Author : Julia N. Albrecht & Trisha Dwyer
School/Work Place : University of Otago, New Zealand & Department of Conservation, New Zealand
Contact :
Year : 2015

Scholarship on guiding and interpretation positions formal training as a central factor in guide instruction. Guide training operates in the area that mediates between personal characteristics, attitudes and knowledge of the guides and what may be desirable qualities from the visitors’ perspectives. Notably, this dichotomy is not necessarily reflected in the formal guide training provided by industry associations, tertiary education institutions and tour operating companies. Generally, the focus in training for guiding and interpretation is on knowledge of the tour content, communication skills, delivery of presentations, customer service skills, group management, and health and safety. Competency in particular skills such as climbing or kayaking may be required for adventure tourism guides. Certificates thus earned may be a requirement for future employment as a guide. The underlying assumption of these training approaches is that they are conducive to guide learning. Little is known about how guides actually acquire knowledge and develop their skills in guiding and interpretation over time. This paper departs from the assumption that training has a vital impact on guide development and instead posits lifelong learning as the most significant formative influence on guides. Studies on guiding have to date overlooked the importance of informal learning and its potentially influential role in professional development. This paper, based on primary empirical research on guides’ perspectives on the interpretation of indigenous cultural heritage, argues that lifelong learning is more formative than formal guide training and related education. Life experience and prior learning of both indigenous and non-indigenous guides inform and influence their performance. In addition to the empirical findings, the discussion in this paper is based on a review of the relevant literatures on guiding, interpretation, and learning in the context of tourism.

List of Articles
No. Subject Views Datesort
2 Think Tank IV Sustainability and Mass Destinations: Challenges and P... file 4734 Oct 13, 2013

In year 2001, the Government of the Balearic Islands decided to establish a tourism tax, named "ecotax", as an important measure to achieve a more sustainable tourism model for the islands. This paper analyses the background of the ecotax, t...

Author: Antoni Serra Cantallops 

Year: 2004 

1 Think Tank IV Sustainability in a Mature Mass-Tourism Destination: T... file 4847 Oct 13, 2013

Most destinations are struggling to achieve sustainability for their economies, their environments, their cultures and their tourism industries. This laudatory, idealistic and complex process involves many sectors of the industry, the commun...

Author: Pauline Sheldon, John Knox & Kem Lowry 

Year: 2004