For over 20-years a monthly tactical decision game (TDG) was published in the Marine Corps Gazette. These games allowed readers to play along by submitting their solution. In the next issue a discussion was published, presenting the back and forth dialogue that took place as players explained their rational and why they decided to take a particular action.
From the military, the value of TDG’s has branched out into other fields of expertise. As a form of ‘problem-based learning’, a TDG can be used in sports, business, aviation, the 1st responder community, or any profession that routinely needs to make high stakes decisions under time pressure.
In this article, the basics of creating and playing a TDG are presented. In addition, the article suggests two ways to improve a TDG by incorporating elements of Naturalistic Decision Making (NDM). Last, you can learn more about TDG's by downloading a free copy of “Mastering Tactics - A Tactical Decisions Game Workbook”, by Maj John F. Schmitt, USMCR.
Richard Feenstra is an educational psychologist, with a focus on judgment and decision making.
Bobby Hoffman is the author of "Hack Your Motivation" and a professor of educational psychology at the University of Central Florida.