High School & College Credit

A group of teenagers sitting towards the top of a mountain, with a view of the landscape in front of them.

Earning High School Credit

The National Center for Outdoor & Adventure Education (NCOAE) offers select high school credits through Blueprint Education, an accredited distance learning school for grades 8 through 12, with the mission of inspiring students to make better choices and to be champions of their own learning.

Blueprint is accredited by AdvancED, the unified organization of the North Central Association Commission on Accreditation & School Improvement (NCA CASI), and the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools’ Council on Accreditation and School Improvement (SACS CASI).

Academic Course Hours and Credits

NCOAE maintains and exceeds U.S. high school standards for seat-time. Students may be eligible for the following high school credits:


Learning and showing proficiency in mountaineering, rafting, kayaking, rock climbing, surfing, stand-up paddleboarding, alpine, or backpacking activities during an NCOAE course.

outdoor leadership

Learning and showing proficiency in interpersonal development, small group dynamics, critical thinking, and decision-making during an NCOAE course.


Learning about and showing proficiency in water conservation, astronomy, environmental sustainability, Leave No Trace (LNT), cycle of rain clouds, and oceanography during an NCOAE course.

How do I get high school credit?

No test is required, but credits must be approved prior to the course start date by the participants’ sending school.

NCOAE instructors evaluate student journals, presentations, participation and self-evaluations with a Pass/Fail grade at the end of the course.

Students earn Carnegie Units (credit hours) for each topic. The number of credits depends on the length of course and the number of hours per instruction on each course. For example, 16 to 20 days equals 1.0 total credits; 30 to 34 days equals 1.5 total credits; and a semester equals 2.0 total credits.

All credits are elective, and earn half to a full credit. Credits align with national high school standards for physical education and leadership. Credits cost an additional $50 per enrollment/student.

Earning College Credit

There is an essential opportunity for each student to flourish in the individualized environment at The National Center for Outdoor & Adventure Education (NCOAE).

NCOAE connects specific wilderness curriculum to help students make authentic change within themselves and therefore, within in the world. NCOAE is dedicated to developing passionate learners, community leaders and value-driven decision makers. This all ties together in helping a student create the foundation to, “be leaders, problem solvers, and self-sufficient explorers.” All academic course work for NCOAE’s academic quarter and semester courses is university-level.

NCOAE uses experiential education as the foundation of its educational philosophy, which helps students develop in the capacity to meet social challenges, solve problems, and make a positive difference in the world.

Students enrolled in the University of North Carolina at Wilmington (UNCW) – a nationally ranked University accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission—are eligible to receive college credits for select approved NCOAE courses. Read below to find out which courses are eligible for college credit through UNCW.

Academic Course Hours and Credits

NCOAE maintains and exceeds U.S. university standards for classroom hours. Each course is assigned credits based on academic rigor and course hours. Students may be eligible for the following college-level credits through the University of North Carolina at Wilmington:

Academic Quarter Course: Outdoor Educator Instructor

Wilderness Medicine Training

How do I get college credit?

Environmental Science (EVS) students currently enrolled at the University of North Carolina- Wilmington (UNCW) will be eligible to receive credit hours for any of the courses listed above. Students may be eligible to receive college level credits within their own institutions; however, these students should speak to their advisors first regarding this possibility.

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