NRA's new online-only training

Discussion in 'Training' started by lklawson, Feb 22, 2016.

  1. lklawson

    lklawson Staff Member

    As I'm prepping up for my NRA Pistol Instructor class this weekend, I am required to take the NRA Basic Pistol class (again - it's the class I took for my Ohio CCW). The NRA has made a very important change to their Basic Pistol class, and I suspect they're going to be applying this to the other "basic" classes as well, such as Basic Rifle. Previously the class was split into two parts, a live, instructor lead, classroom portion, and a live fire on-the-range portion. The NRA has now take the classroom portion and replaced it with online training. The live, instructor lead, classroom section is being phased out. There will still, of course, be the instructor lead live-fire range portion but the instructor will NO LONGER BE TEACHING CLASSROOM MATERIAL. They will be doing a short hands-on review and then moving almost immediately to the range portion.

    Cynically, I note that the NRA is charging $60 for their online class which is money that they were not collecting before this change.

    My NRA Certified Training Counselor has noted that the classroom portion of the class has always been the least favorite of students and had the most opportunity for students who are more ahead to race in front of others or for students who are having more difficulty with a topic to "slow up" the class.

    I see both advantages and disadvantages to the new system and I will say that the material is very well done. This is what I wrote to the NRA, in their "anonymous feedback" section, at the completion of the course online.

    Peace favor your sword,
  2. moona11

    moona11 King of you Monkeys Lifetime Supporter

    Online training is stupid for hands-on training. We have a lot of online training but firearms training online is stupid. We have tried it and keep trying it. In the end we have to go over the same thing again on range day. Hands on is how it works with the bang bang.

  3. It is very beneficial~~~for the NRA.

    Not so much for the instructors that counted on that money.
  4. moona11

    moona11 King of you Monkeys Lifetime Supporter

    Just another way to make money for them. Don't help the trainer or students.
  5. OldOutlaw

    OldOutlaw Supporting Member

    Well, the folks around here who have gotten the NRA Pistol Instructors Certificates
    are making a lot of money now themselves.
    In Iowa we have to go through the 8 hour classroom course or Live fire on the Range. One of the two. Must have the Certificate before we apply at the Sheriffs Office for a Concealed carry permit.

    Class room - $100 a pop!!
    Range - $75 to $100 a pop!
    Same for Renewals.

    Pretty nice extra income if you ask me! I know several of these guys and they are usually doing 10 to 20 persons per class/range trip. Once or twice a month now.
    Oh, and guess what. Cash only trades hands. Wonder if they report that as income?
    When I am forced to pay this, I guess I don't blame NRA for taking a cut.
  6. undeRGRound

    undeRGRound ROLL wif Da MOLE! Supporting Member

    Dayum, plus we had to suffer thru NRA's "punishment"
    and get all kirky-fried too! :(
  7. OldOutlaw

    OldOutlaw Supporting Member

    It was 5 years ago when the State went to a must issue state. But, training is required. At that time about the only source of a class was all the LEO Instructors around. They ran 12 hour courses all in one day. Class and range. They were getting just about at $300 a pop. Plus, you needed a lot of mags and 500 rounds of ammo. So some of the LGS owners who have indoor ranges and an instructors cert jumped in right away. The first year I did not have to do anything as I already had a professional permit. This year I forked out my $75 for a range qualification to renew.
    My wife had to pay $100 for her class 4 years ago. Rip off!!! :mad:
  8. The local fire department puts on the classes here for 60 bucks. The instructor is a paramedic. I think the gun shops start around 100 bucks. Unlicensed OC probably keeps the prices down.
  9. lklawson

    lklawson Staff Member

    I should have replied to this earlier but I got busy and forgot.

    There are two phases to the new NRA Basic Pistol class. ONLY Phase I is online. It covers what would normally be the classroom lecture portion of a traditional class. Phase II, the second half, is conducted with class mates and a live instructor. It is broken into 4 Exercises which include review and Instructor verification of the material supposedly "learned" in the online portion as well as, of course, physical handling and instruction of Range skills in both Benchrest and Isosceles positions at varying distances. Qualification from standing is a 5-shot string at 10' in a 4" group, though they also shoot 5-shot strings at 15' and 20' to 4" targets as well as shooting a 20-shot string at 45' on a 8" target for a 6" group.

