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National Outdoor Leadership School

Administered jointly by the Office of Academic Affairs and the Center for Advising and Career Services

Jo Chytka, Director
Center for Advising and Career Services
222 Knight Hall
Phone: (307)766-2398 FAX: (307)766-2089
Web site:

The University of Wyoming (UW) and National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) Articulation Agreement provides the opportunity for degree seeking UW students to receive UW academic credit for NOLS courses.

When NOLS students step into the world's wild places, they bring not only their backpacks, but also more than 40 years of experience in expeditioning. NOLS founder Paul Petzoldt's idea was simple: take people into the wilderness for an extended period of time, teach them the right things, feed them well and when they walk out of the mountains, they will be skilled leaders. The core of his idea was the extended expedition, one of sufficient length that a person could learn and practice the skills over and over again. That is the backbone of every NOLS course and today the school is widely recognized as the world's leader in the extended expedition, from two weeks to twelve.

This articulation agreement covers domestic and international NOLS originated semester-long courses.  This agreement will also cover some individual short-term courses (14-45 days; including mountaineering, rock climbing, sailing, kayaking, skiing, snowboarding, and backpacking) and the Wilderness First Responder course ("WFR")

Application: Students Enrolled at UW

Students who have completed at least one semester at UW, and are in good standing for academics and conduct prior to the proposed period of study, may apply to receive articulated NOLS credit.

All students interested in obtaining internship course credits must be advised by the appropriate UW unit prior to taking the NOLS semester course.
Students enrolled in the NOLS program may apply their financial aid to the cost of the program if they are enrolled as a full-time degree seeking student at the University of Wyoming. 

Credit and Credit Transfer

UW credit hours will be awarded in the approved courses, which require prior UW academic department and college approval, upon completion of the NOLS courses, provided a grade equivalent to a UW grade of C or better was obtained at NOLS.

Students should be aware that for internship credits to be awarded, additional academic work requirements determined by the internship course home will need to be met.  Those additional requirements vary between academic programs and amount of credit desired, but may include a satisfactory evaluation from NOLS, a weekly journal, a substantial written report, and an oral presentation.

UW credit will not be awarded if the student withdraws or is expelled from the NOLS course.

Academic Advising 

Prior to participating in a NOLS course for UW credit, students must contact the Director of the Center for Advising and Career Services, his/her designee, and the student's assigned adviser.  These persons will approve the student's schedule, provide the appropriate course numbers, and liaise with the NOLS Registrar.

Students enrolling in NOLS semester long courses must register for a minimum of 12 UW credit hours for the participating semester.

UW students studying at NOLS will be bound by all rules, regulations and by-laws in operation at NOLS.  In addition, since UW students remain enrolled as degree candidates at UW, they must also adhere to UW standards of conduct, rules and regulations. UW and NOLS both abide by the Federal Right to Privacy Act (FERPA).

Financial Arrangements

Each UW student will pay to NOLS:

  • The NOLS tuition and related fees (any changes to be advised in writing by NOLS at least three months in advance of the change coming into effect), related fees would include equipment deposit;

  • Complete medical and evacuation health insurance;

  • Other fees (e.g. tuition protection program, local transportation, and gear purchases), air transportation and additional living expenses will be paid directly by the student to the provider of the service.

Each UW student will pay to the UW Outreach School

  • The published per credit registration fees to register UW credits earned at NOLS

Approved NOLS Semester Courses

Semester in the Rockies
Teton Valley Semester
Outdoor Educator Semester
Semester in the Southwest
Semester in the Sonoran
Semester in Patagonia
Semester in Baja
Summer Semester in Australia
Semester on the Borders
Semester in the Yukon
Semester in Alaska
Semester in Australia
Semester in New Zealand
Semester in the Pacific Northwest
Semester in the Amazon
Semester in India
Year in Patagonia
Year in Sonoran
NOLS Courses
Absoraka Backpacking
Wind River Mountaineering
Rock Climbing
Rock and River
Whitewater River Expeditions
Salmon Backpacking and Rafting
Pacific NW Backpacking
Himalaya Backpacking
Himalaya Mountaineering
Australia Backpacking and Sea Kayaking
Australia Backpacking
Patagonia Mountaineering
Baja Sea Kayaking
Yukon Outdoor Ed-Backpacking and River
Yukon Backpacking and River
Alaska Mountaineering
Denali Mountaineering
Alaska Outdoor Ed-Backpacking and Sea Kayaking
Brooks Range Backpacking and River
Southwest Alaska Sea Kayaking
23 and over Prince William Sound Alaska Sea Kayaking
Amazon Basin River Expedition
Mountain, River, Sea Kayaking, Sailing Instructor Courses
Professional Instructor
Baja Coastal Sailing
Pacific Northwest Trip Leader
North Cascades Mountaineering
Waddington Range Mountaineering
Pacific Northwest Outdoor Education Mountaineering
Pacific Northwest Sea Kayaking and Sailing
Patagonia Mountaineering
Patagonia Backpacking and Fly Fishing
NOLS/Orvis Wilderness Fly Fishing
Wilderness Horsepacking
Rocky Mountain Outdoor Educator
Scandinavian Backpacking
Scandinavian Sea Kayaking and Backpacking
Soutwest Outdoor Educator Backpacking and Rock Climbing
Southwest Lightweight Backpacking
Winter Outdoor Educator
New Zealand Backpacking
Yukon Backpacking
Yukon Backpacking and Wilderness Canoeing
Alaska Backpacking and Packrafting
Rocky Mountain Lightweight Backpacking

Information on UW credit for NOLS courses may be found online at

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