The training courses here can help you acquire the tools, skills, and knowledge you need to manage your climate-related risks and opportunities. All courses are free of charge, and are offered in at least one of three formats: online audio-visual presentations ("Online, Self-Guided" and "Tool Tutorial"), training webinars ("Online, Scheduled Lecture Series"), and residence training courses ("Onsite, Instructor-Led"). Each training module is accompanied with a test to help you evaluate your knowledge. These courses feature scientific information adapted from authoritative sources, prepared by recognized subject matter experts. The courses have been pilot tested with users and other subject matter experts and may be updated periodically, as needed.

Coastal communities increasingly realize the need for adaptation strategies, but many are unsure where to begin. Attend this two-day, instructor-led course to gain a thorough grounding and practical skills for incorporating adaptation strategies into planning processes. Time in class is provided to practice applying what you’ve learned, and opportunities for local collaboration and next steps are emphasized through discussion, participant activities, and local speakers and examples. The course is designed for planners, public works staff, floodplain managers, hazard mitigation planners, sustainability managers, emergency managers, community groups, members of civic organizations, and coastal resource managers. Participants are eligible for continuing education credits through the American Institute of Certified Planners and Certified Floodplain Manager (CFM) professional certifications.
A rock groyne at Atlantic Beach, New York.
Category
Climate Adaptation & Mitigation
Strategic Planning
Type of Training
Onsite, Instructor-Led
Difficulty scale
Intermediate
This course will build on the first course of the series, Coastal Hazards Awareness, by supplementing the awareness knowledge with tools and skills for practical use. The one-day, performance-level training course provides training on available tools for the assessment and planning for natural hazards and vulnerabilities that uniquely affect coastal communities. Examples of these hazards include short-term events such as high surf, storm surge, and tsunami inundation or long-term threats from sea level rise and coastal erosion. The goal of this course is to enable participants to identify methods and considerations for assessing hazards and vulnerabilities of coastal communities, compare and select sources and methods for collecting coastal hazard and vulnerability data, and utilize available web-based tools to conduct a preliminary hazard and vulnerability assessment in their community.
Beach erosion at Pea Island National Wildlife Refuge, North Carolina
Category
Climate Adaptation & Mitigation
Strategic Planning
Type of Training
Online, Scheduled Lecture Series
Onsite, Instructor-Led
Difficulty scale
Intermediate
Module time (hr:min)
8:00
This one-day, awareness-level training course aims to increase the awareness of the hazards facing coastal communities and basic strategies to reduce the risk to those hazards. This course provides training on the basic science of, assessment of, and preparedness for natural hazards and risks that uniquely affect coastal communities. Examples of these hazards are short-term events such as high surf, storm surge, and tsunami inundation or long-term threats from sea level rise and coastal erosion.
High tide at the Ocean Beach pier, San Diego, California
Category
Climate Adaptation & Mitigation
Strategic Planning
Type of Training
Online, Scheduled Lecture Series
Onsite, Instructor-Led
Difficulty scale
Beginner
Module time (hr:min)
8:00
The National Estuarine Research Reserves, a network of 29 coastal sites along U.S. Coasts and the Great Lakes, host a range of education, outreach, and training opportunities through their Coastal Training Programs. The overarching goal of these programs is to provide current science and skill-building opportunities for decision-makers in coastal communities. The Coastal Training Programs increase audience understanding of the environmental, social, economic, and policy consequences of human activities, and facilitates coordination among stakeholders to support evidence-based policies and actions. Each Reserve’s program is different, and many sites host trainings related to resilience and climate change. Some sites have the flexibility to meet the needs of specific decision makers at specific times by organizing or developing custom trainings for local or regional decision makers. Reserves also frequently host the NOAA Digital Coast trainings. To access training opportunities, or find contact information for program coordinators, select a reserve from the national map. View the Reserve page, and then go to the Reserve Website (under Important Links). Check the Reserve Website for Training, Education, and Outreach opportunities.
Map of U.S. states with green markers along coasts
Category
Climate 101
Climate Variability
Climate Change
Climate Products
Climate Adaptation & Mitigation
Climate Attribution & Extreme Events
Communication
Strategic Planning
Type of Training
Online, Scheduled Lecture Series
Online, Self-Guided
Onsite, Instructor-Led
This awareness-level, eight-hour course addresses the current science of the causes of floods (both meteorological and otherwise), flood forecasting, flood risk assessment, and best practices for preparation and mitigation for both short- and long-fuse flooding events. Key concepts and discussion topics are reinforced with facilitator-led group activities that utilize real-world flood scenarios that illustrate the diverse challenges and complexities that can occur during actual flood events while building participants' experience and confidence in anticipating, heeding warnings, and responding to floods. The goal of this course is to prepare participants to recognize the conditions that lead to flood events, evaluate their community's risk, and prepare appropriately.
Coastal flooding at the Outer Banks of North Carolina
Category
Climate Adaptation & Mitigation
Climate Attribution & Extreme Events
Strategic Planning
Type of Training
Onsite, Instructor-Led
Difficulty scale
Beginner
Module time (hr:min)
8:00
This course covers a step-by-step approach that can be used to create a new conservation plan or update an existing one that incorporates climate change information. It is suitable for anyone working to manage or conserve lands in coastal areas. This includes wetland, floodplain, or emergency managers, planners, or conservation organizations. The course's six iterative steps draw from existing strategic conservation planning frameworks; however, the steps here focus on climate considerations and key resources relevant to the coastal environment, including coastal watersheds.
screenshot from course site
Category
Climate Change
Climate Adaptation & Mitigation
Type of Training
Online, Self-Guided
Difficulty scale
Beginner
This online module series aims to increase the capacity of municipal decision makers to make effective choices supporting resilience to the impacts from climate change. Considering current and future impacts helps shape decisions that enhance the health, safety, and welfare of Rhode Island’s communities. The brief modules provide an understanding of the implications of a changing climate in Rhode Island. Each module consists of a voice-over PowerPoint, speaker notes, and a resources document. Relevant examples and lessons learned from Rhode Island communities are included, as well as ways to use various resources and tools in decision making. PREP-RI builds upon existing state efforts and is the product of collaboration among experts from a variety of fields. While this series is primarily geared toward coastal municipalities, much of the information will be helpful for inland communities as well as other public- and private-sector stakeholders throughout the state.
Screen capture from the PREP-RI website
Category
Climate Change
Climate Adaptation & Mitigation
Strategic Planning
Type of Training
Online, Self-Guided
Difficulty scale
Beginner
This manual describes a method developed by the Center for International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN) at Columbia University for climate vulnerability mapping that can be applied to any geographic area. The manual was designed for a five-day training course for GIS analysts in the framework, data, and methods to develop a vulnerability map using the spatial index approach. The primary focus is on the methods needed to process and transform the raw spatial data in order to develop a spatial vulnerability index (and constituent indices for exposure, sensitivity, and adaptive capacity) using a combination of ArcGIS and R statistical computing software. Developed with Tetra Tech ARD under the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) Planning for Resilience in East Africa through Policy, Adaptation, Research, and Economic Development (PREPARED) and the African and Latin American Resilience to Climate Change (ARCC) projects. Best used as a guide for training courses, though can be used by individuals to develop vulnerability maps.
Draft vulnerability map from the Guide
Category
Climate Adaptation & Mitigation
Strategic Planning
Type of Training
Online, Self-Guided
Difficulty scale
Advanced