Duke of Edinburgh Award

The Duke of Edinburgh's Award is a fantastic opportunity for young people to develop skills and interests in a non-academic context. It requires independence, motivation, commitment and resilience over a prolonged period and will inspire and equip you to participate in a range of activities. The programme is internationally recognised and will help to define you as an individual. The sense of satisfaction that young people achieve as a result of complete the Duke of Edinburgh's Award is huge and can provide a confidence to suceed in life.

DofE at North Oxfordshire Academy provides a programme of activities that develop the whole self in an environment of social interaction and team working.

We offer opportunities for all students in Years 9, 10, 12 and 13 Bronze, Silver and Gold Duke of Edinburgh Awards (DofE) here at North Oxfordshire Academy. 

The DofE is a great chance for your child to expand their horizons, discover new interests and abilities, have fun with friends, develop essential skills for their future and achieve an internationally renowned Award.

About the Duke of Edinburgh Award

The DofE is a life-changing experience. A fun time with friends. An opportunity to discover new interests and talents. A tool to develop essential skills for life and work. A recognised mark of achievement; respected by employers. It is many things to many people, supporting generations to successfully navigate adult life. The DofE Award is non-competitive and open to all young people from 14-24 and is about setting personal challenges and pushing personal boundaries.

Through DofE, participants will build traits like confidence, resilience, and self-esteem. They’ll gain skills and attributes for work and life, like problem-solving, team-working, and self-motivation – and they’ll achieve an Award that’s recognised by top employers and universities. 
There are three levels of DofE programme which when successfully completed lead to a Bronze, Silver, or Gold Award.

To achieve Bronze, Silver and Gold Award, participants must complete four sections:

Skills, Volunteering, Physical, Expedition and for those working towards Gold, an additional residential section.

Every DofE participant can choose what skill, physical and volunteering they are most interested in, personalising their own program. We will provide guidance and support, and students can either choose to continue an activity they already do or discover something completely new.

Activities for each section take a minimum of one hour a week over a set period. We offer an extensive range of extra-curricular activities every Wednesday after school at North Oxfordshire Academy which can help participants fulfil each section. 

All sections of the Award need to have an Assessor. An assessor is someone who checks on your progress and agrees the completion of a section of your programme. They must be independent. Therefore, they cannot be a member of your family.

An Assessor can be anyone who is interested in helping you to achieve, has some knowledge of the activity you are doing and can be available over the time you’re doing it. They will produce or sign off the relevant Assessor’s report for that section, which is uploaded into eDofE.

Once all sections are complete and signed off by an assessor then the participant has achieved their full Award.

Students have information assemblies about the Award in the first academic term. 

About the expedition

The Expedition section involves your child working as part of a small team (4-7) to plan their expedition’s aim, plan their route and do some training to make sure they are fully prepared – before spending for Bronze, two days and one night and for Silver, three days and two nights, in the local countryside.

Ahead of this, they will take part in training, delivered by our fully trained staff every Tuesday after school, who cover the expedition principles, introduce them to expedition equipment and look at first aid, camp craft and navigation. We expect all participants to abide by the 20 DofE Conditions during their expedition section. They will be formally assessed by a DofE assessor during their qualifying expedition.

How to enrol

If you are interested in enrolling your child, please fill out the enrolment form which can be downloaded and printed here. Alternatively, you can contact Miss Roberts directly by clicking here.

Payment will need to be made via ParentPay; once the payment has been confirmed your child’s place on the award will be secured. It is £65 for Bronze and £75 for Silver.


Our DofE Ambassadors are passionate about sharing their story and ensuring youth voice is heard. They are advocates for the DofE and want to inspire others. The Ambassadors are positive role models and help to promote DofE throughout the academy.

Opportunities to apply for an Ambassador role can be done after they have achieved one DofE award. The programme offers training and is another great addition to their personal development.

DofE also provides the opportunity to progress this leadership experience by becoming a UK Youth Ambassador, which offers young people a voice in how the future of the Award is shaped: how to keep it relevant in a post-COVID climate, and how to make it more accessible in terms of social mobility and disability requirements. North Oxfordshire Academy has a good record of providing candidates for both the internal and national Ambassador scheme.

NOA DofE Ambassador

DofE Awards

Bronze Award

The Physical, Skills and Volunteering sections must be undertaken once a week, with two of these sections to be completed over three months, and one over six months.

Although students will be assisted in selecting appropriate activities and monitored throughout the delivery of the Award, completion of these sections will primarily be the responsibility of the students taking part.

Silver Award

The Physical, Skills and Volunteering sections must be undertaken once a week, with two of these sections to be completed over 6 months, and one over 3 months.

If your child did not complete their Bronze Award, they are required to do an extra 6 months either volunteering, or whichever of the Physical or Skills section they did for 6 months.

Gold Award

The sections must be undertaken once a week. They must spend 12 months on the Volunteering section. For the Physical and Skills section, they must spend 12 months on one and 6 months on the other.

If your child did not do their Silver Award, they are required to do a further 6 months on either of the activities they did for 12 months.