Field Study trips for school groups

While any school trip where children are taken on a learning experience outside the normal classroom could be described as a field trip, when we talk about field work or field studies we are specifically referring to trips that cover geographical or environmental science topics, and those designed to allow students to make quantitative research such as sampling strategies, or qualitative observations of their immediate surroundings from a scientific perspective.

What sort of activities can children get involved in?

The National Curriculum for KS2 states that Geographical field work skills that children should be able to demonstrate include, measuring and recording features the urban and rural landscape using methods such as plans, maps, and digital technologies. For KS3 it suggests that students use field work to collect, analyse and draw conclusions from geographical data.

More specifically, on a field work school trip students could be asked to carry out various forms of sampling in order to find statistical significances. They may record levels of light, temperature or humidity to study micro-climates. River processes and flooding analysis may be assessed by measuring channel velocity or mapping techniques. Coastal erosion management practices or urban economic development trends may be studied using historic data sources.

On this page you will find details of the best environmental studies centres in the UK. Covering all key stages, the courses available below will provide your students with practical experience that will improve their understanding of environmental issues.

Society, law and politics

Changes to the National Curriculum starting in September 2014 see the subject area of Citizenship become compulsory for maintained schools at Key Stage 3 and 4. The purpose is to teach and inspire children about the United Kingdom, how it is governed, our political system, and how they as individuals can actively participate as citizens of our society. Topic areas such as the judicial system and law, politics, and finance are central to citizenship and many teachers are finding that citizenship school trips are a great way to help children understand and make sense of what can otherwise be quite a difficult subject area.

Below you will find a range of UK school trip venues as well as some overseas study tours, all of which specialise in citizenship themed educational experiences. These range from mock parliaments and trials, staged debates, to witnessing how government functions at a local and national level.

Short on time? We can help!

Let us find the perfect Field Studies location for your school trip.




The Sustainability Centre Residentials


Our 55 acre woodland site nestled in the stunning South Downs hills is a perfect place to learn and explore. With the wealth of opportunities in our grounds, we can arrange activities ranging from night walks and bushcraft courses to camp fires. The Wetherdown Lodge where you will stay was once home to Royal Navy recruits. It has since been completely renovated and equipped with green energy technology that meets all the heating needs of the building. Pupils can monitor the output of the photovoltaic (solar energy) panels on the roof, and find out how much woodchip is needed to provide all the heat and hot water for their stay. Pupils also recycle their lunch box waste, help to feed the chickens, use the low-flush option on toilets, and discover how hot the water can get thanks...

The Sustainability Centre Residentials
The Sustainability Centre Residentials







Sustainability in action! Come and visit us for a day or more to learn all about looking after the planet in our beautiful 55 acre woodland site nettled in stunning the South Downs National Park. Packed with hands on activities for all ages. ...

The Sustainability Centre



The Estate is an ideal location for studying topics such as biodiversity, conservation, woodland ecology and management issues, as well as the conflicts and benefits of the construction of dams. ...

Elan Valley



Five fantastic locations in the South East offering fieldwork for all ages to bring the curriculum to life. The choice of day and residential centres include a huge range of excellent urban and rural field sites from Box Hill to Bushy Park. ...

Field Studies Council - London South East
★★★★★



Leicester Outdoor Pursuits centre is a Charitable organisation providing Outdoor Adventurous activities for all. Our activities are designed to stimulate, educate and motivate all participants at affordable prices throughout the year. ...

Leicester Outdoor Pursuits Centre





Plas Gwynant is an amazing setting in its own parkland at the foot of Mount Snowdon in North Wales, and offers high qualilty outdoor learning amongst the mountains, rivers and lakes of the Snowdonia National Park. Sole occupancy is available. ...

Plas Gwynant Outdoor Education Centre



Do you like the idea of teaching your curriculum while your students minds are wide open? When better for them to learn than during the fun of your school trip? We are the Island Classroom, where you can combine fun with education in a unique way. ...

The Island Classroom



We are based on a farm, in a forest, by a river and near the sea, so the array of habitats is vast! We have residential accommodation at our farm and wonderful treehouse classrooms based in ancient mixed woodland nearby. ...

Countryside Education Trust - Field Studies



What's the difference between a backswimmer and a water boatman? That's just one of the many questions your class will have answered on a visit to RSPB Sandwell Valley. Children will have a memorable day discovering nature on their doorstep. ...

RSPB Sandwell Valley



Allow students to unplug and tune in to nature. Let them learn and practice ancestral skills through a range of hands-on bushcraft experiences. Leave walls behind; join us in our stunning East Lothian woodland where young minds will be inspired... ...

