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Course Description

A group of people hiking in a forest with the sun shining through

This course explores communication and experiential learning theories and their application to natural history interpretation and environmental education program design and delivery. Students will develop interpretive materials, plan an interpretive walk and deliver the interpretive walk to a community group.
Note: This course can be taken individually or as a part of a certificate program.

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the course, the learner should be able to:

1. Summarize interpretive theory in relation to the environment

2. Describe a diversity of approaches to environmental interpretation

3. Explain the role of environmental interpretation in conservation and sustainability

4. Develop a strong skillset related to audience assessment, the delivery of program objectives, and effective planning, communication, and debrief

5. Communicate interpretive experiences in the field through a variety of approaches

Course Topics

  • Interpretation Fundamentals
  • How to Engage
  • Values and Interpretation
  • Risk Versus Reward
  • Defining your Objectives; Assessing your Audience
  • Interpretive Planning
  • How to Plan for all scenarios
  • Interpretive Writing
  • How to Write what you Experience
  • Interpretive Presenting
  • How to Present what you Interpret
  • How to Debrief
  • Sense-Making of Environmental Interpretation
  • Interpretation's Role in Environmental Sustainability
  • How to Communicate your Skills to a Wider Audience/How to Actually get a Job

Additional Requirements

Prerequisite(s): BIOL*2060

Equate(s): ENVB*3000


Assessment Item Weight Learning Outcomes
Interpretive Blog - Initial submission (posts due weekly) 15% 1, 2, 3, 4
Interpretive Blog - Peer Evaluation 10% 1, 2, 3, 4
Interpretive Blog - Final Submission 25% 1, 2, 3, 4
Interpretive Podcast - For Children 20% 3, 4, 5
Interpretive Podcast - Personal Reflection on 1st Podcast 10% 3, 4, 5
Interpretive Podcast - For Adults 20% 3, 4, 5
Total 100% 1 - 5


Applies Towards the Following Certificates

Technical Requirements

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*Course details are subject to change.


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