WLS Curriculum

The Wilderness Life Support, a wilderness first aid course, is offered in two formats:

Traditional In-Person Courses

16 hours of in-person classroom lectures and hands-on practical skills training.

See Traditional Courses

Hybrid Online & In Person Courses

The lecture portion of the course is completed online followed by 8 hours of hands-on practical training with a question and answer session.

See Hybrid Courses

All WLS courses teach students how to manage medical situations in the backcountry when traditional medical services are unavailable.

Some courses may include CPR training. The Wilderness Life Support certificate is valid for two years.

WLS Learning Objectives:

  • Providing a practical foundation in Wilderness Medicine for people without medical training
  • Teaching patient assessment and treatment guidelines for life support until definitive medical care or evacuation is available
  • Training the provider in methods to manage medical and trauma emergencies when evacuation is unavailable or unnecessary
  • Teaching techniques and guidelines for evacuation

At the completion of the online (or classroom lectures) and practical sessions you will receive a Wilderness Life Support certificate in Wilderness First Aid.

Course Topics Include:

  • Abdominal and Chest Injuries
  • Airway and Breathing
  • Bites and Stings
  • Bleeding and Shock
  • Drowning and Water Safety
  • Evacuation Guidelines
  • Head Trauma and Spine Injuries
  • Heat Induced Injuries
  • Hypothermia and Cold Injuries
  • Lightning Injuries and Prevention
  • Medical Problems in the Wilderness
  • Musculoskeletal Injuries
  • Patient Assessment
  • Vital Sign Assessment
  • Water Disinfection
  • Wilderness Medical Kits
  • Wilderness Wound Management

Online Wilderness Medicine Learning Modules

If you are interested in learning about specific wilderness medicine topics but don’t want to attend a live course, you can complete topic specific online courses based on your topic of interest.

See Online Modules

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