Woodland Ways Bushcraft Residentials - Scotland



Set in a unique location, Dartmoor Zoo offers a wide range of workshops designated to inspire students to learn about the animal’s world, conservation and our native wildlife. ...

Dartmoor Zoological Park



Allow students to unplug and tune in to nature. Let them learn and practice the skills of their ancestors through a range of hands-on bushcraft experiences. Leave the walls behind; join us in our 250 acre woodland where young minds will be inspired.....

Woodland Ways Bushcraft - Oxfordshire



Quality Outdoor Learning Experiences. We are specialists in field work and outdoor adventurous activities in harmony with the Seashore, Coast & Woodlands. ...

Allnatt Swanage



Take your students to a world-class artists region, home of the Tate, Barbara Hepworth and incredible landscapes shed in natural light - this is Cornwall. ...

Cornwall Art



Located in the beautiful village of Tattenhall just 7 miles from Chester the centre offers a peaceful haven and a base for wide range of Outdoor Activities and the Arts. It's proximity to many schools makes it ideal for day courses too. ...

Conway Centres Tattenhall



At Hostelling Scotland we want to support young people to discover Scotland and have a wide range of opportunities to learn outside the classroom. ...

Hostelling Scotland



Based on the North Norfolk coast, Holt Hall provides a residential experience for up to 70 students and 8 staff on a private estate of 75 acres of woodland and gardens. It provides opportunities to learn outside the classroom and develop new skills. ...

Holt Hall Environmental & Outdoor Learning Centre



Why is white chocolate white but milk chocolate brown? Which plant makes both furniture and clothes? Which birds roam free around the grounds? Discover these answers and much more as you explore our spectacular glasshouses and beautiful gardens! ...

Birmingham Botanical Gardens



Discover the wonders of the sea at Deep Sea World - Scotland's National Aquarium. Situated under the Iconic Forth Rail Bridge Deep Sea World is home to over 4,000 sea creatures from Starfish to Sand Tiger Sharks there is something for everyone! ...

Deep Sea World Education
Eden Project
Eden Project
★★★★★



Here at the Eden Project in Cornwall, education is central to our mission as a charity. We offer exciting learning opportunities for students of all ages at schools, colleges and universities. ...

Eden Project
★★★★★



With direct access to the Menai Strait the venue offers both challenging Outdoor Activities & Creative/Performing Arts opportunities. Set in 169 acres there are an extensive range of on-site activities that last 3hrs so are as productive as possible....

Conway Centres Anglesey
★★★★★



Perched on the edge of Lake Windermere, with views out across stunning mountain vistas, YHA Ambleside offers an unforgettable location for a Lake District getaway. This well-equipped hostel is perfect for activity breaks for walking and watersports. ...

YHA Ambleside



Allow students to unplug and tune in to nature. Let them learn and practice ancestral skills through a range of hands-on bushcraft experiences. Leave walls behind; join us in our private woodland at Belvoir Castle where young minds will be inspired.....

Woodland Ways Bushcraft - Leicestershire
The Manor House
The Manor House
★★★★★



Our team are passionate about creating quality, memorable and exciting experiences and activities from our lovely Manor House near Padstow. We offer full-board accommodation and sole-occupancy for our groups, many of whom return year after year! ...

The Manor House
★★★★★



With our wide variety of activities and action packed courses we can provide quality outdoor learning experiences for all. Our Key Stage range is designed to challenge and stimulate every age group. ...

Allnatt Isle of Wight



LTC Eastbourne is a residential centre located in a former home of the Dukes of Devonshire, a Grade 1 listed building in a 10-hectare private park just 15 minutes' walk from the centre of Eastbourne. ...

LTC Eastbourne



The Medina Valley Centre nestles on the banks of the River Medina, at the heart of the beautiful Isle of Wight. Our field study staff are experienced Geography and Biology teachers who love to teach in the Great Outdoors. ...

Medina Valley Centre



Two fantastic locations in Scotland offering Curriculum for Excellence linked fieldwork for all ages. Inspire your students at either Kindrogan, Perthshire, by the stunning Scottish Highlands, or Millport on the shores of the Isle of Cumbrae. ...

Field Studies Council - Scotland



4 fantastic locations across North and South Wales offering fieldwork for all ages to bring the curriculum to life. Discover the mountain scenery of Rhyd-y-creuau, gorgeous coastlines of Dale Fort and Orielton or wonderful parkland surrounding Margam...

