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Methodology for Delineating Wetlands


Course Code: EH0401WA21

This course is eligible for continuing education credits toward the Society of Wetland Scientists’
Professional Wetland Scientist (PWS) Certificate Program.

Methodology for Delineating Wetlands

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Date & Time

Online Class Sessions: June 22-24, 2021; 9:00am – 4:00pm EDT (Log-in time: 8:45am EDT)

*In Person Field Trip: 2 days in October 2021 in Basking Ridge, NJ and Cream Ridge, NJ (exact dates will be confirmed closer to the fall due to COVID-19)

Students must all online sessions and the field trip to complete this course.

*Pending federal, state, and university regulations. If deemed necessary, we will conduct the field trips virtually.


“I just wanted to complement Rutgers on such an excellent course: the professionals, the location, and the knowledge. It was fantastic and I truly enjoyed learning all of the 'science' and methodology behind what I have been taught to do over the past three (3) decades. I can't tell you how many 'light bulbs' went off in my brain as I absorbed as much as I could. This is a course that I will be certainly recommending to others in the future. Well done.”

-Barbara Wolley-Dillon,
Zoning Official/ Land Use Administrator
Borough of Mantoloking

Learn the methods of the experts! This three-day online course will introduce you to delineating wetlands using the Federal Interagency Wetland Delineation Manual, which is required for use in New Jersey. Techniques taught will also be applicable to individuals interested in using the 1987 Corps of Engineers Wetland Delineation Manual

Learn how to recognize key indicators of wetlands (hydrophytic vegetation, hydric soils, and other signs of wetland hydrology) and how to use them to follow the delineation methods outlined in the manual.  You will apply the criteria learned in the online class sessions while performing wetland determinations during the field trips in October.

Features of Wetland Indicators

  • Vegetation: Analyze plant communities and identify dominant plants and indicators of hydrophytic vegetation
  • Soils: Identify sandy and non-sandy hydric soils based on the National List of hydric soil field indicators
  • Hydrology: Recognize direct and indirect indicators

NOTE: The Corps Regional supplements for the Atlantic Coastal Plain and Northeast-Northcentral Regions will not be covered in this class.

Prerequisite: If you are planning to earn the Wetland Delineation Certificate, completion of Vegetation Identification for Delineating Wetlands is required prior to attending this course.

Please be advised that this is not an introductory course. For an introductory course, please enroll in our Introduction to Wetland Identification course.

See what past attendees said about this course!

Recertification Credits

In addition to 3.2 Rutgers CEUs, this wetland training course is approved for the following credits:

Landscape Architecture Continuing Education System (LA CES) Credits: Pending

NJ Professional Engineers: 24 Continuing Professional Competency (CPC) credits

NJ Land Surveyors: 24 Continuing Professional Competency (CPC) credits

NJ Landscape Architects: Pending

NJ Certified Public Works Manager (CPWM): 5 Technical, 5 Management, 2 Government

NY Landscape Architects: 14 hr CL; 18.5 hr EA

NY Land Surveyors: 12 hours

NY Professional Engineers: 12 hours

Society of American Foresters: Pending

ATTENTION HEALTH OFFICERS AND REGISTERED ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH SPECIALISTS: Rutgers University, NJAES, Office of Continuing Professional Education has been approved by the New Jersey Department of Health as a provider of NJ Public Health Continuing Education Contact Hours (CEs). CEs for Methodology for Delineating Wetlands are still pending.

Society of Wetland Scientists Professional Certification Program (SWSPCP): Methodology for Delineating Wetlands has been pre-approved for 2.1 equivalent semester hours by the SWSPCP as meeting standards for content and instruction toward SWSPCP Professional Certification or SWSPCP Professional Certification Renewal. Approval per course is calculated based upon 15 hours of contact time per credit. Click here for more information about the Society of Wetland Scientists Professional Certification Program (SWSPCP).

The Wildlife Society: Pending

raplph tiner, wetlands instructor

Ralph Tiner, M.S., M.P.A., SWS Fellow has over 40 years of practical experience in wetland delineation and is a nationally recognized authority in the field. He recently retired from the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service where he directed wetland mapping in the Northeast United States as part of the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service's National Wetlands Inventory (NWI). He is a nationally recognized expert on wetland delineation and has been actively involved in improving wetland delineation techniques for decades. In addition, he was compiler and principal author of the Federal Interagency Wetland Delineation Manual, which was published in 1989 and is the standard for identifying and delineating wetlands in New Jersey.

