Outdoor Instruction and Guiding (Level 5)

Take your outdoor skills to the next level with our NZ Diploma in Outdoor Adventure Education – and learn how to share your knowledge with others.

If you’re passionate about the outdoors, what better way to earn a living than sharing your passion with like-minded people! You will work with a wide variety of real clients in organised, supervised, instruction and guiding opportunities, receiving regular feedback and mentoring to improve your practice and prepare you for leading others out in the industry.

The nationally recognised New Zealand Outdoor Instructors Association (NZOIA) Leader qualifications are embedded into our programmes. They give you a kick start in the adventure industry and connect you with the wider instruction and guiding community.

Generally, you will need to have completed our Certificate programme to gain entry into the Diploma, however if you think you have the pre-requisite skills for direct entry, give us a call and we can discuss your options. 


  • Level:
  • Credit Value:
  • Awards:
    NZ Diploma in Outdoor and Adventure Education (Multi Skilled) (Level 5)
  • Location:
  • Method of Study:
    Full time
  • Holiday Duration:
    2 weeks
  • Teaching Duration:
    32 weeks
  • Total Duration:
    34 weeks
  • Start Date:
    February 2022
  • End Date:
    October 2022
  • $7,771

Graduate Profile

Graduates of the New Zealand Diploma in Outdoor Adventure Education are capable of leading groups and managing clients or students safely in a range of outdoor settings in the education or tourism sectors.

The personal technical skill-set of graduates will be equivalent to that required by professional level qualifications (NZOIA, SKOANZ, NZRA) so graduates are capable of operating in moderate- to high-risk outdoor settings. This recognises a fundamental principle in outdoor leadership: that an instructor or guide must be able to operate safely and effectively in risk settings which are higher than those in which they may be expected to manage client safety.

Graduates will specialise in technical pursuit instruction, education or tourism experience management.

Knowledge and skills in safety management and group leadership will allow graduates to make proactive decisions in the field. This creates the potential to guide and instruct clients, unsupervised, in a variety of outdoor settings of low to moderate risk.

Group facilitation, presentation and teaching skills will allow graduates to effectively deliver the stated outcomes of the organisation they represent. These could include technical skill delivery and instruction, personal development, environmental and health education and tourism experience management.

Knowledge of Aotearoa New Zealand’s special flora and fauna, its geophysical and socio-cultural make-up along with contemporary studies of global and local environmental issues allow graduates to “tell the story” of New Zealand while enlightening and entertaining their clients or students.

Education pathways

This qualification may provide a pathway to the:

New Zealand Certificate in Outdoor Senior Leadership (Level 6) with strands Alpine, Bush, Caving, Education Outside The Classroom, Mountain Biking (Grade 5), Senior Raft Guide (Grade III), Senior Raft Guide (Grade IV/V), Senior River Boarding Guide (Grade III), Senior River Boarding Guide (Grade IV/V), and Rock Climbing.

Entry Criteria

Applicants must meet the following criteria:

  • It is strongly recommended that all individuals hold a first aid certificate either before entering programmes leading towards this qualification or before completing study.

  • Organisations or workplaces within the Outdoor Recreation sector may be covered by The Vulnerable Children Act 2014 depending on their organisation type or whether they provide services to organisations responsible for children and/or youth.
  • Where a learner engages with an organisation and/or activity that is covered by The Vulnerable Children Act 2014, they must successfully meet the safety check requirements.
  • For the purpose of this qualification, engagement may mean employment, practical experience or any learning and assessment within a programme leading to this qualification.

Entry requirements:

  • New Zealand Certificate in Outdoor and Adventure Education (Multi-Skilled) (Level 4) [Ref: 3765] or equivalent.


This is a Safety Sensitive Programme