IOL Insights - June 2015
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IOL Insights - June 2015

Author:IOL FE
Date Added:23 June 2015

What we have been doing on your behalf in the last few weeks

Represent, influence, lobby, collaborate

  • AAIAC (Adventure Activity Industry Advisory Committee): Ensuring it retains a web presence and supporting the creation of an AAIAC Council to provide strategic guidance and accountability.  An IOL Trustee will sit on the new AAIAC Council.
  • Collaboration between Trustees of IOL and The Council for Learning Outside the Classroom to discuss how best the two organisations might support each other’s work and the ongoing development of the sector.
  • Posed direct questions for Sport & Tourism Minister Helen Grant at specially organised meeting for the wider outdoor sector.  The MP has been supportive of a move by the SRA and OIA to appoint a minister for the outdoors in a future UK Government.
  • Contributed to a range of national articles to heighten media profile for outdoor learning.  You can help with this too - simply contact the IOL office with your news.
  • Guidance for a survey examining attitudes towards and provision of non-formal education taking place within school. Being conducted by Demos on behalf of The Scout Association.  
  • Response to a survey of outdoor recreation in the UK on behalf of its members and the Outdoor Learning sector. The Department for Culture, Media & Sport appointed the Sports & Recreation Alliance and the Outdoor Industries Association to conduct this.
  • Representation of UK developed outdoor learning practices across the European Union and seeking to learn from the development of practices in other traditions and cultures across Europe.
  • Collaborating with other UK bodies to ensure our voice is heard in the EU and direct lobbying of MEPs.
  • Supporting the ‘I Will’ Campaign led by General Sir Nick Parker alongside the Sports & Recreation Alliance.  The campaign is designed to make social action part of life for as many 10 to 20 year olds as possible by 2020

Research, good practice, courses, awards, accreditation, QA

  • New IOL Leadership workshop is being launched in Autumn 2015.  Its refined content and structure are recommended as a first step towards LPIOL, though it equally stands alone as piece of professional development for practitioners who have taken on formal leadership responsibilities and wish to strengthen approach.  See Events & Courses on the IOL website or App for more details.
  • Supporting the development of a legacy programme of resources and training. This will ensure the findings from The Paul Hamlyn Foundation’s Learning Away project are used to develop good practice in residential outdoor learning.
  • Supporting integration of research findings into practice. To this end, summaries of research papers from the Journal of Adventure Education and Outdoor Learning will be posted on the IOL website to assist those looking for applicable research.
  • Providing workshops at the Adventure Tourism Research Association conference at Sheffield Hallam University in September. This is to support the development of good outdoor learning practice in adventure tourism.
  • Exploring ways in which The Institute may best support the work of The Centre for Youth Impact.   The UK Government backed initiative is designed to encourage good practice in designing, delivering and assessing the impact of youth work interventions.
  • Review of IOL’s accreditation services to make them more accessible and helpful to your professional development. These are increasingly being adopted by employers to structure their staff development programmes.  This work has also clarified the role of accreditation in training provision by member organisations. 
  • The Adventure for All Special Interest Group has recently expanded its Specialist Provider Organisation membership to include Ghyll Head.  This demonstrates ‘a proven commitment to, and expertise in the provision of outdoor learning for people with disabilities’.  The SIG’s AGM will held at Lake District Calvert Trust 27-29th November 2015.

Knowledge base, professional advice, guidance, projects, funding

  • Steering the Blagrave Trust funded review of impact evaluation in outdoor learning across the UK in 2015.  The work by Giving Evidence & University College London will result in a report later in 2015.
  • The last IOL Trustee meeting focused on the vision for IOL for the coming 5 years.   A formal vision document will be developed this year.  If you have views on the future direction of the Institute, that you want to be considered, please contact a member of the IOL Trustees, a Regional Chair or the Chief Executive.  If you wish to stand as an IOL Trustee you should contact the Chair direct.  The most recent appointment to Trustees is Tony Thomas OBE.  In addition Heather Crawford has been co-opted to support the work of the IOL Trustees.   
  • The recent member survey had a healthy response and a full analysis of its findings will be published in the next edition of Horizons.
  • Developing a new apprenticeship for the sector with a group of employer representatives.  The new approach will be designed to better reflect the needs and costs incurred in training an outdoor learning practitioner.

Regions, special interests, network, events, connections

  • The IOL Employer’s Group recently met with representatives from the academic research community focused on outdoor learning.  The Group identified a need to encourage more research in practice and support the Blagrave funded review of current impact evaluation in the UK.
  • IOL Regional Chairs had their annual meeting at Kingswood Hexham this quarter.  The Regional Chairs can lead and influence the outdoor learning sector both in the region and at a national level.  Your regional chair can be found on the regional pages of the IOL website
  • The Geographic Association conference was attended by the recently formed IOL Field Studies (NAFSO) Group. Lots of interest in the new group generated.  Further conference attendance will raise awareness of the new group and invite membership.
  • Regional Conferences for your diary!
    - North West Summer CPD Gathering, Ambleside, 11th September.
    -  North East Conference, Carlton in Cleveland, 16th October.
    - South West Conference, Plymouth, 14th November

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The Institute for Outdoor Learning supports practitioners and providers of Outdoor Learning. Our mission is to increase participation in outdoor learning in the UK and to recognise and improve the quality of outdoor learning in the UK. - See more at:
The Institute for Outdoor Learning supports practitioners and providers of Outdoor Learning. Our mission is to increase participation in outdoor learning in the UK and to recognise and improve the quality of outdoor learning in the UK. - See more at:
The Institute for Outdoor Learning supports individuals and organisations who use the outdoors to make a difference for others.

Our mission is to increase participation in Outdoor Learning in the UK and to recognise and improve the quality of Outdoor Learning in the UK.

By representing and lobbying on behalf of our members, both organisational and individuals, and the outdoor education and recreation sector we can help ensure the development and progression of outdoor learning.

IOL supports your work and career whether you are a professional outdoor practitioner, field study officer, instructor, teacher, youth worker, outdoor leader, management development trainer, student or anyone involved in learning outdoors.

Whether you enjoy recreation, expeditions, bushcraft, adventure, therapy, teaching or learning in the mountains, hills or wilderness, on water or land, in rural or urban areas, there will be benefits to you to visit this site or to become an active member. IOL Membership offers you the opportunity to widen your horizons of influence and networks, develop your outdoor career and gain access to deals on outdoor learning publications, gear, training and more.

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