Playground Design Online Course

Playground Design Online Course Sale!
Full Fee $595.00 incl GST - Best Value!
Payment Plan $800.00 incl GST
Duration 100 hrs (12 months)
Exam Optional
Tutor Support Yes unlimited by email
Qualification Certificate

  • Explore opportunities to work in the play industry, as a designer, consultant, playground builder, materials and equipment supplier, etc.
  • Understand how to create environments sympathetic to a childs development.

This course develops a sound understanding of the design and construction of small community parks and playgrounds.  A valuable course for parks managers or designers, the course covers playground philosophy, design of play structures (for function and safety), materials selection, community participation and park design.

Course Aims:

  • Determine the procedure to plan a park development, including a playground and other facilities.
  • Prepare a concept plan for a park or playground.
  • Assess the design of park components, including materials and equipment used in parks and playgrounds.
  • Determine appropriate design characteristics for a local or neighbourhood parks.
  • Determine legal implications involved in the design of a playground.
  • Design facilities to cater for movement throughout a park or playground.
  • Manage appropriate community participation in development of a park or playground.


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Detailed Course Outline

This course is made up of a number of lessons or units.  Each of these has self assessment questions, a set task (practical homework) and an assignment which you can upload online.  Click below to read about each of the lessons and what you will learn.

There are 8 Lessons in this course:

Overview of Parks and Playgrounds

  • Types of Playgrounds
  • Big Toy Playgrounds
  • Community Playgrounds
  • Adventure Playgrounds
  • Manipulating the Environment to provide for play
  • Play Forests; bamboo, pine, eucalyptus, deciduous
  • Evaluating a Playground’s value
  • Checklist for Functional Value of a Playground
  • Site Planning Process
  • Planning and Design
  • Insurance Considerations
  • Planning Theories: comprehensive, structure, systems, advocacy
  • Central Place Theory

Playground Philosophy

  • What is Play
  • Children interacting with the Environment
  • Nature and Scope of Adventure Playgrounds
  • Establishing an Adventure Playground
  • The Adventure Play Leader
  • Site Design

Preparing a Concept Plan

  • Planning for Play; planning levels, planning participants, processes
  • Stages of Planning
  • Project Questionnaire
  • Planning Principles
  • Design Procedure Step by Step
  • Minimising Costs in a Playground Development
  • Catering for Disabled People
  • Special Playgrounds
  • Case Study Playground in a Child Care Centre
  • Case Study in a Public Park


  • Characteristics
  • Comparing and Choosing Options for Construction Materials
  • Barriers and Walls
  • Fences
  • Surfaces, paths and hard surfaced areas
  • Safety Characteristics of Different Surfaces
  • Construction with Wood

Park & Playground Structures and Materials

  • Components of a Playground
  • Further Design Factors
  • Using Plants in Playgrounds
  • Buildings and Structures; gazebos, outdoor rooms, cubbies, shelters, sheds, belvederes, pergolas etc
  • Planting around a Building
  • Siting of Buildings
  • Building Floors
  • Deciding what building to use
  • Earth Forming, Shaping and Earthmoving Equipment
  • Checklist for Construction Issues to Watch Out For

Local and Neighborhood Parks

  • Considering Local Needs
  • Fun and Fitness Trails
  • Skateboarding Facilities
  • Multi Purpose Courts
  • Park Interpretive and Environmental Facilities
  • BMX Facilities
  • Motor Vehicles
  • Case Study: Community Play Park

Community Participation In Park Development

  • History, Attitudes, Philosophy
  • Making a Working Bee Successful
  • Community Gardens

Special Assignment

When you have completed the lessons of your Certificate course, you will be given the option of taking the optional exam. It's okay if you don't want the exam, we still issue your Careerline Certificate. For Advanced Certificates however, the exam is compulsory (per module) and are included in the course fee.

Course Tutor(s)

Barbara Tremain BSc. (Hons) Horticulture, RHS Adv. Cert,. RHS General, City & Guilds Garden Design, Permaculture Level 3 (UK)

Barbara brings to Careerline a wide range of horticultural experience and knowledge Barbara has a keen interest in herbalism, edible wild plants and has lead into studies of many plant based complementary medicinal systems, qualification as a Bach Flower remedy practitioner and studying Ethnobotany. Barbara has practiced and studied horticulture as well as combining it with her love of travel in many countries including the UK, US and Australia and has also studied Permaculture and runs her own horticulture business. Within the past two years she have also worked for Groundwork SW with 18-24 year old unemployed people, this work and the mentoring scheme has allowed me to teach informally. It has been a delight to nurture the interests of keen learners in horticulture and garden design. Meanwhile the business has covered a variety of Garden Design projects, from wildflower gardens to seaside situations, and has included some work with Chelsea Gold multi-winner John Moreland.

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I pay in installments?

Yes! We offer great payment plans, however full payment up front is the cheapest. You can choose the best payment plan for you from the course page, or call us on 07 55368782 to talk to one of our course consultants for a custom plan.

Can I study from anywhere in the world?

We have many international students. Careerline's range of courses are suitable for any one, anywhere in the world.

Do I get a discount if I enroll in a second course?

Yes. You may claim a 5% fee discount when you enroll in a second course, and a further 10% off a three-course package.


Do I have to sit an Exam?

No. If you are enrolled in a Certificate course (100hrs), the exam is optional. You will be issued with a certificate which proves that you are competent in all units, if you choose not to sit the exam.

Do you have set start dates?

There are no set start dates, you may start at any time. Our courses are all self-paced. As our home page says, ‘Courses for Anyone, Anywhere, Anytime’. ‘Anytime’ includes the start time of your choice. However, we do encourage our students to submit assignments on a regular basis. Wherever possible, we suggest developing a study routine.