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Short Courses at Schumacher College

People all over the world have been informed and inspired by our 20 years of transformative short courses for sustainable living.

Bringing together leading international thinkers, activists and practitioners, we continue to deliver our unique brand of small-group transformative learning experiences.

With a focus on interactive and participatory learning, we offer the practical skills and strategic thinking required to face the ecological, economic and social challenges of the 21st Century.

Join us for a diversity of short courses this year, ranging from weekends to six month programmes to suit your availability.

Schumacher is a very special place – as we try and figure out what on earth we’re going to do with this unraveling planet, it’s become a thinktank for hope, a battery for positive vision!“ Bill McKibben

NEW:The Elmhirst Programme – Soul, Spirit and Story

We are delighted to announce a new programme of short courses starting January 2015 in the beautiful Elmhirst Centre of Dartington Hall. Click here for more information

Bursaries are available for our all of our short courses, please click here >>

Short course programme

Wildwise Outdoor and Environmental Education Training Courses

Starts: Thursday October 2, 2014

We are delighted to work with Wildwise to offer an exciting programme of courses to develop skills and resources and to inspire professionals working in the field of outdoor and environmental education. Read more…

The Living Touch of Wild Earth - Reinhabiting the World Around Us

Starts: Monday October 6, 2014

6 – 10 October 2014 | Stephen Buhner | Through a unique blend of deep humor, storytelling and experiential exercises, Stephen will explore the self-organisation in biological systems, neural networks in Ecosystems, plant and bacterial intelligence, the ecosystem function of hallucinogens and medicinal plants, the dynamics of aisthesis, golden threads, duende, heart perception and cognition, imaginal thinking, the experience of interspecies communication, the dynamics of sensory gating channels, and a great deal more. Read more…

Earth Democracy: Creating Living Economies and Living Cultures

Starts: Monday October 6, 2014

6-10 October 2014 | Vandana Shiva In this course, Vandana Shiva will join us for a rare teaching week in the UK, to investigate Earth Democracy and how it can be brought to life through the concrete experience of her food movement Navdanya – a network founded to help farmers achieve seed and food sovereignty, now the largest direct marketing, fairtrade organic network in India. Read more…

Nature-Connected Leadership: Standing at the Threshold of Radical Change

Starts: Monday November 3, 2014

November 3-7, 2014 | Mark Morey Our greatest hope for the future and ‘a new type of thinking’ could lie in relationship-based systems that include: self, nature, others and the unseen. Through storytelling, guided inquiry, ritual, and immersive practices of connection with the natural world, Mark Morey will guide you on a transformational journey that will result in breakthrough ways of being a leader. Read more…

Ecopsychology - Transforming Psychology for an Ecological World

Starts: Monday November 10, 2014

10-14 November 2014 | Andy Fisher | Ecopsychology is an opportunity to rethink the theory, practice, and self-image of psychology in light of an ecological view of reality.
This is a radical reshaping of psychology for a whole new society, an ecological society. Read more…

Myths from the Edge of the Fire: The Eloquence of Initiation

Starts: Monday November 10, 2014

10 – 14 November | Martin Shaw ad guests | Join Mythologist Martin Shaw and guests, including Paul Kingsnorth, for an experiential course that explores the power and central importance of story in shaping the major conversations of our time: the re-building of culture, the ecological imagination, the capacity for paradox. Read more…

The Right Livelihood Programme, UK and Bhutan - Finding Deeper Purpose

Starts: Monday November 17, 2014

November 2014 – November 2015 | *With Ha Vinh Tho, Julia Kim, Satish Kumar, Julie Richardson, Chung Rinpoche, Kenpo Sonam Bumdhen and Otto Scharmer | Join us for a year-long transformative learning journey that aims to align your livelihood with a deeper purpose in service of happiness and well-being of people and planet. This will be an inspirational, transformative and action-orientated journey towards developing a prototype of your own project, plan, or pathway to right livelihood. In this, you will be supported by a community of peers, tutors and experts. Read more…

A Maker's Journey

Starts: Monday December 1, 2014

1 – 5 December 2014 | Richenda Macgregor, Nick Kary, Dolly Kary, and special guest (to be confirmed) A five day exploration into what it may mean to live a hand-made life. Through stories, clay, pigments, and wood we will seek to explore and enlarge that relationship between our hands, natures materials and each other. Contains philosophy and practise! Read more…

