REVIEW OF “CRISIS MANAGEMENT” E-LEARNING MODULE
How to Cite
Copyright (c) 2023 Psychological Research (in the Balkans)
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.
The COVID-19 pandemic presented world leaders with an unprecedented set of challenges. All of a sudden, they were expected to promptly and effectively manage a crisis on both the local and global levels, while taking into consideration all its multi-faceted ramifications related to economics, physical and mental health, etc. This incident signaled the need for up-to-date easy-to-follow guidelines for dealing with similar emergencies in the future.
The e-Learning module “Crisis Management”, developed and implemented by Ilina Nacheva, PhD and Ralitsa Doychinova, PhD, is a timely response to the need for better crisis management preparation. Developed as a part of project KP-06-DK2/5 (www.cov19resilience.social) “Socio-psychological Еffects of the Crisis caused by COVID-19: Perceived Stress and Dynamics of Experiences”, supported by the program “Funding of fundamental research projects on public challenges associated with the COVID-19 pandemic - 2020” of the Bulgarian National Science Fund, Ministry of Education and Science of the Republic of Bulgaria, the module constitutes part of Bulgaria’s national reaction to the pandemic through the public engagement of trained scholars.
The pandemic was unprecedented in various ways and so is this e-module on crisis management. Combining classical and modern knowledge on the topic, and providing recent first-hand empirical evidence from its creators’ own work, the module places special emphasis on the psychological aspects of managing a crisis. In doing so, the module promises to equip future leaders and first responders to effectively handle the mental health considerations related to a crisis.
The module is specially designed with its applied value in mind. The content, currently in Bulgarian, is targeted at the undergraduate and graduate levels of students in psychology, social sciences, and mental care. However, its engaging and easy-to-follow structure and language make the module suitable for various types of audiences that show interest in the topic. To further facilitate accessibility, the module has been made freely accessible on the project’s website (www.cov19resilience.social).
The module is organized in nine compact and straightforward segments—general information, key definitions and concepts, types of crises, crisis management, lessons from the COVID-19 crisis, COVID-19-related empirical evidence regarding three vulnerable groups, third-person perceptions in times of crisis, a model acknowledging the role of culture in crisis management, and a critical discussion on the objective versus subjective perception of a crisis. The content alternates between theoretical and empirical knowledge, and the different sections nicely complement and build upon each other. The module is asynchronous and interactive, allowing the participants to intuitively explore and easily navigate thought the content, advance at their own pace, return to previous pages, or skip through sections.
The content employs numerous high-quality visual aids which guide and hold the learners’ attention. Useful references are provided at the end of each section that allow motivated students to engage in further study.
In my view the module is an excellent example of the education of the 21st century. Employing modern technology for distant learning, adapting content to current learning needs, and emphasizing the applied aspect of the subject matter, the e-Learning module “Crisis Management” is well-suited to educate and prepare future leaders for effectively handling the psychological aspects of crisis-type situations. I congratulate the module’s creators on accomplishing this work and I am excited to follow the module’s development in the future, possibly into a stand-alone program.