ERIC Number: ED267941
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1986-Mar
Outdoor Education: Definition and Philosophy.
Because outdoor education programs occur in every geographic location, are sponsored by all levels of educational institutions, state and local government agencies, and private entrepreneurs, and have no nationally standardized curriculum or measures of competency or knowledge, outdoor education may best be defines as "education in, about, and for the out-of-doors." This simple, yet comprehensive, definition delineates where the learning takes place (in any outdoor setting), the topic to be taught (the outdoors and any cultural aspects related to the environment), and the purpose of the activity (developing knowledge, skills, and attitudes about the world). While differing in meaning, terms used instead of outdoor education include enviromental education, conservation education, resident outdoor school, outdoor recreation, outdoor pursuits, adventure education, experiential education, and environmental interpretation. When analyzed, the philosophy of outdoor education comes down to four premises: commitment to human responsibility for stewardship of the land; belief in the importance of the interrelationship of all facets of the ecosystem; knowledge of the natural environment as a medium for leisure; and acknowledgment that outdoor education is a continual educational experience. Examples of outdoor education activities and sources of information on definitions, values, philosophies, and history of outdoor education are provided. (NEC)
Publication Type: ERIC Publications; ERIC Digests in Full Text
Education Level: N/A
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: ERIC Clearinghouse on Rural Education and Small Schools, Las Cruces, NM.