Since 1984, SIG courses have continued to be highly relevant both to our society’s and to students’ needs, and this year is no exception. Two of our most relevant courses in 2020, Pandemic Preparedness and Institutional Decision-Making, are particularly timely for young people who possess exceptional abilities. Courses like these two help gifted students think about critical issues, be informed regarding the latest facts and policies, and learn how to use past and current information, so that they can become superior decision-makers during future crises that will likely emerge. Both courses are intended for students ages 13-14 but are also appropriate for ages 15-17.
Timely SIG Courses:
In M50 Pandemic Preparedness, students will learn about superbugs and engineered pathogens. They’ll analyze biological threats and economic losses as well as past examples of global inabilities to deal effectively with pandemics. They’ll also look at solutions coming from synthetic biology, human immune therapies, and pandemic preparedness policies. They’ll add their voices to those of scientists and political professionals to problem-solve approaches to reducing the potential risks of “superbugs,” improve early detection systems, and plan international emergency responses.
In M52 Institutional Decision-Making, students will seek ways to improve decision-making on a grand scale by analyzing examples of high-stakes decision-making that appear to be flawed. They’ll learn about techniques to improve human judgment and the ability to think strategically about complex problems, using scenario analysis and structured analytic techniques. They will explore how multiple disciplines such as psychology, economics, business, marketing, and political science work together to influence institutions and make better decisions.
By offering courses like these and many others, SIG takes its role seriously of preparing our gifted, talented, and creative youth to be competent stewards of their futures and to provide them with skills, information, and confidence to cope with whatever tough decisions the future will bring to them.