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How to become an Awarding Centre

Collectively, NICAS Primary Centres and Awarding Centres are known as Accredited Centres. While Primary Centres act as local hubs and ambassadors of best practice, Awarding Centres are usually smaller, local facilities. If you own or run an artificial bouldering facility (indoors or outdoors), you can apply to become an Awarding Centre for NIBAS and run the scheme yourself. This includes traversing walls on school premises.

  • Awarding Centres must have a named Course Director who will be responsible for the day to day delivery of the Scheme at their centre. The Course Director should read the Scheme handbook, particularly the section on ’Requirements for Accredited Centres’ (pages 7–14). This sets out the minimum requirements for both physical facilities and coaches needed to deliver each level of the Scheme.
  • The Course Director then needs to fill out an Awarding Centre Registration Form and send this to us along with the registration fee. There is a flowchart in the same section to help guide you through the process, and the annual registration fee is based on the levels you’d like to offer.
  • The form needs to be countersigned by a Competent Person and also by a Primary Centre who know your bouldering wall and can vouch for your application, as well as providing your induction training.
  • Course Directors, coaches and your Competent Person need to attend an induction workshop every three years in order to run the scheme. A register of inducted persons is held online so inducted status can be checked quickly by any Accredited Centre. Induction workshops are provided by Primary Centres and should cost around £50+VAT per person.
  • Accredited Centres need to use our secure Online Candidate Database to record candidates registered and accredited at each level of the Scheme. The ABCTT cannot see identifying data for individual candidates, but use this to create statistics for Sport England. All candidates are issued with a Unique Candidate Number which is recorded in their logbook, so their record can be checked by an Accredited Centre if required.

How to deliver the Scheme if you are an individual, external of freelance coach

If you are a bouldering coach who meets the requirements in our Handbook (page 10) but do not work for a bouldering facility, you can still deliver the Scheme through an Accredited Centre. See page 8 of the NIBAS Handbook for more information. NIBAS is approved for specified bouldering walls, and may not be delivered at unregistered facilities. All candidates of an external coach must be registered through the Accredited Centre where they are being taught, and will have their accreditation certificates signed by that centre’s Course Director.

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