Risk Management for Outdoor Programs, Online/Virtual Training (Americas/Europe)

Training Description

Risk Management for Outdoor Programs
Online Training Course for Outdoor Professionals
January 5 - February 2, 2022

January 5 - February 2, 2022

The course is a combination of five real-time video-conference sessions, spaced one week part, and independent work periods between live sessions.

Five live online sessions:

Wednesday, January 5, 11:00 am New York Time (UTC-4) Live Session 1
Wednesday, January 12, 11:00 am New York Time (UTC-4) Live Session 2
Wednesday, January 19, 11:00 am New York Time (UTC-4) Live Session 3
Wednesday, January 26, 11:00 am New York Time (UTC-4) Live Session 4
Wednesday, February 2, 11:00 am New York Time (UTC-4) Live Session 5

The course is divided into two separate cohorts, which meet at different times.
The timing of this cohort is designed to be convenient for participants from the Americas/Europe region. For participants in the Asia/Pacific region, please see the Asia/Pacific training listing.

Live session schedule (AM-EU, timed for Americas & Europe)

  • 8 am Los Angeles (UTC-7)
  • 11 am New York (UTC-4)
  • 4 pm London (UTC+0)
  • 9:30 pm India (UTC+5.30)
  • 12 midnight Singapore/Beijing (UTC+8) (Thursday, the day following)
  • 2 am Sydney AU (UTC+10) (Thursday, the day following)

Note that live sessions will always be at 11:00 am New York time. You may need to adjust due to daylight savings, depending on your region.

Independent individual and group work occurs between live sessions.


  • Gain critical knowledge of best practices in outdoor program risk management
  • Learn procedures, systems and plans essential to meeting key outdoor safety standards
  • Understand how to apply successful risk management strategies to adventure programs, experiential education, wilderness expeditions, and outdoor trips

Valuable for
Program Coordinators/Managers, Risk Management officers, Risk Management/Safety Committee members, members of Boards of Directors, executive leadership.

​Course Format
The course is composed of five live video-conference sessions and three independent work periods:

  1. Live sessions. Five live, video-conference sessions, occurring the same day and time each week, for five consecutive weeks.  These include structured real-time small-group and large-group discussions and participant project presentations.
  2. Independent work. Between live video-conferences, there are four week-long independent work periods for individual and remote small-group activity. This work includes:
  • ​Review of pre-recorded slide presentations with presenter video
  • Completion of readings
  • Participation in online discussion forums
  • Participation in interactive video-based decision-making activities
  • Completion of writing assignments (including writing risk management plan outline and strategic improvement plan content)
  • Peer review of select classmate writing content
  • Completion of organizational self-assessment of risk management
  • Completion of online worksheets
  • Participation in online risk decision-making role-playing scenario
  • Structured analysis of case-study examples
  • Completion of quizzes and final exam

Independent work is anticipated to take a minimum of 7-12 hours per week.

Jeff Baierlein, Director, Viristar; past Executive Director at Outward Bound USA


USD $259 individual enrollment.
Course fee includes five live sessions, materials for independent work sessions, lifetime access to an electronic, online-based copy of the course textbook Risk Management for Outdoor Programs: A Guide to Safety in Outdoor Education, Recreation and Adventure, and certification.

Download a PDF version of the syllabus here

The course textbook is Risk Management for Outdoor Programs: A Guide to Safety in Outdoor Education, Recreation and Adventure (viristar.com/book). This 218-page text is provided to each student in electronic online-based format.

Participants take four short quizzes throughout the course and a final written exam. Individuals who fully participate in learning activities and successfully complete the final exam receive a certificate from Viristar valid for three years.

​Previous Participants Say:

  • This program is a must for any professionally run outdoor program that is serious about addressing risk.” Bryan Enberg, Director of Education, National Association for Search and Rescue; Past President, Mountain Rescue Association
  • An insightful look into risk domains and tools. Well-structured and expertly facilitated...a great way to gain multiple perspectives and share knowledge and ideas.” Louise Melville, Coordinator of Experiential Learning, St. Clement's School, Toronto, Canada
  • "Great course full of useful information. Very practical view on how to develop and manage risk in the outdoor industry." Dr. Christian Bisson, Professor of Adventure Education & Adventure Education Program Coordinator at Plymouth State University

Registration: https://courses.viristar.com/course-catalogue/online-risk-management/


Certification Offered: 
Certification Duration: 
3 Years


Contact Person: 
Jeff Baierlein
+1 206 473 8050
Training Provider: 
Training Type: 
Training Dates: 
Wednesday, January 5, 2022 to Wednesday, February 2, 2022

Training Location

United States