Posted on July 14, 2010 by Tia Lalani

Morten Asfeldt discusses the idea behind his outdoor education conference, held during a two-week canoe trip along a tundra river.

Professors and lecturers from around the world meet in Yellowknife to fly 400 km north and start a two-week canoe trip through the tundra, where they present their research findings.

“I figure that if you could gather in a five-star hotel, you can gather in a five-star wilderness,” says Morten Asfeldt about the unique academic conference. The outdoor education professor at the University of Alberta’s Augustana Campus helped co-ordinate the wilderness expedition to discuss best practices in wilderness expedition education.

Attendees from Canada, Scotland, Norway, Sweden, Denmark and Japan brought both a paper and a practice they use with students to reinforce their learning. Simon Beames of the University of Edinburgh, who helped coordinate the conference, brought one of his own practices and learned about others such as bark art, sod hut construction and hand signaling.

This peer-review process strengthens each professor’s paper, which will be collected for publication in an experiential education journal or bound into a book.


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