15 Best Online Fire Science Degrees

Interested in fighting flames and fire science? Looking to be on the front lines? Check out the Best Online Bachelor’s in Fire Science Degree!

Fires have been ravaging the west coast for years now, leaving a path of bare forests and displaced families. If you have a passion for helping others and a desire to be where the action is, a degree in Fire Science may be perfect for you. A degree in Fire Science will not only prepare you to practice emergency disaster relief firsthand, but you’ll also gain knowledge about the  administrative side of the industry. Those who are level-headed, strategic, and good at thinking critically will really excel.

What is a Fire Science degree?

A fire science degree can be for those who already work as firefighters and are looking to be promoted, or for those who have no experience at all. You’ll learn how to effectively communicate, think critically, and strategically lead teams in times of great stress.

Students pursuing a fire science degree can expect to take courses like Fire Dynamics, Applied Fire Engineering Design and Analysis, Fire Related Human Behavior, and more. Learning about human psychology is an integral part of understanding how to effectively help during disasters.

Most undergraduate programs are between 120-180 credit hours, accounting for over 30 classes of online learning experience. Depending on the school, you might enroll as a full-time or part-time student.

How much can you earn with a Fire Science degree?

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average salary for a firefighter is just over $49,000 per year. Firefighters typically work 24-hour shifts at the station and get 48 to 72 hours off.

The more experience and training you have, the better. In fact, jobs in this field are supposed to grow 7 percent from now until 2026. Those who are physically fit with advanced training, including paramedic training, will have the best chances of securing a job.

Location can also be a factor in how much you make. Firefighters typically get paid more in cities because there is more going on day-to-day.

What is required for a Fire Science degree?

As most of these degree programs are aimed at students who already have some experience within the field, possession of an Associate’s in Applied Science in Fire Science or a related field in the emergency services is often required.

Along with an AAS, students must meet the minimum GPA requirements and have received at least a C in all transferring classes. No other entrance exams are necessary.

What are the best Fire Science degrees?

OSR uses six data points: three school-wide and three program specific. For school-wide, OSR uses Student Satisfaction, Admission Rates, and the number of programs the school offers online. For program specific, OSR checks the Median Debt of graduates from that program, how many degrees are offered within that program’s umbrella department, and what percentage of students at that school graduated from that department.

The six statistics are displayed by each school. The sliding bar under each statistic represents how that school compares to other US institutions. “Not reported” means a school did not release that information to the US Department of Education. A more detailed description of the OSR process can be found on the methodology page.

  1. American Public University System

    20-Year ROI
    $1,257,003

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $6,480(in state) / $6,480(out of state)
    • APU offers monthly course starts
    • Up to 90 hours in transfer credits are accepted
    • There is no fee to complete the APU admission application

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction73%
    Admission RateNot Reported
    Programs offered online45

    Program Level

    Median Debt$27,276
    Programs in Department7
    Popularity at School17.72%
    100%
    OSR Score

    The 120-credit Bachelor of Science in Fire Science Management at American Public University doesn’t require applicants to have any prior experience. Required courses may include Fire Protection Systems, Psychology of Disaster, and Managerial Issues in Hazardous Materials. Books are provided online at no cost if you are enrolled in undergraduate courses for credit.

  2. Eastern Kentucky University

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $8,996(in state) / $18,774(out of state)
    • Up to 90 hours in transfer credits are accepted
    • Tuition is billed at a flat rate regardless of residential status
    • Offers convenient eight-week class formats and customizable pace

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction74%
    Admission Rate87%
    Programs offered online17

    Program Level

    Median Debt$28,257
    Programs in Department7
    Popularity at School16.70%
    83%
    OSR Score

    Eastern Kentucky University’s 120-credit online bachelor’s degree in Fire Protection Administration combines the latest science and technology so students have a competitive edge in the job market. All students must complete 66 hours of core courses, including Hazardous Materials, Fire Dynamics, Building Construction, and more. EKU also offers bachelor’s degrees in Fire, Arson and Explosion Investigation, and Fire Protection and Safety Engineering Technology.

  3. Fayetteville State University

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $2,982(in state) / $14,590(out of state)
    • In-state students save on tuition
    • No need to visit campus at any point
    • Nationally ranked for Best Value to students

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction75%
    Admission Rate68%
    Programs offered online10

    Program Level

    Median Debt$9,742
    Programs in Department2
    Popularity at School17.71%
    82%
    OSR Score

    FSU’s online Bachelor of Science in Fire and Emergency Services Administration program offers concentrations in Management and Investigations. Courses cover a wide variety of topics, including investigation/analysis, wellness, fire prevention organization and management, ethics, and fire-related human behavior. You’ll get a wider world view from people who have been in the field and understand the challenges faced within the industry.

