Running Deer School is now an ASDAN registered centre, offering the Certificate of Personal Effectiveness to our students in Years 9-11, as well as some of ASDAN’s Short Course awards including Expressive Arts and Animal Care.

ASDAN is a nationally recognised awarding body who offer courses which can be tailored to individual needs and interests. Their programmes are challenge-based, meaning students can immerse themselves in longer projects, or choose a range of shorter ones, to suit them. ASDAN courses are also relevant to vocational interests and the development of life skills, as well as more traditional curriculum subjects.

What is the ASDAN Certificate of Personal Effectiveness?

The Certificate of Personal Effectiveness (CoPE) is a nationally recognised qualification available at Levels 1, 2 and 3. The qualification offers imaginative ways of accrediting young people’s activities. It promotes, and allows centres to record, a wide range of personal qualities, abilities and achievements of young people, as well as introducing them to new activities and challenges.

Why choose to study this?

ASDAN CoPE, at Levels 1 and 2 is a qualification aimed at students in Years 10 and 11 and is equivalent in size to a GCSE. As well as helping you to develop a range of skills and personal qualities, CoPE has also been shown to have a positive impact on students’ achievements in Maths and English:

What will you study?

The CoPE curriculum is found in the student book, which comprises 13 modules. The modules are divided into three sections; section A, B and C. Each section should take at least 10 hours to complete – 10 hours is worth one credit. You will need 12 credits to gain the Certificate of Personal Effectiveness.

The module titles are: Communication; Citizenship and community; Sport and leisure; Independent living; The environment; Vocational preparation; Health and fitness; Work-related learning and enterprise; Science and technology; International links; Expressive arts; Beliefs and values; Combined studies (this module allows you to mix and match a combination of challenges from other modules).

You will produce a portfolio of evidence to demonstrate your achievements. You must also demonstrate competence at Level 1 or 2 in the six CoPE skills units:

  • Introduction to Working with Others
  • Introduction to Improving own Learning and Performance
  • Introduction to Problem Solving
  • Planning and Carrying out a Piece of Research
  • Communication through Discussion
  • Planning and Giving an Oral Presentation

When will you do this?

You will be timetabled for CoPE each week, studying for approximately 120 hours over Years 10 and 11. Some of the work you are already doing, like learning a new skill or going on work placement, will also count towards this time.

How will your work be assessed?

You will be assessed on a portfolio of evidence, which demonstrates your achievements in the challenges which we will link to the six skills units. We will show you what this portfolio should contain and how to present it. You will work with your tutor to identify which additional subject modules and which challenges you would like to work towards, so you put together your own bespoke curriculum.

How will Running Deer School make sure that my assessments are fair?

After each module is completed, the tutors involved with CoPE will put the work through a process called Internal Moderation. This means that we will check to make sure that everyone’s work is judged to the same standards. Each year, there is also an additional moderation called External Moderation, where a sample of work from the school is looked at by the ASDAN regional team.

You can find out more about moderation in our Assessment Policies ASDAN

What can I do if I’m unhappy with a decision about my work?

As well as moderation processes, we also have an appeals policy. It is really important that you read it, as there are some deadlines that you will need to keep to.
You can find out more about the appeals process in our Assessment Policies ASDAN

We also have a general Complaints Policy at Running Deer School, which is for students as well as parents, carers and members of the community. In the first instance, we would urge you to speak to a member of staff about any issues.

To find out more about ASDAN CoPE, visit their website at:

Running Deer CIC is a not-for-profit, charitable organisation based in Devon. Find out how you can help make a difference and support us.

Running Deer School is a DfE registered independent school (registration number: 878/6067) for young people with Special Educational Needs. Part of Running Deer CIC, we provide activities and opportunities based around traditional rural skills and land based studies, bushcraft, equine assisted education, dog therapy, green woodworking and conservation.

Running Deer CIC is a not for profit organisation and company limited by guarantee. Company No: 7605814. VAT Reg No: 289345260.

Head of School: Joanna Winterburn

Telephone: +44(0)1647 400201
Email: school at
Address: Butterdon Wood, Moretonhampstead, Devon, TQ13 8PY

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Running Deer School in Devon are an Ofsted Good Provider

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