It encompasses all things nature, outdoors, and mindfulness, prioritizing the use of non-formal teaching methods, developing the lifelong learner, and providing experiential learning opportunities. Students will focus on the outdoor aspects of education and learning, ranging from outdoor education activities, resources, (forest) school and seasonal programs, naturalist basics, to interests and importance of environmental, animal or habitual education, as well as naturalism, mindfulness, well-being, and advocacy in both physical and mental health areas.
In addition, students can select a number of elective courses fitting their individual career aspirations and areas of interest.
Career opportunities include but are not limited to outdoor educator and naturalist roles in non-, or for-profit organizations, or the private school system. Nature-based organization positions like program director, coordinator, specialist, programmer. Advocate roles in topics relating to the outdoors, nature, environment, or conservation. Freelance fields focusing on the outdoors, nature, and spiritual/ mental wellness, as well as self-care/ mindfulness, as for example (personal) self-help instructor, motivational speaker, or trauma-informed coaching.
This track/ concentration also can serve as preparation for graduate school to further students’ studies and work in allied areas of their chosen field.
Other Career Opportunities Include (but are not limited to)
- Academic Programming Naturalist
- Adventure Trip Leader and/or Specialist
- Afterschool Coordinator
- Associate Outdoor Education Leader
- (Assistant) Camp Director
- Camping Director
- Field Mentor
- Gardening and Farming Instructor
- (Outdoor) Activity Specialist
- (Outdoor) Adventure Specialist
- (Outdoor Adventure Trip Leader
- (Outdoor) Camp Counselor
- (Outdoor) Camp Educator
- (Outdoor) Camp Instructor
- Outdoor Education Instructor
- Outdoor Education Programming Director
- Outdoor & Environmental Educator (Naturalist)
- Outdoor Facilitator
- Outdoor Field Instructor
- Outdoor Instructor
- Outdoor Outreach Coordinator and/or Facilitator
- Outdoor Play Instructor
- Teen Adventure Program Leader
- Wilderness Trip Leader and/or Specialist
Certifications for the Students in the Outdoor Education Program Include (but are not limited to)
- Camp Director Certification
- Certification for Archery
- Certification in First Aid & CPR
The Bachelor of Arts in Community Education degree program with Outdoor Education Experiential Learning and Mindfulnes major at West Liberty University requires minimum total 120 credit hours course of study.
The coursework includes:
- General Studies: 31-39 credit hours
- Common Core: 40 credit hours
- Track/Concentration: 41-49 credit hours
Click to view and download the complete Planning Check Sheet.
- Academic 4-Year Plan(s)
West Liberty University’s Bachelor of Arts in Community Education Program follows the 120 credit hour model for a bachelor’s degree and is designed for completion in three academic years. Despite the intention of this program to be an accelerated three-year program, students who wish to expand their studies to four years have the option to do so, by not taking summer classes but adding a fourth year of Fall IV and/or Spring IV classes.
Community Education’s Outdoor Education Partnership
- 4-H Wheeling, West Virginia University Extension Service Ohio County, Wheeling, WV
- Oglebay Institute-Schrader Environmental Center, Wheeling, WV
- Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens, Pittsburgh, PA
- The Linsly Outdoor Center, Raccoon Creek State Park, Hookstown, PA
- The Meadowcroft Rockshelter Historic Village, Avella, PA
- The Wilds, Cumberland, Ohio
For more information, please contact:
Director of Community Education
Dr. Miriam Roth Douglas
West Liberty University
308 Main Hall
208 University Drive
Campus Union Box 162
West Liberty, WV 26074