Ralph has written extensively on the subject of wetlands and is the author of several field guides including: Field Guide to Non-tidal Wetland Identification, Maine Wetlands and Their Boundaries, A Field Guide to Coastal Wetland Plants of the Northeastern United States, and In Search of Swampland, as well as an update of the Wetland Indicators book entitled Wetland Indicators: A Guide to Wetland Formation, Identification, Delineation, Classification, and Mapping. His most recent books are: Tidal Wetlands Primer: An Introduction to Their Ecology, Natural History, Status, and Conservation and Remote Sensing of Wetlands: Applications and Advances (for which he is senior editor and authored several chapters).

In addition to writing about wetlands, he has been teaching wetland identification and delineation courses through the Rutgers Office of Continuing Professional Education Office since the mid-1980s.


Wetlands instructor Mal Gillbert

Mallory N. Gilbert, CPSS; PWS, Emeritus; CPESC, Retired; LtCol USAF, Retired (Mal) has been a private consultant since 1986 and has more than forty years of professional experience in plant sciences, natural resources management, and wetland and soil sciences. He holds a Bachelor of Science degree in Forestry and Forestry Facilities Design (1972) and a Master of Science degree in Agronomy/Soil Physics (1975), both from the University of Connecticut.

Mal has authored numerous environmental reports, publications, and regulations for a variety of state, federal, and private organizations. In addition, he has worked as a contributing scientist contractor for the former U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Waterways Experiment Station (WES) in Vicksburg, Mississippi and the U.S. Department of Interior Fish and Wildlife Service. Mal has edited and published The Land Judging Guide for Vermont (third and fourth editions), has authored portions of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Environmental Laboratory Engineer Research and Development Center, Wetlands Research Program: Wetlands Engineering Handbook (ERDC/EL TR-WRP-RE-2), is a contributing author and editor of Wetland Mitigation: Planning Hydrology, Vegetation and Soils for Constructed Wetlands by Gary J. Pierce, and has also served on the peer review panel for the "Regional Supplement to the Corps of Engineers Wetlands Delineation Manual: Northcentral and Northeast Regions." Mal completed his tenure as an appointed Board Member of the Society of Wetland Scientists (SWS), International in 2017, having served three-years as the SWS Awards Committee Chair. He has also served as an Executive Board Member of the Society of Wetland Scientists Professional Certification Program (SWSPCP), as SWSPCP President Elect (2007-2008), President (2008-2009), Immediate Past President (2009-2010), and as Ethics Committee Chair for the SWSPCP (2011-2016). He continues to serve the SWSPCP as a Member of the Professional Certification Renewal Committee. In 2019, Mal was honored with the SWSPCP's R. Harold Jones Lifetime Achievement Award in recognition of his achievements as a professional wetland scientist.


The following textbook is required:

Wetland Indicators: A Guide to Wetland Formation, Identification, Delineation, Classification, and Mapping / Edition 2 (ISBN 0873718925) Ralph W. Tiner - $95.00

The following textbook is optional:

Munsell Soil Color Chart - $210.00

You may purchase either of these textbooks on your own or through our office with your registration.

NOTE: Please register by Tuesday, June 8, 2021 in order to receive your textbook by the first day of the class. For any registrations received after June 8, we can't guarantee the textbook will get to the student by the first day of class.

Multi Course Registration Fee $1,075.00 Save when you register for this class and Vegetation Identification for Wetland Delineation: North or South!
Early Registration Fee $1,125.00 Register on or before June 1, 2021 and save!
Registration Fee $1,200.00 After June 1, 2021
Cancellation Fee $100.00  

Substitutions are permitted. View cancellation policy.


No meals will be provided at this course.


Online Session:

This online portion of this course will be delivered via the Rutgers Canvas learning management system. Registrants will receive an email with a link to access the course and a document with tips on how to use Canvas on June 21, 2021. Please log into Canvas at 8:45am EDT on June 22, 2021 for a brief overview of the online format. The class will start promptly at 9:00am EDT.