The Elmhirst Programme: Rising Women Rising World

Starts: Monday January 12, 2015

12 – 16 January 2015 | Scilla Elworthy, Karen Downes and Rama Mani | Rising Women Rising World, is an exciting and inclusive new global initiative of women committed to co-creating a life-affirming world through education, training and developing a coherent vision of a world that works for all. his week-long course is designed to introduce you to the initiative and train you to deliver its workshop Inner Action – building the inner strength and practical skills for contributing to a world that works for all. Read more…

Mind in Nature - Three Week Intensive

Starts: Monday January 19, 2015

19 January – 6 February | Anna Breytenbach, Rupert Sheldrake, Shantena Sabbadini, Stephen Harding and Philip Franses | Today’s emerging science is turning the mechanistic view of science on its head, revealing life as intelligent, purposive and meaningfully communicative. This three-week intensive will look at the evidence through the work of people who are expanding the frontiers of scientific understanding and practical experience. Read more…

The Elmhirst Programme: Are We Virtually Dead?

Starts: Monday February 2, 2015

2 – 6 February | Iain McGilchrist and Rupert Sheldrake | This week-long course is a rare chance to study alongside psychiatrist and author Iain McGilcrist. It offers an exploration into issues such as the role of embodiment, intuition and instinct in life. Are we becoming more machine-like, does it matter if we are, and what does this have to do with the brain? We will take a closer look at the way governments and their experts are constantly surprised by outcomes that appear unexpected or paradoxical, but which could have been foreseen if we had adopted a way of looking at the world that we have now been trained to ignore. Read more…

Call of the Wild: A Foundation in Environmental Education - Outdoors!

Starts: Sunday March 1, 2015

March – November 2015 in association with WildWise and special guests. | Do you aspire to be an outdoor educator but lack the confidence, experience or skills to connect people with the natural world? Read more…

Drawing On Indigenous Wisdom - Three Week Intensive

Starts: Monday March 16, 2015

16 March – 2 April 2015 | Jean Robert, Mac Macartney, Colin Campbell, Lucy Hinton, Martin Shaw, Stephan Harding, Philip Franses and Jonathan Dawson | We look with fresh eyes at the teaching of the Earth’s ancient wisdom traditions and what we might learn for the design of our 21st Century social and economic structures. read more…

Generation of the New Economy – Youth Economics Festival

Starts: Monday April 13, 2015

April 13 – 18, 2015 | David Graeber, Molly Scott Cato, Rob Hopkins and Jonathan Dawson | This week will offer young people from across Europe and beyond the opportunity to collaboratively explore developments at the cutting edge of the learning and practice of economics. It will provide a space for us to set the agenda, self-organise into a vibrant and self-governing learning community and dive deep into imagining new ways of organising our economies and communities. Read more…

The Elmhirst Programme: Positive Psychology for the Planet – cultivating resilience, sustainable happiness and active hope.

Starts: Monday April 20, 2015

20 – 24 April 2015 | Chris Johnstone | Participate in a cultural shift in our approach to happiness, resilience and hope with the co-author of Joanna Macy’s new book Active Hope.* Read more…

Agroecology: Food for the Future

Starts: Monday April 27, 2015

April 27 – May 1 2015 | With Miguel Altieri and Clara Nicholls This course brings together leading voices in agroecology to provide a fascinating exploration of the principles of agroecology and how these can be applied to ensure biodiverse, productive and resilient farms; promote food sovereignty and promote the necessary change of the dominant food systems. Read more…

The Rewilded Child - Reconnection with Nature

Starts: Monday May 25, 2015

25 – 29 May 2015 | Jay Griffiths, David Bond, Chris Salisbury and Lemn Sissay | Join award winning author Jay Griffiths, film maker David Bond and wild storyteller Chris Salisbury for a 5 day course designed to examine the relationship between childhood and nature, it’s importance in modern society and how we can start to reconnect children with the wild. Read more…


Our Short Course fees, included in the individual course pages above, reflect the calibre of the teachers who come here and the high contact time that participants have with them. Accommodation, either within the College or elsewhere on the Dartington Hall Estate, is included in the fee. We assign College rooms on a first come first served basis, as Dartington rooms are a picturesque but 10 minute walk from the campus, so please mention on the booking form if you have a special need to be College based.


The College encourages participation from all economic backgrounds. To support this, the College has a small number of bursaries available. Click here for more details >>

For all short course enquiries please contact:

Archive of past short courses >>

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Schumacher College is part of the Dartington Hall Trust, a company limited by guarantee, registered in England and as a charity (company no. 1485560, charity no. 279756). Registered office: The Elmhirst Centre, Dartington Hall, Totnes, Devon TQ9 6EL, United Kingdom