Courses

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Welcome to our training program!

The Interpretive Guides Association offers a series of training courses and exams designed to provide guides with skills and knowledge to effectively communicate our unique local natural and cultural heritage to visitors. We provide training focused on sharing the natural and cultural heritage of the areas we work for hiking guides, museum interpreters, bus tour guides, information centre staff, rafting guides, horse packing guides, scuba guides, mountain guides and anyone interested in learning more about the the areas we teach.  We also offer group management training for interpretive hiking guides.

Our courses range from 4hrs – 40 hrs in length to suit the needs of different individuals from mountain enthusiasts to professional guides. Our public courses are scheduled in May, June, November and February each year and are available in English, French, and Japanese. If you have a group of 10 or more we may be able to schedule a private course to fit your schedule. Please explore these pages to learn more about our courses and certification options for interpretive guides and interpretive hiking guides.


Tous nos cours de certification sont disponibles en français. Veuillez nous contacter si vous souhaitez en savoir plus.


Cancellation & Refund Policy

Please read our Cancellation & Refund Policy if you are planning to sign up for this course.

If you cancel three weeks before the course starting date, you will receive a full refund minus a $30 administration fee. If you cancel two weeks before the course starting date, you will receive a 50 percent refund minus a $30 administration fee. If you cancel with less than 2 weeks notice no refund will be issued. The interpretive Guides Manual costs $45 for members. If you received a copy of the manual as part of your course fees the $45 fee will be subtracted from any refund amount.

If you are sick on one or more days of the course you must prove your sickness (i.e. a doctors note) and get in touch with the instructor immediately. We will place you in an alternate course if we have space available, otherwise you will need to re-register and pay.

If the Interpretive Guides has to cancel a course due to low numbers, you will have the choice of being given a full refund or transferring your registration for another course.


Currently Available Courses & EventsCalendar View


August 24, 2020

Grizzly Bear Talk

Join Gordon Stenhouse for a talk about recent bear research and a chance to get answers to your toughest bear questions.

This talk will fill you in on Gordon's latest bear research information. In the course registration email, we will also be inviting participants to submit questions for Gordon to cover during the talk. If you have unanswered bear questions, this event is for you!

Gordon is a research scientist and the leader of the Foothills Research Institute Grizzly Bear Research Program. This research program began in 1998 and now has over 250 published scientific papers from the research team working on this program over the past 23 years.

Gordon is on secondment from the Alberta provincial government and is an adjunct professor at the Western College of Veterinary Medicine at the University of Saskatchewan. He is also the past chairman of the Alberta Grizzly Bear Recovery Team and is an executive council member with the International Association for Bear Research and Management.

Gordon has studied both polar and grizzly bears for 37 years ….now more than half of his life.

Course Details Register Now

September 21, 2020

Apprentice Interpreter September 21st and 22nd

Online Via Zoom Meetings

Course Details Register Now

September 23, 2020

3 Season Group Management September 23-24

Day 1 online via Zoom, Day 2 on trail.

Course Details Register Now

September 23, 2020

3 Season Group Management September 23 AND 25

Day 1 online via Zoom, Day 2 on trail.

Course Details Register Now

Purchase Group Management Handbook

Purchase Group Management Handbook

Course Details Register Now

Purchase Canadian Rockies Natural/Cultural History Handbook

Purchase Canadian Rockies Natural/Cultural History Handbook

Course Details Register Now

Purchase Interpretation Handbook

Purchase Interpretation Handbook

Course Details Register Now

Basic Online Course - Jasper

The on-line Basic Knowledge Course covers the same content and is the same cost as the in-person course. The on-line version is best viewed with a high-speed internet connection, but it is possible to view with a dial-up connection. You may complete this course over a couple of days or sittings if you wish. You can also stop the course at any time to take a break, or get a snack!
You can take the exam as many times as you like at no extra cost.

Course Details Register Now

Basic Online Course - Banff

The on-line Basic Knowledge Course covers the same content and is the same cost as the in-person course. The on-line version is best viewed with a high-speed internet connection, but it is possible to view with a dial-up connection. You may complete this course over a couple of days or sittings if you wish. You can also stop the course at any time to take a break, or get a snack!
You can take the exam as many times as you like at no extra cost.

Course Details Register Now