Fire Protection Technology Degree and Certificate Programs

Having an understanding of fire protection technology can be beneficial in several different careers. Two programs offered in the field include a Fire Protection Technology Certificate and an Associate of Science in Fire Protection Technology.

Essential Information

The certificate program in fire protection technology could familiarize current professionals with the operation and maintenance of various fire protection systems. The associate's degree program offers similar lessons in addition to general education courses. Laboratory experiences may be included in the curriculum.

Fire Protection Technology Certificate

A certificate program in fire protection technology can provide government workers and business owners with an understanding of how to use and operate fire protection, fire alarm and fire detection systems along with similar technologies. Such programs often cover the regulations and protocols related to the various types of fire protection technologies.

Fire protection technology certificate programs are most commonly offered through the continuing education or extension departments of four-year universities or community colleges. They can be designed for students who are currently enrolled in a baccalaureate degree program or for working professionals looking to boost their knowledge of fire protection systems.

The topics covered relate specifically to the methods of installing, maintaining and repairing fire protection systems. Topics may include:

  • Fire protection hydraulics
  • Fire protection systems
  • Fire extinguisher installation and maintenance
  • Fire alarm and detection systems
  • Gas and vapor detection
  • Applications of fire research

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Associate of Applied Science in Fire Protection Technology

A two-year associate's degree program in fire protection technology covers the same basic concepts as a certificate program in the field, but includes more courses in general education. Such programs also cover the technical and administrative skills behind maintaining fire protection systems. They are ideal for aspiring managers or administrators who make the decisions regarding fire safety technology within public or private organizations. Community colleges and vocational schools offer fire protection technology degrees geared towards currently working professionals or individuals who have at least a high school diploma or GED.

Students learn through a combination of classroom lectures and hands-on laboratory experiences. They may take courses in:

  • Hydraulics
  • Arson investigation
  • Hazardous materials
  • Fire safety technology
  • Fire suppression law
  • Building codes

Popular Career Info

Fire safety technology certificate programs are not the same as fire science programs. They are not typically designed for firefighters, but for individuals who make the administrative decisions regarding fire protection systems and protocols. Typical positions are:

  • Insurance investigator
  • Building manager
  • Municipal fire department manager
  • Fire prevention educator

Employment Outlook and Salary Info

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, fire inspectors and investigators were expected to have 5% job growth from 2014-2024. In May 2015, the BLS reported that these professionals earned $56,730 as a median annual salary.

Continuing Education

Individuals who are interested in furthering their education in fire protection technology might consider enrolling in a bachelor's degree program in fire protection engineering. Such programs are designed for individuals who are interested in working with architects, developers and construction owners in engineering the actual fire protection systems used in residential and commercial buildings.

Fire Protection Technology Certificate programs teach current professionals about various fire protection systems and technologies. Associate of Applied Science in Fire Protection Technology programs are entry-level programs that also cover the operation and maintenance of fire protection systems, as well as include general education and business courses.

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