School for Science and Conservation

Online Nature Guide Training Course

This basic-level Online Course is meant for those interested in nature and in exploring a career as a Nature Guide.

The role of a Nature Guide is to conduct informative, ethical, and enjoyable nature excursions for interested people and groups. This Online Course is spread over 50 days (in 7 Learning Sets) and covers topics on Natural History with a special focus on the Western Ghats region and Basic Guiding skills. The course assignments are geared to encourage the participants to explore and learn about the plants and animals in their neighborhoods and develop specific guiding skills. There will be a maximum of 12 participants. Those who attend all live sessions and complete the course requirements will be given a certificate of course completion by NCF.

Video introduction to Online Nature Guide Training Course

Course schedule

Course Dates: October 1, 2023 — November 19, 2023

Course Syllabus: See syllabus below (PDF here)

Course mentors

This is a mentorship course that is led by our experienced naturalist mentors, Payal Mehta and Harsha J. Both have extensive experience as nature guides and trainers across many parts of India and other countries. They will be interacting with the participants throughout the length of the Course.

Course fee and application

The course is free. However, selected candidates will have to pay Rs. 500 towards study material that will be provided during the course.

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This course is developed as part of the nature education, awareness building, and outreach efforts of the Anamalai Rainforest Restoration Project in the Western Ghats program of the Nature Conservation Foundation.

Technical Support

Rohit Varma and Anirudh Umapathy, Nature inFocus, Bengaluru

Subtitles Translation

Tamil: Indira Srinivasan, Vidhya Vijayaraghavan, Joel Sherjin, P. Jeganathan, M. Anthony Anista, Asha Kirubaran, Mahalakshmi Sivakumar

Kannada: Aditi Rao, Mohan Moolepetlu

Marathi: Manasi Kamatnurkar, Sumit Kamble, Vishal Sadekar

Course Manual Artist

Manasa Murari

Advice, Ideas, Content

Payal Mehta and Harsha J with Abhisheka Krishnagopal, Abidur Rahman (Northeast India), Annie and Eric Gropp, Annie Van Dinther, Arpita Dutta, Conan Dumenil, David Raju, Deepanker Mukherji, Denzil Britto (Rao Jodha Park, Jodhpur), Devi Priyadarshini, Divya Mudappa, Ganesh Raghunathan, Garima Bhatia, Janhavi Rajan, Justin Peter, Kalyan Varma, Karan Chawla, Karthikeyan Srinivasan, Kitta (BRT Tiger Reserve), Mittal Gala, Mousumi Ghosh, Narayan Rangaswamy, Nikita Khamparia, P. Jeganathan, Priya Venkatesh, Ramya and Mark, Robyn and Tony Martin, Rohit Varma, Saee Gundawar, Sarath Champati, Shahnaz Baig (Tadoba), Siddarth Machado, Subhadra Devi, Suhel Quader, Surya Ramachandran, Swati Sidhu, T. R. Shankar Raman, Teresa and Ged Caddick, Toby Sinclair, and Vineith Mahadev.

Previous course dates (completed):

26 Jun – 14 Aug 2022 (2 batches)

6 Feb – 27 Mar 2022

24 Oct – 24 Nov 2021

5 Sep – 4 Oct 2021

4 July – 4 August 2021

7 Feb – 10 March 2021

Other Nature Guide Training Programmes

Besides the online Nature Guide Course, we have run multiple field-based, Nature Guide Workshops for local communities in Valparai (Tamil Nadu), Latpanchar (West Bengal), Pakke and Anini (Arunachal Pradesh). Like our online course, these programmes also include three main aspects: learning and practicing guiding skills and techniques, learning about the natural history of each area, and responsible tourism. There is a lot more field time and hands-on learning during these in-person workshops.

Every year we teach the Nature Guide module within the Eco-tourism Elective (Experiential Learning, VII semester) for undergraduate students at Forestry College, Dr. Balasaheb Sawant Konkan Krishi Vidyapeeth, Dapoli. This is a 3-day workshop where students learn the role of a nature guide, benefits of having local nature guides for eco-tourism destinations, and a few key skills and qualities of a good nature guide.

If you are interested in collaborating with us for a nature guide course/workshop for your organisation, we would love to work out a course design most relevant for your participants and habitat. You can write to us on: