Information Environment Advanced Analysis Course
Course Description: This course prepares students to apply IEAA concepts to enable intelligence, planning, and operational communities to characterize, forecast, target, wargame, and assess the information environment in support of a commander’s or policymaker’s decision-making process. Students are immersed in concepts, techniques and operational constructs and linked to the Joint Intelligence Preparation of the Operational Environment (JIPOE), Operational Design, Operational Approach, and the Joint Planning Process (JPP).
Course Length: 110 hours (80 academic hours + 30 hours reading time)
Optimum: 30. Minimum: 20. Maximum: 33
Measurement: Participate and complete the practical exercise (PE) and oral evaluation
Location: Colorado Springs, CO or Worldwide
Introduction to the Global Information Environment – Provides students with an overview of the new realities of the Digital Age and the complex global information environment, including concepts, techniques, constructs, lexicon and relationships to doctrine that will be used throughout the course.
Critical Thinking – Students learn techniques to adaptively apply when analyzing and challenging conventional wisdom, understand how adversaries think, and comprehend how critical thinking supports mission analysis – across the information environment and in numerous other domains.
Information Environment Decomposition – Students learn systems theory, approaches and analytic techniques with which to decompose systems, subsystems and attributes comprising an information environment.
Behavioral Influence – Students learn analytic and holistic concepts to understand the decision-making calculus within the information environment as related to decision makers; includes will, human factors, group dynamics, prospect theory, and social identity theory. The focus is on developing capabilities related to influencing the decisions and behaviors of various target audiences.
Information Environment Characterization – Students learn to create a textual and visual understanding of the problem they are addressing within the global information environment. This includes explaining systems, subsystems and attributes and to apply link, culture, semiotic, pattern, trend and anomaly analyses. Students also apply systems theory concepts and interrelationships, aggregation analysis and systems emergence.
Forecasting – Students engage in recomposition and synthesis of the current state to determine what may happen with the problem set and what they may be able to do about it. This leads them to anticipatory analysis, in which the students develop two future states using verbal and visual depictions to get a sense of what the problem may look like if it is not addressed with any measure of effectiveness, and what it may look like if it is actioned with greater effectiveness.
Sense Making – Students apply an information environment framework and a hierarchy of effort to align activities and effects to achieve objectives and an end-state. They examine how components of will and capability interact to reach the desired end-state they are tasked to meet. Students learn operational design techniques and begin developing an operational approach (draft course of action).
Global Planning – This block of instruction introduces students to a range of crucial planning and operational concepts and approaches. They receive instruction in integrated planning and campaigning—the indispensable art of conducting continuous planning and operations in parallel to deal with fast-moving, digital age problems. They also engage with the means for developing a whole-of-governments and whole-of-alliances approach, bringing as many important players from across the globe and various organizations as possible into the effort to address the problem at hand. Through the use of case studies, students also learn how to engage in Narrative Warfare, winning the battle for the narrative using effective meta-narratives, narratives, and messages.
Wargaming – Students learn to manage risk, think like the adversary and other actors, and discern nth-order effects by applying wargaming and red-teaming methods and techniques. Students learn to use an action-reaction-counteraction methodology to learn how wargamers and red-teamers should interact to ensure the plan is as thorough as possible and that they are anticipating adversary actions to the greatest possible degree.
Assessment — Students learn assessment terminology, techniques, and approaches. Measures of Effectiveness, Measure of Effectiveness Indicators, and Measures of Performance receive significant emphasis. Students are required to develop an assessment methodology and specific criteria for the problem they are working.
Capstone Practical Exercise (PE) – The capstone PE is delivered in two phases providing students with a realistic scenario within which they can apply all concepts, techniques and constructs learned throughout the course. Phase I consists of a 2.5-hour oral examination to ensure students have grasped of IEAA concepts and contexts; phase II is 8 hours of concept and technique application culminating with each small group delivering a thorough 45-minute IE recommendation to a senior leader panel.