Neill 2010 Technology and outdoor education: Some experiential possibilities

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A presentation by James Neill to the 16th National Outdoor Education Conference, Notre Dame University, Fremantle, Western Australia, January 10-13, 2010.

90 mins - Concurrent workshop session E4

The aim of this session was to explore experiential relations with different kinds of technology in outdoor educational settings.


There is a philosophical tension in outdoor education about the role of technology. On one hand, outdoor educators seek to distance participants from technology in order to provide “a place apart”. On the other hand, most outdoor education programs rely on a growing plethora of outdoor and safety gear, electronic navigation and communication, and transport technologies. Despite this, outdoor education tends to be somewhat unadventurous in its pedagogical use of technology. Instead, we might experiment with a wider spectrum of technologies (from low tech to high tech). By considering possibilities from across the technological gamut – e.g., from survival programs (low tech) to urban challenges with mobile electronic devices (high tech) – we might enrich our understanding of outdoor learning processes and engage different types of participants.


  • Slides (Slideshare)
  • Audio and notes will be made available

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