Updated Pistol Course is Live!

posted on November 12, 2019
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For the instructors who responded to previous NRA Education and Training (E&T) surveys, you’ll recognize several improvements in the recently updated Basics of Pistol Shooting (BOPS) Course.

A team of professionals helped update the Basics of Pistol Shooting Guide, and incorporated comments and feedback from NRA instructors and Training counselors nationwide.  The new version contains modern photography, updated content and newly inserted graphics all with the intent of improving the learning process.  The book’s landscape layout and spiral binding are intended to make it easier for students to follow along during a class, and the book won’t close itself like the previous hardbound version.  

“The NRA is very lucky to have such dedicated NRA instructors that enabled us to create such a high-quality product. We worked with hundreds of instructors that answered our surveys and read the 200-page draft versions of this book.  This book is a direct reflection of our instructor’s commitment to excellence.” – Eric Frohardt, Director, NRA Education and Training.


E&T began shipping the new books on Oct. 19, 2019, concurrent with an eBlast announcement to certified instructors.  For any instructors who hold an inventory of previous versions, much of the content is unchanged, so don’t worry if you have old handbooks. You can still use them with students until your inventory is depleted. There will be no buyback program for previous books, and all orders placed going forward will be fulfilled with the new handbook. Keep in mind that the new lesson plans became available in October, 2019.

While the book content, organization and delivery method for student lesson plans has been improved, the training objectives have not changed.

The new lesson plans are very well done and include detailed information in the notes section, visible only to the instructor. For classrooms that can support it, the lesson plans even include live links to web-based resources and videos. What impressed me most is the level of detail that went into the new lesson plan, including a section up front that alerts instructors to any new information that may have been added since the previous version. This allows instructors to download the latest content in real-time. These living documents reside online at the familiar nrainstructors.org website for current NRA pistol instructors. Instructor cost for the book is $15.00, while the public, non-restricted cost is $17.50. For a link to the student packet click here.



For the un-restricted link, visit this link.

The NRA plans to apply lessons-learned from instructor surveys to future versions of rifle, shotgun and concealed-carry courses. Please continue to provide us any feedback you have through telephone, email and survey responses, as well as comments on future installments of the “Instructors Notebook” as found in this blogpost.

If you think you have what it takes to become an NRA-certified firearms instructor, you can review the steps for application here.

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