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E-Learning Course

Welcome to the UMass Extension 4-H Online Volunteer Training!

This course was developed as a collaborative effort of 13 western states' 4-H programs.  It is designed to give an introduction to 4-H youth development and the philosophy of this program.  The course takes approximately 20 - 30 minutes to complete.

Course completion is required for all Massachusetts 4-H volunteers.  Once you have completed the course the system will notify your local Educator.  Remember, course completion is only one part of the required process to become a 4-H volunteer.  Your local 4-H Educator will work with you to complete all the steps in that process.

The course has four parts:

  • "About 4-H" - includes information about the purpose and philosophy of 4-H and a variety of ways to participate.
  • "Positive Youth Development" - introduces you to the Essential Elements of 4-H and the positive aspects of working with youth and youth groups.
  • "Getting Started in 4-H" - provides information about conducting club meetings, after school programs and other types of gatherings.
  • "Leadership and Teaching" - shares techniques and tools for you to use when working with youth groups.

Because this was developed by the western states there are a few differences we need to point out.  Family clubs and 4-H Shooting Sports are not allowed/supported in the Massachusetts 4-H program.  National 4-H guidelines currently require a minimum of 5 youth from 3 different families to have a chartered 4-H club and we go by these guidelines.  The annual membership forms for Massachusetts 4-H are slightly different and there is a participation fee required.  Finally, there is no state fair in any of the New England states.  We do have the New England wide fair, Eastern States Exposition where our 4-H members may exhibit.

Instructions to begin the course:  Click on the link below.  Enter your first and last name as instructed, under state (from the drop down menu) select Massachusetts and enter the password given to you by your local 4-H Educator. 

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