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Some of the key decisions that must be made are shown below, and you probably identified others as well. Should residents in the two downstream towns be evacuated? If the decision is to evacuate, when should the evacuation take place? Who will notify the citizens of the evacuation, and how? What additional resources will be necessary to accomplish the evacuation and provide any shelter needed? What is the most effective way to keep the dam from collapsing, and what resources will be needed to accomplish that? What’s At Stake? The ability to make sound, timely decisions during an emergency event is critical.

Good problem solving and decision making can avert tragedy and help the community recover from the event more quickly. Conversely, poor decision making-?or the absence of decisions-? potentially can result in injury or death to victims or responders. (Clearly, in our case study, if the Emergency Manager makes a poor decision-?or simply doesn’t make any decision before it’s too late-?the consequences could be disastrous for the residents of Amber and Gilson. ) But the repercussions don’t stop there. Poor decisions in the early stages of an event can make the responders’ job more difficult and more dangerous.

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In addition, they can give rise to much more critical or complex decisions later on-?to say nothing of the effect on community relations. Good decision-making skills are one of your most critical assets as an emergency management professional. This course will help you develop those skills. Page 1. 3 Decision Making and Problem Solving contains six units. Each unit is described below. Unit 1, Course Introduction, provides an overview of the course. Unit 2, The Decision-Making Process, presents a five-step, provisioning model and opportunities to apply the model to case studies.

The unit also explores factors that affect decision making. Unit 3, Identifying Decision-Making Styles and Attributes, discusses the impact of personality type and personal preferences on decision-making style. During this unit, you will complete a personality type inventory and consider what that information indicates about your approach to decision making. This unit also explores hat it takes to be an effective decision maker and whatnot can do to capitalize on your strengths and minimize your limitations.

Unit 4, Ethical Decision Making and Problem Solving, focuses on situations involving ethical decisions and discusses the components of ethical decision making. Unit 5, Decision Making in an Emergency, gives you an opportunity to apply decision- making and problem-solving skills in a case study situation. Unit 6, Course Summary, summarizes key concepts from the entire course. Page IA This course will involve you actively as a learner by including activities and exercises that highlight basic concepts. It will also provide you with guidance on actions required in specific situations through the use Of field-specific case studies.

Job Aids Throughout the course, you will find job aids designed to guide you through a variety of decision-making tasks. They can be used during the course, and you will find them useful later, after you have completed the course. Knowledge Checks At the end of most units you will find a knowledge self-check. You can use these self-administered quizzes to verify that you have learned the content of the unit before moving on. In addition to the six units, this course includes an appendix that contains copies of all the job aids presented in the course.

Page 1. Course Objectives In Decision Making and Problem Solving, you will learn a decision-making model that can be used to make decisions and solve problems in both emergency and day-to-day situations. This self-paced course will provide you with a foundation of knowledge that will enable you to: Explain the need for decision-making and problem-solving skills in emergency management Describe how decisions made before an emergency help the decommissioning recess during an emergency. Distinguish between a problem and its causes or symptoms. Analyze your personal attributes and relate them to your decision-making style.

Describe the personal attributes of an effective decision maker. Explain how the ethics of a situation can affect decision making and problem solving. Apply a model for problem solving and decision making to emergency management scenarios. How Will You Benefit? You will benefit in several ways by taking this course: You will learn how to identify a problem-?as distinguished from its causes or symptoms. Failure to identify the problem properly is one of the main reasons for poor decision making. You will learn a model for problem solving-?and learn how to apply the model as a way of improving your decision making.

You will become more aware of your own personal attributes as a decision maker and use that awareness as a starting point for improving your decision-making ability. Page 1. 6 How To Complete This Course This course is designed so that you can complete it on your own at your own pace. Take a break after each unit, and give yourself time to think about the material, particularly how it applies to your work as an emergency management professional and the decision-making situations you have encountered or anticipate encountering on the job.

Remember to complete the activities and case study exercises that are presented during the course. These activities and exercises emphasize different learning points, so be sure to complete all of them. Compare your answers to the answers provided following each activity or exercise. If your answers are correct, continue on with the material. If any Of your answers are Wrong, go back and review the material before continuing. Take the short “Knowledge Check” quizzes at the end of Units 2 through 5. Check your answers using the answer key that follows each Knowledge Check.

If you missed any questions, go back and review the material again. After you have completed all of the units, complete the Final Examination that is available online through the Emergency Management Institute’s Independent Study office, using the supplied answer sheet. To obtain credit for taking this course, you must successfully complete this examination (75 percent correct). MI will score your test and notify you of the results. You may take the Final Examination as many times as necessary. Sample Learning Schedule Complete this course at your own pace.

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