Policy, Research, Articles and Statements

Policy Document Links

Curriculum for Excellence through Outdoor Learning Scottish Government (2010)

Outdoor Learning, Practical Guidance Education Scotland (2011)

Vision 2030+  Scottish Government (2016)

Taking Learning Outdoors: Partnership for Excellence Learning and Teaching Scotland (2007)

A More Active Scotland- Scotland’s Physical Activity Delivery Plan Scottish Government (2018)

UK Chief Medical Officers’ Physical Activity Guidelines (2019)

Out To Play Scottish Government (2020)

My World Outdoors  Care Inspectorate (2016)

Going Out There – Scottish framework for Safe Practice in Off-site Visits Scottish Government/ SAPOE (2013)

Fit for the Future – Outdoor Education SAPOE

Scotland’s biodiversity:a route map to 2020 Scottish Government (2015)

This document cites all the references to outdoor learning from How Good is Our School 4.  HGIOS4 – OL references

Outdoor learning exemplified through Getting It Right For Every Child. OL GIRFEC Poster

STEM Education and Training Strategy for Scotland (2017): STEM strategy

Space to grow – Care Inspectorate

Realising the Ambition – Scottish Government

Early Learning and Childcare: Delivering High Quality Play and Learning Environments Outdoors practice note. Care Inspectorate.

Place Progression – Natural Resources Wales

Latest Health of Scotland Report – Scottish Health Survey 2019

Summary of Findings of Scottish Health Survey 2019 and Scottish Household Survey 2019

Research supporting Outdoor Learning

  1. The use of residential experiences and their impact on attainment – http://learningaway.org.uk/
  2. Improving Social and Emotional skills in children to enhance their learning – Transforming outdoor learning in schools – https://www.plymouth.ac.uk/uploads/production/document/path/7/7634/Transforming_Outdoor_Learning_in_Schools_SCN.pdf
  3. The health benefits of being in green spaces to learn – Natural connections report http://publications.naturalengland.org.uk/publication/6636651036540928
  4. Increase of ‘Character’ in pupils – http://relationalschools.org/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/More-than-just-a-ski-trip-Relational-Schools-Foundation-Report.pdf
  5. Meta-analysis of the health benefits of being outdoors. Includes references to research in education establishments https://www.rspb.org.uk/Images/naturalthinking_tcm9-161856.pdf
  6. Pupils social relations, motivation to learn, well being and academic performance in relation to outdoor learning – http://bmcpublichealth.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12889-016-3780-8
  7. Evidence of the relationships between natural environment and range of outcomes – Connections to Nature – http://publications.naturalengland.org.uk/publication/6636651036540928
  8. Participation in conservation of natural spaces increases health and wellbeing – http://bmcpublichealth.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s12889-015-2214-3
  9. Effects of environment based education on students motivation to learn – http://www.seer.org/pages/research/AthmanandMonroeJIR2004.pdf
  10. Three case studies on assessing outdoor learning – http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/03004279.2015.1042987
  11. Education Endowment Foundation research on effectiveness of Outdoor Adventure Learning https://educationendowmentfoundation.org.uk/evidence-summaries/teaching-learning-toolkit/outdoor-adventure-learning#closeSignup
  12. The Educational Outcomes of Learning for Sustainability – A brief review of Literature https://www.gov.scot/publications/educational-outcomes-learning-sustainability-brief-review-literature/pages/3/
  13. School Inspection Reports and the status of Outdoor Learning, Residential experiences and Adventure activities in Scottish Schools https://beamingsimon.files.wordpress.com/2019/06/carnegie-report_web.pdf
  14. Evaluating the Outdoor Learning Experience  https://www.cardiff.ac.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0008/475676/Evaluating_The_Outdoor_Learning_Experience_Doc_EMAIL.pdf
  15. Mental health toolkit for schools -Measuring and monitoring children and young people’s mental wellbeing https://www.annafreud.org/what-we-do/schools-in-mind/resources-for-schools/mental-health-toolkit-for-schools/
  16. Physically active lessons in schools and their impact on physical activity, educational, health and cognition outcomes: a systematic review and meta-analysis https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S009174351400509X
  17. High quality Outdoor Education Guide https://ahoec.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/2336-HQOL-Scottish-flyer.pdf
  18.  Public parks are sustainable resources for better mental health https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/05/200527105025.htm
  19. Evaluating the effectiveness of wildflower seed mixes for boosting floral diversity and bumblebee and hoverfly abundance in urban areas. For more information visit
  20. Practitioner Guide to Assessing Connection to Nature – https://cdn.naaee.org/sites/default/files/assessing_connection_to_nature.5.11.20.pdf

  21. Investigating The Process Of Learning Outdoors – Roger Scrutton, Edinburgh University

  22. Using outdoor learning to augment social and emotional learning SEL skills in young people with social emotional and behavioural difficulties SEBD Alan Price
  23. The phased model of adventure therapy trauma focussed low arousal positive behavioural support Grace Trundle and Roger Hutchinson
  24. Forest School for wellbeing an environment in which young people can take what they need Lucy Tiplady and Harriet Menter
  25. The health impacts of nature – Frontiers in Psychology
  26. 120 mins per week Outdoors – Mathew White et al
  27. every-child-outdoors – RSPB
  28. Mental health and greenspace NE – Natural England Health Briefing
  29. Physical Activity and greenspace NE – Natural England Health Briefing
  30. Health benefits of the great outdoors – Caoimhe Twolig-Bennet et al
  31. Impact of OL on attainment – IDOX
  32. ‘It’s good for their self esteem’: the substance beneath the label – Mark Leather
  33. Daily Mile research – Ryde et al
  34. Place-responsive pedagogy: learning from teachers’ experiences of excursions in nature – Ashley Fenwick and Jonathan Lynch
  35. Evaluating tools – Evaluations toolkit
  36. Leadership for embedding outdoor learning within the primary curriculum Tom Pether
  37. Benefits of outdoor learning Michele Grimshaw et al
  38. Nature based ECE for HWE development Avril Johstone et al


The Guardian – Scotland eyes outdoor learning

The Guardian – Split Classes and Outdoor Learning

The Guardian – Ignore Outdoor Learning and it may disappear for ever

TES – Life in Danish Schools post Lockdown

TES –Outdoor Learning, the time has come

Other outdoor learning articles – Times Educational Supplement (TES) –

Children and Young People Now – Special Report – Outdoor Learning

Greener play boosts children’s immune systems – The Guardian

Inspiring Scotland – Practitioners Tips – Experiences


Scottish Advisory Panel for Outdoor Education (Scotland)

National Network for Outdoor Learning (Scotland)

A Scottish guide to High Quality Outdoor Learning and Residential Experiences

Outdoor Learning Sector Advice (Wales)

Welsh Outdoor Alliance Statement

Institute for Outdoor Learning Sector Report  on Covid 19 (England)

Council for Learning Outside the classroom and OEAP (England)




Report a Glow concern
Cookie policy  Privacy policy

Glow Blogs uses cookies to enhance your experience on our service. By using this service or closing this message you consent to our use of those cookies. Please read our Cookie Policy.