Journeyman Certification

What It Is And How It Works

The Journeyman Certification Program is a standards-based outdoor skill certification consisting of specific requirements and documentation standards for those seeking professional certification and recognition from the Jack Mountain Bushcraft School. Completing all requirements means that you have what we consider to be the MINIMUM SKILL LEVEL necessary to lead trips and travel through remote areas safely. In order to be recognized, you will need to complete all the benchmarks listed below in a manner consistent with our standards. Simply completing a semester course does not mean that you are at the journeyman level of experience.

All work must be completed during the associated field course. It is difficult and not everyone will meet the requirements. Because we wouldn’t want to devalue the achievement of people who have completed the Journeyman, we will not make exceptions on the requirements. Making exceptions cheapens everyone involved.

The work is standard-based. Simply put, if you don’t meet the standards, you don’t receive the certification.

Journeyman Certification Requirements

Required Field Course

The Journeyman Certification is meant to be completed during the Wilderness Bushcraft Semester or the Wilderness Guide Training Semester. While intended to be within the scope of the course, our certifications are challenging and will require significant physical and academic effort to complete in 9 weeks.


There are very specific and stringent documentation parameters for all our certifications and candidates will need to follow these parameters carefully in order to be recognized. Explanations and outlines for all required coursework is located on Google Classroom, to which a student is admitted upon registering for a semester course. The coursework is completed and submitted digitally through Google Classroom, although for extended trips students often use paper notebooks, then transfer this to Google Classroom upon return to base camp. Once completed, student work is assembled into a final portfolio. Documentation will include:

  • Logbook – Completed, typed and signed by instructor
  • First Person Ecology research – Completed and verified by instructor
  • Practical skills testing rubrics – Graded and signed by instructor (must receive a passing grade for ALL EXAMS)
  • Trip planning paperwork
  • Outlines from “The Journeyman Workbook” – Completed and verified by instructor

Specific Requirements

During the field courses students will learn a variety of skills and techniques. Each of these are broken down into one of the seven elements of our programs (Skill, Journey, Craft, Nature, Culture, Sustainability and Self). In order to received the Journeyman Certification, students will need to complete all the items required. The goal is verified skill, experience and research.

Certification FAQ

How It Works

There is no extra tuition to enroll in the certification option for your field course. You simply let us know. If you decide to withdraw from the certification option, you can do so at any time. If you withdraw, we won’t put an emphasis on testing you with practical exams, and you can just take the course for personal enrichment.

Specific Curriculum & Requirements

When you register for a course you’ll receive all of the specific requirements for the certification. These will include the following:

  • Logbook & Course Documentation
  • Workbooks
  • Benchmarks (Crafts, Skills, Meals, Number Of Repetitions, etc.)
  • Oral Exams
  • Practical Exams

No Social Promotion

Social Promotion is the practice of promoting a student to the next grade level, or granting a certificate, regardless of skill mastery in the belief that it will promote self-esteem. Regardless of how well we get along, what a great person you are, how much experience you have, or what you’ve done in your life up to this point, we do not socially promote. We have strict requirements and they must be met. Because we wouldn’t want to devalue the achievement of people who have completed the JMBS certifications in the past, we will not make exceptions on the requirements. Making exceptions cheapens the achievements of everyone involved.

Time Constraints

Can I finish the requirements for the Certification at home after the course? No. As this is a standards-based certification, completion at home raises many problems and questions. First, how do we verify that a skill meets the standard required? Second, being able to finish at home allows a person to not use their time wisely and still receive the certification at the end of the process. This is not something we want to encourage. All of the people who have completed the certifications in the past have done so during the course at the field school.

Two-Week Writing Period

While benchmarks and course work must be completed during the course, there is a 2-week writing period after a course where students can clean up, digitize, edit, etc., their written work. This means that while you cannot complete certification requirements after the course, you can, in the example of a Boreal Snowshoe Expedition where you kept a hand-written logbook and workbook, type this up. All documentation must be typed in order to be valid for certification.

Starting Early

While we do not allow anyone to extend the time to get the work done beyond a course, we encourage people to start early. Contact us for more details on this.

What JMBS Certifications Are Not

JMBS Certifications are acknowledgements that a student has reached a standard and breadth of proficiency. They are not a job placement service (click here to read about jobs in the bushcraft industry). They are also not a promise of work with the Jack Mountain Bushcraft School.

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