Dec 01, 2021  
Catalog/Handbook 2021-2022 
    
Catalog/Handbook 2021-2022

Fire Science Technology, AS


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Program: AS-25980

The Fire Science Technology Program is designed to allow fire service or fire protection professionals to enhance their technical competencies and prepare for career advancement. The program emphasizes the scientific basis of fire hazards and the control of these hazards, effective operating procedures at fires and other emergencies, and preparation for leadership and managerial positions.

Certain courses in this program require placement at the college level or satisfaction of developmental education requirements in reading, writing, and math.

Note: If a student is not currently a Florida State Certified Firefighter and would like to become one, he or she must earn the State of Florida Firefighter I and II certifications through a state-certified fire academy such as the one at Ridge Technical College, 7700 State Road 544, Winter Haven, FL 33881; telephone: 863.419.3060. The Ridge Center Fire Academy is a separate program from the Polk State Fire Science Technology Program.

As of November 18, 2013, a student must attain a State of Florida Firefighter Certificate of Compliance prior to pursuing the Fire Officer certifications that are part of the articulated credit for this degree. In Chart A, Option V: Fire Safety Specialist, Option VI: Fire Safety, and Option VII: Fire Investigator are also designed for students who do not hold Firefighter I Certification. These options are intended for those serving as risk managers, safety personnel, fire marshals, investigators, law enforcement specialists, or fire engineers (or within other specialized positions).

A firefighter who holds out-of-state, national, or military certifications (or who has completed other fire courses) must contact the Florida Bureau of Fire Standards and Training to ask for an equivalency review to determine what is needed to satisfy or convert these certifications to Florida certifications. For more information, a student should contact the Bureau of Fire Standards and Training, 11655 NW Gainesville Rd., Ocala, FL 34482-1486; telephone: 352.369.2800.

Program Learning Outcomes (PLOs):
Upon successful completion of the program, the graduate is able to:
PLO 1: Apply concepts of fire chemistry, fire behavior, and fire extinguishment theory.           
PLO 2: Distinguish concepts of fire prevention practices, fire protection systems, and building construction with relation to fire behavior and fire inspection practices.
PLO 3: Assess and incorporate fire department organization and procedures, and use fire company managerial concepts and principles that lead to effective supervision and leadership.
PLO 4: Apply information and skills related to classroom instruction and course design; applicable legal, ethical, and safety issues; and evaluation and management.
PLO 5: Demonstrate fluency with processes related to incident command, hazardous materials situations, and terrorism responses.        
PLO 6: Compare and contrast different firefighting strategies and tactics and demonstrate fire fighter operational safety practices.
PLO 7: Incorporate and apply legal, ethical, safety, and risk-management principles as they relate to a modern fire organization.
PLO 8: Demonstrate fluency regarding the necessary information and skills to detect and determine the origin and cause of a fire, as well as the legal guidelines for the fire investigator.

General Education Requirements (18 Credits Required)


Health and Wellness (One Course)


Articulated Credits from Approved Florida Bureau of Fire Standards and Training Certifications (36 Credits Required)


A student must earn 36 credits from the program's core fire-related curriculum. The articulated core credits range from 24 to 36 credits, depending on the option selected in Chart A or B. The options with less than 36 credits require the student to select from a list of approved electives to make up the difference. Polk State College does not provide direct instruction for any fire science courses (i.e., those with the FFP, BFST, or ATPC prefix). These fire science courses can be taken from a variety of sources, including the Ridge Technical College in Winter Haven.

Fire science courses are only articulated into Polk State credits if the individual attains the Florida Bureau of Fire Standards and Training Certifications (i.e., Fire Officer I (new version), Fire Officer I (old version), Fire Officer II, Fire Safety Inspector I, Fire Safety Inspector II, and Investigator (new version) or Investigator I (old version)). Information about these certifications is available at the Florida Bureau of Fire Standards and Training website (http://www.myfloridacfo.com/Division/SFM/BFST).

State certifications are verified by Pearson Vue or a similarly approved third-party testing service. Therefore, no individual courses are accepted by transcript. The student must bring the originally issued state certification (as listed above) to the Winter Haven Campus Administration Building (WAD). This office copies and enters the certification into the student's record, and the original certification is returned to the student. Credit articulation is provided at no cost to the student.

In 2016, the Bureau of Fire Standards and Training (BFST) incorporated three fire course prefixes: FFP, BFST, and ATPC. The corresponding course title, curriculum, learning outcomes, and four-digit numbering of courses remained the same. All three prefixes equally apply towards a corresponding State Fire Certification. Therefore, all three prefixes are accepted for articulation through State Certification (i.e., Fire Officer I (new version), Fire Officer I (old version), Fire Officer II, Fire Safety Inspector I, Fire Safety Inspector II, and Investigator (new version) or Investigator I (old version)).

Each student must select a program of study from the appropriate chart:

Chart A is for the student who earned the Fire Officer I Certification after November 18, 2013.

