Free Online Learning Courses

Below are online learning courses that are free to all (NEWWA/AWWA membership not required). Note that it is the user's responsibility to contact his/her certification board to determine if credit hours will be honored for completing any of the below.

Basic Training for Drinking Water Board Members (U.S. EPA 2012 - Guide, U.S. EPA 2014 - Online Course Modules):

Basic Training for Drinking Water Board Members Online Course Reference Guide (.pdf)

Basic Training for Drinking Water Board Members - Online Course Module 1: Roles & Responsibilities & Communication

Basic Training for Drinking Water Board Members - Online Course Module 2: Budgets & Planning for the Future

Basic Training for Drinking Water Board Members - Online Course Module 3: From Source to Tap - Treatment & Distribution Overview

Among the many people supporting a community’s water system are members of a governing board. These board members, or in some communities, water commissioners, are often citizen volunteers with little or no prior knowledge of running a water system. State and federal agencies along with water associations recognize that these volunteers play a vital role in ensuring the continued safety of our drinking water supplies. To support the work of governing boards, they have developed numerous training tools and guides to understanding water treatment and regulations. This guide, along with the accompanying on-line training course, represents only a fraction of those tools. It was prepared to give board members a basic understanding of everything from running a board meeting, to setting water rates and working closely with the water operator. For those who want more training and information, many other detailed references are available and are listed in the Appendices.

 Financial Sustainability for Small Systems (Posted July 2015)

This eLearning course is made possible through a U.S. EPA grant for small systems training in conjunction with AWWA’s training partner, the Environmental Finance Center Network and is intended for small systems serving populations under 10,000. AWWA membership is not required; however, registration is required.

Course Length: 2 hours

Cost to small systems: FREE

Course Description:
This eLearning course focuses on 3 major areasneeded by small systems to achieve financial sustainability; including understanding enterprise funds and their revenues, as well as an overview of what is needed to protect public health through safe water.

The course is divided into three modules.
• Module 1 describes an enterprise fund and explains how to set-up, manage, and use those funds.
• Module 2 covers enterprise fund revenues including their origin, what they should cover, and how to set up rates to cover expenses.
• Module 3 illustrates the major elements of what it takes to provide safe water to protect public health, including major regulations and their role in water quality, common operational questions managers should address, and how to involve operators in management decisions.

Learning Objectives:
• Operating a Water System to Protect Public Health
o Explain the health effects of regulations and water quality
o Answer common operational questions public works managers have about water systems
o Explain common ways a manager can involve their operators in management decisions
• Enterprise Fund Revenues
o Explain the origin of enterprise funds
o Explain what enterprise funds should cover
o Demonstrate how to set rates to cover expenses
• Understanding Enterprise Funds
o Explain what an Enterprise Fund is
o Explain what an Enterprise Fund is not
o Describe what an Enterprise Fund should do for you
o Demonstrate how to set-up, manage and use your Enterprise Funds

Continuing Education Units:
2 Hours / 0.2 CEUs
Attendees may be awarded CEUs for AWWA education programs by the state licensing agency. AWWA grants CEUs for this course at a rate of 1 CEU for 10 contact hours. It is the individual's responsibility, before registering for any education program, to contact his/her licensing agency: 1. To confirm that the education program is acceptable for continuing education credit towards the particular license; 2. To confirm what is needed to submit for credit approval.

Maintaining and Achieving RTCR Compliance for Small Systems - FREE, Self-paced e-learning for small systems (<10,000) - (April 2015)

Course Description:
This free eLearning course focuses on 4 major areas needed by small systems to maintain and achieve compliance with the Revised Total Coliform Rule; including when and how to conduct the RTCR assessment, evaluation of sampling procedures, source water treatment assessments and evaluation of distribution system operations and maintenance practices on coliform occurrence.

The course is divided into four modules. The first module introduces the RTCR by describing the latest changes and impact to operators and their water systems. It demonstrates when and how to perform level 1 and level 2 assessments and provides examples and opportunities to apply the new learning.

The second module covers sample site assessment which includes determining if deficiencies exist in distribution system practices that may lead to inaccuracies in sample collection, possible microbial contamination, and data management procedures.

The third module illustrates the major elements of an assessment of sources of supply and treatment in the context of the RTCR.

The fourth and final module illustrates the major elements of an assessment of distribution system operations and maintenance practices in the context of the RTCR.