Best Survival Schools and Courses in 2021

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By Bryan Rucker •  12 min read

Survival schools and courses are unquestionably a great way to up your survival game because they offer several different types of useful skills and strategies that are not often known by the average joe. 

Best Survival Schools & Courses in the US

This is why I believe they’re beyond worth the small price required, because you’ll not only likely make good friends, but you’ll leave with skills that will serve you very well in the wilderness.

If you grew up in a city such as the suburbs like many others have, or you just haven’t had the chance to experience survival tactics hands-on, then attending a survival school will give you the firsthand experience you need.

In-person schools aren’t necessary to grow your survival skills, however. Many online courses work just as well. I’ve listed a few excellent schools and courses, that way you can decide which is the best for yourself.

The factors that I considered before creating this guide were affordability, skillsets offered, attendee experience, length, difficulty, and much more. Let’s hop into what is known as the better schools and courses offered around the nation.

Best Online Survival Courses: My Picks

Ultimate Survival Guide

Simple and Affordable 

The first online course that I’m including is the Ultimate Survival Guide hosted on Udemy. 


This is a course created by Jeremy White, a survival expert with years of survival experience. I wanted to add at least one course that was simple to begin and short, and something very affordable. 

In this course, Jeremy teaches many useful skills that could be used for camping, hiking, man-made or natural disasters, and more. 

Natural Disaster and Terror Attacks

The first useful batch of skills that he teaches is Terror attacks, Natural Disasters, and Animal Attacks. 

These are certainly possible to happen, and while they’re unlikely to occur, this course will prepare you for them. 

Today’s world always seems to throw a curveball at the most unpredictable times, which is why these skills are so necessary to learn. 

Survival Kits and Apocalypse Preparedness 

The next set of skills that I think are incredibly important that he teaches are Government Collapse, Survival Tactics for Emergencies, Fire building, and Apocalypse preparedness. 

These are all critical aspects of disaster and preparedness to know. I should mention, this course is not a comprehensive project. This course is made for novices who want to learn the basics all across the board. 

It’ll give you a great foundation to continue building your current (or lack of) skills to ensure you’re better prepared when disasters hit and how to prevent it.

SHTF School

Welcome To Bootcamp

This is, in my personal opinion, one of the best online survival courses available. SHTF school offers an extraordinary amount of information, involving all types of different kinds of scenarios.


Their main course is nicknamed “Boot Camp,” and it certainly is one, I’ll say. In this course, you’ll learn many different survival skills and strategies used by armed forces, survivalists, and more.

The course is affordable, especially when you take into consideration the mass amount of content that it offers. Selco plays a large role in content creation, who has extensive survival experience.

Real-World Content

Many books, courses, and schools typically teach the basic “boy scouts” skills such as fire building, wound patching, and camp building. These are great to know, but not worth paying lots of money for.

In SHTF School, these guys go all in. You’ll learn what happens during these terrible scenarios. As I’ve mentioned previously, Selco has lived through some of the harshest conditions you could imagine.

This means that the content he creates comes from someone who has directly experienced what he’s talking about, and not just writing what he thinks would be best.

The Nitty and Gritty

So, what does the course cover? For starters, you’ll learn what to do if you ever find yourself freezing in the middle of a large forest, with nothing but a knife and water bottle. They don’t expect you to have all those fancy tools that are often talked about. 

Skills like assessment, hunting, urban survival, and food search are all covered in-depth here. Trading, bug out bags, find water and sterilizing it, self-defense, first aid, and much more are explained well.

This course is undoubtedly wide spectrum, and it’s one of the most detailed courses available. You will indeed be prepared after completing this course. 

Modern Survival

Jason’s Take On Survival 

Jason Hunt, the instructor of Modern Survival, has spent much of his life in challenging situations in the wilderness, and he’s experienced many different disasters and has learned from each of them.


He believes that most people who become victims of disasters would have most of their ducks in a row within a month.

That’s not a wrong guess, in my opinion. So most of his content is taught with this in mind, although all of the skills taught can be used lifelong.

How And Why He Teaches Survival

Jason, as mentioned previously, has lived through many disasters, and he’s put himself in challenging situations just to determine the best ways to maintain a good day.

He believes that firsthand experience is more important than anything, mainly when learning new skill sets. 

This is why his favorite way of instructing his clients is by using videos, which certainly allows for better learning. He also uses books, which are undoubtedly very informative.

What Modern Survival Entails 

I love Jason’s approach to survival because he doesn’t only teach the physical aspect; he teaches how to handle the stresses of disasters as well.

The mental aspect is just as important, if not more important than the physical skill set. The course also includes fire building, first aid management, finding food and water, and more.

He even teaches how to build a safe shelter, plus explains what types of animal tracks are safe or dangerous. It certainly would not be an excellent idea at all to camp up with a bear nearby.

Best Offline Survival Schools

Aboriginal Living Skills School

The Owners Reasoning 

After starring on the show from Discovery Channel: Dual Survival, Cody Lundin decided to try his own take on survival, so he started Aboriginal Living Skills School located In Arizona, which teaches useful survival skills.


Cody certainly has the experience to instruct too. He’s spent much of his life out in the woodlands by himself, regularly learning new survival strategies and putting his skills to use.

After a while, he grew an itch to start sharing his knowledge with others, hence creating Aboriginal Living Skills School. 

Survival Tactics That You’ll Learn

Cody is big on old school training, hugely preferring the hands-on type of activity that is often on hiatus nowadays. He teaches many beneficial aspects like primitive building and outdoor sheltering skills.

