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MEMA Home > Programs > Exercise > Exercise Levels

Levels of Exercise

Emergency management exercises test the ability of any town, county, state or even home or business to respond to an actual emergency. There are five levels of exercise:

  • Orientation seminar: An overview or introduction.
  • Drill: A coordinated, supervised exercise activity, normally used to test a single specific operation or function.
  • Tabletop exercise: A facilitated analysis of an emergency situation in an informal, stress-free environment.
  • Functional exercise: A fully simulated interactive exercise that tests the capability of an organization to respond to a simulated event.
  • Full-scale exercise: Simulates a real event as closely as possible.

Visit our online exercise calendar to find exercises scheduled for your area, or check with your County EMA Director.

If you are interested in learning more about the exercise process, we recommend FEMA's Independent Study course, IS-139 Exercise Design.



Last update: 03/31/09