Education Program FAQ
How do I get to Base Camp?Back to Top
After you have selected your first Path, you can access Base Camp using the following steps:
- Log in to https://www.toastmasters.org
- Click your name at the top of the screen to access your Profile
- Using the blue tile titled "Go to Base Camp," select your club and click “Go.”
- This will take you to the Base Camp home page
How will I know when Base Camp has planned outages or when something will be updated?Back to Top
The Pathways Updates page provides a list of planned technical updates and user experience enhancements, along with a list of previously released changes.
Why do I need to disable my pop-up blockers on Base Camp, and how do I do so?Back to Top
Your pop-up blockers must be turned off so your browser does not prevent you from accessing projects, tutorials, and resources which open in new windows on Base Camp.
For help on disabling your pop-up blockers, find your browser name in the list below and click on the corresponding link:
What browsers are best for accessing Base Camp?Back to Top
Base Camp is compatible with the following browsers:
- Latest Microsoft Edge
- Latest Apple Safari
- Latest Mozilla Firefox
- Latest Google Chrome
Please note: Browsers should be installed in vendor-supported environments. If your system does not meet the minimum requirements, you may experience longer download times.
How long will it take me to load projects in Base Camp?Back to Top
Internet speeds vary depending on your internet service provider and the area where you live. Some projects in Base Camp take longer to load than others, depending on the size (for example, the projects with videos will take longer than those without).
You may experience longer load times if your system does not meet the minimum requirements. Your system should have at least five megabits per second in network and connectivity speed to ensure faster downloads. The recommended speed is eight megabits per second.
Who are Base Camp managers, and what is their role?Back to Top
For most clubs, the Vice President Education (VPE) will assume the role of Base Camp manager. The Base Camp manager helps facilitate your progress by verifying your education, approving requests, and more. If a VPE is unable to perform these duties, or if a club does not have a VPE, the Base Camp manager's responsibilities will be fulfilled by the Club President or Club Secretary. The central duties of the Base Camp manager include:
- Approving speeches outside the club
- Verifying level completion
- Tracking member progress
- Verifying project completion for members using printed materials
What types of recognition can I receive?Back to Top
You will earn a digital badge and certificate each time you complete a level in a Pathways path. When you complete a path, you receive the accolade of Proficient, signifying your demonstrated expertise. You can also complete the Pathways Mentor Program and earn the title Pathways Mentor.
Those looking for more to achieve, can explore the Distinguished Toastmaster award (DTM) and the Distinguished Club Program (DCP). Visit the Achievement + Awards page for more information.
How can I earn the Distinguished Toastmaster award (DTM)? What are the requirements?Back to Top
How do education credentials work?Back to Top
A member's name will display in the club roster and other Toastmasters International resources, followed by an acronym representing their current educational achievement(s). Depending on which program the member has completed work in, this may show different information, and here is how it works:
- Traditional education program award credentials are written as follows
- Communication award credential followed by Leadership award credential
- Pathways award credentials are written as follows
- Only the most recently achieved award will show
- Any Pathways award credential overwrites a traditional education program award credential (both Communication and Leadership)
- DTM overwrites all education award credentials, whether traditional program or Pathways
Here is an example:
- Pat Smith completes Level 1 in Motivational Strategies, their name will now reflect as Pat Smith MS1
- When Pat completes the Motivational Strategies path, their name will reflect as Pat Smith MS5
- Pat Smith MS5 begins a new path Team Collaboration and completes Level 1, their name will reflect as Pat Smith TC1
- After completing all requirements, Pat Smith then submits for their DTM, their name will reflect as Pat Smith DTM
- Regardless of any further education awards completed by Pat after their DTM, their name will continue to reflect as Pat Smith DTM
How do I apply for an education award online?Back to Top
Club officers can apply for education awards for members through Club Central. Please note that club officers may not apply for their own awards online; if you are a club officer, have a different officer in your club submit for your awards.
I am rejoining Toastmasters after several years and have never worked in Pathways. How do my previously earned education achievements align with Pathways?Back to Top
Your progress toward awards in the traditional education program is not transferable to Pathways because the programs' projects and learning structure are different.
Please note: Any service you have completed as a club or District leader that has not been applied toward an award can be used to fulfill your next education award in Pathways (including club leadership, District leadership, club sponsor, club mentor, club coach, Youth Leadership Program, and Speechcraft).
Are my achievements in the previous education programs still recognized?Back to Top
Yes, all educational achievements will remain part of your record with Toastmasters International. Competent Communication (CC), Competent Leadership (CL), and other awards earned in previous education programs will always be recognized by the organization.
Do I have to complete a full year in a District leadership role to get District leadership credit to apply for an education award?Back to Top
Yes, your District leadership role must be a complete year, from July 1 to June 30, to count toward a District leadership requirement for an education award.
If you live in a locality with no District, an exception may be granted, but this must be submitted to World Headquarters to be reviewed before being processed.
