Adult Learners Page

Welcome to the Adult Learners Page.

This page contains important information for Adult Learners currently undertaking their Adult Training.  It provides information about the role of Training Advisers, Personal Learning Plans, Validation of training and links to on-line training resources and e-learning packages.

Training Advisers

Training Advisers (TA's) have a key role which involves supporting and assessing adult learners, who are usually new to Scouting, through The Adult Training Scheme, ensuring that they have the skills, knowledge and attitudes they need to be effective in their Scouting role.

The Adult Training Scheme is presented in a modular format with several different methods of learning available to allow for the greatest of flexibility for the adult learner to complete the necessary training for their role.

Adult learners will be given the opportunity to meet with a TA within the first 5 months of their appointment in order to complete their Personal Learning Plan (PLP) at a Training Access Session.  A PLP is a record of validated modules as well as an outline of how the adult learner intends to undertake the necessary learning/training for modules where a learning need has been identified.

During their first meeting with a TA, the adult learner will discuss and assess their training needs and formulate their Personal Learning Plan.  They may be able to validate some of the modules necessary for their role through previous Scouting experience/roles and/or their current skills and abilities.  Once the PLP has been formulated the adult learner will need to meet with a TA in order to validate any learning undertaken, once all the modules have been validated the TA will recommend the award of the Wood Badge (an award given to recognise the completion of training).

Access to a TA can be achieved though a Wood Badge Cafe (dates of these session are available on the Wood Badge Cafe Diary page).  These sessions are held several times a year at weekends or during week nights.  These sessions give adult learners the opportunity to meet with a TA to formulate their PLP, validate completed training, access the e-learning packages, watch training DVD's as well as have one-to-one training.

Arrangements can be made for individuals who cannot make the Wood badge Cafe's to meet with a TA.  To arrange a meeting with a TA outside of a Wood Badge Cafe please contact one of the Local Training Managers.

'Getting Started'

'Getting Started' is the initial training that each new Adult Leader is required to complete within 5 months of their  provisional appointment.

This training comprises of modules 1, 2 & 3 or 4, depending on their appointment. 

Module 1, Essential Information provides the basic information needed for new Adults in Scouting.  It covers the Fundamentals of Scouting, as well as key policies of The Scout Association including Child Protection, Equal Opportunities and safety in Scouting.  Module 1 is available as an on-line e-learning package or as a DVD.

Module 2, Personal Learning Plan is outlined below

Module 3, Tools for the Job (Section Leaders) provides basic information on the individuals role or area of responsibility, and some practical help to get started in their role.  Module 3 is run as a course every 3 months (dates can be found on the Training Session Diary page), as well as being available as an on-line e-learning package.

Module 4, Tools for the Job (Managers) provides basic information on the individuals role or area of responsibility, and some practical help to get started in their role.  Module 4 is run as and when needed (dates can be found on the Training Session Diary page),  as well as being available as an on-line e-learning package.

Personal Learning Plans

During their first meeting with a Training Adviser, adult learners will discuss and identify a plan to meet their training needs, in order to carry out their new role in Scouting.  This training plan is called a Personal Learning Plan (PLP) and will not only detail the modules where learning in necessary, but how that learning will be achieved.

There are many different methods of learning available for most of the modules of the Adult Training Scheme, giving adult learners a choice of how they complete their training.  The alternative methods of learning that are available are outlined in the Training Modules page.

For most roles there are quite a number of modules to complete, however, previous experience both within and outside of Scouting will be taken into consideration during the formulation of the PLP.  Adult learners will need to meet regularly with TA's to review their progress, validate completed training and set new targets.


As previous knowledge and experience is taken into consideration, if adult learners already have the necessary skills and abilities, there is no need for them to complete any training or learning on the identified module.

Adult learners do however, as a result of learning or previous skills, need to demonstrate that they can do what they claim.  As part of the planning process for their PLP, adult learners will need to agree with a Training Adviser how they will validate each module.

Validation of modules is a two-stage process, the first of which requires adult learners to demonstrate something that shows that they can complete the module.  The second involves a discussion with a TA to check understanding of the module content.  Activities that can be used to validate modules are listed in the Adults Personal File.

e-learning and on-line resources

As mentioned above, some of the modules are available to compete on-line.  As well as e-learning, Videos, the Adults Personal File, module matrix, training available at Gilwell and the module workbooks and factsheets are all available on the Scoutbase website.

A broadband internet connection is an advantage, as some of the pages and videos are quite large, and will take a very long time to download using dial-up connection services.

A guide to using elearning is available here.

If you experience problems with the website or downloadable versions of the workbooks and other resources, hard copies are available from the Local Training Managers.

To access the on-line resources click on the link below:

Changes to Module 16 Nights Away

Residential experiences are important to Scouting and it is important that our Training Scheme promotes this, and helps us to motivate and enthuse our leaders.  The purpose of training in The Scout Association is to support volunteers in the role they do, and to ensure that training is relevant and tailored to individual needs.


In 2008, feedback from County Training Managers and Adult Learners suggested that Module 16 Nights Away was not meeting the needs of all the Movement.  The outcome of the subsequent project was to split the modules in two, creating an introductory module and a skills based module.

The New Modules

Module 16 Introduction to Residential Experiences: This modules aims to give an introduction to the place, value and organisation of residential experiences.  It is designed to introduce learners to residential experiences and their importance in Scouting, and give them information about the Nights Away Permit Scheme.  This is the obligatory module necessary for the Section Leader Wood Badge, and if run as a course will only take a few hours.

Module 38 Skills for Residential Experiences: This module aims to enable adults to acquire the appropriate skills to plan and run successful residential experiences for young people.  This module reflects the skills needed for the Nights Away Permit, and will help Leaders to gain and consolidate skills.  This module is a specialist module and not an obligatory module for Section Leaders & Supporters.  If run as a course this will most likely run in the format of a residential training weekend or one day skills day.

What do the changes mean for Leaders currently in training and those coming in new?

For those undertaking their Wood Badge, it means the requirement for training, both learning and validation, will be different.  For new Leaders, those new to Scouting, or those who want to brush up on their skills for residential experiences or to hone their skills for Nights Away Permit, the additional module (Module 38 Skills for Residential Experiences) will give a more structured and practical training module that will cover these skills.  This module has been written in collaboration with Nights Away Assessors, so it will support the assessment checklist for a Nights Away Permit.

Section Leaders who have already validated Module 16 Nights Away will not have to do any additional learning or validation.  The validation criteria for Module 16 Introduction to Residential Experiences will have already been covered.

Section Leaders who have not yet validated Module 16 Nights Away should complete the validation criteria for Module 16 Introduction to Residential Experiences.  If they have completed the learning under Module 16 Nights Away they will also have covered the learning for Module 38 Skills for Residential Experiences.  These Section Leaders can choose whether or not they want to validate this module based on whether or not they will be attending or running a residential experience.

These changes can take effect immediately, the update for the Adults' Personal File can be downloaded here.