Field Studies Council - Wales
★★★★★



Set on a working organic farm Magdalen provides a unqiue base for students, children and adults to explore the great outdoors. A range of tutor led activities are tailored to you and we provide high quality accommodation with homecooked meals. ...

Magdalen Farm



Outdoor education makes lasting impressions on young people that instill skills for life through building strong relationships with peers & leaders, increase confidence, self-awareness & motivation which enhances their learning & outlook on life. ...

Real Adventure - Lake District



Founded soon after 1066 by William Peveril and overlooking Hope Valley and Cave Dale, Peveril Castle is a fantastic and historically important site for school children to explore. An exciting and dramatic Norman castle overlooking the Derbyshire coun...

Peveril Castle



New for 2018: Bell Heath Outdoor Elements has reopened following a £1m investment by the Malvern Hills Outdoor Company. This wonderful facility with it's adrenalin-fuelled activities sleeps 78 people and is just 20 minutes from Birmingham city centr...

Bell Heath



Based in picturesque Christchurch Harbour, a SSSI nature reserve. This college-owned centre offers bespoke trips for Outdoor Adventurous Activities and Field Studies. We use highly qualified instructors and are fully accredited by ALLA, LOTC & RYA....

Hengistbury Head Outdoor Education Centre



We offer High Quality Outdoor Education in a residential setting in The Snowdonia National Park. Our activities are adventurous, and challenging and support the curriculum you deliver in school. Experience it for Real at Oaklands, bespoke adventure...

Conway Centres Oaklands



Cornwall is a safe, accessible and inspiring location for school groups of all ages! Bursting with curriculum-based visits and activities, ranging from science and geography to art and design, what will your students discover? ...

Cornwall Tour



A choice of locations in Devon and Somerset offering fieldwork for all ages to bring the curriculum to life. Slapton Ley and Start Bay close to the beach in south Devon and Nettlecombe Court in beautiful countryside surroundings near Exmoor. ...

Field Studies Council - South West



Why not 'Step Through Time' with our fantastic Dinosaur Experience? Or get up close to our animals in an environment that is as close to their natural habitat as possible. ...

All Things Wild



Experience amazing outdoor locations at Field Studies Council’s network of UK Centres. Our courses are all focused on students being immersed in the natural world. They also make use of the beautiful surroundings including using bushcraft skills. ...

Bushcraft with the Field Studies Council



We offer outstanding outdoor experiences taught through challenge, creativity & curiosity. Experience the creative curriculum through high quality activities, enjoy sole use of our inspiring setting, beautiful accommodation & experienced staff team....

Naturesbase



Located in North London, a hidden gem of historical interest for school groups. With an internationally renowned art collection, Robert Adam interiors and acres of land to explore! ...

Kenwood House



Set in a converted Georgian farm in 43 acres of woodland, fields and gardens, our friendly full-time team deliver a wide range of outdoor & creative adventures for a special learning experience. Day visits, residentials, and sole occupancy available....

Edgmond Hall



Simonsbath House Outdoor Centre specializes in offering fun packed, mixed programs of outdoor and environmental courses aimed at giving pupils a taster of challenging, exciting and interesting activities that will shape their future memories. ...

Simonsbath House Outdoor Centre



Allow students to unplug and tune in to nature. Let them learn and practice ancestral skills through a range of hands-on bushcraft experiences. Leave walls behind; join us in our stunning Peak District woodland where young minds will be inspired... ...

Woodland Ways Bushcraft Residentials - Derbyshire



Outposts' offers couples a beautiful secluded location in an AONB which provides a safe environment for free range children with the very best of learning outside the classroom. Bush craft, adventurous activities, team and leadership development. ...

Outposts Residential Camp Somerset



Brand new for 2017 – this state-of-the-art hostel is an exciting £14.8 million initiative created in partnership with the Northumberland National Park Authority. It is the ideal base for exploring the Hadrian’s Wall UNESCO World Heritage Site. ...

YHA The Sill at Hadrians Wall



Enjoy a curriculum linked day of hands -on habitat study with surveys of pond, woodland,rare chalk grassland and meadow. Use sweep nets and pond nets, observe creatures under magnification and discover and identify predator and prey in a food chain. ...

Habitat Study Trips



We are an independent centre in beautiful North Norfolk, run by qualified teachers and experienced instructors. We offer an exciting range of curriculum linked outdoor activities to a loyal following of schools - one on their 27th visit in 2018!...

Aylmerton Outdoor Education Centre
★★★★★



Situated less than a mile from Beeston Castle and within very private grounds this cosy and familiar centre lends itself to being used by primary groups. It offers opportunities for a variety of studies within the immediate environment. ...

