UPDATE: At their meeting on 7th December, 2017, HSE agreed to further investigate the feeling for change to the AALA delivery structure. Between now and Spring, 2018 there will be a series of opportunities for feedback to HSE on what might best deliver the right balance of opportunity, breadth, quality and cost when reassuring stakeholders in adventure activities (users, providers, funders, legislators, beneficiaries) that the best opportunities are offered delivered well. ENDS
As the AALA progresses with the work of UKAIG, the field again has an opportunity to claim its full professional status according to common sense and social research theory. This research underpins the statement defining what a professional is (full information below).
Whilst various requirements exist such as code of ethics, body of knowledge, training structure, defined period of experience, etc., the most vital is that there is public trust and reassurance derived from quality insurance owned and delivered through the professional body of the professionals themselves, and not any external quality assurance group however competent that group is. Below, and over the next days we invite discussion around what might be.
"A profession is a disciplined group of individuals who adhere to ethical standards and who hold themselves out as, and are accepted by the public as possessing special knowledge and skills in a widely recognised body of learning derived from research, education and training at a high level, and who are prepared to apply this knowledge and exercise these skills in the interest of others. It is inherent in the definition of a profession that a code of ethics governs the activities of each profession. Such codes require behaviour and practice beyond the personal moral obligations of an individual. They define and demand high standards of behaviour in respect to the services provided to the public and in dealing with professional colleagues. Further, these codes are enforced by the profession and are acknowledged and accepted by the community."
The Professional Standards Councils offers insights into the various ways of defining professions and professionals http://www.psc.gov.au/what-is-a-profession.