If you love adventure and the outdoors and want to make a career out of your passion, the School of Adventure Studies at West Highland College UHI is the place for you.

Based mainly in Fort William - the Outdoor Capital of the UK - and with an adventure base on the Isle of Skye, you can choose from a range of courses and degrees in the tourism, adventure and marine sectors.

With our majestic mountains, rivers and seas as outdoor classrooms there is no better place to study.

We are part of the University of the Highlands and Islands and are located in one of the finest UK locations for adventure tourism. Natural heritage, culture, marvellous landscapes and seascapes of the West Highland Coastline and Islands make up our playground.

Students Kara and Angus tell us about their study experience

You can see what students have to say about their experiences of studying at the School of Adventure Studies (SOAS) and about becoming part of the vibrant local outdoor community. Read the summer update magazine to find out some of what students and lecturers have been up to throughout the last academic year.

Our academic staff and expert associate practitioners are highly experienced and qualified. Our close links with the outdoor sector mean that all our courses are relevant and dynamic, with a focus on employability and cutting-edge practical and academic content. Browse through our staff pages to get a feel for the breadth and depth of talent involved in the course delivery.

Our Centre for Recreation and Tourism Research works closely with SOAS to help inform curriculum development, provides research opportunities for both staff and students and assists students to develop their ideas and translate their research into business opportunities or joint ventures.

To find out more about what it's like to study in the Highlands, follow our Facebook page or have a look at the range of courses and programmes we have to offer - you can follow the links to find out more and apply:

Adventure student biking in forest

The Adventure Pathways Scheme

Adventure Tourism Management, Adventure Performance and Coaching and Adventure Education have a framework of shared modules. Each degree has its own identity and focus but there are also important similarities: common ground, skills and knowledge that all adventure professionals must acquire in order to succeed. This common ground is our Adventure Pathways Core and it is built into each of the three adventure degrees. Having this shared core allows flexibility and the option to transfer between degrees within the first two years.

Marine and Coastal Tourism

BA (Hons) in Marine and Coastal Tourism the first of its kind in the UK and focuses on the many uses of the marine resource and how tourism interacts with these uses. The degree was developed in response to the National Marine Tourism Strategy; Awakening the Giant, a collaboration between Government and the marine industry to realise the potential of this sector.

Career opportunities include:

Instructing outdoor and adventure activities; coaching, work in outdoor centres; marinas; teaching; educational expedition operators; adventure therapy; criminal justice rehabilitation; strength and conditioning coach; guiding; adventure business enterprise; management roles; tourism and environment policy positions; risk management and many more. 

For enquiries about the School of Adventure Studies, call +44 (0)1397 874000 or info.whc@uhi.ac.uk


Association of Mountaineering Instructors  BASP UK Adventure Activities Licensing Authority (AALA)Institute for Outdoor Learning

AALA: Climbing/Trekking/Watersports/Mountain Biking confirm on: Tel 029 2075 5715

Muriel Gray discusses the School of Adventure Studies and the student experience in the West Highlands: