As the NWCG Course Catalog transitions from print to digital, an additional reference date for course materials has been added. Previously, courses were printed in large quantities and spent significant time on the shelf in the cache. During that time, policy and terms changed, errors were discovered, and feedback was collected. The revision cycle started when materials were out of date and/or a significant number of errors, policy changes or feedback were collected. Between the certification date and the start of the revision cycle, updates were collected in list form and posted for instructors to view prior to teaching the course. Once revised, courses were tested, then certified, which generates the Certification Date.
With the move to digital course materials, the revision cycle is no longer linked to physical materials or the associated revision cycle. NWCG now has the ability, as well as the need, to move much more quickly. NWCG will continue posting a Certification Date for those courses which have been significantly revised, but a new reference to Updated has been added. This term applies to courses which have had elements revised or updated, but for which a full-scale revision is not necessary, nor a test course.