Oklahoma Baptist University


Kinesiology and Leisure Studies 2903
Camp Administration
(3 hours credit)

Professor: Dr. Bill Buchanan
Office: Noble Complex 106
Office Phone: 405.878.2143
Home: 405.818.8326

The purpose of this course is to provide students with a basic understanding of the successful operation of a campground. This course will study up-to-date information about the marketplace, operational techniques, and consumer attitudes and desires.


1. To understand the importance of recreation programming.
2. To study the basics of recreation programming.
3. To learn the leadership styles involved in camp administration. 
4. To understand the planning considerations for different populations.
5. To explore the various activities used in camping programs such as sports, games, drama, arts and crafts, fitness programs, and nature crafts.

Basic Camp Management by American Camping Association, 5th Edition.

(Due to the short length of the session and the early due dates of reports on the chapter assignments, it is recommended that the student read the books before the beginning of the course. Copies of these books may be ordered from the Oklahoma Baptist University bookstore, 405.878.2411).


1. Work in some type of camp setting (Day Camp, Sports Camp, Church Camp, National Park). 300 points
2. Field Experiences – Keep a journal of your summer experience. 100 points
3. Interviews – Interview two professionals working full time in the area of camp administration. 100 points
4. Read the required text and answer the assigned questions pertaining to each chapter. 350 points
5. Evaluation – Grades will be assigned strictly on a point basis and will be assigned in the following manner:

A = 90-100%
B = 80-89%
C = 70-79%
D = 60-69%
F = 0-59%


1.         What is the person’s background and training?
2.         Experiences which helped to mold your approach to leadership?
3.         What is your philosophy and theory of leadership?
4.         How has the interviewee’s understanding of camp ministry and leadership changed over the years and why?
5.         Use of time and priorities?
6.         How does the interviewee care for his own needs?
7.         If she were to change leadership roles at this point, how would she do so?
8.         How does the person discipline himself to meet his own spiritual needs?
9.         What does she see as the strengths and weaknesses of her functioning as a Christian camp leader?
10.        What are the interviewee’s views concerning relationships and leadership of camp staff?
11.        What are the interviewee’s views about authority and leadership in working with youth in a Christian camp setting?
12.        What does he consider to be his greatest accomplishment in his ministry as a leader in a Christian camp setting?

Chapter Questions:

Chapter 1: The Tradition of Camping
—What are some of the differences between camps and conference/retreats centers?

Chapter 2: What is the Camp Director’s Job?
—What are the administrative roles of the camp director?
—What are the ultimate responsibilities of the camp director?

Chapter 3: Where Does Program Begin?
—Get a copy of the camp's purpose and goals.

Chapter 4: The Participant
—Identify your camp's participant population and describe efforts made to provide diversity in that population.
—In the precamp training schedule, outline how and where the appropriate growth and development – as well as problematic behaviors – of campers is covered.
—Examine the camp program and schedule in light of preventing unnecessary stress in the lives of campers.
—Identify what you would need to know and do as a leader of a group that is being brought to your camp for the first time.

Chapter 5: Designing The Program
—List all the program activities utilized in your camp this summer.
—Review the flow of a typical day at camp; consider where there are times for:

    - strenuous physical activity
    - quiet, reflective, relaxed time
    - choosing an activity
    - learning new skills
    - meeting campers from other living groups

Chapter 6: Personnel Organization
—Ask for a copy of job descriptions for each camp position.
—Test the number of counselors against the number of campers at one given time to find your camper/counselor ratio.
—Identify the different steps taken during the staff screening and employment process to prevent employing persons with a proclivity toward child or sexual abuse.

Chapter 7: Personnel Recruitment
—See page 124.

Chapter 8: Staff Orientation and Training
—Have the dates for pre-camp training been clearly identified to staff at the time of the contract?
—What are the specific objectives which need to be accomplished during the pre-camp training period?
—Which staff members with particular expertise can be used during staff training as group leaders, presenters, or instructors?

Chapter 9: Staff Supervision and Performance Appraisal
—Outline who supervises whom.
—Outline performance appraisal tools that are used or should be used.

Chapter 10: Selection, Development, and Maintenance of the Site
—Does your camp have a maintenance schedule for all mechanical equipment on the grounds? For all buildings (painting, caulking, repairs)?
—Make an inspection of all buildings and program areas, listing needed repairs and corrections.

Chapter 11: Risk Management
—Prepare a list of risks that exist in your camp, starring those which appear to happen most frequently and those which carry the highest potential risk.
—What is your camp’s information and record retention plan?

Chapter 12: Operation and Supervision
—Identify the types of health care certification or training that the staff at your camp need.
—Is one person responsible for selecting and checking drivers?
—For what purposes do you need vehicles for camp? How many and what type?
—If a day camp, is there a plan for the pickup and drop-off of campers, and the notification of parents if plans change?

Chapter 13: Marketing
—Locate all printed materials previously used for camp promotion. Study them in light of the camp's objectives and of your market analysis.

Chapter 14: Business and Finance
—Outline the budgeting process for your camp.
—Describe the three basic types of fund-raising and the principles that affect all good fundraising.
—Who may purchase for your camp? By what methods? Who checks the order when it is received and approves payment?

Chapter 15: Volunteers
—Does the camp have a written agreement with volunteers? Ask for a copy if they do.
—In what ways that are not used now could your camp use volunteers?

Chapter 16: Evaluation and Reporting
—What type of evaluations would have been helpful to you as you began planning for your first season?
—Using illustration 16.1 as a basis, develop your own chart listing the areas of the camp program and the people who should be involved in the evaluation of each area.

Chapter 17: Becoming a Professional
—Which of the seven mark s of a profession do you feel accurately reflects the camping profession?


First Session
June 1-25
Second Session
June 25-July 19
Third Session
July 19-August 12
Work Experience June 1-25  June 25-July 19  July 19-August 12 
Journal June 25  July 19  August 12 
Interviews (2) #1 June 10
#2 June 17 
#1 July 3
#2 July 16 
#1 July 26
#2 August 8 
Chapter Questions Chapters 1-5
June 7

Chapters 6-10
June 14

Chapters 11-17
June 21 
Chapters 1-5
June 28

Chapters 6-10
July 5

Chapters 11-17
July 12 
Chapters 1-5
July 26

Chapters 6-10
August 2

Chapters 11-17
August 9


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