Professional Development 2024

Professional Development 2024

Outdoors Victoria is thrilled to announce a series of 26 professional development sessions spread across all four terms of the academic year. Designed specifically for OES (Outdoor & Environmental Studies) teachers and outdoor activity providers, these courses offer a unique opportunity to enhance your skills and knowledge in outdoor education and recreation.

Join us as we delve into the world of outdoor education and recreation, learn from industry experts, and network with like-minded professionals. Don’t miss this chance to take your skills to the next level!

As an added benefit, Outdoors Victoria Affiliates enjoy complimentary access to select courses and special discounts on the remaining offerings. If you’re not already a member, now is the perfect time to join!
Visit this link to become an affiliate and take advantage of these exclusive benefits.

Affiliate members: As you book your tickets, please select the ones under Affiliate Members to get complimentary tickets and special discounts.

Professional Development Timetable and Sessions 2024

February 22nd | 4:00 – 5:00 pm | ONLINE

Planning for the logbook and unit 4.3 written report

In this session JP will talk through the process he used in selecting his Focus Four Key knowledge points and how they are linked with his planned practical experiences. As part of this he will also introduce a logbook template (in conjunction with ACHPER) and walk teachers through the planning needed to ensure students have the ability to collect adequate primary data on practical experiences, supplemented by secondary data.

A brief scaffold of the written report will also be discussed, leaving plenty of time for q&a on this aspect of the revised study design.

Jarrod Paine | Author, Teacher and licenced snake catcher from north east Victoria.

Jarrod is a curriculum expert and has written the VCE Outdoor Environmental Studies subject for Year 12’s to support online learning.  With 20 years of teaching experience and a life of outdoor adventuring, he enjoys nothing more than sharing his vast knowledge with OES Teachers.


March 12th | 5:00 – 6:30 pm | ONLINE

Indigenous peoples’ custodianship of outdoor environments including the formation of Land and Water Councils and Registered Aboriginal Parties (RAP)

The session audience will be Secondary School teachers who teach year 11 and 12 VCE Outdoor and Environmental Studies (OES) as they now, as part of the new Victorian Curriculum 2.0 from 2024 for OES, need to impart teachings and get the students to enquire about:

  • What custodianship means for Indigenous people
  • The pathways to recognition for Indigenous people in Victoria
  • The role of Land and Water Councils and Registered Aboriginal Parties

Jarrod Paine | Author, Teacher and licenced snake catcher from north east Victoria.

Jarrod is a curriculum expert and has written the VCE Outdoor Environmental Studies subject for Year 12’s to support online learning.  With 20 years of teaching experience and a life of outdoor adventuring, he enjoys nothing more than sharing his vast knowledge with OES Teachers.


March 21st | 4:00 – 5:00 pm | ONLINE

Navigating DET procedures & guidelines for camps & outdoor adventure activities 

Brett and Phil, from their in-depth knowledge of the Excursion Policy, will take you through the relevant sections for preparing for school camps and outdoor adventure activities.

Brett Easton | Alpine School – Gnurad-Gundidj Campus, Glenormiston VIC Warrnambool College

Brett is a founding member of the Gnurad-Gundidj Campus team, prior to that studied Outdoor Education and spent a number of years coordinating a large school based Outdoor education program. Brett is also a member of Outdoor Victoria’s Schools Advisory Group.

Phil Dennis | Head of Outdoor Education / HSR – Warrnambool College

Phil is an experienced and passionate Outdoor Education teacher who strives to build community partnerships and links to nature to support student learning and wellbeing.  Phil worked at Gnurad Gundidj, The School for Student Leadership for over a decade and currently heads up Outdoor Education at Warrnambool College. Phil is also a member of Outdoor Victoria’s Schools Advisory Group.


April 23th | 4:00 – 5:00 pm | ONLINE

Unpacking the 2023 examiner’s report

Using the Chief Assessor’s report of the 2023 exam, this session will provide you with an understanding of the exam trends, identify common mistakes and explain mark allocation. We will discuss the assessment guidelines and how this may influence your 2024 planning and delivery.

Belinda Dalziel | Head of Experiential Teaching and Learning | VCE Outdoor & Environmental Studies teacher Beaconhills College – Berwick Campus

Belinda Dalziel has been teaching VCE Outdoor & Environmental Studies for 15 years and is passionate and teaching and learning in this subject. She has authored a variety of materials, including text books, examinations, school assessed course work, study guides, and course outlines. With over 13 years of experience as a VCAA examination assessor as well as, leading examination assessment roles.


April 30th | 4:00 – 5:00 pm | ONLINE

Applying the AAAS

Andrew will deliver a simple and no-nonsense approach to introduce the AAAS, in order to help you become more familiar with the structure, format and the audit tools available. He will also discuss WHY the AAAS matters and importantly, help you understand HOW the AAAS applies to your role within your given context, whether you’re an outdoor activity provider, outdoor educator, camp or school.

