Human Dimensions Foundations of Natural Resource Conservation

Course Description

This course will foster a common understanding and application of human dimensions of natural resource conservation. It will provide an overview of key concepts, methods and practical applications, historical context and "must have" tools for the natural resource professional's toolobox.

The course is based on a human dimensions framework and relies heavily on case study applications, including experiences of the participants, to demostrate the benefits of addressing human dimensions of conservation challenges.

The course is offered through Colorado State University's Department of Human Dimensions of Natural Resources, in partnership with the USFWS National Conservation Training Center and the National Wildlife Refuge System Human Dimensions Branch. The Partnership and Community Collaboration Academy supports the course announcement and participates as a member of the instruction team.



  1. Provide a working definition of human dimensions, including key disciplines of the field. 
  2. Identify the overall need for human dimensions approaches and how they can be effectively integrated into management planning and decision making.
  3. Describe key human dimensions application areas such as human-wildlife conflict, public participation, behavior change and strategic communications.
  4. List some of the tools, methods and concepts used to address these application areas and know where to find human dimensions resources.
  5. Describe, through example, how human dimensions has been useful in addressing specific management challenges.
  6. Frame their own conservation challenges more broadly to include the human dimensions elements and begin to address important human dimensions needs in their conservation work

2016 Partnership and Community Collaboration Academy Presentation

Collaborative Conservation Practices.pdf presented by Liz Madison, Guest Instructor

HD Collaborative Conservation_Notebook.pdf 

Strategic Thinking Activity Collaborative Conservation.pdf

Digging Deeper_Finding Answers_Partnership Assessment Tool.pdf

Seven Faces of Philanthropy and Partnership, 16 min video

OneTam, 4 min video and One Tam web site

For additional insights into collaborative conservation practices, view the suite of Collaboration Skills instructional videos. 

Join The Academy Network, a closed facebook group for partnership and community collaboration practitioners.

Who Should Attend

This interagency course is open to natural resource practitioners and decision-makers who work with people-related conservation challenges. This includes mid- to upper level managers, field biologists, education and outreach specialists, visitor services staff and outdoor recreation planners.



This 3-day classroom course is offered once per year at the National Conservation Training Center, located in Shepherstown, WV. The next course is scheduled for November 14-16, 2016.



Tuition for USFWS, NPS and BLM employees is prepaid. Participants from other agencies and organizations such as USFS, NOAA, NWF and TNC should review annual tuition fees. 



Register online using DOILearn, the Department of the Interior's Learning Management System. 



Julie Study, Course Leader, National Conservation Training Center


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