Conway Centres Beeston



Situated in a magical and inspiring forest environment our popular Delamere centre is a fantastic venue for woodland based activities, whether they be of an outdoor an adventurous, Arts or field studies nature. ...

Conway Centres Delamere



Shortenills Environmental Centre offers a dynamic and creative approach to learning in a diverse and beautiful setting. Well equipped classrooms, dining area and dormitories with new programmes for a day visit or residential of great learning. ...

Shortenills Village - The Adventure Learning Charity



Flatford Mill in Suffolk offers fieldwork for all ages from its fascinating, historic location. Day and residential trips available at this Field Studies Council location. ...

Field Studies Council - East Anglia
★★★★★



Grab an adventure on Dartmoor, building confidence and developing new skills at Adventure Okehampton's award winning, friendly centres in Devon. Part of YHA, we offer bespoke school residentials for all group sizes customised to your needs. ...

YHA Okehampton Activity Centres



Located in the picturesque village of Burwardsley our centre offers opportunities unique to it's location. The surrounding countryside provides further possibilities for historical and environmental studies. ...

Conway Centres Burwardsley



Experience exceptional school adventure trips in the heart of Snowdonia National Park. If you're looking for an affordable, action-packed school activity trip, look no further! We can create a bespoke programme designed for the ultimate fun. ...

Snowdonia Adventure



We are based on a farm, by a river, in a forest, near the sea! Lots of wonderful activities are available from bushcraft to looking after our farm animals to visiting historic sites. Oh, and children rate our food 5/5! ...

Countryside Education Trust



Whitlingham Adventure is set within Whitlingham Country Park, just on the outskirts of Norwich, offering bespoke, high quality trips in a complete range of water and land activities to children, young people and the wider community. ...

Whitlingham Adventure



Adventure challenges and outdoor activities for all ages and abilities in 9 acres of woodland at our Malvern Hills Centre and surrounding area with a focus on team-work, leadership, building independence, self-confidence and facilitating exploration....

Malvern Hills



3 fantastic locations across the Lake District and Yorkshire offering fieldwork for all ages to bring the curriculum to life. Discover the mountain scenery of Blencathra, adventurous grounds of Castle Head or lakeside location of Malham Tarn. ...

Field Studies Council - North of England



A range of outdoor, hands on activities to enrich curriculum learning. Set in the beautiful venue of Forestry England's Wyre Forest. Activities promote SMSC and PHSE outcomes too. ...

Curriculum Enrichment - Outdoor Learning



There are plenty of outdoor and indoor facilities for school groups to see at Bolsover castle, including the 17th century castle built by Charles Cavendish, Riding House Range which now contains an exhibition, Terrace Range and Wall Walk. ...

Bolsover Castle

YHA Edale
YHA Edale
★★★★★



Outdoor adventures in the Peak District don’t get better than this! YHA Edale is a grand country house literally on the slopes of Kinder Scout, and surrounded by the gorgeous scenery of the Edale valley. ...

YHA Edale
★★★★★



YHA Eden Project is the only onsite accommodation provider for the Eden Project, the most famous education attraction in Cornwall. Ideal for that magic combination of fun and learning, the Eden Project provides a breath-taking environment for pupils....

YHA Eden Project



Set in a prime location, Anglesey Outdoors is the ideal venue for real outdoor adventure, field studies or simply a place to set up base. Bespoke residentials provided by dedicated professional staff. ...

Anglesey Outdoors



'Best Outdoor Activity & Learning Centre - Moray', Scottish Enterprise Awards 2018. 'Best Outdoor Venue' finalist, Scottish Hospitality Awards 2016, '17 & '18. TripAdvisor 94% rated. AALA-licensed, & Learning Outside the Classroom accredited. ...

Craggan Outdoors



We provide high quality outdoor activity programmes, teaching children values and skills that will last a lifetime. We tailor our programmes and activities to your requirements whether residential or day visitors. ...

Weardale Adventure Centre
★★★★★



Hampstead Heath is the ultimate outdoor classroom. Our hands-on school sessions allow students to have fun, develop their knowledge and key skills, and explore different aspects of this beautiful open space. ...

Hampstead Heath Schools Programme



A magnificent example of late 12th-century castle. Schools have the freedom to explore the inside of the castle walls through the main gatehouse, the 'wall walk' along the top of the castle, as well as learn about the history from the illustrated dis...

Framlingham Castles



There's a full day outside the classroom at Audely End House and Gardens. A 17th century mansion complete with Victorian Service Wing, Kitchen Garden and stables to explore outside and visit the hands-on Nursery Suite and Coal Gallery. ...