    The 4 Exercises in the live instruction portion are:
    1. Safety
    2. Fundamentals (including grip, sighting, trigger control, etc.)
    3. Operation & operational controls, and Maintenance
    4. Range qualification

    Again, I really only have two complaints with it. First that it FORCES people to take online training who may learn better in live, lecture, style environments, and second that they cannot avoid the pitfalls of online training such as compatibility issues, network bandwidth issues, and distractions of the outside-the-classroom world.

    Peace favor your sword,
  10. lklawson

    lklawson Staff Member

    I got some more information on this.

    My Training Counselor is plugged in with the Training Committee and I was able to get the inside skinny.

    First, the bulk of the $60 goes to the internet hosting company, who is hosting & providing the videos and flash material. The NRA gets a very small slice of that $60 fee. No, I don't know how much but "small amount of" was the phrase used.

    Second, I now know why the NRA has changed to a mandatory online training for Phase I. It's because there were a bunch of doofuses "teaching" wrong, inaccurate, training material, or even flat out lying. The NRA got tired of trying to clean up their messes or hearing about it 3rd hand after the damage had been done. For instance, there was one Instructor who was teaching that the Weaver Stance worked because you "weave back and forth" while in it and fire when your sight picture crosses the target. His credentials were revoked. They also revoked the credentials of numerous Instructors who were teaching NRA courses but shorting the time and materials, just flat out skipping parts. Now, the fact is that an NRA Certified Instructor can teach whatever courses and course material that the feels like, but he can't call it an NRA course. He can teach an Introductory Rifle course and totally skip the Prone position, for instance, but he can't bill it as an NRA Basic Rifle course or issue NRA Basic Rifle certificates to his students. This was happening and, apparently, the ones who were getting caught and having their credentials revoked wasn't sufficient to dissuade the others who weren't getting caught, apparently anyway. This is a big deal because some States require a State-Approved curriculum for their Concealed Carry courses and the NRA Basic Pistol is usually on that list. So if an Instructor advertises his class as NRA Basic Pistol, registers it on the NRA Instructors website & database, then issues NRA Basic Pistol certificates and his course material DOESN'T COVER all of the required material, the shooting community in general, the CCW community in general, and the NRA in particular, all get a black eye.

    These guys screwed it up for a lot of people.

    I totally "get" this. I've seen something similar here in Ohio. Ohio Revised Code (ORC) specifies that a CCW course MUST be X hours long (currently 8) with Y number of hours of that on the range (currently 2). But some CCW instructors were cutting it short on class time and range time, offering "accelerated" classes or just good-ol-boy issuing certificates. While the law states 8 hours total with 2 on the range, some folks were getting maybe 5 hours total training time with one hour on the range. When they were eventually caught, they went to prison and all of their students' CCW licenses were revoked. And it's still happening. I have a friend who's out-of-state CCW is about to expire and, as an Ohio resident, he's wanting to replace it with an Ohio CCW. He has repeatedly told me of a acquaintance of his who's willing to give him an accelerated course because he already has/had a CCW from another state. I have advised my friend every time NOT TO DO THIS. Ohio law is clear about training requirements. 8 hours with 2 of that on the range. No exceptions because you had CCW from another state. He could loose his license and the State then gives him 90 days to find and take, then submit proof of, another CCW class or he could face charges too.

    It boggles the mind.

    Peace favor your sword,
  11. That's why I pretty much shred the online First Aid certificates when I teach a hands-on course. There was one guy who loved to say how he could perform all the proper procedures, under fire, to keep a guy alive, to include airway management, bleeding management, and shock management really fast.
    So I brought in the blood dummy (an old full-sized combat dummy you can pack full of blood packs), and pulled an under fire drill with a below-the knee amputation, airway obstruction, and shock. The guy looked like a kitten dropped into a bathtub. In the end, he shoved an NPA into the guy's sinus cavity, was unable to stop the bleeding, and completely forgot to treat for shock.
  12. Branth

    Branth Member

    I'm deeply skeptical of doing away with classroom training. I can see having a couple short videos first to get some of the preliminary stuff out of the way (This is the end the bullet comes out of, this thingy is called a trigger, etc.), but I feel like the really important stuff NEEDS an instructor there to handle questions as they arise.
  13. lklawson

    lklawson Staff Member

    The really important stuff does get live training on top of the video stuff.

    Peace favor your sword (mobile)