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Nature, heritage and interpretive guide training: mirror on the past and window to the future

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journal contribution
posted on 05.06.2017, 02:02 by Weiler, Betty, Black, Rosemary
The continuing growth in ecotourism and heritage tourism in Australia has enhanced the need for competent tour guides, as they are key to delivering a high quality ecotourism or heritage experience. However, research and industry experience has found that many guides fall short in the knowledge and skills required to plan and deliver effective interpretive tours. One mechanism that can be used to improve guiding performance is training. The Australian Directory of Education and Training in Nature/Heritage Tour Guiding and Interpretation (2001) was produced from an inventory of all known nature and heritage tour guiding and interpretation courses and subjects/units being offered by Australian tertiary institutions, technical and further education (TAFE) colleges, and community-based education organisations as of June 2001. This paper provides an analysis of some of the data collected in this inventory, in order to paint a picture of the current training scene in nature/heritage guiding. The data are also compared to selected information from the 1996 Directory of Ecotourism Education, and analysed in relation to recent industry trends and demands for quality guides. These analyses provide a basis for identifying gaps and opportunities for interpretation and guide education and training for the future.


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Working paper series (Monash University. Department of Management).

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