Audley End



A day trip to the stunning Isle of Wight is only a short ferry crossing away! With only a small stretch of water between you and the island, the Isle of Wight offers a truly unique experience and can be reached in as little as 12 minutes! ...

Geography Galore – Southampton Docks and Solent
Southport Eco Centre
Southport Eco Centre
★★★★★



We offer exciting, memorable, hands-on educational workshops covering a range of curriculum topics. We have a superb teacher satisfaction rate with many supporting testimonials. We endeavour to make your day with us best fit the needs of your pupils....

Southport Eco Centre
★★★★★



North Devon's premier outdoor centre. Fantastic friendly staff, exciting activities in wonderful locations and tasty, wholesome food in great surroundings. Makes Skern Lodge the ideal destination for your next residential or day trip. ...

Skern Lodge



Our fantastic Midlands locations are Preston Montford in Shropshire and Bishops Wood in Worcestershire. Both offer fieldwork for all ages to bring the curriculum to life. The locations are easy to reach while offering access to beautiful countryside....

Field Studies Council - Midlands



Brilliant Liverpool Tours organise inspiring tours around the second Port of the British Empire. Georgian & Victorian England is experienced around a busy sea port, the Royal Albert Dock, the World Heritage Waterfront & Port Sunlight Village. ...

Brilliant Liverpool Tours
Why is fieldwork important for students?

Field studies is an important part of geographical or scientific investigation. Classroom based learning can give students facts and figures to support ideas and concepts, but if you are able to support this type of learning with fieldwork, you can dramatically improve your students' understanding of the subject.

Where can we go to do fieldwork?

The easiest option is to take your group to a local park or town centre to undertake fieldwork at a local level. Studying eco-systems or biodiversity, habitats, food chains, rural land use and woodland management may tick the coursework box, but will only give your students an entry level understanding of the subject. Tell your students that they are going on a trip to the coast to measure the impact of tourism on the local economy and they hear, we are going to the seaside for the day. Tell them they are going to be using choropleth mapping to study population trends in the city centre, and they will hear, we are spending the day in town rather than the classroom. So how exactly do you get your students inspired by field work?

Planning exciting and inspiring field work

Depending upon where your school is located, by travelling further afield and perhaps taking a multi day trip, you can open up far more interesting opportunities for your group. A school field studies course could be a single day; more concerned with gathering data to be interpreted back in the classroom, or may last several days - allowing more detailed investigation into methods and techniques of data collection, as well as on site analysis.

In the UK

Coastal studies are the obvious example of a situation where you may need to travel. Other topics of study where you are likely to find better examples to study if you are willing to travel include watercourse pollution and river management practices, limestone pavements, river braiding or flood plains, and historic processes such as glaciation and peat bogs.

Overseas

Some schools take the additional step of investigating the options beyond the UK. Iceland is a prime example of a location where KS3 and KS4 students can study volcanoes and glaciers in a way that is simply not possible at home. For those looking at human geographical areas of study such as social, economic and demographic changes, especially cities, we have seen a lot of schools recently heading for Spain. Field studies trips to Spain can easily be tailored to cross curricular subjects such as modern foreign languages and human geography.

Getting help with your field work trip from a specialist company has a number of advantages. These companies have been helping schools organise trips for years. They know the curriculum and how to tailor their area to your own specific needs and topics, helping you design a memorable learning experience for your group. They employ staff who have lots of previous experience in teaching groups just like yours. They are passionate about their local area and the knowledge they can pass on to your students.

"Research shows that children remember more, learn great social skills and develop enhanced relationships with their teachers as a result of a residential field trip. In our experience, they also have a lot of fun!"
Jane Cooper, Chief Executive
Countryside Education Trust




"Fieldwork has widespread benefits and can be a life-changing educational experience for many. Students gain many crucial skills, such as good organisation, team working, accurate observing and recording, and many communication skills. All of these equip them superbly for work in a wide range of professions as well as benefitting their personal development."
Mel Cousins, Marketing Officer
Field Studies Council




"Inspiring children to be environmentally aware is essential to build enquiring minds, field studies visits allow children of all abilities to learn and achieve together."

"Field studies visits allow children to become immersed in their environment, experiencing targeted learning in Environmental Science whilst covering areas of the school curriculum as diverse as STEM, Geography, Physical Education and the Arts, all in stimulating and exciting outdoor environments which allow children to grow emotionally as well as in education achievement."
Tim Cooper, Development Manager
Groundwork South



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