The Associate of Applied Science (AAS) Fire Science program includes the necessary general education and specialized fire and emergency services coursework to prepare students for careers in the fire service. Students will learn fundamental firefighting skills such as utilizing protective clothing and equipment, conducting search and rescue operations, advancing hoselines, and operating fire streams. Students will also be challenged with the academic aspect of firefighting in subjects including building construction, fire behavior, strategies and tactics, and fire prevention. With the knowledge, skills, and abilities gained from this program of study, students will be aptly prepared for a career in the fire service.

Students are required to complete internship credits as part of their degree plan. During this internship, students become affiliated with a fire department and gain valuable on-the-job experience while working with professional firefighters. Students have the opportunity to build a professional network, learn through practical experience (i.e. training, emergency response, etc.), and receive valuable leadership and guidance. It is highly recommended that students complete their internship credits locally, while in school to maximize the experience.

For more information, please visit the program website.

Graduation Requirements

Students must complete a minimum of 90 credit hours with a cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) of 2.0 or better. All courses must be completed with a grade of ‘C’ or better. Twenty-four (24) credits must be completed at Southwestern before the AAS Fire Science degree is awarded.

Complete the graduation application process one term prior to the term of completion (e.g., spring term graduates must apply during winter term).

Pre-Program Courses

Students are required to take the following courses prior to the program courses, depending on students' college placement information. See advisor for details:

CIS90Computer Basics (or demonstrate proficiency)2
MTH20Basic Mathematics (or placement in higher math course)4
WR90RAcademic Literacy (or placement in higher writing course)4

Program Guide

Plan of Study Grid
First Year
FS100 Principles of Emergency Services 3
FS105 Firefighter Fundamentals I 2
FS180 Internship: Fire Science 1
MTH60 Algebra I 1 4
English Composition 2
or English Composition w/Honors
CIS120 Concepts of Computing 4
FS110 Firefighter Fundamentals II 2
FS120 Building Const Related to Fire Svc 3
FS121 Fire Behavior and Combust 3
FS180 Internship: Fire Science 1
Required Program Course - Speech 3 3
FS115 Firefighter Fundamentals III 2
FS125 Principles of Fire and Emergency S 4
Health, Wellness, and Fitness 4 3
Required Program Course - Human Relations 5 3
Specific Elective 6 4
Second Year
FS123 Structural Firefighter I (or specific elective) 6 4
FS200 Strategy and Tactics 3
FS205 Fire Prevention 3
FS231 Fire Protection Hydraulics and Wate 3
FS280 CWE: Fire Science 1
FS210 Hazardous Materials for First Respo (or specific elective) 6 2
FS215 Legal Aspects of Emergency Services 3
FS220 Fire Protection Systems 3
FS280 CWE: Fire Science 1
EMT151 Emergency Medical Technician Part A 5
Specific Elective 6 2
FS130 Fire Apparatus Driver/Operator (or specific elective) 6 1
FS222 Fire Instructor I (or specific elective) 6 3
FS225 Prin of Fire & Emerg Service Admin 3
FS232 Occupational Safety and Health ES 3
EMT152 Emergency Medical Technician Part B 5
 Total Credits90

Program Student Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this program, the student will be able to:

  • Demonstrate technical proficiency in fundamental firefighting skills.
  • Apply critical-thinking and decision-making skills relevant to fire service scenarios.
  • Demonstrate behaviors consistent with professional and employer expectations.