Support for people with additional needs

Mountain Training is committed to ensuring that everyone has equal opportunity to attend our courses. We work in close partnership with the mountaineering councils and a key strand of their work is to ensure that participation is open to all. The BMC Equity Steering Group and initiatives like Adventure for All have been central to this and are an excellent source of information.

Mountain Training’s pathways allow progression through its skills schemes and leadership qualifications. People enter the pathway at a point suited to them and progress from there. We believe that course attendance brings many benefits; be it a skills scheme, assistant or leadership qualification. The choice of scheme is a very personal one; not all schemes are appropriate for everyone but many can be accessed by people with additional needs.

All Mountain Training courses are practically orientated. Our Hill & Mountain Skills, Rock Skills and Indoor Climbing Assistant schemes offer an extremely accessible way into the pathway.

Leadership qualifications are equally open to all who can demonstrate their competency outlined in the scheme syllabus. Our leadership qualifications require significant personal skill, situational awareness and group management ability. All candidates must be able to meet the criteria of the syllabus independently to gain the qualification.

Navigating on a course cKarl Midlane

Informing Mountain Training

Please make course providers aware of any additional needs you have at the booking stage. This may involve talking to them about any mental or physical disabilities you may have. We recommend reading the scheme handbook to gain an understanding of the demands of the training before approaching a course provider. Providers and course staff want the best for all concerned. It’s important to have an open, honest and frank discussion prior to attendance.

Skills schemes

Hill Skills, Mountain Skills and Rock Skills are the most accessible of all our schemes. Providers are likely to query participants about their individual needs prior to the course to ensure delivery suits all in attendance. Where participants have significant additional needs there may be value in a private course, specialist input and lower tutor to participant ratios. It is worth discussing this with Mountain Training if you are unsure.

Indoor Climbing Assistant

The Indoor Climbing Assistant is an excellent way to get involved in working with others teaching climbing. If our other qualifications aren’t quite suited to you or you wish to experiment a little and explore how you could engage with Mountain Training in the future this is a really good starting point. If you pursue this qualification your competence will be assessed in supporting qualified instructors and coaches but you will not be qualified to manage groups independently.

Qualification courses

Mountain Training qualifications are competence-based. It is expected that all candidates will meet all the criteria outlined in the syllabus to attain the qualification.

Training courses

Each qualification has specific pre-requisites described in the scheme handbook. The pre-requisites are the minimum levels of personal experience in climbing and/or walking required of candidates to enable them to get the most benefit from attending the training course. Gaining this amount of personal experience gives a good insight into the demands on candidates of attending a training course. Candidates must have gained the pre-requisites independently prior to attendance. If it is not possible to participate independently it is likely subsequent assessment will be extremely challenging. It is worth considering the assessment requirements prior to attending training.

The provider is likely to query training course candidates about their individual needs prior to attendance to ensure safety is not compromised. In some cases, given the time constraints upon course staff for example, it may be difficult to cover an acceptable amount of the syllabus due to the additional needs of candidates. Mountain Training will do its utmost to accommodate in these cases.

Assessment courses

If you have a particular need that requires extra assistance, please discuss it with the course provider. In such cases, Mountain Training will make, or allow its providers to make, reasonable adjustments so that you can access courses and demonstrate attainment.

Common examples of requirements which Mountain Training accommodates:
  • A moderate hearing or visual impairment.
  • A physical disability, such as that resulting in restricted mobility (provided it does not impede performance in the attributes that are the focus of assessment, such as a candidate’s ability as a walking leader).
  • Dyslexia.
If you require an adjustment to be able to demonstrate competence, please contact a course provider or Mountain Training for support. You will need to outline the nature of the requirement, how it relates to the syllabus and suggest an appropriate adjustment.

Climber with prosthetic leg cRock and Water Adventures

General principles underpinning reasonable adjustments

Not invalidating the prescribed syllabus requirements

While Mountain Training will allow a range of reasonable adjustments to accommodate candidates’ special requirements, it will not authorise any adjustments which would prevent leaders from functioning effectively and independently upon qualifying and will ensure that any adjustments are appropriate to the scope of the scheme. As noted above Mountain Training qualifications are competence-based and candidates will therefore be assessed on their ability to meet all of the syllabus criteria in order to attain the qualification.

Reflecting a candidate’s assessment needs and usual methods of working

Reasonable adjustments allowed by Mountain Training will reflect the current needs of individual candidates and, as far as is possible, their usual methods of working. Mountain Training, the provider and course staff are required to maintain the relevance, reliability and comparability of the assessment of candidates for whom reasonable adjustments have been made.

Not giving candidates an unfair advantage

Although Mountain Training will allow a range of reasonable adjustments at assessment, none of these adjustments will give the candidates in question an unfair advantage over those candidates for whom such adjustments are not being made. Mountain Training’s standards will not be changed under any circumstances and all candidates will be required to complete all the prescribed assessment components and to demonstrate their knowledge, understanding and competence strictly in accordance with the syllabus.

Further support

If further support is required please contact Mountain Training.

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