Introduction to Species Status Assessment - Online


Target Audience:

U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service Endangered Species Act practitioners and partners.

Summary and Objectives:

This multi-week online course is an overview of the species status assessment (SSA) framework, which is an analytical approach developed by the Service to deliver foundational science information for all Endangered Species Act decisions. The overview will cover the basic concepts and minimum requirements of an SSA and will show participants how to diagnose the level of complexity and expertise required to complete an SSA. Although the overview won't cover technical methods in detail, it will introduce participants to some of the tools and resources available to conduct SSAs with an emphasis on those of low to moderate complexity. The participant will have the opportunity to explore the SSA framework through a series of pre-recorded videos, individual work, group work, and class discussion of concepts. It is expected that the participant attend most of the class sessions and you are not able to attend a session, review and complete any missed course materials. The online class will use Microsoft Teams, Word Documents, Powerpoint, Zoom (or another platform), and chat/email.

A schedule of the online class sessions can be found below:

  • Week 1: Wednesday - Thursday 1-5 pm
  • Week 2: Monday - Thursday 1-5 pm
  • Week 3: Monday - Thursday 1-5 pm

Upon completion of this course, participants will be able to:

  • Use available data and the SSA Framework to assess the species viability by applying the conservation principles of resiliency, redundancy and representation by means of a "categorical" methodology.
  • Identify existing species information that is important to an SSA analysis and demonstrate its use in an SSA.
  • Develop future scenarios using information provided by the SSA analysis.
  • Practice drafting written portions of the SSA while working in a team environment.
  • Describe where to find tools and resources to conduct an SSA.

Competencies Addressed:

Data Interpretation - Basic, Scenario Planning - Basic, Planning and Evaluating - Basic, Wildlife and Fisheries Biology Management - Awareness, Wildlife Biology - Awareness

Course Short Name
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Training Tuition Cost
36.0 hours
Training Credit Hours
Semester Hours

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