Environment-Based Learning (EBL)

Master of Education Program

A Natural Approach to Education

IN605 2014 184

The best educators are those who can creatively teach core curriculum topics both inside and outside the classroom. By adding EBL credentials to your resume, you will learn how to use assets within your own community to engage and motivate students to want to learn.

Mary Baldwin University offers one of the nation’s first environment-based learning (EBL) graduate programs designed specifically for educators. With an environment-based educational approach, educators use the local community and environment to teach all subjects in a way that is meaningful and relevant to K-12 students.

By integrating an outdoor inquiry-based education model into their curriculum, teachers can help their students develop critical thinking skills, become better problem solvers, learn “deep” content knowledge, gain an appreciation for their surroundings, and through this process, become more environmentally literate citizens.

EBL courses like Math in the Garden, The Intersection of Life and Land, and Natural Research empower you to teach relevant content through engagement with the world outside your classroom walls. View the Summer 2019 EBL Courses.

Apply to MBU for MED degree, EBL Certificate or just to take one course.

Research suggests that active, inquiry-based learning in the outdoors increases student academic achievement in all subjects. When students study and apply content in real world settings, they gain a deep understanding of the concepts and therefore are better able to transfer the knowledge to other situations- from questions on standardized tests to complex real-life issues and problems. The environment provides the perfect setting for this kind of natural learning.

–Tamra Willis, program director for Environment-Based Learning (EBL)

Richard LouvAn increasing number of parents and a few good schools are realizing the importance and the magic of providing hands-on, intimate contact between children and nature as a larger part of a child’s education.

–Richard Louv, author of Last Child in the Woods



Gainful Employment Information

Contact Information

Dr. Tamra Willis
Program Director for Environment-Based Learning (EBL), Mary Baldwin Associate Professor, College of Education