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Online Courses

Project EnCRiPT offers a series of classes online that cover various aspects of environmental enforcement. These offerings, which range from one to eight hours in length, are available at your convenience. You can start and complete sections of the course whenever you would like. Once the course is successfully completed, participants may be eligible for up to eight hours of training credit through the Texas Commission on Law Enforcement (TCOLE).

Select a course below to view more information or scroll down to see the full list.

Courses

  • Advanced Personal Safety
  • Chain of Custody
  • Determining Probable Cause
  • Environmental Crimes 101
  • Environmental Sampling Overview
  • Ethics of Environmental Enforcement
  • GIS (Geographical Information System) in Environmental Investigations
  • How to Handle the Media
  • How to Handle the Media-Cohort
  • Illegal Dumping of Nonhazardous Waste
  • Interviewing Techniques
  • Introduction to Environmental Investigations
  • Parallel Proceedings
  • Personal Safety for Environmental Enforcement Professionals
  • Report Writing
  • Search Warrants: Planning & Execution
  • Soil Sampling
  • Water Sampling

Advanced Personal Safety

Our number ONE responsibility is to keep ourselves safe in the work environment as well as our everyday lives. This course will spotlight specific things such as toxicology, types and routes of exposure, and personal protective equipment that we must understand to ensure our safety as well as others. Please complete the course, Personal Safety for Environmental Enforcement Professionals before taking Advanced Personal Safety. Advanced Personal Safety is divided into two modules.

ONLINE for 2 hours of TCOLE (Texas Commission on Law Enforcement) Credit (TCOLE #3880)
Course Objectives:

Module 1 - Health & Safety
  • Define toxicology
  • Understand that exposure plus toxicity equals a health hazard
  • Differentiate between acute and chronic health effects
  • Define dose/response relationship
  • Identify the routes of entry
  • List the main types of harm
Module 2 - Personal Protective Clothing & Equipment
  • Identify the primary concerns of personal protective clothing and equipment
  • Define the basic principles of PPE failure
  • Identify the four levels of PPE
  • Characterize self-contained breathing apparatus (SCBA)
  • Discuss limitations of clothing and equipment

Chain of Custody

This course identifies what a proper chain of custody is and its legal importance. It provides a "how-to" for establishing chain of custody with analytical samples, photos, and documents. Chain of Custody is a course in a 6-course block on Judicial Procedures.

ONLINE for 1 hour of TCOLE (Texas Commission on Law Enforcement) Credit (TCOLE #3880)
Course Objectives:

  • Define "chain of custody"
  • Identify the legal reason for maintaining a chain of custody
  • Learn how to apply a chain of custody for analytical samples
  • Learn how to apply a chain of custody for digital photographs
  • Learn how to apply a chain of custody for documents
  • Identify a flag system

Determining Probable Cause for Environmental Investigations

This course will identify various investigative techniques to aid any individual when investigating environmental situations or crimes. It will assist to gather evidence in support of both criminal complaints and applications for a search warrant. Determining Probable Cause is a course in a 6-course block on Judicial Procedures.

ONLINE for 1 hour of TCOLE (Texas Commission on Law Enforcement) Credit
Course Objectives:

  • Identify potential hazards
  • Introduce types of surveillance techniques
  • Discuss identification and gathering of evidence
  • Discuss observations and records

Environmental Crimes 101

Environmental Crimes 101 is a perfect course to allow investigators a perspective on "covering all the bases" when it comes to environmental investigations. It will raise awareness for all individuals associated with environmental discovery and investigations, whether they are civil or criminal in nature. Filmed in Corpus Christi, Texas, incredible instructor, US EPA Special Agent Andrea Abat, leads this recorded webinar as a fresh perspective to online learning.

ONLINE for 2 hours of TCOLE (Texas Commission on Law Enforcement) Credit (TCOLE #3880)
Course Objectives:

  • Identify liaison partners and resources
    • Law Enforcement, Regulatory/Technical, Judicial-Civil and Criminal
    • Personnel, Equipment, Intellectual Property, Operations
  • Identify probable cause strategy for multi-media investigations
  • Identify and plan for chemical, biological, radioactive, nuclear, and organic threats for multi-media investigations

Environmental Sampling Overview

This course is designed to characterize the different types of sampling and identify the equipment required to do so. It will provide a basic understanding of sampling while preparing the environmental enforcement professional for more advanced water and soil sampling courses (coming soon).