He also instructs his clients on how to prepare for upcoming disasters like hurricanes or snowstorms. Urban and Rural survival strategies are also included, which involve tactics like finding food and water.

Bow building, tool creation, and other helpful tips are shown; this way, you’re prepared if you’re caught in disaster without any fancy tools.

How He Does It

The first thing I’ll say before we jump into the how is that hands-on experience is critical in learning a skill to the fullest. But even then, the instructor must explain how to use it, not just why or when.

This is why Cody’s course is so good because he goes to great lengths to ensure his clients have a detailed look at the why, when, and how perspective.

He takes a very intuitive approach, that when applied, flows very well with the class. The course includes lengths between 1-14 days. It’s well worth the try, and it looks like an enjoyable experience.

Boulder Outdoor Survival School

Their Backstory 

The name, abbreviated as BOSS, has been teaching survival for over fifty years. They have several survival experts located on-site and regularly have new slots open for the public.


Their main goal is to invite those who are looking to learn more about survival, in a fun and exciting kind of way.

Much of their training is field-based, which essentially means they throw you into the field with a few other people, plus the instructors, and begin training. 

Their Focus 

BOSS’s primary goal is to teach the most useful aspects of each skill. They do not waste time learning elements of a skill set that you’ll probably never need. 

They like to take the best of each skill and allow you to partake in a scenario with the instructor, so you’re able to learn hands-on.

They are especially significant in primitive building and natural resources gathering; I don’t blame them; it’s the most necessary skill to know. You’ll even have the chance to learn first aid and experience the beautiful nature that is Utah.

What You’ll Be Doing

After arrival, you’ll meet the others that are also partaking in the course and the instructors. This initial meet won’t last long before it’s time to head out.

BOSS offers course lengths between 7-28 days, so it’s undoubtedly an in-depth school. You’ll go on hiking trips, learn how to filter water and build camps, and much more.

They’ll also have you learn bushcraft skills, learn how to build your campsite, and be taught mild self-defense tactics, so you’re adequately prepared if you’re stalked by an animal, for example.

Randall’s Adventure & Training

Expertise Is An Understatement 

This is near my territory, and I’ll add it can get pretty complicated with all of the different types of woodlands, creeks, rivers, insects, and snakes here. 


Randall, the owner of Randall’s Adventure & Training, knows this, so he decided to share his own experiences with others. He has teamed with the Military to transverse through harsh situations. 

He has even hiked through the Amazon jungle, guiding teams through safely. So Randall undoubtedly brings a ton of expertise to the table and certainly knows how to teach.

Where He Teaches 

Randall has, as mentioned previously, transversed through some of the most challenging environments in the world. This has gained him a considerable amount of experience with all types of woodlands and situations. 

Gallant, Alabama, is where most of his expeditions are held. This is great because Gallant, Alabama, is the perfect place to learn due to its complicated terrain. 

This area is also home to many different types of natural resources, so you’ll get to learn the better ways of how you should use these to your advantage correctly.

What He Teaches

Randall is an old school dude, and he loves old school skills. This is awesome, though, because if you think about it, humans didn’t evolve to where we are now by using spaceships and land rovers.

You’ll learn a lot about finding edible food, finding and sterilizing water, how to use a compass to your advantage, bushcraft skills, and more.

He’s also very adamant about the importance of first aid, so expect to learn a considerable amount of emergency first aid skills. His courses are anywhere between days and weeks and he has many types of expeditions to choose from.

Open Questions about Survival Schools in the US 

Are Schools or Courses Better?

This depends on each person’s circumstances. If you’re a type of person that learns well online, whether it be online schooling or work, then online courses would probably suffice. 

They’re especially great to save you from going on a trip, but you’ll miss out on the first-hand experience you’d get by attending an actual school.

I think that in-person schools are superior in just about every way. However, online courses like the three above can provide just as much technical information for you to learn, then implement when needed.

Are Schools/Courses Vital To Learning Survival Skills?

Not particularly, however, online courses or in-person schools provide an amount of information that would otherwise be difficult to learn by yourself in such a short amount of time.

As mentioned previously, in-person schools provide the first-hand experience with all types of survival strategies. 

Online courses are great too, but neither provides the long term skill sets that you can learn out on the field yourself. The courses and schools simply kick start and quicken the initial learning curve.

What Kind Of Survival Skills Are The Most Necessary?

I’ve been involved in survival for virtually my entire life, and I’ve studied various strategies. Throughout this time, I’ve learned a few things.

The most valuable survival skills to know are natural resources and how to find and use them, shelter building, hunting, first aid, and fire building.

Navigation is also fundamental because you do not want to lose your campsite when looking around for resources, like food and water.


Schools or Courses are a great way to kick start anyone’s skills and quicken the initial learning curve, but they’re not critical in skill-building. They’re similar to Boy/Girl Scouts, just at a higher level. 

If you plan to take online courses, expect to learn many necessities that are critical to know. You’ll probably see things that would’ve never otherwise come to mind. 

In-person schooling is superior, but it comes at the cost of driving there and having to make time for it, such as taking time off work. They’re both great, and what you decide is best is up to you and your needs. 

Bryan Rucker

Brian Rucker has spent his entire life participating in essentially all things wildlife. His concern grew astronomically during the previous tensions between the United States and other nations. He also has grown a substantial interest in survival and sustainability due to the current shape of the world over the years. He believes that preparation triumphs all things.