Do the Award

On this page you will find information to help you in completing your Duke of Edinburgh's International Award. If you have questions, please contact your Award Leader!

Regardless of which Award level young people choose to do, Award Participants have up until their 25th birthday to work on their Award. The weeks of activity recorded in the Online Record Book do not need to be consecutive. Similarly, young people also don’t need to work on all of the Award components simultaneously. Participants will set their own goals and go through the Award at a pace that works for them.

If you are also part of another youth organization such as Scouts, Guides or Cadets, your activities done with them may count towards your Duke of Ed as long as the standard for the badge or Award in question are no less than the requirement for the same activity for the Duke of Ed.

As you complete the Duke of Ed, make sure you avoid these potential challenges:

  • You may not use the same activities to qualify for more than one section of the Award.
  • The activities that are used towards completing an Award must be voluntary and unpaid. (It may be acceptable in some circumstances for travel to and from an activity to be subsidized by an organization or club.)  
  • If you benefit financially from participating in an activity, this cannot be used toward completing your Award.​

Who are Assessors?

An Assessor is the adult who is instructing, coaching or supervising you during your activities!  This person should be qualified to assess and comment on your progress and efforts given for each section of the Award.  Ideally, you will have a different Assessor for each activity.  Parents should not act as Assessors unless they are instructing and/or there is no other option available. Please note that dropping off and picking up Participants from activities is not considered an Assessor’s qualification. Award Leaders are not automatically Assessors and should not ​assess activities they did not witness and supervise.  Click here for more information about ​choosing an Assessor.

Quick Tips

Some quick tips to keep in mind as you complete the Duke of Ed:

  • The activities must be completed in your own time and require regular effort.
  • All activities used for the Award must be voluntary and you cannot be paid or receive credit for them
  • Select activities and set S.M.A.R.T. goals that are keeping within your ability.
  • Parents or relatives can only be your Assessor when they are mentoring you in a section and are qualified in the area they are assessing. 
  • Keep detailed logs of your activities in the Online Record Book. (This includes a record of your Service hours, Skill hours, Physical Recreation hours and log report for each Adventurous Journey)

Award Section Opportunities

Every Participant has the opportunity to choose their own activities within the Award framework. Here are some general guidelines about each of the sections:

Service

Service is all about giving back to your community, or giving to others and their communities.  Service offers you the opportunity to engage with society and gain an understanding of the importance of your role within your immediate and global community. It gives you the chance to connect with individuals and groups you may have previously overlooked or not been aware of, and to make a real difference in your wider community.  Participants should donate their time to help others or a cause. Service can be done individually or as part of a group.  Click here for more information on the Service section of the Award.

Skill

With so many hobbies and interests to choose from, the Skill Section of the Duke of Ed allows you to explore and discover talents within yourself that you may have only hoped for or dreamed about.  In some ways, this is the broadest section of The Duke of Ed, as it offers so many choices based on individual interests and passions, whether artistic, creative, musical, academic, technical, cultural or some other area. By trying something entirely new, or undertaking an existing activity with renewed purpose, you will stimulate new interests or improve existing ones.  Click here for more information on the Skill section of the Award.

Physical Recreation

The Physical Recreation section of The Duke of Ed offers you the opportunity to participate in physical activity in a variety of ways: some people want to train alone; others enjoy non-competitive activities with one or more friends; others love the challenge of team sports and others still are exhilarated by the thrill of competition.  No matter what your physical or mental ability or inclination, as long as you have the determination, this section offers you the opportunity to develop healthy fitness habits that will hopefully carry on long after an Award has been achieved. Click here for more information on the Physical Recreation section of the Award.

The Adventurous Journey

The aim of the Adventurous Journey section is to promote a spirit of adventure and discovery. Along with the development of individual qualities and skills, the Adventurous Journeys will encourage young people to develop awareness and respect for the natural environment and the importance of protecting it. Click here for more information on the Adventurous Journey section of the Award. 

Gold/Residential Project

The Gold Project offers you a unique experience that truly broadens your horizons and challenges your outlook.  At the heart of the Gold Project is the undertaking of a purposeful experience with people who are not your usual companions, working towards a common goal. Adding to this, you are also outside your usual place of residence, often in an unfamiliar environment with unfamiliar people.  It is hoped that the Gold Project rewards you with a sense of personal achievement, enhanced social connections with new and interesting people, and a truly life changing experience. Click here for more information on the Gold/Residential Project.  

For more information and activity ideas ask your Award Leader for the Participant Handbook.

The requirements for each section can be found here.

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