The Duke of Edinburgh Award

What is The Duke of Edinburgh’s (DofE) Award?


The Duke of Edinburgh’s (DofE) Award is nationally and internationally recognised by colleges, universities and employers as a programme showing that young people have achieved and ‘done something different’ with their lives that makes them stand out from the crowd.

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 and practice expedition. For Gold only, they also take part in a residential of their choice.

Who’s it for? 

Everyone! DofE is non-competitive and everyone aged 14+ is welcome – whatever your interests, background and abilities. It’s about finding the confidence to be yourself, and knowing that when things get tough, you can find a way through. You will get all the support you need to make sure you’re fully prepared.

Levels of DofE Award

Lisneal College offers the DofE Award at all three levels dependent on the participant’s age:

  1. Bronze Award (for those aged 14 years in Year 10)

The Bronze level can be completed in a minimum of 6 months.

  1. Silver Award (for those aged 15 years in Year 11)

The Silver level can be completed in a minimum of 6 months for those who have completed the Bronze level, or 12 months for direct Silver entrants.

  1. Gold Award (for those aged 16 years and over in Year 13)

The Gold level can be completed in a minimum of 12 months for those who have completed the Silver level or 18 months for direct entrants.


Order of Awards

It is recommended to complete each award level progressively e.g., Bronze, Silver then Gold, as this reduces the time it takes to achieve each award.

However, you can still start on a Silver or Gold programme without having previously undertaken the Bronze or Silver award.

Whatever level is undertaken, a personal programme of activities is achieved that includes:

  • Volunteering – helping people in the community
  • Skills – almost any interest or hobby
  • Physical – sport, dance and fitness
  • Expedition – training, planning and completing a practice and assessed expedition on foot or cycle.
  • Residential (only at Gold level) – spending time away from home, learning a new skill with new people.



What are the benefits of taking part?

Achieving a DofE award can help a pupil gain skills and attributes that make them a successful candidate for college, university, and employment. A pupil will gain self-confidence, learn new skills, talents, and meet new friends.

Skills you can gain include the following:

  • Teamwork
  • Resilience
  • Self-management
  • Problem-solving
  • Independence
  • Responsibility
  • Communication
  • Initiative


DofE Expedition Programme (General Outline). Please note the dates are subject to change.

Training Days 4 days in Feb/March
Assessed Expedition 2 days in April/May/June
Training Days 4 days in Feb/March
Practice Expedition 3 days in April/May/June
Assessed Expedition 3 days in April/May/June
Training Days 4 days in Feb/March
Practice Expedition 3 days in April/May/June
Assessed Expedition 4 days in May/June/July /Sept

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, outdoor pursuits, learning or service to others.

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.


How do I get involved?

To find out more details please contact the DofE Co-ordinator.