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Registered Practitioner

Of the Institute for Outdoor Learning (RPIOL)



Registered Practitioners of the Institute for Outdoor Learning (RPIOL) are competent instructors, leaders or teachers with a passion and enthusiasm for outdoor learning.


Find an RPIOL Centre


RPIOL Centre Map


RPIOL Interview Dates

Once your RPIOL Application is complete please send this to the IOL Office with the interview date of your choice, if you would like an alternative date please give dates and time when you are available.
Interviews are predominantly held via GoToMeeting.

  • Friday 22nd May 2020 - 09:30
  • Friday 22nd May 2020 - 11:00


  • Is RPIOL for you?
  • Benefits for Individuals
  • Benefits for Organisations
  • Becomng an RPIOL Centre
  • RPIOL Core Competencies

A Registered Practitioner will have been involved in delivering Outdoor Learning sessions to individuals or groups for 1-2 years or more, in either a paid or voluntary role. If you are an instructor, leader, teacher, youth worker, education officer or park ranger, etc. then RPIOL demonstrates your professional approach.

RPIOL holders are excited about how outdoor learning helps people learn and develop. The award recognises how people provide safe and effective outdoor learning for individuals or groups. It is not a set syllabus, it is a process of bringing your range of skills, knowledge and experience together to show how you meet the RPIOL Criteria.

Recognises your skills, knowledge, experience and awards for providing outdoor learning.

Demonstrates your professional approach.

Gives you space to reflect on your approach, style and career direction.

Is flexible to fit where you provide outdoor learning – e.g. activity centre, school grounds, parkland, wider countryside, beach, lakes, sea, lowland, open moorland, upland or mountains.

Shows a commitment to national criteria in Outdoor Learning.

Promotes the experience and expertise of your organisation.

Enhances and supports the career development of your staff.

RPIOL is designed to mirror and run alongside staff induction and training programmes and university courses that include a strong practical element.

RPIOL is accessed through IOL Approved Centres. The partnership between IOL and an organisation allows them to register, brief and mentor candidates and sign off the observed sessions.

Each IOL Approved RPIOL Centre has an Internal Facilitator who is the main point of contact between IOL, the organisation and candidates. The straightforward application process to be an approved RPIOL centre checks that Internal Facilitators hold an APIOL award and are familiar with the current RPIOL process and criteria.

IOL Approved RPIOL Centres can operate in any branch of outdoor learning, e.g. outdoor education, personal development, professional development, sports coaching, adventure tourism, outdoor therapy.

Selects and delivers a well-structured sequence of sessions. Makes considered activity-risk-benefit decisions.

Facilitates inclusive, safe and professional outdoor learning. Knows their teaching / instructional style.

Supports others in the delivery of outdoor learning programmes. Understands the scope and environmental values of outdoor learning.

Develops through critical reflection. Learns from others beyond their workplace or special interest area.

RPIOL Process


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What is involved?

With the help of an RPIOL Mentor you complete a logbook that describes:

Your outdoor 'CV' - the range of your experience, knowledge and skills.

Your evidence against the criteria - reflection and learning from an external workplace visit, training course attendance and observation reports.

Your career development - where you have come from and where you're going next.

An assessment interview with an external assessor confirms that you can show you meet all the RPIOL criteria and have the professional attitude of a RPIOL award holder.







Professional Accreditation Document Store

Log In to access all of the RPIOL documentation


How Do I?..


Be a member of IOL

Ask your organisation or find a local Approved RPIOL Centre to register you as a candidate (£80)

Apply direct to IOL as an independent candidate (£250)

Become an Approved RPIOL Centre

Be an Organisational member of IOL

Complete the RPIOL Centre Registration (£300)

Designate an Internal Facilitator (APIOL Holder) and Mentors

View current list of Approved RPIOL Centres

Update RPIOL Centre Details

Register Candidates for RPIOL

Be an Internal Facilitator and complete the RPIOL Candidate Registration Form

Be an RPIOL Assessor

Hold an APIOL Award and have experience assessing the competence of outdoor professionals

Be familiar with the assessment interview guidelines

Complete registration with IOL

Highlight your RPIOL award or Approved RPIOL Centre status

Request a copy of the logo and guidelines for use on websites, brochures, etc.

Contact Fiona at IOL

Talk to someone about RPIOL

Contact the IOL Professional Development Team
IOL Professional Development Team Contact Details

If you would like to register for RPIOL please contact the IOL Office, email Louise or call us on +44 (0)1228 564580

Neal Anderson - Professional Standards Manager

Matt Hutson - Professional Development Officer, Area Specialist for Assessors

Jo McCready - Professional Development Officer, Area Specialist for Coaching

Julian Pierce - Professional Development Officer, Area Specialist for RPIOL



Warwick Mill Business Centre, Warwick Bridge, Carlisle, Cumbria, CA4 8RR

+44 (0)1228 564580



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