Pathways To Learning Hong Kong Registered School 566985 & 600733

Certificate in Experiential Learning

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Where can this qualification take me? | Why Hong Kong?

Experience Learning. Experience Leading.

Not so long ago people had one job for life. Not so much anymore. Many of today’s jobs did not exist 10 years ago. In the future work will be different again. But even while technology is constantly changing our lives, people will always need to work together, collaborating in groups. The ability to lead well - and follow well - will be highly valued.

Leadership Happens Here - Hongkong

Prepare yourself for the future
Throughout this programme you’ll develop self-awareness, confidence, communication and collaboration skills, and a first-hand understanding of group dynamics. You’ll do it in engaging and real environments with lots of uncertainty and change - just like the future will be.

Our graduates often move into international adventure tourism and education careers. They also use the transferable leadership skills from this programme to embark on business, professional and corporate management pathways all over the world.

What you will experience 
We begin by using the development of mastery in technical outdoor skills to build confidence, resilience and discipline. These skills give us the ability to conceive, plan and execute expeditions that highlight and allow us to practice the collaborative and leadership skills we study in the classroom. As we learn more of ourselves and our environment we blend theory and practice in real world environmental and health projects that apply all we have learned in the year. The core outcomes of this approach will allow you to develop:

  • Confidence in the Natural Environment
  • Personal Resilience and Discipline
  • Evaluation and Management of Risk
  • Collaborative strategies and Innovation skills
  • Project and Group Management
  • Emotional and Social Intelligence
  • Leadership and Followership
  • A Holistic Approach to Health and Wellbeing
  • Environmental Awareness

As you draw your learning together and begin to realise these outcomes, you will achieve four core competencies (specific module codes indicated):

Acquiring Self Confidence and Resilience through Mastery (CEL404, CEL410)
Skill acquisition in the outdoor disciplines of rock climbing and surfing demands personal discipline and resilience. In the process of acquiring mastery, self-confidence is developed alongside an appreciation for real and perceived risks and the safe management of them. 
Research tells us that our self-confidence positively effects the goals we set for ourselves and our commitment to achieving them (Locke, 1984). A strong sense of internal motivation and perseverance are attributes shared by entrepreneurs and successful employees alike.

Effect of self-efficacy, goals, and task strategies on task performance. 
Locke, Edwin A.; Frederick, Elizabeth; Lee, Cynthia; Bobko, Philip 
Journal of Applied Psychology, Vol 69(2), May 1984, 241-251

Learning, Collaborating and Leading through Expeditionary Experience (CEL405, CEL 406)
Exploring our natural environment further through Trekking and Sea Kayaking expeditions, new and unpredictable challenges constantly emerge, mimicking the world of work with alarming accuracy. Successful expeditions demand creativity, collaboration, teamwork and leadership in a variety of complex situations. Effective planning, risk and group management skills are the keys to success. 
Research (Smith, 2009) from employers and training organisations tells us that high performers tend to be comfortable calculating and taking risks, are capable of entrepreneurial planning, and are leadership savvy. During expeditions and in business, poor decision making can have very real consequences. The same cannot be said for purely classroom based explorations.

Going beyond competencies: An exploratory study in defining exemplary workplace learning and performance practitioners 
Smith, Terri Freeman 
Performance Improvement Quarterly, 2009, Vol.22(1), pp.27-51

Creating Depth with Understanding (CEL400, CEL403)
Studies in Leadership and Culture provide the background from which socially informed and aware individuals emerge, who are able of compliment this with actual experience in leading diverse groups in varied contexts. We examine reflection, assumptions, natural and contingent leadership styles, group process and feedback models in theory and in practice.
Paraphrasing John Dewey, DePaul Universities highly ranked entrepreneurial programmes advocates that practice without theory is blind, and theory without practice is pointless.

Building an Appreciation for Ourselves and our World (CEL401, CEL402)
A holistic and applied approach to Studies in Health, Wellbeing and Environmental Literacy creates grounded individuals with a deeper understanding of ourselves and our place in the world.
We endeavour to work directly with local community health and environmental organisations such as and in order that we can reinforce our theory with practice.

Public and private organisations are increasingly focused on solving complex social and environmental problems (Margolis and Walsh, 2003) and alongside with this we see the emergence of social entrepreneurs as drivers of innovation in business.
Margolis, Walsh (2003) Misery Loves Companies: Rethinking Social Initiatives by Business, Administrative Science Quarterly Vol. 48, No. 2, pp. 268-305.

For more information please call us on (852) 2116 3916 or email [email protected].

Make an online query here (please choose CEL in the drop-down menu).

Find an enrolment form here.

Find a Student Application Questionnaire here.


Fast Facts about the programme

Programme length

34 weeks plus vacations

Programme level

Certificate Level 4 - equivalent to first year bachelor


TPP Certificate in Outdoor Education

Qualifications embedded in programme available with additional assessment

NZ Outdoor Instructors Assn Leader Awards (pursuit specific)

Institute of Leadership and Management (ILM) Certificate Level 3

Employment pathway







Education pathway

This programme is designed as the beginning to a career that can be as flexible and varied as the future world of work will demand. Early forays into the world of work will most likely be in areas that demand high levels of interpersonal skill and self-awareness such as:

  • Adventure Tourism guiding/operations management
  • Outdoor Adventure Education
  • Adventure Therapy
  • Community Recreation
  • Environmental Education
  • High School teaching

The programme is also designed to allow articulation to a range of other internationally recognised programmes:

TPP Diploma in Outdoor Instruction and Guiding Level 5 (New Zealand)

ILM Certificate Level 5

Bachelor’s Degree in Sustainability and Outdoor Education Level 7 (New Zealand, ARA Institute)

NZ Outdoor Instructors Assn Pursuit Specific Level 1 and 2 awards (

Why Hong Kong?

Many important commentators feel that the 21st Century is the 'Asian Century' and Hong Kong is the gateway city to the East. Its fusion of Eastern and Western culture is the perfect jumping off point for a career that could span the globe.

The urbanised area of Hong Kong accounts for only 25% of its land area. Of the remaining land, 40% is protected for public recreation and access. These parklands contain almost 3000 different species of plants and animals and are considered to be one of the more biologically diverse regions of the world. Hong Kong is also home to a UNESCO Global Geopark at Sai Kung, recognised internationally for its unique geologic features.

Because of its rich cultural make up and dense population Hong Kong also offers some of the world’s most foremost environmental and social issues – waste management, power generation, environmental degradation, pollution from neighbouring states, food distribution, environmental connection for an increasing urbanised population, the list goes on.

It is the convergence of this rich biological area and population density that brings the best out of humanity. There are many social and environmental initiatives operating in Hong Kong with which this programme is able to interact.

Hong Kong is also known for its hugely varied and accessible Rock Climbing, its sub-tropical Sea Kayaking conditions and golden sandy camping beaches and superb surf! 

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