: 1 – 9 p.m. (overnight trip)
July 16: 8 a.m. – 1 p.m. (part of the overnight trip)
July 18 – 21: 1-4 p.m.

*please note: as this course includes an overnight experience there will be a supplemental fee. This amount will be emailed to registered students once finalized.  

After this course, participants will

  • foster a sense of wonder through interdisciplinary, local, outdoor, thematic explorations that consider connections and patterns
  • develop, implement, and assess outdoor learning
  • situate the importance of risk (assessment /management and healthy risk) and safety within the context of outdoor learning experiences as preparation
  • strengthen outdoor pedagogical practices, such as: balance, flexibility, and stance
  • nurture awareness and relationships with more-than-human towards sustainable ways of learning and living
  • embrace Indigenous and non-Western perspectives and practices of outdoor learning
  • build a healthy and productive learning community through our shared learning experiences

Dr. Hart Banack

Dr. Hartley Banack is an Assistant Professor in the School of Education at the University of Northern British Columbia since July 2021.  From 2014-2021, Hart was with the Department of Curriculum and Pedagogy at UBC Vancouver, where he was the Coordinator of Outdoor Environmental Education programs.  Hart was a founding member of the HOPE (Health, Outdoors, Physical and Experiential)-Education M.Ed. and co-coordinated two cohort (2017-2019 and 2019-2021).  Hart created and led the first Elementary Outdoor Learning cohort at UBC in 2020-2021. Hart has taught the Introduction to Outdoor Learning course since 2014.  Hart loves to paddle canoe, cycle, ski, throw a disc, hike, and just be outdoors.

How to register

To register for courses, please visit the Student Information Service Centre (SISC).

Register for Term two (July/August) courses via the Student Information Service Centre (SISC). If you intend on taking a 400-level course, please ensure that you receive prior approval by your graduate supervisor using this form.

If you are looking to transfer a course into UBC Vancouver, or another institution, please confirm transfer credit will be approved prior to registering for a UBC Okanagan course.

*It is the student’s responsibility to ensure that the course is accepted towards the completion of a program.

Register for Term two (July/August) courses via the Student Information Service Centre (SISC). You must have current Summer registration eligibility. If not, please email sie.education@ubc.ca.

If you are looking to transfer a course into UBC Vancouver, or another institution, please confirm approval of transfer credit prior to registration.

*It is the student’s responsibility to ensure that the course is accepted towards the completion of a program.

Apply to take select coursework as a non-degree student at through the Non-Degree Access Studies Application.

If you require assistance, please email sie.education@ubc.ca

Register for Term two (July/August) courses via the  Student Information Service Centre (SISC). You must have current Summer registration eligibility. If not, please email sie.education@ubc.ca.