Outdoor and Environmental Education

Dr Simon Beames

Senior Lecturer in Outdoor Learning

  • Institute for Education, Teaching and Leadership (IETL)
  • Moray House School of Education
  • University of Edinburgh

Contact details



Thomson's Land (Rm 2.05)

Moray House School of Education
Post code


Simon Beames is a senior lecturer in the Outdoor Education Section of the Moray House School of Education.

For nearly 25 years, Simon has taught outdoors in North America, Asia, and Europe. He is former co-editor of the Journal of Experiential Education and former Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.

Simon developed the Outdoor Journeys programme – a cross-curricular, local outdoor learning initiative.  He has published four books: Understanding educational expeditions (editor), Learning outside the classroom (co-author), Outdoor Adventure and Social Theory (co-editor), and Adventurous Learning (co-author).

Outdoor Education at the University

Outdoor Journeys


Understanding educational expeditions

Learning outside the classroom

Outdoor Adventure and Social Theory

Adventurous Learning


  • BPE (McMaster)
  • MSc (Minnesota State Mankato)
  • PhD (Southampton)

Postgraduate teaching

  • Postgraduate academic: Experiential Education, Social Theory and Outdoor Education
  • Practical: Rock climbing, hillwalking, winter mountaineering, Norway ski tour

Open to PhD supervision enquiries?


Areas of interest for supervision

  • Sharifah Syed Abdullah- Influences of Residential Outdoor Environmental Education on environmental attitudes and behaviours 
  • Sho Shimoyamada- The production of Scottish open gardens: Perceptions of power 
  • Clare Nugent- Nature kindergartens as pedagogical environment for early childhood: a multi-case study 
  • Rebekah Tauritz- Developing Uncertainty Competences through Outdoor Education for Sustainability
  • John Pierce- A Longitudinal Case Study into the Practices and Processes of Outdoor Centres in Ireland
  • Jerry Tracey- An investigation into the cultural interaction between slalom and play-boating with white-water canoeing and kayaking.

Research summary

  • Learning through journeys outside the classroom (local and far away!)
  • Using social theory to examine outdoor education practice
  • Exploring the relationship between adventure and learning

Project activity

  • Outdoor Journeys
  • A Natural Curriculum
  • The Disneyization of adventure
  • Institutional rock climbing
  • Adventure and education
  • Socio-economic status and access to outdoor learning
  • Influences of out-of-classroom learning experiences (research commissioned by Gordonstoun School)

View all 35 publications on Research Explorer