Provider’s Code of Conduct


This CODE OF PROFESSIONAL CONDUCT (the Code) sets out the rights and duties of a Provider of The National Navigation Awards Scheme (the NNAS) when acting within the fields of competence set out below. In this Code, the term “Provider” is used to mean an individual or organisation registered as such with NNAS. The term “Instructor” is used to mean an individual with whom the Provider has a professional relationship, whether for remuneration or as a volunteer. “Participant” is used to refer to any person taking part in an enterprise under the control of an Instructor.


1. An Instructor holding a variety of qualifications may deliver NNAS Bronze, Silver and Gold awards. Those wishing to do so should view the course criteria document available on the website for currently accepted awards.

2. An Instructor who wishes to deliver NNAS Gold may need to do a further conversion course depending on the level of qualification, currency and experience. Guidance is available on the website via the course criteria document.

3. An Instructor must be registered as a Provider themselves or be working for an existing Provider to deliver any NNAS course.


The Instructor may instruct the course referred to in the field of competence for the relevant award. In giving instruction the following will be given due consideration:

4. The Instructor will establish the physical, psychological and technical need and abilities of the Participant(s) and plan accordingly.

5. The Instructor will choose the most appropriate teaching methods in the circumstances.

6. The Instructor may lead the group.

7. The Instructor may allow any Participant to be placed in an apprentice situation while remaining under the direct supervision of the Instructor.

8. The Instructor shall ensure that Participants are clear as to the meaning of instructions given particularly when these instructions relate to safety.

9. The Instructor shall not leave Participants unsupervised whether directly or indirectly unless this was the agreed plan or for reasons of safety or rescue. In those cases, the Instructor shall take reasonable steps to ensure the safety of Participants.


10. The Instructor may undertake the role of technical consultant to the Participant advising on aspects of navigation.


11. A qualified Instructor may supervise trainee instructors in order for them to gain experience prior to assessment for an award. The Trainee will have undertaken appropriate training for the activities. In cases such as these, the supervising Instructor retains full responsibility for the activity.

Participants must be informed of the exact status of the trainee instructor including their level of qualifications and experience.


12. The self-employed Instructor working for a Provider may undertake work for Participant(s). Individual terms will be agreed for each activity undertaken. The Instructor may work as part of a team or individually but in all cases, the Instructor retains autonomy in decision making.

13. The Instructor employed on a salaried basis will follow the instructions of the employer except when these conflict with the Instructor’s professional judgement. It is expected that whether the Instructor or employer is a Provider the course delivery is still within these guidelines established by NNAS. In the event of a conflict of interest then referral to an NNAS Board representative will be made.


14. RISK: Outdoor activities by their nature involve an element of risk and such risks must be accepted by the Clients. The Instructor shall try to make sure that Clients and Participants are made aware of the risks involved in the activity.

15. EQUIPMENT: The Instructor should use equipment appropriate to the activity which is subject to a routine maintenance program.

16. CONDITIONS: The Instructor shall be informed with regards to conditions in the area chosen using appropriate weather, snow and avalanche forecasts.

17. TECHNICAL SKILLS: The NNAS recommends that all Providers and Instructors keep up to date with current safe practice and techniques relevant to the NNAS and record the personal and professional associated experience.

18. ADVICE: Instructors/ Providers will respond courteously and helpfully to all requests for advice about navigation matters. They should offer to help aspirant instructors and professionals from other areas recognising any potential possible legal implications.

19. RESCUE: In the event of an incident the Provider/ Instructor shall endeavour to give assistance. It must be remembered that none should expose themselves to unnecessary risks and that the first responsibility is to their Participant(s).

20. ENVIRONMENT: All shall encourage by example, advice and vigilance cleanliness in the mountains, proper use of access routes and observe voluntary access restrictions. The Provider/ Instructor shall display proper respect for the environment and shall abide by the guidelines of the NNAS and respective national Mountaineering Councils.


21. When working with young people under the age of eighteen it must be remembered that the Provider or Instructors may be working in loco-parentis and will need to have particular regard to their safety and welfare. The Instructor should be clear about the extent of responsibilities involved and should ensure a clear transfer of responsibility at the start and conclusion of the activity.

22. The Provider shall ensure that the terms of engagement are fully agreed with the Participant(s). In particular, an agreement should be reached about aims, objectives, fees, expenses, numbers of participants and equipment.

23. The Instructor shall ensure that the Participant(s) are taught the relevant safety precautions and shall endeavour to encourage the development of a spirit of self-reliance and initiative.


24. The Provider and Instructors, in so far as they are able, are to retain cordial relations with other entities such as mountain centres, professional bodies, landowners, rescue organisations and the public.

25. The Provider and Instructor shall wherever possible co-operate with MTUK, the BMC, Mountaineering Councils, sports councils and public bodies in general.


26. CONTINUED PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT: In order to retain Providership the Provider must take part in relevant Continued Professional Development as decided by the NNAS Board and described on the NNAS website. The Instructor working for the Provider must also demonstrate and record a similar commitment. All Providers must attend at least one Annual General Meeting every three years to continue to hold their Providership.

27. PROFESSIONAL STANDARDS: In order to retain Providership the Provider must report any incidents or near misses as decided and directed by the NNAS. The Provider must complete the required Quality Assurance report and be available for regular Internal Verification. The Instructor working for the Provider must demonstrate and record a similar commitment.

28. INSURANCE: The Instructor should hold or through their Provider be covered by suitable insurance to cover civil liability for professional negligence. If the Instructor does not hold insurance it must be confirmed that the organisation for which the Instructor is working does. The Provider/ Instructor will advise the Participant(s) of the extent of cover held and whether the Participant(s) should consider obtaining further accident cover.

29. ADVERTISING: When the NNAS name or logo is used for promotion or marketing purposes such promotion must be clear, honest and contain no falsehoods or misrepresentations that may bring the NNAS into disrepute. Providers may use the logo and name to advertise courses. The NNAS logo and conditions of use are available from the office for the use of registered providers.

30. ENHANCEMENT OF THE NNAS: Providers and Instructors shall at all times seek to enhance the status of the NNAS and by extension the skills of navigation. Providers and instructors should avoid all behaviour that will bring the NNAS into disrepute.

31. DISPUTES BETWEEN PROVIDERS: A dispute between Providers or Instructors may be referred to the Board who will decide based on the details of this code.

32. EQUALITY OF OPPORTUNITY: All Providers and Instructors shall ensure that they act at all times in a manner that reflects a positive approach to equal opportunities and the elimination of discrimination.

33. BREACHES OF THE CODE: A Provider or Instructor who fails to fulfil the obligations contained in this code by action or omission, or who behaves in such a way as to bring the NNAS into disrepute may be required to account to the Board and may be subject to sanctions imposed by the Board.


Thanks are extended to the Association of Mountaineering Instructors in the writing of this document.