A lot of emphasis is placed on being prepared for the unknown. Although many would like to be prepared and be ready, some simply do not have the time to sit for an entire week taking a survival course. However, there are many organizations and local governments who understand and are offering courses online that people can do from the privacy of their own home and at their own pace. Look Locally If a person does have a few extra hours to spare, taking a preparedness class locally can give a person a good idea of how their city will respond if a disaster occurs. Having some insight on their protocols and getting to know some of the members who work in the disaster related field would be equally beneficial in that one can learn from them. Typically, local fire departments and city websites offer free courses such as EMT training, disaster preparedness courses, earthquake and flood preparedness and emergency preparedness training. Additionally, many local fire departments offer First Aid/CPR online. Doing a little research can go a long way. Online Disaster Preparedness Courses Federal Emergency Management Institute has courses designed specifically to prepare the public for disasters. This agency has online courses for independent and self paced studies that focus on the 9 mission statements of the agency: Incident management, Operational planning, Disaster logistics, Emergency communications, Service to disaster victims, Continuity programs, Public disaster communications, Integrated Preparedness and Hazard Mitigation. Courses are all free and enrollment in EMI is generally limited to the U.S. residents; however, there are a limited number of International participants who are accommodated in these courses. There are certain criteria and prerequisites that are specified for each course. The University of Michigan School of Public Health has multiple university courses available and offers a wide range of topics including: Bio-terrorism & Emergency Preparedness for Public Health/Dental Health Care Professionals, Coping with Disasters, Effects of Radiological Agents, Global Food-Local Outbreaks, Katrina, Catastrophes, and Communicable Disease Calamities: Are We Prepared?, Psychosocial Issues Related to Bio-terrorism. All of these courses can be done from home (distance learning) and as a person is learning, they will accumulate college hours as well. This program is not free. Online Survival Training Courses There are many websites that offer survival courses, but require a fee. The Survival Trading Preparedness course is the only site found that offers it for free. The course will last roughly about one hour. This basic survival course will help a person identify and prepared for being in natural setting where an emergency situation may occur and knowing how to handle oneself. Start Gaining Knowledge Preparing to the highest magnitude in the case of a disaster has just gotten even easier. Having a well diversified knowledge base on how to prepare for disaster is key to knowing when and how to react in a disaster situation. Thanks to the Information Age, information is at the click of a button.