  4. Anna Maria College

    20-Year ROI
    $885,873

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $34,800(in state) / $34,800(out of state)
    • Ranked among the Top Ten Fire Science Programs in the Country
    • Graduates will receive a certificate from the National Fire Academy
    • Recognized by the Fire and Emergency Services Higher Education

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction78%
    Admission Rate79%
    Programs offered online3

    Program Level

    Median Debt$17,245
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at School27.21%
    81%
    OSR Score

    The online Bachelor of Science in Fire Science is a completer program intended for firefighters who wish to gain a leadership position within the industry. Courses are taught by experienced fire service leaders who have served on the front lines. Required courses may include Fire Related Human Behavior, Emergency Services Management, Applications for Emergency Services Research, and more.

  5. Purdue University Global-Davenport Campus

    20-Year ROI
    $671,223

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $13,356(in state) / $13,356(out of state)
    • The university offers three start-dates per year
    • May be eligible to earn certificates like Firefighter II, Fire Officer, etc.
    • Books and course materials are provided at no cost for military members

    School Wide

    Student SatisfactionNot Reported
    Admission RateNot Reported
    Programs offered online34

    Program Level

    Median Debt$36,746
    Programs in Department4
    Popularity at School11.10%
    78%
    OSR Score

    Purdue University’s 180-credit online Bachelor of Science degree in Fire and Emergency Management will prepare you for a career as a firefighter, fire safety specialist, and more. Students will learn analytical, technical, legal, and technological skills to succeed in the field. Required courses may include Emergency Management Response, Principles of Emergency Services, Legal Aspects of Emergency Services, Crisis Management in Terrorist Attacks and Disasters, and more.

  6. Western Illinois University

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $8,630(in state) / $8,630(out of state)
    • The curriculum was written by firefighters for firefighters
    • Tuition is billed at a flat rate regardless of residential status
    • WIU offers automatic scholarships for certain GPA and test scores

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction74%
    Admission Rate60%
    Programs offered online3

    Program Level

    Median Debt$23,246
    Programs in DepartmentNot Reported
    Popularity at School18.84%
    73%
    OSR Score

    The 120-credit BS in Fire Protection Services Administration at Western Illinois is designed for current firefighters and officers preparing for leadership positions within the industry. Foundation courses focus on introductions to the fire service, firefighter safety, fire tactics, fire prevention, ethics and fire service law. You may also complete an 18-semester-hour minor in Fire Administration.

  7. Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University-Worldwide

    20-Year ROI
    $1,325,236

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $9,000(in state) / $9,000(out of state)
    • Each session is just nine weeks
    • Offers multiple start times throughout the year
    • All students receive a National Fire Academy certificate

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction70%
    Admission Rate63%
    Programs offered online16

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department4
    Popularity at School< 1%
    68%
    OSR Score

    This 120-credit online Bachelor of Science in Emergency Services program is one of the few programs that carries the “Certificate of Recognition” from the Fire Emergency Services of Higher Education. All students must complete six FESHE core courses. You can choose to receive a specialization in Aviation Emergency Management or Fire and Emergency Services.

  8. University of Nebraska at Omaha

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $5,954(in state) / $18,644(out of state)
    • In-state students receive a discounted tuition rate
    • Ranked the number one university for military friendliness
    • The same faculty who teach on-campus teach UNO’s online courses

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction75%
    Admission Rate87%
    Programs offered online14

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department2
    Popularity at School9.71%
    68%
    OSR Score

    UNO’s 120-credit online Bachelor of Science in Emergency Management trains students for careers that prevent, plan, and respond to disasters in both the private and public sectors. Students may choose two concentrations from a list of 15, including Public Health, Natural Disasters, and more. Completing two concentrations will grant you a minor in Fire Service Management.

  9. Idaho State University

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $5,425(in state) / $20,201(out of state)
    • All courses are taught by fire officers
    • All classes are online and feature live interaction with instructors
    • Affordable in-state tuition for all online classes regardless of residence

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction74%
    Admission RateNot Reported
    Programs offered online2

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department2
    Popularity at School1.95%
    65%
    OSR Score

    ISU’s online BS in Fire Services Administration requires completion of 38 credits of General Education courses. Required courses may include Principles Fire Emergency Safety and Survival, Disaster Planning and Control, Managerial Issues of Hazardous Materials, and more. ISU offers several scholarships, including the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation Scholarship and the International Association of Fire Fighters W.H. “Howie” McClennan Scholarship.

