Topic outline

This e-learning course has been created in collaboration with the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC). The course will introduce key concepts related to pest surveillance and pest status determination, particularly as it relates to new pest detections and emerging pests. It will provide practical guidance to assist National Plant Protection Organizations (NPPOs) in strengthening their national surveillance systems and surveillance activities to support early pest detection, pest monitoring and pest status determination.


This e-learning course targets NPPOs' managers, supervisors, and staff involved in surveillance; other staff from NPPOs or IPPC contracting parties in charge of exchanging information on new pest detections or changes in pest status and staff from private organizations responsible for phytosanitary certification of export commodities.

  • NPPOs' surveillance obligations, models and management.
  • National pest surveillance programs: prioritization, planning, methodologies and data collection.
  • Steps in pest status determination supported by case studies.
  • Pest reporting responsibilities and good practices in the context of ISPM17, and publication on the IPP.

The course consists of 6 lessons, ranging from approximately 30 - 60 minutes duration each:

  • Lesson 1 - National organizational arrangements: Surveillance approaches and applications
  • Lesson 2 - Organizational arrangements: Legislation, funding, management and human resources
  • Lesson 3 - Surveillance programme prioritization, planning and design
  • Lesson 4 - Operations and methodologies of a pest surveillance programme
  • Lesson 5 - Steps in determining pest status
  • Lesson 6 - Pest reporting

This course runs on the latest versions of the major browsers, such as Google Chrome, Microsoft Edge, Mozilla Firefox and Apple Safari.

The course opens in a separate popup window. If this does not happen, a popup blocker in the browser is probably preventing it from opening and you will need to disable popup blockers for this site. Please read the following instructions on how to do this.

Digital certification

This course offers certification. You will get your digital badge upon passing a final exam after completing the course and achieving a grade of at least 75%. Please click on the button below to complete the exam, or refer to our Certification section to learn more.

Evaluate this course

We would be pleased to receive your evaluation of this course, to support us in improving future e-learning courses. Please click on the button below to answer the questions in the form. It should only take you a few minutes!

  • Partners

    The course content was developed by plant health experts selected from all over the world, under the auspices of the Secretariat of the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) of the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) and with the oversight of the IPPC Implementation and Capacity Development Committee. 

    The course was funded by the European Union, within the 11th European Development Fund, and Common Market for Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA), under the framework of the "FAO support to COMESA trade facilitation program".