Wildland Fire is offered in cooperation with the US Forest Service-Southern Research Station and US Forest Service-Savannah River. This three credit hour course offers an introduction to fire as a natural component of forest ecosystems and as a tool for forest management. This course provides the formal training and certification (i.e., “red card”) that will allow students to apply for state and federal jobs related to wildland fire.
FORS 5600/7600 - Wildland Fire
This course has a nontraditional format that will consist of two weekend training sessions and an intensive 5-day field experience. Students will complete the National Wildfire Coordinating Groups S-130 Basic Wildland Firefighter Training and S-190 Introduction to Wildland Fire Behavior training curriculum over two weekends (1/11-12 & 2/1-2) at Warnell and Whitehall Forest. Class will begin at 8:30 AM each morning and end around 5:00 PM each evening. It is imperative that students attend these training sessions in their entirety to progress through the class. The S-130 and S-190 courses are comprised of instructor led classroom training modules and a practical field component. Upon completion of the basic training and a few other online training modules, the students will have the opportunity to take a Work Capacity Test
(WCT) pending completion of a satisfactory Health Screening Questionnaire
(which must be submitted with other application materials). The WCT will consist of a moderate, 2-mile hike with 25 pounds that must be completed within 30 minutes. Completion of the WCT is required to participate in the intensive field component and to receive course credit. The intensive field component will begin with travel to the Savannah River Site in Aiken, SC from the UGA Campus on Monday morning (3/9) and will continue through Friday afternoon (3/13), when students return to Athens.
The primary objectives of this course is for the student to: (1) develop an understanding of how fire is applied for the management of forest ecosystems; and (2) complete the training necessary to participate in the application of prescribed fire and fighting of forest fires. Students will be signed up as Forest Service volunteers and receive an Official Incident Qualification Card (Red Card). An active Red Card is good for one year before refresher training and another WCT is required. During this time, students will have the opportunity to volunteer on wildland fires as needed and qualified. At the completion of this course, students should be able to: discuss current fire management issues and controversies, including how fire is implemented to achieve resource management objectives; describe the primary factors affecting the start and spread of wildfire and recognition of potentially hazardous situations; describe how prescribed and wildland fire impact forest structure and function; and describe how various organisms have adapted to and respond to fire.
Athens, GA (11-12 Jan 2020)
Athens, GA (1-2 Feb 2020)
Savannah River Site, Aiken, SC (9-13 Mar 2020)
Dr. Doug P. Aubrey, Ph.D.
University of Georgia's Savannah River Ecology Lab &
Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources
Housing and Meals
Meals are not provided with the exception of breakfast at the hotel Tuesday through Friday mornings. Students are responsible for all other meals. Hotel rooms include kitchenettes.
Participants in this course must be physically fit. A requirement of the certification that is part of this course is that students complete a 2-mile hike in 30 minutes while carrying a 25-pound load in a backpack.
Safety is a priority for this course and appropriate personal protective equipment will be required at all times when in the field. Hardhats, Nomex coveralls, web belts, and fire shelters will be provided for you; however, students will need to supply their own goggles/eye protection, leather gloves, and fireline boots
. A boot vendor will visit the class in January with appropriate options.
Important Information for Course Consideration
The course is limited to 16 students and requires permission of the instructor
. To be considered, prepare a short (1-2 page) statement indicating why you wish to enroll in this course and how you think this course will benefit your professional career goals. Please include your full name, your UGA ID, your current student status (undergraduate/MS/MFR/PhD), your anticipated graduation date, your phone number, your preferred email address, and a completed Health Screening Questionnaire
. Send this statement to firstname.lastname@example.org
. Decisions will be made in early November. Forestry undergraduates can apply this 3-credit course towards their Major Electives requirements. Wildlife undergraduates can apply this 3-credit course towards their Habitat #2 requirement.
||Athens, GA --> Aiken, SC
||Departure from Athens
||Aiken, SC --> Athens, GA
||Departure from Aiken