Post- graduate





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Course Enquiries
University of Central Lancashire
Preston, PR1 2HE, UK.

Tel: +44 (0)1772 892400
Email: cenquiries@uclan.ac.uk

  • Duration:

    1-5 years

  • Level:


  • Mode:


  • Delivery:

    Campus, Full-time and Part-time

  • Campus:


  • Start Date:


  • Award Type:


Why study this programme?

The Masters in Outdoor Practice is designed to enable those working in the broad professional environment of the outdoors to engage with postgraduate study. It is delivered by a team of practitioners, educationalists and researchers in the outdoors. The first year of the course involves taught modules which are delivered at weekends, with subsequent modules providing the opportunity to specialise in your own field of practice through research and/or innovation. A special feature of this innovative course is the flexibility to accommodate a diverse range of interests and promote learning through a portfolio of assessments that appropriately meet the needs of students. Thus, the ethos of the course is to enable students to follow their interests and design their own pathway through a master's programme.

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Entry Requirements

Students require a good honours degree (or equivalent) in which a major part of their studies has incorporated aspects of outdoor/adventure or related disciplines (e.g. environmental education, teaching, coaching etc.).

Other graduates who can demonstrate a commitment to the study of outdoor practice or who have significant experience in the outdoor industry will also be considered for entry. Students where English is not the first language need to demonstrate their ability in the English language through obtaining an IELTS score of 6.0 or above or equivalent.

Applications from individuals with non-standard qualifications, relevant work or life experience and who can demonstrate the ability to cope with and benefit from degree-level studies are welcome.

Programme at a Glance

Year 1: PGCert

  • TL4048 Research Methods in Outdoor Practice (30 credits)


  • TL4049 Contextualising Outdoor Practice (30 credits)

Year 2: MA/PGDip

  • TL4050 Research Project in Outdoor Practice (MA) (120 credits)


  • TL4051 Innovation in Outdoor Practice (MA) (120 credits)

OR (PGDip)

  • TL4052 Innovation and Research Project in the Outdoors (part 1) (PGDip exit) (60 credits)

Year 3: MA (top up from PGDip)

  • TL4053 Innovation and Research Project in the Outdoors (part 2) (60 credits)

Further Information

The programme is designed to allow you construct your own pathway through the course, depending on your own practice, your interests and future careers. It is expected that a wide range of practitioners will access the course, including teachers, outdoor instructors, coaches as well as those from other areas of the outdoor industry.

The programme is designed so that you can exit at PGCert, or PGDip, or complete a master's. From there you may wish to access a Level 8 course such as a Doctorate.

If you’d like to speak the course leader, please do not hesitate to contact them directly.


“From the outset the impression I received from the staff and lecturers was a “can do” approach.”

“As a mature student, the blend of academic experience and knowledge alongside a wealth of practical expertise highlighted how the course had been designed and delivered with the specific intent of providing students with the skills to work in Outdoor Leadership related fields.”

“Since graduation the support of the academic staff to assist in the progression of my professional career has reflected the same attitude as was present during the degree. The high level of academic and practical skills of the staff stands the degree above others.”

How to Apply

Our Postgraduate section has more information around applying including visiting UCLan and the support available.

If you want to continue and apply now, you can apply for many of the postgraduate UCLan courses using our Online Application System.

For other postgraduate courses you can apply directly to UCLan by downloading a Postgraduate Application Form (.pdf 190KB) please also see our Postgraduate Application Guidance Notes (.pdf 158KB).


For detailed information about studying this course at UCLan, please see the course handbook for your year of entry:

For information on possible changes to course information, see our Important Information.


Apply now or see further information about postgraduate study and research. International students should visit our international pages.

Contact Us

Tel: +44 (0)1772 892400

Email: cenquiries@uclan.ac.uk

Fees 2020/21

Full-time: £6,900 per year (UK/EU)
Part-time: £765 per 20 credits (UK/EU)

Further information:

For 2019/20 fees please refer to our fees page.

Industry Links

The course team have strong relationships with a diverse range of organisations in the outdoor industry, including: Outward Bound Trust, the Institute for Outdoor Learning, Mountain Training, British Canoeing, Royal Geographical Society, and British Exploring Society.

Professional Accreditation

Learning Environment and Assessment

The course team are all active practitioners in the outdoors holding a range of high level outdoor qualifications, as well as being research active. For example, areas of expertise include Coaching; Education; Teaching and Learning.

The first year of the programme is taught over weekends, the first of which will include an introduction to the course, the team and the resources. The taught weekends will make use of a wide range of teaching and learning strategies, for example: lectures, seminars, discussions, presentations, tutorials and practical as appropriate, in addition, elearn/ online platforms will also be used. Year two will make use of face to face and online tutorials to support you through your chosen pathway.

Each module is assessed via a Portfolio, this allows you to construct your own pathway through the modules and choose the most appropriate assessment methods for you and your topic area. Assessment strategies might include essays, reports, presentations, critical discussions, practical and artwork.