Hunter Education

Sponsoring Agency or Organization

Contact: Carole Collins


Phone: 803 734-3957

Program details

This is the SCDNR’s most extensive education program. With over 10,000 adult and youth students served each year, it is also the largest classroom-oriented program with DNR instructors. Because all hunters born after June 30, 1979 are required to pass the hunter education course before a hunting license can be obtained, the demand for this course should remain constant or increase slightly over time. Youth participating in the Youth Hunting and Take One-Make One (TOMO) programs are required to have completed hunter education.

There is a strong demand for the hunter education course because of the law requiring completion of the course before a hunting license can be issued to anyone born after June 1979. This is a natural feeder program for the TOMO, Youth Hunt and National Archery in the Schools (NASP) programs. The proportion of students passing the course who also purchase a hunting license is not known. Any trends data over the years would be useful as converting students into active, license-buying hunters is an important objective of the program. Trends data for hunting accidents would also be a good indicator of the benefits of the program.

Because this course and passage of a test is required by law, it is difficult to understand its function in recruitment and retention of hunters. Most (it may approach 90%) take the course as a requirement to buy their first license. These persons are already on a track to hunt and many of them have been hunting and have been trained by good mentors. There is still the possibility to influence the behaviors of these individuals and the instruction includes this material.

Website: Hunter Education

Planning and Evaluation

Program objectives: 

Goal 1: Reduce the number of hunting safety incidents.<br>
Objective 1: Improve firearm handling proficiency.<br>
Objective 2: Increase understanding of the proper use and safety measures when using ATVs and treestands.<br>
Objective 3: Improve target acquisition and identification skills.<br><br>
Goal 2: Increase student understanding of their responsibility for stewardship, conservation, habitat protection and management.<br>
Objective 1: Increase student appreciation of wildlife.<br>
Objective 2: Increase student understanding of the role of individuals and the DNR in habitat management.<br><br>
Goal 3: Increase student understanding of their responsibilities and ethics in the field.<br>
Objective 1: Increase hunter understanding of their responsibilities independent of the law regarding image, waste, hunter relations, fair chase and wise use of the resource.<br>
Objective 2: Increase hunter understanding of ethical issues surrounding land use, game, property owners and other hunters.<br><br>
Goal 4: Increase hunting participation.<br>
Objective 1: Attain an involvement rate in hunting by 50% of the graduates of the hunter education course during the following year.

Manual or Plan

This program has a manual or plan: Yes


This program is evaluated: Yes

Metrics used to measure success and evaluate this program:

(Click on the link for each of these metrics to see programs that use the same metrics)