FBI Virtual Academy (Forensic Science Communications, April 2002)
April 2002 - Volume 4 - Number 2
The FBI Virtual Academy
The FBI Virtual Academy anticipates "opening its doors" this month. We requested additional customization of the site, which delayed our originally scheduled opening date of February/March 2002. We appreciate your patience and the enthusiasm we continue to hear concerning this endeavor.
Agency applications for the Virtual Academy are well underway. We have received more than 1,000 law enforcement, forensic laboratory, and judicial system agency applications since posting the online application in the January 2002 issue of Forensic Science Communications (FSC).
Registering for the Virtual Academy requires several steps. Agencies and their employees must go through these steps before they can begin to use the Virtual Academy. The following estimated timeline helps explain this on-going process:
January 2002: Agencies began registering for the Virtual Academy using the agency application form. Identifying a Training Manager for the agency is a key part of this registration. Students will not be able to use the Virtual Academy until their agencies are registered.
March 2002: The FBI Laboratory Training Unit began verifying agency application information and approving agencies, which will allow its employees to register and enroll in courses.
June 2002: The Training Unit began verifying agencies with the Field Office who will become their liaison for the course enrollment and approval process.
September 2002: The FBI certification and accredition process continues to ensure the security of the information housed within the Virtual Academy.
September/October 2002: Training Managers of approved agencies will receive instructions on student registration and course enrollment procedures by e-mail from the Training Unit.
September/October 2002: Students can register and begin using the Virtual Academy.
October 2002: New fiscal year for training begins.
Question: Is the FBI discontinuing its Quantico, Virginia, classes and offering only Internet training?
Answer: No. The FBI will continue to hold its classes at its physical academy in Quantico. The Virtual Academy is simply a new vehicle for registering students for those classes, revealing new kinds of training, supplying information, and circulating collaboration opportunities to the criminal justice community. Thus, once the system is fully operational, registration for both traditional classroom instruction and interactive multi-media instruction will occur only through the Virtual Academy.
Question: Is there a cost for using the Virtual Academy?
Answer: No. Use of the Virtual Academy is free. However, some of the courses offered (e.g., those provided by one of our Training Partners) may have a fee associated with them. Such costs will be listed under the course information shown in the Course Catalog.
Question: When will the Administrative Advanced Latent Fingerprints (or any other course) be offered?
Answer: The Course Catalog will list all course offerings when they become available. Courses having an active session will display the date, time, instructor, and location. Students cannot request enrollment in courses without an active session listing. (NOTE: Please do not call to inquire about when a particular class will be held; it will be posted as soon as a session is approved.)
Question: I am having a problem getting my agency registered through FSC. What can I do?
Answer: Fax your application to 703-632-4657, and we will enter it manually.
Jane M. Homeyer
Training Unit Chief
Quantico, Virginia 22135
FBI Virtual Academy Campus Map
The Virtual Academy will do far more than just automate training registration and tracking. It will provide opportunities for
- Expanding training with distance learning (Learning Center)
- Documenting training and professional development through individual transcripts (Administration)
- Supporting the Scientific Working Groups (Teaming Center)
- Providing access to powerful reference materials using a customized Dialog search engine (Library)
- Establishing collaboration with strategic Training Partners using a consolidated course catalog and joint course review, approval, and evaluation process (Conference Center)
- Sharing best practices, experts, and other knowledge mining tools (Conference and Student Centers)
- Offering individual development plans for promoting the professional growth of employees (Personal Room)
- Interacting with fellow students (Student Center)
- Learning about career opportunities (Student Center)
- Providing input through surveys to improve training and other related programs (Faculty Center)
- Seeing community events at a glance (Site Calendar)
- And much more…