The Outside World, In and Around Duluth

Outdoor Education vs. Environmental Education

In one of my recent Program Evaluation classes, we were talking about how environmental education and outdoor education differ.

It’s kind of a no-brainer, I guess, but since I’m involved with both, I’ve always pegged outdoor ed and environmental ed as two sides of the same coin. As in: most people start with OE, and eventually make their way over to EE. Or just keep rolling from the one to the next.

Not necessarily the case, I suppose. Some outdoor educators only teach outdoor skills, and never get over to the next idea of using outdoor skills to further environmental education.

So:

Outdoor Education = Learn how to ski

Environmental Education = Learn how to ski to the river to learn how to take water samples to learn how to report on changes in turbidity

Put in that way, it kind of makes it look like EE might be biting off a little much, doesn’t it?

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