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Outdoor Program

UW Credit for National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) courses

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.


Quick links: Application/eligibility Credit and Credit Transfer Academic Advising Financial Arrangements Financial Aid 

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 (WFR) course.


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.

  1. Determine the NOLS course that best fit's your needs/interests and/or goals online at:

  2. Determine the UW credit offered for that course here.

  3. Apply and be admitted into NOLS.

  4. Make an appointment with the Center for Advising and Career Services Director Jo Chytka by calling (307) 766-2398 or e-mailing

  5. Meet with your academic advisor and enroll in the credit offered for the course.

  6. Secure your financial aid (if any) with the UW Student Financial Aid Office, Christy Nordmann, Financial Aid Specialist, (307) 766-3674.

  7. Attend and successfully complete the course (grade C or better).

  8. Grades will be posted the semester following completion of your course.

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 UW academic department 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.

Credit Matrix

The list of credit offered for each NOLS course is available here.

Academic Advising

Prior to participating in a NOLS course for UW credit, students must make an appointment with the Center for Advising and Career Services Director Jo Chytka by calling (307) 766-2398 or e-mailing, and the student’s assigned advisor. 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 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

Financial Aid

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. To do so, please work with the UW Student Financial Aid Office, Christy Nordmann, Financial Aid Specialist, (307) 766-3674.

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Outdoor Program

Half Acre Recreation and Wellness Center, Rm. 141

1000 E. University Ave., Dept. 3604

Laramie, WY 82071

Phone: (307) 766-2402


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