Emergency Services Leadership

  • Date: Nov. 19, 2020 - Feb. 1, 2021
  • Format: online
The self-paced course is designed to prepare students to address the always-changing issues that leaders face within the fire service. Upon completion of this course, the student will be able to apply policies and procedures; recommend action for member-related problems and procedures; select and implement the appropriate disciplinary action based upon the employee's conduct; assign tasks or responsibilities to unit members; coordinate the completion of assigned tasks and projects by members, given a list of projects and tasks and the job requirements of subordinates; direct unit members during a training evolution, given a company training evolution and training policies and procedures; acknowledge career development opportunities and strategies for success; and, discuss various levels of leadership roles and responsibilities within the organization.

MU Extension
Emergency Services Leadership Syllabus

Presented by Fire and Rescue Training Institute

Course Description

This course is designed for students seeking to effectively lead modern public safety organizations and the various components within them. Individuals must possess a solid understanding of the always-changing issues that face fire and emergency medical services. Topics of this course include management and leadership of EMS operations; budgeting financial strategies, hiring, diversity, training, education, and firefighter safety. Value-added topics in this course will include the psychology of leadership and managing confrontations.

To successfully complete this course, students must receive a passing grade on all quizzes, assignments, and projects.  Students successfully completing this online course will receive an MU Fire and Rescue Training completion of course certificate.  

Course Objectives

Upon successful completion of this course, you should be able to:

  • Apply human resource policies and procedures, given an administrative situation requiring action. (NFPA 1021 4.2.5; 2014)
  • Recommend action for member-related problems, given a member with a situation requiring assistance and the member assistance policies and procedures. (NFPA 1021 4.2.4; 2014)
  • Select and implement the appropriate disciplinary action based upon the employee’s conduct.
  • Assign tasks or responsibilities to unit members, given an assignment under nonemergency conditions at a station or other work location. (NFPA 1021 4.2.2; 2014)
  • Coordinate the completion of assigned tasks and projects by members, given a list of projects and tasks and the job requirements of subordinates. (NFPA 1021 4.2.6; 2014)
  • Direct unit members during a training evolution, given a company training evolution and training policies and procedures. (NFPA 1021 4.2.3; 2014)
  • Acknowledge career development opportunities and strategies for success 
  • Discuss various levels of leadership, roles, and responsibilities within the organization.

Course Organization

This course has been developed as an asynchronous (independent learning) opportunity for students wishing to enhance their fire service management and leadership skills. As such, students should acquire designated textbooks and follow the course sequence as presented on the "Modules" tab. Students starting at the top of the modules tab should complete each assignment which will be indicated by a green checkmark on the right side of their modules page. Once an assignment receives a green check mark, the student is then able to work on the next assignment on the list.

Students are encouraged to thoroughly read their textbooks and contact their instructor with any concerns or questions.


This course is reading intensive. As such, students should be prepared to verify their learning through online journal responses and assignments that help students relate key reading concepts to what is found in their response area. 


The activities included in this course are designed so that students may apply what they learn through their course readings and supplementary materials to their own department or response areas. 

Assessments and Grading

Successful completion of a module quiz by scoring a minimum of 70% is required to unlock the subsequent module. After all module quizzes are completed, the end of course project will be unlocked.

Quizzes are automatically graded and immediately available for review. 

To contest a quiz question or assignment score, email Erin McGruder at [email protected]. Include the course name, the specific course element to be contested (for example: quiz name, the question number) and the reason for why you contest this element (for example: how you answered the question, and why you believe the provided response was correct). 

Textbook & Reading Materials

Flood, E., & Avillo, A. (2017). Full-contact leadership. Tulsa, OK: PennWell, Fire Engineering Books & Video.


Carter, H. R., & Rausch, E. (2017). Management in the fire service. Burlington, MA: Jones & Bartlett Learning.

NFPA 1021: Standard for Fire Officer Professional Qualifications, 2014 Edition. National Fire Protection Association.

Smeby, L. C. (2014). Fire and emergency services administration management and leadership practices. Burlington: Jones & Bartlett Learning.

Course Completion

Upon successful completion of online and in-person portions of this blended course, MU Fire and Rescue Training Institute will provide the student with a course completion certificate. The student's successful participation will be recorded on their MU Fire and Rescue Training Institute transcript, which may be requested at any time

Completion of this course is a requirement for students pursuing the MU FRTI Officer Certificate program. 

Students successfully completing this course may also qualify for American Council on Education CREDIT hours, which are accepted towards degree requirements by many colleges and universities. (CREDIT APPLICATION PENDING)

Technical Requirements

 For the best user experience, we recommend you use  Google Chrome (63/64) as your browser.

For technical support, please contact  Erin McGruder by email ([email protected]) or telephone (573-884-8984)

This course is NOT supported by the Canvas Student application on mobile devices. Please make access through your web browser instead. 

Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is fundamental to the activities and principles of a university. All members of the academic community must be confident that each person's work has been responsibly and honorably acquired, developed, and presented. Any effort to gain an advantage not given to all students is dishonest whether or not the effort is successful. The academic community regards breaches of the academic integrity rules as extremely serious matters.

Intellectual Pluralism

The University community welcomes intellectual diversity and respects student rights. Students who have questions or concerns regarding the atmosphere in this class (including respect for diverse opinions) may contact MU Fire and Rescue Training Interim Director, Kevin Zumwalt by email ([email protected]) or telephone (573-882-4735).

Executive Order No. 38 - Academic Inquiry, Course Discussion and Privacy

Faculty allowing recording:

University of Missouri System Executive Order No. 38 lays out principles regarding the sanctity of classroom discussions at the university. The policy is described fully in Section 200.015 of the Collected Rules and Regulations. In this class, students may make audio or video recordings of course activity unless specifically prohibited by the faculty member. However, the redistribution of audio or video recordings of statements or comments from the course to individuals who are not students in the course is prohibited without the express permission of the faculty member and of any students who are recorded. Students found to have violated this policy are subject to discipline in accordance with provisions of section 200.020 of the Collected Rules and Regulations of the University of Missouri pertaining to student conduct matters.


Students with Disabilities: 

If you anticipate barriers related to the format or requirements of this course, if you have emergency medical information to share with me, or if you need to make arrangements in case the building must be evacuated, please let me know as soon as possible.

If disability-related accommodations are necessary, please notify MU Fire and Rescue Training Interim Director, Kevin Zumwalt by email ([email protected]) or telephone (573-882-4735) of your eligibility for reasonable accommodations.