  10. University of North Carolina at Charlotte

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $3,812(in state) / $17,246(out of state)
    • Unique in that all students receive a degree in Engineering
    • Online students can access classes on their own schedules
    • Benefit from a number of online services available to online students

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction74%
    Admission Rate66%
    Programs offered online5

    Program Level

    Median Debt$20,836
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at School5.49%
    64%
    OSR Score

    UNC Charlotte’s Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering Technology: Fire Science emphasizes both technical and non-technical aspects within the field. Required courses may include Principles of Fire Behavior, Active Fire Protection, Industrial Hazards and Electricity, and Applied Fire Engineering Design and Analysis. Online courses may require a proctored exam and the cost of taking an exam is your responsibility.

  11. University of Florida-Online

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $3,358(in state) / $15,000(out of state)
    • Choose to take classes full-time or part-time
    • Benefit from virtual career fairs and other career services
    • UF’s online programs are ranked among the best in the nation

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction76%
    Admission Rate68%
    Programs offered online12

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at School< 1%
    63%
    OSR Score

    The Bachelor of Science degree in Fire and Emergency Services at UF is offered through the College of Design, Construction, and Planning. This degree program will not certify you as a firefighter or provide you with an EMS certification. You may choose from one of the following areas of specialization: Fire, Emergency Medical Services Management, or Emergency Management.

  12. University of Cincinnati-Main Campus

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $9,322(in state) / $24,656(out of state)
    • Offers accelerated 7-week courses
    • Transfer up to 60 credits from an accredited university
    • The rate of tuition is the same no matter your residency

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction74%
    Admission Rate76%
    Programs offered online9

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at School5.53%
    61%
    OSR Score

    The Bachelor of Science in Fire And Safety Engineering Technology is offered through UC’s College of Engineering and Applied Science. Required courses may include Fire Tactics, EMS Special Operations, Terrorism Awareness and Planning, and Political and Legal Foundations. There are plenty of scholarship options for students, including the Barbara Barkley Memorial Scholarship and the Chief William Flamm Memorial Scholarship.

  13. Eastern Oregon University

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $6,928(in state) / $18,248(out of state)
    • Flexible online programs require no on-campus visits
    • Tuition is billed at a flat rate regardless of residential status
    • Access to an academic advisor who works with you one-on-one

    School Wide

    Student Satisfaction72%
    Admission Rate98%
    Programs offered online15

    Program Level

    Median Debt$26,118
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at School5.46%
    56%
    OSR Score

    Eastern Oregon’s Bachelor of Science degree in Fire Services Administration can be completed entirely online. Required courses may include Fire Investigation and Analysis, Emergency Services Delivery, Fiscal Management in Fire Protection, and more. EOU Online’s Fire Services program is consistently ranked among the best and most affordable.

  14. Bowling Green State University-Main Campus

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $9,096(in state) / $16,632(out of state)
    • No residency requirement
    • No scheduled online meeting times
    • Personalized, one-on-one advising is available

    School Wide

    Student SatisfactionNot Reported
    Admission Rate73%
    Programs offered online7

    Program Level

    Median DebtNot Reported
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at School2.19%
    55%
    OSR Score

    Bowling Green’s 122-credit online BS in Fire Administration is offered completely online through the university’s College of Arts and Sciences. Applicants should have industry experience and must first apply to the university before being admitted into this specific program. Most students go part-time and finish this program within two or three years.

  15. Colorado State University-Fort Collins

    Quick Facts

    • Tuition: $9,152(in state) / $26,660(out of state)
    • Can be completed in two years
    • Transfer a maximum of 64 credits
    • Taught by the same faculty and instructors who teach on-campus

    School Wide

    Student SatisfactionNot Reported
    Admission Rate83%
    Programs offered online8

    Program Level

    Median Debt$20,369
    Programs in Department1
    Popularity at School< 1%
    54%
    OSR Score

    The online Emergency and Fire Administration Bachelor of Science degree program at Colorado State University is made up of 120 credits. Required courses may include Essentials of Emergency Management, Trends in Fire Science Technologies, and Fire Protection Though Model Building Codes. Prior experience in fire and emergency services is strongly recommended.