This comprehensive course aims to help you improve your reflections, analyses, and thinking process and therefore your decisions through the practical identification and mitigation of biases. The course covers two fundamental biases related to metacognitive and psychological needs, 17 cognitive biases, as well as the myriad of emotionally-induced and normative biases.
What if we could think better?
Many things may impair our thinking. First among them, we find biases.
Biases are unconscious mental errors. They impact each and every human being. They distort our thinking and we do not know it. We do not notice it.
As a result they impact negatively our decisions. They may create problems in our relationships. They negatively influence our daily lives, be it privately or professionally. They also affect us as citizens, because biases impact all actors in the world.
Yet, this is not a fatality.
We can learn to recognise these biases and to mitigate them.
As a result, our understanding will improve. We shall take better decisions. Our relationships will improve. We shall understand the world better.
A serious and comprehensive course to mitigate biases
This course was designed with a specific objective in mind. How can we best improve our thinking process and analysis to obtain the best possible results, thus, also, the best possible decisions?
Using the best and most adequate knowledge and experience
We have drawn on the experience, knowledge, and understanding gathered by the professions most concerned and most demanding in terms of analysis and reflection: the scientific community and the intelligence community.
Indeed, if intelligence analysts produce bad analyses because of biases, then consequences may be dire. Thus, the intelligence community has developed a large unclassified body of knowledge on biases and how to mitigate them.
Similarly, the scientific community has a duty to generate an understanding that is as objective and as applicable as possible. As a result, it developed and even spearheaded ways to overcome biases.
The result: A comprehensive course to mitigate biases
This approach allowed us to select those major biaises that could impair thought process and to find the best ways to mitigate these biases. We thus cover a large range of biases, and not only a couple of haphazardly chosen biases.
This course will help you first to identify and mitigate a major meta-cognitive bias and a key bias stemming from psychological need. Then it will look in detail at eighteen cognitive biases, and explain how to find them and how to mitigate them. With the following units, this course will address other types of biases, which are rarely considered. Namely, you will learn about emotion-induced biased then normative biases.
For the exercises of each unit, you will also be able to download an action guide and exercise book, which will become your personal invaluable book for recording not only your progress but also all those biases that are specific to your life. You will then use your “Mitigating biases book” throughout time for reference.
Study according to your own rhythm and needs
What you need is an intensive crash course to be operational as quickly as possible?
Then take the course according to your own intensive schedule.
You can complete the course in one day.
Focus on the videos explaining biases and on the exercises.
You will then only be able, at best, to quickly skim through the readings. We explain how to do that if you are not familiar with the process. You can go back to the readings in the bibliography, later, as you have time.
You will be able to access the course for the whole length of your enrolment anyway.
Do you prefer to train peacefully, taking the time to read, practice and reflect?
Then take the course according to your own preferred pace.
You can complete the whole course in 4 to 8 weeks, on average.
You can plan to do one to two units per week. This will give you the time to really practice identifying biases and their mitigation. You will also be able to read peacefully as much as you can. You will deeply assimilate knowledge and understanding. Your retention rate will increase.
With biases, the more you practice, the better you will become at identifying them and mitigating them.
The course in summary
The course is available at once upon enrolment. It is provided through units including lecture videos available 24/7, practical examples and exercises, as well as readings. You will have full access to the course, its videos, tests, reading lists etc, for the length of the course, i.e. 3 months. You can watch each video as often as you need. Of course, you can download for example the exercise books and keep them for life.
You will be awarded a certificate upon successful completion of all the units and their tests.
The course is principally designed for…
This course has been created for anyone involved in analysis and more broadly thinking. Ideally, it should just benefit everyone, as we are all thinking beings.
Structure of the course
The course will guide you through understanding biases and their impacts. It will help you handling them practically.
This course is delivered through eight units in three modules.
- The first module explains what are biases and where they impact us.
- The second module and its six units constitute the core of the course and presents the most important biases impacting us all. Each of these units focuses on a type of biases and detail them: we thus move from meta-cognition and psychological-need biases to three major types of cognitive biases, to two main types of emotion-induced biases and, finally, to normative biases.
- The last module and unit presents supplementary ideas and strategies to mitigate biases.
Throughout the course, each time a bias is explained, ways to mitigate it or cope with it are suggested. As a result, you will not only be able to learn to identify these biases but also to reduce them and to improve your thinking.
Organisation of each unit
After each video focusing on the topic of the unit, most often explaining biases, exercices are offered so that you can practice identifying biases and then mitigating them.
The exercises are detailed in a downloadable pdf exercise book, where you can record your answer.
You will then find readings if you want to learn more about a specific bias. As often as possible, other videos are added to make it easier to understand a bias.
The first seven units end with a test that you must pass to obtain your certificate.
(Units handling biases are already included in the course on analytical modeling, and thus trainees who have registered for that course do not need to take the course on mitigating biases).
Teaching and Training
This course is designed to benefit from the online learning environment. Meanwhile it remains grounded in proper classical high-level academic teaching. It benefits from years of analytical experience and of methodological reflection to improve the analytical process. It also completely integrates multinational experience with intelligence analysts alongside executive course training experience (check the website for many various examples of analyses).
Find out what trainees think about our other courses.
Dr Helene Lavoix holds a PhD in international relations from the University of London, School of Oriental and African Studies (SOAS) (and a MSc with distinction in international politics of Asia, SOAS).
She is an experienced and international lecturer. She taught at Master level at the SciencesPo – Paris School of International Affairs (PSIA) in the global risk – international security section. Previously, she taught at the RSIS, Nanyang University in Singapore, Master in Strategic Studies. She also trains executives, officials and analysts either with tailor-designed training for public, corporate, and NGOs’ clients or in dedicated programs (notably Brussels with Vesalius College).
She has more than twenty five years practical experience as an analyst in international relations, specialised over the last fifteen years in strategic foresight and early warning. She is fully acquainted with the various specificities of SF&W and risk management, from analysis to the challenges met by officers through her work as international coordinator for the Global Futures Forum and, even more directly as President of the Red Team Analysis Society. See full bio here.
Disclaimer: We decline any obligation of results here and we may not be held responsible for the way you will apply or not the course and for possible consequences. Being mindful of and sensitive to others and to yourself should always be your first concern.