S-290, Intermediate Wildland Fire Behavior, 2007

S-290 Decorative banner. Group of photos depicting wildland firefighters performing various duties.

Course Overview Page ButtonCourse Delivery ButtonCourse Materials Button

Course Delivery Information

S-290 may be delivered as instructor-led (classroom) or self-directed (online) training.

    NWCG training materials are being updated to reduce redundancy and conflict among overlapping documents.  Course-specific student workbooks will be replaced by standards-bearing NWCG publications - the documents that actually guide operations.  Instructor guidance will be integrated into PowerPoint presentations rather than located in separate documents.  Instructors may use the instructor guide file (exported from the PowerPoint presenter notes), view the notes in presentation mode, or export the notes into the desired format.

    Expectations of Instructors

    • Prepare thoroughly. Study the course content you are going to teach.
    • Establish a collaborative and constructive classroom environment.
    • Communicate expectations.
    • Encourage student engagement.
    • Respect student diversity in backgrounds, talent, experience, and learning style.
    • Professionally represent your instructor cadre, your home unit, and your agency.

    Course Guidance

    Course coordinators and instructors should be thoroughly familiar with the NWCG course delivery information in these documents:

    • NWCG Standards for Course Delivery, PMS 901-1:  Establishes the standards for delivery, instruction, and evaluation of NWCG training courses.  
    • Course Coordinator’s Guide, PMS 907: Provides administrative information to training specialists, course coordinators, lead instructors, and other managers who present training courses.  Provides general instructions for course planning, management, presentations, and classroom setup.  

    Each course and unit includes an instructor guide. The guides contain information on instructional objectives, delivery methods, duration of instructional units, and required materials.

    See S-290 minimum instructor qualifications

    Recommended Class Size

    Recommended class size is 24 students.  Instructors should maintain a 6:1 ratio of students to instructors/coaches to facilitate exercises and discussion and to enable strong mentorship to the students. 

    Student Materials

    Each student must be provided the following:

    Technical Considerations

    All presentations should be downloaded and tested before the start of class to ensure compatibility with software.

    PowerPoint presentations are built in Microsoft Office 2016.  Saving them in an earlier version of PowerPoint may prevent some features from working correctly.  Instructor notes are built in to the presentation slides under Presenter Notes.

    For help, visit the Microsoft Office website, https://support.office.com/en-us/powerpoint, or contact your local IT support personnel. 

    Course Evaluations

    Use the NWCG Course Evaluation Feedback form to collect information critical to future training improvements.

    Students and cadre members are asked to contribute course evaluations. Input is welcome on all aspects of the training course, including course content, pre-course work, reference materials, quality of instruction, delivery methods, and testing procedures.

    Instructor Cadre Meetings

    Conduct initial, pre-course, daily, and close-out instructor cadre meetings. These provide opportunities to plan, organize, preview materials, review training and exercises, and identify and address concerns and issues. Consider using an informal After Action Review process. Instructor cadre meetings are critical for instructors who do not have previous experience with the course.  Additional information is located in the Course Coordinator's Guide, PMS 907

    Self-Directed (Online) S-290 Delivery Instructions

    This online course (estimate 15 hours) builds upon the basics in S-190, Introduction to Wildland Fire Behavior but provides more detailed information about characteristics and interactions of the wildland fire environment (fuels, weather, and topography) that affect wildland fire behavior for safety purposes. The course is designed for personnel desiring to be qualified as any single resource boss or fire effects monitor (FEMO).  Additional information about the course can be found on the Overview page.


    1. Complete the online course.  You will be directed to the COMET MetEd website. You will need an COMET MetEd account, before starting the course, to receive an NWCG certificate of completion for this course; follow directions on the COMET MetEd website to obtain an account.  It is important to read the Overview tab on the COMET MetEd website regarding additional requirements about NWCG course certificate.
    2. Print the NWCG certificate of completion per the COMET MetEd directions. Keep the certificate as proof of successful completion of the course.

    2007 Version: The following errors have been found in the S-290 course:


    As per direction from the NWCG Training Working Team, instruction of the Fireline Assessment Method (FLAME) material in the S-290 course is optional. This portion does not need to be taught as part of the certified course. The course hours can be reduced by 4 hours if not using the FLAME material. The attached sheet (optional sheet - FLAME) provides direction for adapting the course content.



    Page Last Modified / Reviewed: 

    Please Provide Feedback

    NWCG values your constructive input and we thank you for taking the time to provide feedback.

    Although contact information is optional, we hope that you provide a way for us to contact you in case we need clarification on your comment. If you would like to be contacted regarding your feedback, you must provide contact information. 

    This question is for testing whether or not you are a human visitor and to prevent automated spam submissions.