Can I give and receive credit for two speeches done in one club meeting?Back to Top
No, you may present and receive credit for only one speech per meeting.
How will I know which path is right for me?Back to Top
If you choose to access Pathways using Base Camp, you will have the option to take an online assessment of your skills, interests, and goals. Once you've finished, the assessment will recommend the three paths that best match your responses.
If you don't want to work in a recommended path or prefer not to take the assessment, you can review a description of each path and select the one you prefer. Please feel free to click here for a summary of each path as well as which competencies it helps you develop.
It's also good to note that almost all projects are available in all paths. A project that is required in one path is likely to be an elective in another.
How many projects are in a path?Back to Top
Every path has required and elective projects. Path recognition is achieved when a member completes 14 projects across all five levels—a combination of 10 required projects and four elective projects chosen from a comprehensive list covering various subjects. Most projects include at least one speech that will receive an evaluation. Though members are required to complete four elective projects, they have the option to complete as many as they would like.
Where can I find the evaluation resources for Pathways projects?Back to Top
These can be found in multiple locations:
- You can access and download fillable PDFs of all Pathways evaluation resources from the Toastmasters resource library here.
- You can also download them in Base Camp from the Tutorials and Resources section or the Speech Evaluations page.
- You can also access evaluations directly from the "Your Evaluation" page of your project. Please keep in mind that evaluation resources downloaded from your project may not be fillable.
Is Pathways available in printed format?Back to Top
Pathways gives you the flexibility to learn online or in print. Using Base Camp—Pathways' online learning management system—you'll have access to engaging learning tools, including videos, interactive quizzes and activities, feedback and recognition, valuable tips, and more. When working online, you may choose from multiple unique learning paths in all our translated languages. If you prefer to work in print, five paths are available in full-color, professionally bound materials. The following paths are currently available in print*:
- Presentation Mastery
- Leadership Development
- Strategic Relationships (English only)
- Dynamic Leadership (English only)
- Team Collaboration (English only)
Members who choose to work in Pathways in printed materials receive their path in three distributions. Once members have completed everything in distribution one, they can request distribution two. Similarly, distribution three becomes available to request once everything in distribution two is complete.
*Please keep in mind that some languages do not include print options.
Does Pathways offer accessible educational materials for visually impaired individuals?Back to Top
Yes, Pathways is available in an accessible format. Please visit Pathways Accessible Materials for more information.
Can I complete projects and levels in any order I choose?Back to Top
Projects in Pathways build in complexity across levels. The levels in each path are designed to be completed sequentially. For example, you may learn about organizing a small event in Level 4 of your path. At Level 5, you may then work on developing and implementing a larger event. The sequential order, the time to complete projects, and the opportunity to apply what you learn throughout your path, are by design.
Should you decide that it is appropriate for you as a learner, you may complete levels and projects in the order of your choice.
I completed Level 2 in my path, but I skipped Level 1. How can I submit for my Level 2 award recognition?Back to Top
While you can complete levels and projects in the order of your choice (see the previous question), level completions must be submitted in chronological order on Club Central for recognition purposes.
Your Base Camp manager can approve your Level 2 on Base Camp as soon as you have completed all projects in the level. However, they may not submit your Level 2 award on Club Central until you have completed Level 1.
Similarly, to receive recognition for Level 3, you must have completed Levels 1 and 2, and so on through your path.
How do I complete my path and receive a certificate of proficiency or a proficient badge?Back to Top
To complete the last project in your path, you must first complete Levels 1 through 5 and have each approved by your Base Camp manager.
Once these levels are marked complete, you will have access to view and complete the final project, "Reflect on Your Path." After finishing this project, you will submit a Path Completion Approval request to your Base Camp manager. As soon as they have approved your request, your path will be complete!
Upon completing a full path, you will receive your badge and certificate of proficiency.
I am a Base Camp manager. A member asked me to approve a Level 2 completion, but they have not completed Level 1. Is this something I should authorize?Back to Top
When a member requests a level completion on Base Camp, confirm that they have finished all requirements for that level. Then you may approve the level completion on Base Camp, even if they have not completed the prior levels.
You may not submit that level for award recognition on Club Central until the prior levels are complete. When a member completes Level 2 on Base Camp, you must wait until they have also completed Level 1 before you can submit Level 2 for credit on Club Central.
If I don't meet all of the objectives of my project, can I still get credit for it?Back to Top
Yes. Toastmasters is not a pass/fail program. However, keep in mind that you get out of the program what you put into it. Focusing on meeting objectives, including time goals, will help you get the most from your Toastmasters learning.
Can I repeat the same path for award credit?Back to Top
Yes. If you are repeating a path, you may earn level awards for it. Please note that if you wish to submit for recognition in the Distinguished Club Program, only one award type is accepted each recognition year per member per club. Additionally, please note that if you wish to complete a DTM award, you must complete two unique paths.
Do I need to have both a written and verbal evaluation to receive project credit?Back to Top
For most projects, yes. However, please read through each project carefully to ensure that you are filling the requirements appropriately.
