Online Fire Science Classes

Accredited fire science courses online impart knowledge of mathematics, ethics, biology, earth science and social science to prepare students for a career in firefighting. Students working through fire science classes online practice good judgment and decision making, computer skills, communication, observation and analytical skills as they apply to fire situations.

Online Fire Science Classes

Online courses, combined with field training and equipment use, teach knowledge and skills required to manage and mitigate fires in emergency and disaster situations, saving lives and preserving biodiversity. Students learn about the properties of fire, protection systems, hydraulics, hazardous materials, fire ground strategy and tactics, building construction and codes, investigation, rescue procedures, and fire prevention and inspection.

Knowledge Gained

Students can expect to gain knowledge in the following areas:


Fire science classes present math concepts necessary for making calculations in the field such as flame height and length, mid-flame wind speed, tank volumes, flow rates, pump pressure and friction loss, location coordinates and slope. Students become proficient in arithmetic functions, order of operations, exponents, rounding, fractions, ratios and more.


Students learn standards of ethical behavior in firefighting. Students face moral dilemmas such as whether to save an old person or a child when a fire limits time, stealing from a condemned building and approving a building inspection where obvious fire hazards exist in order to appease friends.


Biology also plays an important role. Thus students will cover ecology, plant succession, prescribed burns for improved habitat, biodiversity and forensics. Students will learn to identify plants, fungi and animal species in ecosystems and consider the diversity of genetics and ecological types.

Earth Science

Classes also provide instruction in earth science categories ó geology and meteorology ó in the context of natural hazards and disasters. Students learn about earth processes, resources and environments, often combining online coursework with field trips.

Social Science

Students will examine research and lessons learned from practitioners to learn about dealing with cultural differences, fatalities, shock, post-traumatic stress and more. Students learn about the human side of fighting fires through social science lessons on podcasts, video clips and apps, covering topics such as how fatigue affects situational awareness.

Skills Developed

Accredited online courses for fire science assist students in developing valuable skills in the following areas:

Judgment and Decision Making

Quality courses incorporate natural decision making models that are useful in unstable situations with high stakes and limited time. Students practice situational awareness, pattern matching, identifying cues to typical cases versus anomalies and the importance of experience and training.

Computer Skills

Courses also incorporate computer skills used by firefighters on the job for administrative duties including reporting, training, communicating and managing employees. Students study database management, spreadsheets, Internet searches, trade-related proprietary software and email.


Instructors teach communications skills used for tasks such as giving instructions to incoming firefighters, directing bystanders and witnesses, sharing vital information with paramedics and officers, and presenting training workshops for community awareness. Students practice face-to-face and two-way radio communications as well as public speaking and interpersonal communications.


Programs stress the importance of observation in assessing emergency situations, making split-second decisions and containing damage. Students sharpen their observation skills by recalling information after scanning floor plans, looking at newspaper photos and paying attention to sensory data.

Analytical Skills

Online instructors teach analytical skills useful in fire protection, investigations and forensics. Students learn logical and convergent thinking practices to trace implications, make comparisons, set priorities, identify time sequences and look for inconsistencies.

Related Subjects

Online EMT Courses, Online Law Enforcement Courses, Online Paramedic Courses