Firbush x Edinburgh Earth Initiative

Partnering to demonstrate how taking teaching and research outside a classroom setting is an effective way of engendering environmentally sensitive and inclusive learning.

The Firbush Outdoor Centre team were delighted to welcome a multi-disciplinary team of students, staff, and teaching staff from the Edinburgh Earth Initiative cohort, offering the opportunity to get outside and engage in nature-based learning. 

Group in the Firbush Lobby area

The Nature-Based Learning Project

The Edinburgh Earth Initiative’s Nature Based Learning Project harnesses the world-class learning and cutting-edge research being pioneered across the University with a goal to transform the way that students and staff engage with each other and the environment around them. Working with experts in the field, the project took an evidence-based approach towards demonstrating the need and the potential for nature-based learning to drive real change within the curriculum at the university and beyond.

Learning in the outdoors encourages an awareness of a wider world and how our actions make a difference on all kinds of scales.

Current postgraduate student

Connecting on the Banks of Loch Tay

Two happy people in front of a canoe on the banks of the Loch

Firbush offers University students and staff, and the wider community, a unique opportunity to connect with one another and nature, and was therefore the perfect setting for the team to build on and explore some of the themes from the Nature-Based Learning Project. As well as spending time canoeing and exploring Loch Tay and its islands, with attention drawn to the wildlife and unique surroundings of the Scottish landscape, the team discussed and explored different ideas around the environment and the sustainability work carried out at the university and interdisciplinary and experiential learning opportunities.

Just wanted to say a big thanks to all of the Firbush team for the day trip you hosted for us at Edinburgh Earth Initiative. You were super responsive to our needs and ideas, which I am very grateful for. Everyone on the team had an amazing time.

Sophie Zych-Watson
Postgraduate Earth Fellow: Nature Based Learning, Edinburgh Earth Initiative

A short survey of the day showed the trip to have positive results and significant impact to all attendees, for both staff and students. When asked to describe their day, team members wrote that they found the day ‘fun, insightful, rejuvenating, peaceful, freeing, nourishing’. One respondent wrote that they had learned more about their colleagues in one day than they had in six months of being in the office. 

Two individuals in a kayak on Loch Tay

About Firbush Outdoor Centre

Firbush has been offering unique and memorable experiences to University students and staff, and the wider community since 1967. Located on the spectacular shores of Loch Tay and benefiting from panoramic views of the Ben Lawers mountain range it provides the perfect opportunity to escape the hustle and bustle of everyday life.  Offering a wide range of mountain and water-based activities all year round Firbush is open to everybody and welcomes reading parties, field trips, sports clubs, societies and staff conferences as well as guests from other universities, companies, families and informal groups looking for an adventure.

Related Information