Chart B is for the student who earned the Fire Officer I Certification prior to November 18, 2013. 

 

CHART A: Fire Officer I Certification earned after November 18, 2013     
Options Title of Fire Study Option

Certification Requirements

Fire Officer = FO

Credits Awarded (credit hours)*

Note: In Chart A, FOI refers to the new Fire Officer I Certification.

Credits from Certifications

(Range: 24-36)*

Additional

Credits

needed **

Option IA  

Fire Supervisor / Fire Safety (A)

FOI(12), FOII(12), Inspector I (6), Investigator**** (New)(6) 

36 0
Option IB Fire Supervisor / Fire Safety (B)

FOI(12), FOII(12), Inspector I(6), Investigator I (Old) (6)

36 0
Option II Fire Supervisor / Manager  

FOI(12) & FOII(12)

24 12
Option III  Fire Supervisor / Inspector

FOI (12), FOII (12), & Inspector I(6)

30 6

Option IVA

Fire Supervisor / Investigator (A)

FOI(12), FOII(12), & Investigator****(12)(New)

36 0

Option IVB

Fire Supervisor / Investigator (B)

FOI(12), FOII(12), & Investigator I (Old)(6) 

30 6
Option V Fire Safety Specialist***

Inspector I(9), Inspector II(6), Investigator****(21) (New)

36 0
Option VI Fire Safety***

Inspector I (9) & Investigator****(24) (New)

33 3
Option VII Fire Investigator***

Investigator****(24)(New) (Important: See note to qualify!)

24 12

 * A reduced number of credits is awarded because of duplicated fire courses between Investigator I (old), Investigator (new), Inspector I, and Fire Officer I/II. These courses can only be counted once within a variation or option. This explains why the number in the parentheses varies from one option to another. There is a maximum of 36 (and minimum 24) fire credits allowed in these options; thus, the credit ranges from 24 to 36. Investigator I (4 courses) now combines combine Investigator I and II into the new Investigator curriculum (8 courses).

  ** The student can earn the remaining credits by selecting courses from the program's list of approved electives.

 *** This option is also for a student who does do not hold the Firefighter Certificate of Compliance (basic firefighter training). This option is intended for risk managers, safety personnel, fire marshal personnel, investigators, fire engineers, etc.

****Prior to the new Investigator version, as required by the BFST, the student must possess certification as one of the following: Firefighter, Law Enforcement Officer, Law Enforcement Crime Scene Technician, or law enforcement officer, law enforcement crime scene technician, Fire Safety I fire safety inspector I (sworn or non-sworn). The BFST provides the most current information on these qualifications. (http://www.myfloridacfo.com/Division/SFM/BFST

 

CHART B: Fire Officer I Certification earned prior to November 18, 2013

Eleven

Variations 

Certification requirements*

Fire Office =FO   

Credits awarded (credit hours)*

In this B Chart, FOI refers to the older Fire Officer I Certification.

Credits  

(Range: 24-36)*

Additional Credits

Needed**

1A FOI(24), Inspector I(6), & Investigator**** (New)(6) (exceeds max) 36 0
1B FOI(24), Inspector I(6), Investigator I (Old)(6)  36 0
2 FOI(24)   24 12
3 FOI(24)  FOII* (New)(3)   27 9
4 FOI(24) & FOII (Old)(12)  36 0
5 FOI(24) & Inspector I(6)   30 6
6A FOI(24) & Investigator**** (New)(12) 36 0
6B FOI(24) & Investigator I (Old)(6)   30 6
7A FOI(24), FOII (New)(3), & Investigator**** (New)(9) 36 0
7B FOI(24), FOII (New)(3), & Investigator I (Old)(6)   33 3
8 FOI(24), FOII (New)(3), & Inspector I(6)   33 3

*A reduced number of credits is awarded is because of duplicated fire courses between Investigator I (old), Investigator (new), Inspector I, and Fire Officer I/II. These courses can only be counted once within a variation or option. This is the reason for the variation in number seen in the option parentheses. A maximum of 36 credits (and minimum of 24) are allowed in these options; thus, the credit ranges from 24 to 36. Investigator I (4 courses) has been modified to combine Investigator I & II into the new Investigator curriculum (8 courses).

  **The student can earn the remaining credits needed by selecting courses from the list of approved electives.

 ****Prior to Investigator (new version), as required by the BFST, a student must possess certification as one of the following: Firefighter, Law Enforcement Officer, Law Enforcement Crime Scene Technician, or Fire Safety Inspector I (sworn or non-sworn). The BFST provides the most current information regarding these requirements (http://www.myfloridacfo.com/Division/SFM/BFST).

Electives


Up to 12 credits of the 42 program credits can come from the following elective courses:

Total Program Hours: 60


Note: Articulated credits can only be applied to the Polk State Associate in Science in Fire Science Technology degree; once a student achieves this degree, all 60 credits can be applied towards a baccalaureate degree.

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