How We Train

Giving conservationists of the future the qualifications, practical experience, and thought leadership to manage ecosystems, defend wildlife, and empower local communities.

A holistic approach to conservation training

On our campus in the Greater Kruger National Park, is the perfect classroom to provide working examples for our students to learn conservation theory and best practices in and out of the classroom.  As part of ‘learning by doing’, we establish a cycle of innovation and development so our curriculum is constantly evolving. This means that through our various training programmes, we’re addressing current conservation training needs and shaping the conservation landscape of the future.

Applied Learning

Theoretical Approach

As a centre of specialisation in conservation education, training, and skills development, our approach is rooted in science, partnerships, and applied learning.  Our Applied Learning Unit supports our efforts by facilitating monitoring, evaluation, research and application in all departments, enabling us to maintain our focus on real issues faced by students and practitioners in their work.

The benefits of this are that we are always:

  • Teaching in a relevant, current and practical way
  • Keeping up to date with relevant techniques in these fields
  • Pioneering the improvement of techniques in these fields
  • Publishing peer reviewed articles
  • Documenting and sharing our learning
  • Forging new and improved links with partners, other institutions and in the industry as a whole

We offer accredited courses, needs-based short courses, and tailor-made modules, as well as postgraduate research opportunities.

  • There are two Higher Education and Training Certificate programmes in Wildlife Area Management: Nature Conservation: Implementation and Leadership; and Advanced Certificate in Nature Conservation: Transfrontier Conservation Management.
  • The College has also now implemented an Applied Learning Unit under the guidance of Prof. Alan Gardiner.
  • Learn more about the Natural Resource Management programmes here.
  • Our innovative work in the field is pioneering new ways of protecting wildlife and catering for the emerging needs of conservation professionals.
  • The campus training facilities equip learners the knowledge and skills they need in order to become a Field Ranger, including ground-to-air and K9 capabilities.
  • The introduction of specially trained dogs into the anti-poaching arsenal is proving to be highly effective. They are a force multiplier, which allows the rangers to be more effective.
  • Learn more about the Wildlife Guardianship programme here.
  • This department is aimed at helping communities participate in local wildlife conservation, creating a mutually beneficial role for tourism and developing sustainable environments and practices within the community.
  • RISE (Rural Initiative for a Sustainable Environment) includes a resource (wildlife) economics stream, targeted skills development, and environmental education stream alongside facilitation in communities.
  • Learn more about the Youth and Community Development programme here.
  • This programme strives to train students according to four pillars: a mastery of the knowledge and skills needed to become a competent guide and tracker; a thorough understanding of conservation management grounded in sustainable utilisation; acquisition of the other skills required to become a competent hunting guide and operator.
  • Learn more about the Sustainable Use and Field Guiding programme here.

Staff and students from around the world

The Southern African Wildlife College works with conservation professionals, local communities, governments, and other educational institutions, and has trained close to 15 000 people from 26 countries in Africa, while hosting university and graduate students from around the world.

Read more about the College’s Alumni and Community of Stewardship here.

Our dynamic lecturers are experienced, motivated and flexible. We also contract in expert instructors to present specific modules. This ensures that our training is as practical and current as possible and addresses real and emerging conservation needs.

Instructors focus on competency-based teaching, which means improved performance when students bring these skills back to the workplace.


An ideal place to learn and practice

Located in the Greater Kruger National Park in Limpopo, South Africa, the campus is one of a kind. It is perfectly situated to expose students to the issues, conditions, and environments they will face in reserves, parks, and protected areas throughout Africa and beyond. With training facilities, lecture rooms, and comfortable accommodation, students’ needs are catered for by a warm and dedicated team and an active student representative body.


Learn more about our Training Programmes

We give students the knowledge and skills they need to become successful conservation practitioners and leaders in natural resource management.


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