Certificate in Youth Leadership

Study youth leadership online to work as a youth leader in youth support and counselling. Learn skills in giving instructions, understanding young people's needs, managing groups, planning and evaluating and creating learning opportunities.

Course CodeVRE015
Fee CodeCT
Duration (approx)600 hours

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Courses can be started at any time from anywhere in the world!

Do you have a lively and approachable personality?  Do you enjoy working with children in an activity based environment? 


Study to gain the skills and knowledge needed to secure a job in a challenging and rewarding role as a youth leader. By studying at home by distance education you can progress through this course at a pace which suits you. 


Youth leadership training is designed to give you confidence to work as a youth leader - you will be responsible for young people and will need effective communication skills to be successful.  Study this course to expand on your current knowledge or to build news skills for your career! 



Core ModulesThese modules provide foundation knowledge for the Certificate in Youth Leadership.
 Play Leadership VRE101
 Recreation Leadership VRE100
 Bushcraft And Wilderness Activities (Survival Skills) BTR201
Elective ModulesIn addition to the core modules, students study any 3 of the following 7 modules.
 Child Psychology BPS104
 Health & Fitness I BRE101
 Motivation VBS111
 Self Sufficiency I (Be More Self Sufficient) ASS100
 Adolescent Psychology BPS211
 Careers Counselling BPS202
 Developmental Psychology BPS210

Note that each module in the Certificate in Youth Leadership is a short course in its own right, and may be studied separately.


  • Key aims of play leadership include:
    • Explain the purpose of play in the cognitive, physical and social development of a child.
    • Develop a plan for a supervised children's play program.
    • Understand the impact of play upon the psychological development of a child.
    • Determine appropriate measures to take to protect a child's safety when at play.
    • Understand options for physical play activities, including games and sports.
    • To develop an ability to evaluate quality, safety features, appropriate applications of equipment.
    • Devlop the ability to plan, establish and manage a supervised adventure.
  • Key aims of recreation leadership include:
    • Learn about qualities which are required in a leader in different leadership situations.
    • Manage interpersonal relationships in support of effective leadership.
    • Communication leadership messages effectively to those you lead.
    • Select appropriate thought processes to follow in order to deal with different leadership problems.
    • Lead teams through innovative and creative processes.
  • Key aims of bushcraft and wilderness activities:
    • Be able to prepare for an excursion into a wilderness area
    • Determine appropriate methods of protecting against the elements.
    • Deal with a range of emergencies in a wilderness situation, including developing contingency plans and determining appropriate first aid.
    • Explain campsite establishment and management.
    • Determine appropriate procedures for managing different passive wilderness activities.
    • Determine appropriate procedures for managing different water based wilderness activities.
    • Determine appropriate procedures for managing different active wilderness activities

What You Will Do

  • Example of a set task from this course:
    • Interview three friends, acquaintances, or colleagues who you have had some contact with in a recreation setting. Interview each for approximately twenty minutes each. Ask them to think about leaders they have encountered in their lives. Who was the best leader? What qualities made them a good leader? Who was the worst leader? What traits made them a bad leader? (Please maintain confidentiality, do not use real names). Make notes of the comments.

What is Adolescent Peer Pressure?

As the reliance on their parents decreases, a teenager will begin to identify more with their peer group.  Early adolescent relationships generally involve one or two “best” friends of the same gender, with a wider circle of other friends.  One characteristic of these friendships is the similarity between the friends.  Generally they will be of a similar socioeconomic and racial background, from the same neighbourhood, school and grade, same age, with common interests, values and other friends.  Why are they so similar?  Primarily, because have similar people around them will serve a positive reinforcement of who the adolescents are, their values and choices.  Often, early adolescent relationships are intense, emotional and can be stormy. They have high expectations of each other and aren’t able to react well when they are not, displaying anger and frustration.  The egocentric nature of adolescents means their expectations of friends are totally unrealistic. As adolescents get older, they tend to make more friends of the opposite sex; however they do predominantly have friends of their own gender. Girls expect emotional support from friends, and disclose information to them.  Boys on the other hand tend not to disclose, unless they are bragging, and expect friends to provide concrete material help from friends.  As adolescent cognitive skills develop the fragile friendships begin to develop into more stable relationships.

Group Acceptance and Popularity
Boys tend to be concerned with status and attributes that give them group acceptance, while girls tend to be more concerned with forming stronger bonds with a smaller number of people.  However, all adolescents generally desire to be widely accepted by their peers.  Progressing from their early adolescent friendships, in middle adolescent years, teenagers will seek acceptance from a “crowd” they relate to and admire.  They can be very sensitive to criticism and negative reactions, are overly concerned with other people’s opinions about them and link their self worth to other people’s perceptions.  Adolescents strive to achieve popularity in a variety of ways. Individuals may try to conform with a group of people, developing a set of friends who are very similar to themselves.  Amongst adolescents, conformity is considered one of the most important requirements for popularity.  In contrast, other adolescents will purposeful seek to deviate from the accepted norms.  This deviance along with anti-social behaviours (fighting, trouble making, bullying, promiscuity) can make some adolescents popular with other delinquent teenagers.  Other teenagers may look up to them for their apparent “courage” in rejecting conformity and defying authority. Some adolescents will seek to use their achievements as a way of increasing their status and gaining approval from their peers.  Participation in group social activities and clubs can broaden the group of people an adolescent associates with, giving them more opportunities to strike up new friendships.  Developing personality and social skills are also very important in popularity and adolescents value such interpersonal skills highly when seeking friends.  Popular adolescents tend to be friendly, happy, fun-loving, outgoing and energetic, with good social skills. They also tend to be physically attractive.  People tend to relate better immediately to people they perceive as attractive, however, when time is taken to get to know people, less and less emphasis is placed on attractiveness.

Shyness increases during adolescence, as teenagers begin to examine themselves, begin to develop sexually and desire to be accepted.  Shyness is often referred to as social-evaluative anxiety and is a fear or anxiousness of behaving incorrectly or being the centre of attention.  The root cause is the basic fear of negative feedback.  Shy adolescents are more likely to turn to illicit drug use to overcome their feelings of social discomfort. 

Most adolescents experience feelings of loneliness, particularly as they begin to relate less to their parents.  Boys seem to have more trouble with loneliness than girls and this is perhaps because they are conditioned not to express their feelings as readily.  Loneliness can also be due to the adolescent’s insecurity, as they figure out how they should be behaving and interacting in different situations.  Some will avoid participation in activities from fear of rejection or embarrassment.  Loneliness that lingers unresolved for any period can become depression, and this is very serious. A lonely adolescent will respond to loneliness in different ways, depending on their personality.

Independent and outgoing adolescents will tend to engage in individual pursuits, keep busy and readjust their own outlook to make themselves happier.  More dependant individuals tend to rely on their social networks more, seek adult help, and look to religion or organised activities.  Other teenagers may not be able to cope at all and will begin to withdraw.



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Tracey Jones

B.Sc. (Psych), M.Soc.Sc., Dip.Social Work, P.G.Dip Learning Disability, Cert Editing, Cert Creative Writing, PGCE. Member British Psychological Society, Member Assoc. for Coaching, Member British Learning Assoc. 25 years industry experience in writing,
What makes a good leader? Is it an innate personality trait or a skill that can be acquired? This book is an excellent guide to the theories and practice of leadership. It is full of interesting facts about social dynamics and examples of leadership style