ONLINE for 2 hours of TCOLE (Texas Commission on Law Enforcement) Credit
Course Objectives:

  • Define sampling and identify why it is necessary
  • List the steps of the sampling process
  • Identify the basic sampling types
  • Present and define the various types of sampling equipment
  • Demonstrate a sampling plan
  • Discuss standard operating procedures
  • Discuss sampling techniques for solids and liquids
  • Identify technical, laboratory, and evidentiary considerations
  • Define QAPP
  • Present sampling documentation
  • Discuss chain of custody techniques

Ethics of Environmental Enforcement

This course will identify the ways in which unethical behaviors, by white collar criminals, might affect the course of an inspection or an investigation.

ONLINE for 1 hour of TCOLE (Texas Commission on Law Enforcement) Credit
Course Objectives:

  • Defining ethics as it is related to the environmental enforcement professional
  • Understanding the concept of environmental justice
  • Understanding the difference between ethics and morals
  • Understanding the ethical issues for the environmental enforcement professional

GIS (Geographical Information System) in Environmental Investigations

This course will identify GIS and explain the benefits by using real-world applications like the Columbia Shuttle disaster and recovery operations. It will explain how GIS can be used for environmental investigations and inspections.

ONLINE for 1 hour of TCOLE (Texas Commission on Law Enforcement) Credit (TCOLE #3880)
Course Objectives:

  • Discuss Common Operational Picture
  • Define GIS and provide a brief overview of GIS technology
  • Provide relevant examples of data that may be available or requested during an investigation
  • Identify resources for GIS data and expertise
  • Discuss real-world applications

How to Handle the Media

This course is our on-demand version of the media cohort and will look at all aspects of public information as an environmental enforcement professional might encounter them.

ONLINE for 8 hours of TCOLE (Texas Commission on Law Enforcement) Credit
Course Objectives:

  • Understand the importance of the image of law enforcement and regulatory agencies
  • Learn how to effectively organize your day to meet the demands of a proactive media response
  • Comprehend the value of developing professional relationships with local media
  • Organize and "package" information for rapid distribution to media contacts

How to Handle the Media Cohort

An online cohort allows participants to take a course together through the internet and to interact with one another using an online discussion board. The cohort course also requires participants to submit writing assignments and papers on a topic of interest to the class to enrich the learning experience by receiving direct feedback from an instructor. Unlike on-demand courses, these classes are available for a specific period of time, although flexibility is built into the classes to allow individuals to complete the coursework at days and times that are most convenient to their schedule.

This course is currently not available online as a cohort but instead as regular online course.

Illegal Dumping of Nonhazardous Waste

Illegal dumping is considered one of the most invasive and prominent environmental problems this nation faces. This course will provide investigators with the proper knowledge and steps to help combat this issue.

Online for 1 hour of TCOLE (Texas Commission on Law Enforcement) Credit
Course Objectives:

  • Define nonhazardous waste
  • Describe how to process illegal dumping crimes
  • List proper safety equipment needed to gather and process evidence
  • Identify sampling techniques
  • Describe how to understand environmental laws
  • Demonstrate laboratory analytical reports

Interviewing Techniques

This course demonstrates good interviewing practices for all types of investigations including criminal, civil, and compliance inspections. Interviewing Techniques is divided into three sections to help the participant better understand the three main objectives. Interviewing Techniques is a course in a 6-course block on Judicial Procedures.

ONLINE for 2 hours of TCOLE (Texas Commission on Law Enforcement) Credit (TCOLE #3880)
Course Objectives:

  • Describe proper techniques for interviewing witnesses
  • Identify suspect interrogation methods
  • Apply proper techniques to practical applications

Introduction to Environmental Investigation

This course will take the environmental enforcement professional through ten components of basic environmental investigation.