Andrew McGuckian | CEO YouThrive Victoria

Andrew has spent most of his career in Outdoor/Experiential Education, working in a range of senior roles, inclusive of National Executive Director of Outdoor Education for the Outdoor Education Group, the inaugural Director of UC Camping and most recently, Manager of Sector Development for Outdoors, Victoria. Andrew is also the co-author of the Adventure Activity Standards Self-Assessment Tools (AASSAT) and looks forward to sharing his extensive knowledge on the AAAS.


May 9th | 9:30 – 3:00 pm | IN-PERSON, FULL DAY

Location: Westerfolds Park Templestowe – Conference Centre

Teaching OES for the First Time

Figure out the nitty-gritty of the new study design – how to teach it, what confuses students (and teachers), and ways to get the most out of your chosen outdoor environments. This all-day workshop will also include a focus on creating assessments including the new Area of Study 3 and logbook, and ways to improve exam and literacy skills in your lessons.

Hayley Tagell | VCE OES Teacher

Hayley has taught VCE OES for the last decade and has experience as a VCAA Exam Assessor, writing SACs with ACPHER, and was part of the VCAA review panel for the recent study design. She has a passion for helping new teachers feel comfortable within VCE OES, and improving literacy skills for students.


May 16th | 9:30 am – 12:30 pm | IN-PERSON, HALF DAY

Location: Westerfolds Park Templestowe – Conference Centre

Connection Before Content – How to Engage Participants, Build Relationships & Nourish Well-Being

The science is in: outdoor programs that intentionally develop trusting & healthy relationships outperform all other curricula on so many levels – greater participation, improved academic performance, stronger & more resilient communities. This session will present a series of fun group games and activities that can easily be integrated into your existing outdoor programs to help your participants feel valued, supported and connected to one another. Mark will also lead a discussion to explore the latest science and research that supports and encourages the intentional development of well-being as the central focus of group-based programs. In addition to learning a bunch of fun activity ideas (to use immediately in your setting,) you will gain a solid understanding of why building connections before diving into your content is so important to the well-being of your groups.

Mark Collard | Founder & CEO, Playmeo

Mark Collard is an experiential trainer, speaker & author. As the CEO & founder of playmeo, he is best known for developing the world’s largest online database of experiential & adventure-based activities. Over a career spanning more than 34 years, he has worked with tens of thousands of people using group games & activities to help them play, interact, build trust and connect. Mark is the author of five top-selling books, including No Props No Problem, Count Me In & Serious Fun. Mark sat on the Board for Outdoors Victoria Board from 2015 to 2021.


May 23rd | 4:00 – 5:00 pm | ONLINE

Gaining appropriate informed consent to ensure programs meet legislative obligations. Tips to working with providers to plan great OE/Camps

This online session will provide tips for working with Outdoor Activity Providers to plan great Outdoor Education/Camp experiences.

Bernie Mills | Director of Experiential Education, Firbank Grammar

Bernie has worked in the Outdoor Education sector for almost 20 years. His career began professionally as a guide and leader, working across a range of sectors, including schools and corporate organisations. He has worked both domestically and abroad. Bernie is a qualified teacher, having previously taught VCE Outdoor & Environmental Studies and Physical Education. He is currently the Director of Experiential Education at Firbank Grammar School, a leading Melbourne school in outdoor and environmental education.


May 30th | 4:00 – 5:00 pm | ONLINE

Strategies Outdoor Providers can offer schools, and for Teachers in schools to best manage Teacher Time In Lieu

Cole Waters | Head of Outdoor Education – Castlemaine Secondary College

Cole has been teaching Outdoor Education since 2007. Since 2008, Coles has been teaching in a government education setting, and he is very passionate about giving students outdoor experiences.


DATE AND TIME TBD | ONLINE

Developing student literacy skills to help prepare for the exam


DATE AND TIME TBD | ONLINE

Managing anaphylaxis and diabetes on programs/camps


DATE AND TIME TBD | IN-PERSON

Location: Westerfolds Park Templestowe – Conference Centre

Indigenous peoples’ land management strategies – Managing Country Together in Action.


DATE AND TIME TBD | IN-PERSON

Location: Westerfolds Park Templestowe – Conference Centre

Program design/outcomes model and meeting school expectations and DET Guidelines


DATE AND TIME TBD | ONLINE

Introduction to delivering cultural interpretation


DATE AND TIME TBD | ONLINE

Tips and tricks in providing great meals


DATE AND TIME TBD | ONLINE

Preparing your students for the OES exam – Common errors unpacked


DATE AND TIME TBD | IN-PERSON

Location: Westerfolds Park Templestowe – Conference Centre

Mental Health 1st aid day 1


DATE AND TIME TBD | IN-PERSON

Location: Westerfolds Park Templestowe – Conference Centre

Mental Health 1st aid day 2



DATE AND TIME TBD | ONLINE

Workplace agreements and employment instruments


DATE AND TIME TBD | ONLINE

Sharing some great trip plans


DATE AND TIME TBD | IN-PERSON

Location: Westerfolds Park Templestowe – Conference Centre

Building individual and organisational capacity for staff to carry out concurrent risk assessment


DATE AND TIME TBD | IN-PERSON

Location: Westerfolds Park Templestowe – Conference Centre

Critical incident response  scenario training


DATE AND TIME TBD | ONLINE

Maintaining participant records and the requirements of privacy legislation


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