What are the costs associated with Pathways?Back to Top
Your regular membership dues cover the cost of your first path; however, if you choose the printed materials option for your path, there is a 25 USD printing fee. The cost for an additional path is 20 USD, and if you elect to work in printed materials, the 25 USD printing fee also applies to all additional paths.
Remember: you can always print out copies of the Pathways materials on your own, at no charge. If you are enrolled in Pathways online, you can print out any of the materials on Base Camp.
How many free paths do I get?Back to Top
Every member is entitled to their first path at no cost.
I am a member of multiple clubs. Will I receive a new path for every club I join?Back to Top
Membership dues cover your ongoing membership, as well as services provided to you, your club, and your District, but not additional educational materials. Each new member receives one free path, which belongs to the member, not the club. Additional paths must be purchased individually in Pathways
When I purchase an additional print path, do I need to pay the fee for printed materials again? And do I also have to pay a shipping fee for each path?Back to Top
Each time you purchase a print path, you pay a fee for printed materials. This fee covers the cost of your materials and shipping.
Can I use a Toastmasters gift certificate to purchase a path?Back to Top
No. Toastmasters International gift certificates are only for Toastmasters-branded merchandise. Pathways educational materials are not available for purchase using a gift certificate.
What is the return policy for educational material?Back to Top
The return policy can be found in the Conditions of Use section of our website, here: https://www.toastmasters.org/footer/conditions-of-use
Please note that educational materials belong to the person for whom they were ordered; they are not transferable between or among members.
I would like to access the new Level 1. Can I exchange my existing path for a new, updated path?Back to Top
The new Level 1 is available in online paths selected after the release on October 27, 2021. Only members who qualify for an exchange via the Pathways exchange policy (outlined in the Conditions of Use on the Toastmasters website) are eligible to exchange their path.
Can I give speeches outside of my club for credit?Back to Top
Yes. You can do speeches outside of the club environment for credit toward an educational award, as long as you receive prior approval from your Vice President Education (VPE) or another Base Camp manager. To request approval from your VPE, you can use the external training tool on Base Camp. Information about this tool is available on the Tutorials and Resources page on Base Camp. While using this tool is optional, VPE approval is required, and the external training tool provides the benefit of creating a record on your transcript.
When projects or speeches are completed outside of Toastmasters, the member and VPE should read the project assignment carefully to determine if an evaluation is required. If an evaluation is not explicitly required in the project, it is still recommended that the member have an evaluator present. However, if it is not possible to bring an evaluator into the setting outside of the club, the VPE may choose to approve the speech without an evaluation.
Speeches given at Toastmasters club meetings are considered to be in the club environment. Speeches given at any Toastmasters event that is not a club meeting are considered outside the club environment. This includes giving a speech as a test speaker in an evaluation contest or competing in a speech contest if using the speech toward a Pathways project.
What are the limitations on speech topics?Back to Top
Other than adhering to the requirements of your project, there are no limits on speech topics. However, please consider the following:
Members often hear "through the grapevine" that speeches concerning politics, religion, and sex are forbidden by Toastmasters International because "such controversial subjects are not appropriate."
This is not true. Toastmasters International does not prohibit any speech topic, content, or language.
Toastmasters International recognizes that club members may learn much about the world around them from listening to others' speeches on a variety of subjects. This variety can add interest to club meetings and stimulate thoughts and ideas.
Toastmasters International also recognizes that clubs are comprised of diverse people and recommends that members be mindful of this diversity, using good taste and sensitivity when selecting speech topics, content, and language.
While Toastmasters International has no organizational restrictions along these lines, each club does have the right to limit speech subjects, content, and/or language, with the consensus of its members. Club officers should guide their members on observing good taste and sensitivity in the context of that particular club.
Club websites are useful vehicles that clubs can use to advise members and guests of any policies that have been decided. Presenting information on a club website helps maintain consistency as leadership changes. Additionally, it allows transparency and clarity for club members to review the established practices of their club periodically.
Do the evaluator and speaker both need to be present when the speech being evaluated is presented?Back to Top
In-person/live speeches and evaluations are at the heart of the Toastmasters club experience. This remains true whether the club meeting is taking place on premise or online. The speaker receives a targeted evaluation shortly after giving their speech, along with feedback from all audience members. While audience reactions and nonverbal feedback are some of the reasons that speakers and evaluators must be present for speeches, there are additional reasons why this is critical to the club experience.
In-person/live speeches and evaluations provide a learning opportunity for the speaker, the evaluator, and other club members. Recording a speech and sharing it with the evaluator later would remove important opportunities for the entire club to develop. The evaluator learns from quickly listening to a live speech that cannot be paused, analyzing that speech, and putting together constructive feedback in a short amount of time. Additionally, the rest of the club learns from hearing the live evaluation and the feedback the evaluator developed in their limited amount of time. All evaluations should be presented verbally and in writing and are best presented in the moment of the learning opportunity.