Wilderness First Responder

Professional Development Course

Accidents can happen in the wilderness. People get injured, sick, and lost. When the temperature drops, the wind picks up, and you have an injured friend on the ground—would you know what to do? Many backcountry emergencies are preventable, and even when bad things happen, sometimes the wrong care can make things worse. By learning a the advanced skills of the Wilderness First Responder, you can make the difference between a good outcome and a bad one—and maybe even save a life.

The Wilderness First Responder (WFR) course at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB) can help you prepare for tough situations in the wilderness. From treating bodily injuries to recognizing the signs and symptoms of common ailments, this course can ensure that you’re well-trained for a variety of rugged outdoor experiences. The WFR course is about 72 hours long, taken over 8 to 10 days.

Wilderness First Responder is a job-training program leading to certification. Based on the Department of Transportation’s First Responder and EMT curriculums, the WFR program integrates wilderness and medical training. Street EMTs who take the WFR course may become certified as Wilderness EMTs. Please read all requirements before registering for a course.

Please note: A valid certification in cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) is required prior to the start of the program.

This course also has a minimum required age of 16 years old.

  • Anyone working in a position of leadership in an outdoor setting
  • Individuals who want a high level of wilderness medical training for extended personal backcountry trips or expeditions
  • A comprehensive look at standard survival skills
  • Accident response and assessment
  • Musculoskeletal injuries
  • Environmental and medical emergency situations
  • Soft tissue injuries
  • CPR

You are awarded your certification up on the following criteria

  • Complete all the coursework
  • Pass any physical skills assessments
  • Pass a written assessment at the conclusion of the course