Equipment you will need to access this training:

  • A computer or tablet
  • Microphones and webcams are required as this is a very interactive course

Photo ID Requirement:

Each registrant will be asked provide a photo of him/herself holding their government-issued photo ID. This is required by credit boards so that you may receive credits for participating in this online course.

  • You will receive a reminder email prior to the start of the class with further instructions. Wait to receive these instructions before you attempt to upload your ID.
  • The photo must be clear enough that we can read your name and verify that the person pictured on the ID is in fact the person holding it.
  • After an OCPE staff member reviews the picture and verifies your identity, you will have access to participate in the course when it begins.


  • If this is your first time registering with us, please provide your own unique email address when registering; do not provide an email address that you share with co-workers.

  • If you have previously taken classes with us and have used an email address that you share with your co-workers or supervisor, you must update your account with a unique email address. Click the Register Online button below and sign into your account. On the left side toolbar, click My Account. On the drop-down menu, click Edit Profile/Password. Scroll down to the Email Address field (not the secondary email address field!) and enter your own, individual (not shared!) email address here. Click the Submit button at the bottom to save. If you need assistance updating your account, please email or call (848-932-9271, option 2) our Registration Department.

Field Trip:

The in-person field trip portion of this course will be held in over two days October 2021, pending federal, state, and university regulations. If deemed necessary, we will conduct the field trips virtually. Exact dates will be confirmed closer to the fall due to COVID-19. The field trips will be held at the following locations:

Somerset County Environmental Education Center - Lord Stirling Park
190 Lord Stirling Road, Basking Ridge, NJ 07920
Directions and Map

Rutgers Fruit and Ornamental Research Extension Center
238 Route 539, Cream Ridge, NJ 08514
Directions and Map

Note: Pre-registration is required.


Registration will close at midnight on June 22, 2021.

To Pay By Credit Card:

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First time registering online? Click here for step-by-step instructions.

To Pay By Check, Money Order, or Purchase Order:

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For Registration Assistance:

Please call 848-932-9271, option 2.

Program Questions? Contact Us!

Program Coordinator: Suzanne Hills, 848-932-7234
Administrative Assistant: Sarah McCarthy, 848-932-7703

Attention U.S. Veterans

This course is approved by the New Jersey State Approving Agency for Veterans Training for educational benefits through the GI Bill®. For more information about the GI Bill, click here.

GI Bill® is a registered trademark of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA). More information about education benefits offered by VA is available at the official U.S. government website at http://www.benefits.va.gov/gibill.

Jump-Start Your Career with a Rutgers Certificate!

Promote your education and experience in wetland plant identification and delineation -- earn the nationally recognized Rutgers Wetland Delineation Certificate today! The certificate program consists of 6 days of training: our 2-day Vegetation Identification course (North or South sessions ONLY) and our 4- day Methodology of Delineating Wetlands course. Participants must also complete the take-home exam with a score of 70% or better in order to earn the certificate. This nationally-recognized certificate program will demonstrate that you have completed extensive training in wetland delineation and give you an edge in the marketplace.

Past Students Reveal What They Learned in the Course

"I did not just give excellent ratings to the instructors because I want to look good. I truly felt that both instructors were attentive, knowledgeable, and understanding."
- Daniel P. Laue, Environmental Scientist

"I want to thank your office for actually offering these continuing education courses; they truly are one of a kind in the area, well worth the time and resources it takes to attend.  The professors are definitive experts in their related fields and are extremely enlightening.  I look forward to taking additional courses in the future."
Nicholas Ginther, Landscape Designer, DW Smith Associates, LLC

"I learned what the alphanumeric codes in a Munsell [soil color chart] mean and I know how to apply them now to determine soil chroma and value. The materials/tools that accompany the course proved very useful when applied in the field."
- A. Holly, Environmental Scientist

"Soil identification and its use in wetland delineation."
- J. Mabus, Biologist

"Good emphasis on plant sampling techniques to determine dominance."
- S. Lacy, Environmental Scientist

"How to justify the wetland line."
- T. D'Angelo, Environmental Consultant

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