Video Surveillance 101 Course On-Demand Overview

Understand the most important terms, technologies, and trends in the video surveillance industry. Aimed at people with limited technical exposure to video surveillance systems.

The IPVM Video Surveillance 101 course is uniquely designed to help those new to the industry.

The course price is $399 USD - Register Now!

IPVM Image

Video Surveillance 101 Course Overview

This course was created to addresses the problem that there is no curriculum, education nor training required to enter the video surveillance industry.

Course Schedule

This IPVM training is the equivalent of a college 101 survey course, consisting of 12 1-hour sessions that can be watched immediately on-demand.

IPVM Image


Class 1: History explains the key technologies and trends that have shaped video surveillance today - from analog to IP, from VGA to Megapixel, from VCRs to DVRs to NVRs, from local to remote to network monitoring, we explain where the industry has come and what is now legacy.

Class 2: Architecture explains the technical fundamentals of systems from cameras to recorders to analytics to cloud, showing how they relate and what the options are.


Class 3: We teach fundamental components including Sensors, lenses, SoCs, etc. and fundamental form factor tradeoffs from box, bullets, covert, domes, multi-imagers, turrets, PTZ, etc.

Class 4: We explain the basics and importance of fundamental camera features such as codecs, streaming, ONVIF, bandwidth plus we demonstrate key issues in imaging including WDR and low-light.


Class 5: We explain the differences and tradeoffs between DVR, NVR, and VMS offerings.

Class 6: We demonstrate core VMS functionalities including live viewing, search, administration, remote access


Class 7: We explain VMD, video analytics and AI, neural networks, deep learning as it applies to video surveillance plus cover tradeoffs in where video analytics are performed (camera, recorder, server, cloud).

Class 8 An introduction to the key issues in facial recognition and behavior analytics such as abnormal events, fighting, collisions, etc.

Storage And Cloud

Class 9: Storage - Differences between HDD, SSD, local versus NAS/SAN, Edge storage, RAID for surveillance

Class 10: Cloud - Differences between hosted storage and managed video, Cloud service providers (AWS, Azure, etc.) plus bandwidth and security implications

Video Surveillance Business

Class 11 Business: We explain the fundamentals of the business from manufacturers to rep firms, distributors, dealers, integrators, online sales, consultants and more.

Class 12 Trends: The final capstone section, examines the major technology and political trends driving the industry ranging from AI to VSaaS to rising ethical issues and global political conflicts impacting the industry.

Watch Anytime

The lectures are recorded and posted to the class page for on-demand viewing.

Personal Help / Call / Office Hours

While many online courses leave students to figure out the instruction on their own, we've made personalized help a priority for our on-demand courses. Every on-demand student gets a 20-minute phone call with an IPVM expert to get started and we offer 'office hours' every week to help any student learning the materials.


At the end of classes, you will take a cumulative final exam including multiple-choice and short answer questions. If you pass, you will earn an IPVM Video Surveillance 101 certificate of course completion (see list of current IPVM Certificate Holders).

Who Should Take This Course?

Strong fits for the course are those new to the industry or those who have been in the industry in business roles but want to have a better understanding of the fundamental technologies and trends in the industry.

Who Should NOT Take This Course?

If you are in the industry and have significant technical experience, you will likely be bored by the course. Additionally, those who have already passed IPVM's camera or networking course are likely to find this too basic.

Course Feedback

IPVM Image

The following student feedback explains what benefits they found from taking the 101 course:

  • "As I was taking the course while working I felt I could immediately implement my knowledge from the get-go. The course has made me feel much more confident that's for sure."
  • "Made me question my employee's choices - at least on a basic level - Definitely asking the manufacturers more questions and understanding their models. - Realize it does not make sense to stay "in love" with one manufacturer but working with a few and finding whatever solution is cost effective and stable for my end-users."
  • "I am an end user and took the course to help me understand the topic, technology and industry. I can better answer questions from my supervisors.
  • "I am new to this industry. I needed a basic understanding so that I could have an intelligent conversation with a potential client."
  • "Especially being a relative "newbee" to the industry (30 years in Medical industry, 1 year in the surveillance industry 31 years ago) was a great add-on to my on-going training that I am going through with manufacturers, dealers, software vendors and internal personnel. I would highly recommend this course for someone in my status but also a refresher for even those that have been in the industry."
  • "As of April 6th I have started a new position as a video admin. While I have experience as an operator monitoring a VMS, this training has provided me a far greater understanding of how the equipment and industry works beyond that interface. As I delve into the administration sector, I am seeing a lot of what was covered in this training in a whole new light."
  • "This has been very helpful so far with client discussions related to; the pros and cons of VSaaS, and AI capability vs manufacturer claims. Overall, the class answered some basic questions I may have been to afraid to ask!
  • "This training has helped me to gain a better understanding of the terms and processes as well as what I can/should expect from my work teams. It has helped me to understand how to communicate better with the Technicians and make their assignments specific to the goals of each project."
  • I have a better understanding of the equipment that our installers are working with; cameras, DVR/NVR etc. I also have a better understanding of what other sales representative are talking when presenting/selling their equipment. I can ask better questions.
  • "I study video surveillance as one area of interest in my academic work, and this provided in-depth understanding from experts with a nice concise overview that you can't get elsewhere."
  • "This training has helped me remember a lot of things I have forgotten and also made me aware of things that I am currently working with today. This will also help me with future projects and how to approach them. Great course!!!!"

Register Now

The course price is $399 USD - Register Now! This includes live on-boarding with an instructor, office hours, recorded classes, private class discussion group, personal help, examination and a certificate, if you pass.

IPVM Image


An active IPVM subscription is required to take the course.


Any questions, please email us at