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Fire & Emergency Response Management

Earn your FERM bachelor’s degree in two years.

Students with a technical college degree transfer up to 60 credits. See how your credits transfer by scheduling an advising appointment today! online fire and emergency response management student


Mission Statement

The Bachelor of Applied Studies in Fire and Emergency Response Management combines academic excellence with applied aspects of the fire and emergency response management industry. It integrates theory, research and practical application that develops and increases the student’s leadership, management and administrative skills.

Note this degree does not qualify you as a firefighter or provide you with EMS certification but prepares you academically.


Ranked among the nation’s best


Fifth in Best Online Fire Science Degrees
Seventh in Best Online Degrees in Emergency Management
12th Most Affordable Online Fire Science Bachelor’s Degree



What is Fire and Emergency Response Management (FERM)?

UW Oshkosh’s online FERM program prepares students to manage complex public health and safety organizations. The first of its kind in Wisconsin and developed by fire chiefs, it is designed for individuals who are working in fire safety and emergency response professions. With a focus on developing advanced skills in leadership and communication, your FERM degree builds upon your professional and educational experience. Coursework includes budgeting, emergency planning, administrative law, and management of emergency services.  To see a full list of FERM courses, click here. Within the FERM major, students have the option of choosing between two emphases:

  • Fire Services Management
  • Emergency Management

Transfer up to 90 credits FERM students transferring in an eligible associate degree typically transfer in about 60 credits, but we can accept up to 90 credits of previous college-level coursework. A block of up to 45 credits will be awarded to those with an eligible associate degree, plus applicable general education courses. We also are able to consider the following types of credit for transfer:

  • Military Credit (including an automatic 4 credits with submission of DD214 form)
  • Some National Fire Academy (NFA) and FEMA credits
  • Credits that appear on an ACE (American Council on Education) transcript


In addition to being fully accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, UW Oshkosh’s Fire and Emergency Response Management BAS degree is also the first online degree program in the nation to receive accreditation from the International Fire Service Accreditation Congress (IFSAC). UW Oshkosh’s FERM program is also the only IFSAC accredited program in the state of Wisconsin.

Earn Your Degree in About Two Years

For full time students with 60 or more transferable credits, the FERM degree can be completed in as little as two years. However, depending on your educational background and preferred schedule, it may take more time. One of our advisors will be happy to review your previous coursework and prepare a personalized planner that will help you understand how your associate degree will transfer and what coursework you will need to complete to earn your FERM degree. Click here to connect with an advisor. 

100% Online and Accelerated

The Fire and Emergency Response Management program is offered completely online! Most courses are delivered in accelerated, seven-week sessions, which offer additional flexibility for students working full time. Courses are delivered through Canvas. Students interact with their professors and classmates through online discussion, class lectures, and a drop box for assignments. There are no required scheduled meeting times, but there are deadlines and due dates for projects, assignments and discussions.

Affordable and Flexible

Our tuition—$360 per credit for *Fire & Emergency Response Management courses —makes budgeting for your degree easy. Financial aid is available for students who qualify. We also welcome veterans’ benefits and employer reimbursement. For more information on financial aid options, please contact the Office of Financial Aid.  *Please note that courses taken outside of the degree requirements may have additional fees* Search and apply for scholarships managed by UW Oshkosh colleges and departments by using the “Academic Works” website.  Click the button below for more information.

A Supportive Community

From small classes to dedicated advisors, FERM students have a strong support network from day one. Excellent campus resources—including the writing center, library, and academic advising—are all available to serve online students


Brandon Pannier
(920) 424-0234


The UW Oshkosh FERM program is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC). The program is also accredited by the International Fire Service Accreditation Congress (IFSAC), which is a nonprofit system of fire service certification programs and higher education fire-related degree programs.