Why NOLS Wilderness Medicine?
We know you have a choice in your Wilderness Medicine classes. We hope you can find value in NOLS and what sets us apart from other providers. There are less expensive, older, and newer providers worldwide. But age, discounts, and savings do not always produce a quality product. NOLS focuses on excellence through its instructors, curriculum, and partnerships.
NOLS is the World Leader in Wilderness Education
NOLS is a nonprofit global wilderness school that seeks to help you step forward boldly as a leader through 13 campuses across the globe for field expeditions. The NOLS mission is to be the leading source and teacher of wilderness skills, medicine, and leadership that serve people and the environment.
33 Years of Wilderness Medicine Education
Since 1990, NOLS Wilderness Medicine has offered wilderness medicine courses that will prepare you to recognize, treat, and prevent injuries and illnesses that are common in the outdoors.
NOLS Wilderness Medicine teaches roughly 20,000 students per year across 800 classes, more than any other wilderness medicine education provider.
All NOLS courses are taught by NOLS Wilderness Medicine Staff hired and trained by NOLS and under the direct supervision of NOLS Wilderness Medicine. NOLS does not allow other providers, organizations, outfitters, or companies to teach the NOLS Curriculum.
NOLS is clear that "NOLS instructors are expert educators with years of medical and wilderness leadership experience. They are, first and foremost, intentional educators.
With backgrounds ranging from veterans of the U.S. Navy to National Park Service Rangers, outdoor educators, flight nurses, and more, they bring real and deep experiences to teaching the recognition, treatment, and prevention of wilderness emergencies."
NOLS teaches evidence-informed medicine that is field-tested on our own NOLS field courses with expert oversight. The wilderness medicine NOLS teaches is chosen carefully and is reviewed by their Medical Advisory Panel to be accurate, relevant, and practical. NOLS reviews accident data and the experience of outdoor programs and search and rescue operations to help prepare students to respond to the most likely incidents that happen in the wilderness.
Additionally, NOLS performs internal retention studies to be most effective. NOLS is not only teaching relevant and current medicine, but medicine that you can remember and use. This medicine is not just the outlook or viewpoint of one person, organization, outfitter, or region.
Hybrid Learning + In-Person Education
Online learning is a powerful tool, but so is in-person, hands-on education. NOLS offers both, and all courses meet or exceed the Wilderness Medicine Education Collaborative Standards for in-person education.
The WMECS standard for in-person learning on courses is a minimum of 45 hours for Wilderness First Responder, 16 hours for Wilderness First Aid, and 16 Hours for WFR Recerts. Wilderness Medicine Courses taught fully online are not recommended and NOLS will not recertify WFR certifications from providers that do not meet this standard.
Ongoing Education and College Credits
NOLS Wilderness Medicine offers continuing education credits for EMT's, Doctors, Physician Assistants, and Nurses. There is no additional fee for this for our students.
NOLS Wilderness Medicine also has partnered with the University of Utah and Western State Colorado University to offer optional college credit for an additional fee.
Why Idaho Rescue Training?
Idaho Rescue Training is the largest provider of NOLS Wilderness Medicine courses in Idaho and in Nepal. We also offer courses in Utah, Montana, and Oregon. Idaho Rescue Training has worked with many local organizations to provide initial and ongoing education for their staff with the goal of a diverse course set at diverse locations across the region. As we work with groups, we also work towards the goal of increasing access to NOLS Wilderness Medicine courses.
Idaho Rescue Training provides around 30 classes per year across the world, all taught by NOLS Wilderness Medicine instructors, typically with 2 NOLS instructors per course with a maximum of 30 students per class. We also seek out great classrooms since we do not have our own site.
Between 2020 and 2022, Idaho Rescue Training hosted 63 classes and trained 1,470 students in 4 states and 2 countries.
Idaho Rescue Training is also an Affiliate of the Wilderness Medical Society, working to advance the mission of the WMS.