ONLINE for 0 hours of TCOLE (Texas Commission on Law Enforcement) Credit
Course Objectives:

  • Define environmental crime
  • Understand the history of environmental investigations and enforcement
  • Understand the five elements of the Environmental Matrix of Organization
  • Recognize and identify environmental hazards
  • Identify the factors of investigator safety
  • List the steps and proper techniques associated with evidence collection
  • Define investigative resource inventory
  • Discuss available technology for environmental investigations
  • Discuss interagency cooperation and jurisdiction
  • Define ethics of environmental enforcement

Judicial Procedures

This is a cluster block of 6 online courses designed to walk professionals through the basics of various judicial procedures. These courses include:

Look for specific course information within the course directory.

Parallel Proceedings

Parallel Proceedings will identify the similarities and differences of civil versus criminal investigations and the requirements of both. It will explain how various levels of our judicial system function in the context of environmental enforcement. Parallel Proceedings is a course in a 6-course block on Judicial Procedures.

ONLINE for 1 hour of TCOLE (Texas Commission on Law Enforcement) Credit (TCOLE #3880)
Course Objectives:

  • Identify the three types of legal proceedings
  • Discuss the process of discovery
  • Characterize the importance of segregating evidence
  • Discuss the process of civil trials
  • Identify the types of civil and criminal remedies
  • Identify the characteristics of the criminal system
  • Discuss warrant requirements
  • Identify the characteristics of administrative proceedings

Personal Safety for Environmental Enforcement Professionals

This course will identify dangers and threats facing environmental enforcement professionals. It will define risk management and mitigation and introduce the concept of a Health and Safety Plan or HASP. This course is a necessary component for any civil or criminal investigator no matter if they are a veteran or new to the agency and/or assignment.

ONLINE for 2 hours of TCOLE (Texas Commission on Law Enforcement) Credit
Course Objectives:

  • Identify dangers and threats facing environmental investigators
  • Define Risk Management
  • Discuss Identifying Risk
  • Discuss Risk Mitigation
  • Introduce the concept of a Health and Safety Plan
  • Define "The Common Sense Mindset to Personal Safety"
  • Discuss each of the three components of the CSM and give examples

Report Writing

This course will provide individuals with the proper tools to write competent, acceptable investigative reports for all types of professions.

ONLINE for 1 hour of TCOLE (Texas Commission on Law Enforcement) Credit
Course Objectives:

  • Demonstrate the basics of report writing
  • Identify the additional requirements for environmental reports
  • Differentiate between structured and non-structured narratives
  • Identify chain of custody issues
  • Identify legal issues concerning sampling, chain of custody, and sample retention

Search Warrants: Planning & Execution

This course will identify all of the necessary steps for planning and executing a search warrant. It will also identify the necessary components of gathering intelligence, seizing evidence, and closing the crime scene.

ONLINE for 2 hours of TCOLE (Texas Commission on Law Enforcement) Credit
Course Objectives:

  • List the methods for planning a search warrant
  • Identify the importance of the search warrant briefing
  • Define the staging area
  • List the steps of the search warrant execution activities
  • Identify types of evidence seized
  • Discuss methodology for closing search warrant crime scene

Soil Sampling

This course is designed to prepare individuals who need to inspect, collect, and even store solid samples of soil, sand, and similar materials. It is best to complete the Environmental Sampling Overview course before completing Soil Sampling.

ONLINE for 1 hour of TCOLE (Texas Commission on Law Enforcement) Credit
Course Objectives:

  • Provide a basic foundation to conduct soil sampling
  • Identify types of equipment to conduct soil sampling
  • Identify the type of containers used for storing soil samples
  • Discuss appropriate personal protective equipment used while performing soil sampling
  • Demonstrate proper sampling techniques

Water Sampling

This course identifies the necessary components of water sampling for environmental professionals including planning your sampling, taking the samples, sample collection types, and chain of custody. It is best to complete the Environmental Sampling Overview course before completing Water Sampling.

ONLINE for 1 hour of TCOLE (Texas Commission on Law Enforcement) Credit (TCOLE #3880)
Course Objectives:

  • Learn what to plan for sampling events
  • Learn what sample containers are required for each analysis and how to fill them
  • Learn what equipment, container, and analysis is appropriate for each typical scenario
  • Learn how to use specialized equipment