Reaping fruits of labour: Revisiting Education Outside the Classroom provision in Denmark upon policy and research interventions

Karen Seierøe Barfod, Mads Bølling, Lærke Mygind, Peter Elsborg, Niels Ejbye-Ernst, Peter Bentsen

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


Education outside the classroom (EOtC) is a primary school educational approach that utilizes the school’s local environment for teaching purposes. The aims of this study are 1) to examine the provision and characteristics of regular EOtC (referred to as udeskole in Danish), in Denmark in 2019 and 2) to investigate trends in the extent of the practice of regular EOtC in Denmark from the first surveys in 2007 and 2014 to 2019. Firstly, some of the nationwide regular EOtC development projects and initiatives that were rolled out between 2014 and 2019 is described. Secondly, we present the results of the recent 2019 survey of the provision of regular EOtC in public, private, and special-needs primary and lower secondary schools. Third, trends of regular EOtC provision in
general schools, i.e., public and independent schools, are examined with combined data from 2014 and 2019, and discussed in light of the 2007 data. In both 2007, 2014 and 2019, school leaders were asked to report
whether EOtC was taking place regularly at their school. Regularity was operationalized as at least half a day every second week for a longer period. At the school level, the proportion of schools practising regular EOtC
remained constant from 2014 to 2019, but the 2019 provision was larger among special-needs schools (34.0 %) than among general schools (19.5 %). The number of classes per public school practising regular EOtC increased by 31.8 % (7.0–9.2 classes), and the proportion of general schools with a local description of regular EOtC as a target approach increased from 24.5% to 45.2%. As more teachers seem to be practising regular EOtC and seem to be clustering within the same schools, the provision should be taken into account in plans for urban green spaces for education and schools.
Original languageEnglish
JournalUrban Forestry & Urban Greening
Number of pages7
Publication statusPublished - 1 Mar 2021


  • outdoor education


Dive into the research topics of 'Reaping fruits of labour: Revisiting Education Outside the Classroom provision in Denmark upon policy and research interventions'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this