Close this search box.

Episode 68: Teaching Decision Making


Teaching Decision Making1During the Mental Management of Emergencies program we talk about the process of how to develop and maintain situational awareness. And then, we talk about how to use situational awareness as the foundation for decision making.



Length: 32 minutes
click the YouTube icon to listen




If you are interested in taking your understanding of situational awareness and high-risk decision making to a higher level, check out the Situational Awareness Matters Online Academy.
CLICK HERE for details, enrollment options and pricing.



Teaching Decision Making2Discussions revolve around how we train first responders which requires training both cognitive and kinesthetic skills (i.e., information and muscle movement). Stated another way, teaching the WHAT and WHY (cognitive) and the HOW (kinesthetic).

However, on the drill ground, some instructors bypass the cognitive and focus almost entirely on the kinesthetic. It is easy to understand why this happens, with the majority of explanations revolving around limited (precious) time on the drill ground.

That is understandable. But it’s not acceptable. For teaching decision making does not add substantial time to hands-on evolutions, so long as the instructor has spent some time in the classroom teaching the foundations of decision making. The drill ground becomes the closest thing to real-life practice that a firefighter/officer can experience. Teaching decision making, in the context of the real environment, is a critical skill that MUST be practiced.

This episode is dedicated to how to teach decision making in real-world context.




Intro music

Safety Dance (1982)
Men Without Hats
GMC – Virgin Records

Our sponsor:

Midwest Fire

Situational Awareness Matters






Situational Awareness Matters! website

Firefighter Near Miss Reporting System


The mission of Situational Awareness Matters is simple: Help first responders see the bad things coming… in time to prevent bad outcomes.

Safety begins with SA! 

Share your comments on this article in the “Leave a Reply” box below. If you want to send me incident pictures, videos or have an idea you’d like me to research and write about, contact me. I really enjoy getting feedback and supportive messages from fellow first responders. It gives me the energy to work harder for you.



How to reach me…


Phone: 612-548-4424

Facebook Fan Page:


Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.