Duke of Edinburgh

The Duke of Edinburgh's Award

The Duke of Edinburgh's Award is a challenging programme of leisure time activities, designed to encourage young people to learn new skills, help others, and experience adventure in the outdoors.

Duke of Edinburgh


There are three progressive programmes which, when successfully completed, lead to a Bronze, Silver or Gold Award. Pupils create their own DofE programme by finding a volunteering, physical and skills activity of their interest, before undertaking a final assessed expedition after undergoing a training day and practice expedition. For Gold only, they also take part in a residential expedition of their choice.

Through participation pupils make new friends, develop social and inter-personal skills and increase their initiative, independence and self-confidence. Completion of the assessed expedition and the whole award gives a great sense of achievement. The award is highly prestigious and is valued by colleges, universities and employers.

The awards

Pupils at the High School of Dundee participate in all three levels of the award: Bronze, Form 3; Silver, Form 4; and Gold, Form 5. Pupils are encouraged to view the award as a three-year progressive course and it is not possible to accept direct entrants at Silver and Gold level as we work to establish the foundation skills at Bronze level and then develop them further as pupils progress through the awards.

Duke of Edinburgh expedition

The pupils must choose activities for the Volunteering, Skill and Physical sections themselves, and be involved in them for lengths of time which vary according to the particular award they are going for. The weekly commitment for each section is one hour per week and participants are required to record each session.

The following outlines the School’s general DofE expedition programme. Please note the dates are subject to change.

Training Day 1 day in March
Practice Expedition 2 days in late April/early May
Final Expedition 2 days in mid May/early June
Training Day 1 day in March
Practice Expedition 3 days in June
Final Expedition 3 days in mid August (during school holidays)
Training Day 1 day in March
Practice Expedition 3 days in June
Final Expedition 4.5 days in mid-August (during school holidays)

As mentioned, Gold Award participants also complete an additional residential week. Five days and four nights are spent working on a purposeful project, in an unfamiliar environment, with people not known to them. Pupils typically choose to complete a project in environmental work, conservation, learning or service to others.

To enable us to manage this popular co-curricular option, and to enhance the overall experiences of the participants, at Silver and Gold levels the School outsources the expedition section of the award to ‘Beyond Adventure’, an outdoor activities provider near Aberfeldy. The Bronze level is managed solely by the School.

Transport and equipment costs are subsidised by the School to keep them as low as possible and details of charges for the awards are available from the School’s DofE Co-ordinator.