Top 7 FEMA Online Courses to Prepare You for Anything

The Emergency Management Institute(EMI) offers over 180 free FEMA online courses for emergency management personnel, community leaders, and the general public. The FEMA online courses provide training and preparation for various emergency scenarios including large-scale natural disasters and other emergencies.

A certificate is awarded upon successful completion of the online final exam with a score of 75 percent or better. Students must obtain a FEMA student ID (SID) number before taking exams and receiving certification. Some of the courses are eligible for college credit and most qualify for Continuing Education Credits (CUE). FEMA online courses are self-paced and require between 30 minutes and several hours to complete.

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7 FEMA Online Courses Worth Taking

1. IS-907: Active Shooter: What You Can Do

Active shooter incidents are becoming more frequent in the United States. In this 1-hour course, participants will learn how to prepare and respond when experiencing an active shooter situation. Students will also learn about what to do immediate following an active shooter situation. The course discusses the components of an effective emergency action plan and appropriate training exercises for responses in public areas and the workplace.

Coursework will emphasize how to recognize potential violence in public places and how to access risk and to intercede appropriately while minimizing risk. Students will understand how to work with emergency personnel during an active shooter crisis and the best steps to take for survival. The course materials also include downloadable resource guides and is recommended for managers, employees, and individuals.

2. IS-10.A: Animals in Disasters: Awareness and Preparedness

This 3.5-hour course will prepare animal owners and animal care providers to respond during emergency and hazardous situations. Students will learn about the most effective steps to reduce the negative impacts of natural and man-made disasters. The course material examines meteorological disasters such as tornados, floods, hurricanes, and drought. Geological events will be discussed including landslides, earthquakes, volcanos and Tsunamis. Technological hazards such as radiation exposure and material spills are also covered in the course material.

The course also includes care of household pets, livestock, and horses, before, during and after disasters. Students learn how to prepare a disaster kit, how to develop an emergency plan, and how to prepare for evacuation. Pet owners will also learn how to train their pets to stay calm during emergencies and reduce the risk of separation. Individuals will learn what to do to prevent separation from their pets or service animals during an emergency and what to do if they do become separated. Recovery after reunification discusses pet physical and psychological health and owner bereavement.

3. IS-241.B: Decision Making and Problem Solving

This course is part of the FEMA online courses series for decision-makers and provides a thorough overview of practices for effective decision-making during crisis situations. Students learn about developing situational awareness under duress during traumatic experiences and how to implement systematic strategies. The 2-hour course introduces problem-solving models used to facilitate decision-making in crisis situations. Topics also include ethical decision-making for individual and group scenarios and how ethics influences outcomes.

Students who complete this course should have a better understanding of the attributes of an effective decision maker and how effective decision-making impacts emergency events. Participants should also be able to describe appropriate strategies during crisis situations to produce best possible outcome scenarios. Finally, students should understand how ethical factors impact decision-making in crisis situations.

4. IS-366.A: Planning for the Needs of Children in Disasters

This course introduces special considerations for children related to emotional stability, physical security and family preservation during times of disasters and emergencies. Topics include the unique needs of children, critical components when children are involved, preparation, response, and recovery. The course looks at case studies from hurricane Katrina and The 2004 Indonesian Tsunami to reassess emergency procedures involving children.

The course integrates recommendation from The American Academy of Pediatrics and provides a downloadable resources toolkit. While this course was designed with emergency personnel in mind, anyone with children or coming into contact with children during emergencies and disasters will benefit from the course.

5. IS-394.A: Protecting Your Home or Small Business From Disaster

One of several FEMA online courses for homeowners, IS-394.A: Protecting Your Home or Small Business From Disaster provides home owners and small business owners with the tools to prepare for and mitigate the effects of disasters. Students will learn about potential threats to their small business or home and protective measures to reduce or eliminate risks from wind, fire, water and earthquakes. The 10-hour course includes downloadable study materials with the test taken online.

6. IS-5.A: An Introduction to Hazardous Materials

Students learn about hazardous materials and the potential threat they present during times of crisis such as natural disasters and war. The material is designed to prepare students to identify risks for being a target for terrorist activity using toxic chemicals and Weapons of Mass Destruction (WMD).

Students will also learn to assess where potential threats from hazardous waste exposure exists within the community during catastrophic events, such as public water source contamination. The effects of hazardous materials on the human body and the environment are also discussed.

7. IS-106.16: Workplace Violence Awareness Training 2016

In this course, students will learn about four types of workplace violence including violence by criminals, by customers, by employees and by people related or known by victims. Materials cover how to recognize different warning signs levels and steps to take when situations turn violent. Students will also understand how to work with emergency personnel during the crisis and how to cooperate in the aftermath of incidents. The course places emphasis on identifying potentially volatile situations and how to intervene before situations escalate into violence.

FEMA online courses provide a valuable service for professionals and individuals interested in learning how to prepare for and deal with catastrophic events and small-scale crisis. Explore FEMA online courses today and check back frequently as The Emergency Management Institute(EMI) continues to update and revise its course offerings.