PRATT — For several years, the Kansas Department of Wildlife, Parks and Tourism (KDWPT) Hunter Education Program has offered a two-part alternative to the all-classroom hunter education course, called an “Internet-assisted” course. The course has used the International Hunter Education Association’s Internet program for the first portion of the class — the online portion — but now the agency has replaced this with its own internet-assisted portion of the class.
For Internet-assisted courses, all students must complete an online course before they can attend a field day and testing session, which is the second portion of the course. To begin, go to the Internet assisted field day and testing schedule link found on the KDWPT website, www.kdwpt.ks.us under “Other Services/Education/Hunter/Internet-assisted Course.” Then click the buffalo logo to find contact information for a field day that fits the student’s schedule. After registering for the field day and testing session of choice, the student is ready to begin the course.
Within 90 days of the chosen session, students log onto the KDWPT website listed above. Students need access to a printer to work through this course. As each chapter is completed, students answer the review questions for that chapter and print the page with answers. These must be brought to the second portion of the course, the field day and testing session.
The end of the online portion of the course features a course completion test. This test is important because students see the same material covered on the pretest required to continue the course with the field day and testing session. Students cannot access the completion test until they have completed all the chapter review questions. They must present these chapter review pages and the course completion test to the instructor to get into the field day and testing session. The whole process takes a few hours, from the comfort of home.
The next step is to show up at the designated field day and final testing site. First, students hand in their online tests and take a 25-question quiz to show that they have completed the online work. To continue with the course, students must correctly answer 22 of 25 questions, an easy task for anyone who has gone through the online material. Following the short quiz, students will spend a short time in the classroom discussing hunter ethics, laws, and game identification. Then it’s outside for the rest of the day as they participate in a simulated hunting trail walk, firearm handling, and live fire. The trail walk and live fire shotgun training are required.
The Internet-assisted course format is designed to meet the needs of those individuals with conflicting schedules. Like the traditional course, there is no required fee to take the KDWPT online course. KDWPT does accept two alternative Internet-assisted portions of the course, both of which charge a fee and may be linked to from the KDWPT Hunter Education page online.