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EDMG320 - Natural Disaster Management

Course Details

Course Code: EDMG320 Course ID: 2991 Credit Hours: 3 Level: Undergraduate

This course covers the basic principles of natural disaster management in the United States. This course highlights several hazard types as topical investigations, as well as the processes and considerations of management options for preparedness, response, recovery, and mitigation. This will include, but not be limited to, understanding basic natural hazard mechanisms, the range of physical and human impacts, linkages to demographic and environmental transitions, and both structural and non-structural mitigation techniques. All management techniques are framed within existing U.S. federal guidelines, however management techniques covered in this course may be applied widely. The course covers organization, operations, training, and other issues associated with the management of natural disasters. The student will participate in a simulation taking on a decision-making role and must react to information about a specific natural disaster that develops over a series of weeks. The students will be presented with a series of weather-related information and will be assigned a specific role. They must make leadership decisions on how they will utilize their resources responding regularly to the incident commander (course professor) explaining what actions need to be carried out along with their rationale for their actions. Wrapping up the scenario, a Hot Wash is conducted with three UP (good) things and three DOWN (need improvement) things and provided to the incident commander so that the student will be able to better handle the next disaster as a lessons-learned phase.

Course Schedule

Registration Dates Course Dates Session Weeks
04/27/20 - 10/02/20 10/05/20 - 11/29/20 Fall 2020 Session B 8 Week session
05/25/20 - 10/30/20 11/02/20 - 12/27/20 Fall 2020 Session I 8 Week session
06/29/20 - 12/04/20 12/07/20 - 01/31/21 Fall 2020 Session D 8 Week session
07/27/20 - 01/01/21 01/04/21 - 02/28/21 Winter 2021 Session B 8 Week session
08/31/20 - 01/29/21 02/01/21 - 03/28/21 Winter 2021 Session I 8 Week session
09/28/20 - 02/26/21 03/01/21 - 04/25/21 Winter 2021 Session D 8 Week session
10/26/20 - 04/02/21 04/05/21 - 05/30/21 Spring 2021 Session B 8 Week session
11/30/20 - 04/30/21 05/03/21 - 06/27/21 Spring 2021 Session I 8 Week session
12/28/20 - 06/04/21 06/07/21 - 08/01/21 Spring 2021 Session D 8 Week session

Current Syllabi

The successful student will fulfill the following learning objectives:

LO–1 Understand hazard paradigms with variations in vulnerability to disasters.

LO–2 Describe the reason the Swiss cheese model is used to explain the causation of disaster.

LO–3 Distinguish the roles and responsibilities of various agencies for natural events and evaluate various programs for natural disaster mitigation and management.

LO–4 Analyze Losses, Relief and Cost-Benefit of disasters: Economic Considerations

LO–5 Describe the different hazards such as hurricane, severe storm, flooding, hurricanes, drought, volcano, earthquakes, landslides, avalanches, wildfires, biohazard, and technological hazards and the protective and mitigation measures used.

LO–6 Evaluate public policy and planning disasters.

LO–7 Identify key challenges in disaster risk reduction.

LO - 8 Compare and contrast chronic (elusive) and rare (new) hazards.


Participation is mandatory and will count towards the course grade. You are expected to provide a substantial comment of several well-written paragraphs in each session and a similar comment or reflection in reply to at least two other students’ contribution. Statements such as “I agree” or “good post” will not count as a reply. You will be marked down for this type of response.

Initial posting is due on Thursday of the assigned week. The responses are due by Sunday midnight.

All the chapters in all the textbooks will be covered throughout this eight (8) week course. As a student, you are expected to read each of the assigned chapters. Other material will be assigned for reading as determined appropriate by the Instructor. Be sure to check the “Additional Readings” folder in Resources regularly.

NameGrade %
Forums 30.00 %
Week 1 Introduction 5.00 %
Forum #1 5.00 %
Forum #2 5.00 %
Forum #3 5.00 %
Forum #6 5.00 %
Forum #7 5.00 %
Weekly Assignments 30.00 %
Week 2 - Written Assignment #1 15.00 %
Week 6 - Written Assignment #2 15.00 %
Final Course Paper 20.00 %
Week 8 - Written Assignment #3 20.00 %
Simulation Forum - Week 5 10.00 %
Forum #5 - Day 5 3.33 %
Forum #5 - Day 6 3.33 %
Forum #5 - Hot Wash 3.33 %
Simulation Forum - Week 4 10.00 %
Forum #4 - Day 1 2.50 %
Forum #4 - Day 2 2.50 %
Forum #4 - Day 3 2.50 %
Forum #4 - Day 4 2.50 %

Please visit and search by the course number (ex: LITR210) to access your required resources.

Additional Readings: Weekly case study readings will be assigned in class and will change to remain current for illustrative purposes. Please refer to “Course Announcements” for listings.


Book Title:Various resources from the APUS Library & the Open Web are used. Please visit to locate the course eReserve.*

Previous Syllabi

Not current for future courses.