Structured Analytic Techniques – Basic Diagnostic Techniques

Become a better intelligence analyst by understanding about how to apply a variety of basic structured analytic techniques to your work.

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About This Intelligence Community Online Course

This course explains why it is critical to structure analysis to improve intelligence. Gain the basic skills necessary to produce logically sound, descriptive intelligence analyses in support of work for your customers.

The course is the second in a four-part FedLearn learning series. By the end of this series, you will be able to apply:

  • Apply critical thinking throughout the analytic process
  • Identify and mitigate biases to reveal unstated assumptions
  • Refine and clarify intelligence questions
  • Assess evidence and evaluate arguments
  • Select and apply the appropriate analytic techniques; and evaluate and validate previous analytic conclusions.

What You Will Learn

  • Apply problem restatement techniques to identify the root of the problem and properly frame the intelligence question to answer
  • Use the divergent/convergent technique to generate ideas and select the most promising ones for implementation
  • Learn how to apply the pros-cons-and-fixes technique to overcome negativity and properly weigh and address associated risks
  • Use sorting, chronologies and timelines techniques to organize and order the information to aid intelligence analysis

The online course is aligned to the Defense Intelligence Agency Certified Defense All-Source Analyst Certification Body of Knowledge Topic Area 5 – Structured Analytic Techniques.

Your Instructor

The course was developed by Robert Folker. Mr. Folker is a retired U.S. Air Force intelligence weapons instructor with more than 30 years of military experience in technological development for various military applications. He currently is a senior strategist and intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance consultant with PatchPlus Consulting.

Mr. Folker a senior subject matter expert on indications and warning, sensitive reconnaissance operations, ISR planning, sensor employment and numerous intelligence disciplines that span the range from unit-level to national-level organizations, cyber operations, U.S. and adversary weapon systems and transregional threats.

He is both a graduate of and former instructor at the USAF Weapons School and earned his Master of Science in Strategic Intelligence from the National Intelligence University.

Who Should Take This Online Course

This online course is intended for new intelligence analysts working for either Federal government agencies or government contractors who have little to no prior experience and want to develop the basic skills necessary to produce logically sound, descriptive intelligence analyses. It is also an excellent refresher for more experienced intelligence analysts.


This course is the second in a four-part FedLearn learning series.

The FedLearn course, Structured Analytic Techniques: An Introduction (ICAT103), is the prerequisite for this course.

After finishing this course, it is highly recommended that you to take the third course in the series, Structured Analytic Techniques: Diagnostic Techniques I (ICAT115), to continue to advance your knowledge.

Course Certificate

To achieve a course certificate of completion, you must score 80 percent or higher on graded lesson quizzes and a final exam.

Course Format

Self-paced, online training course

Course Pricing

Individual courses are $49 (per person).

Seat licenses to access the entire FedLearn Intelligence Community catalog are also available. Click here to learn more and purchase.

If you are interested in learning about special team rates for Federal government and government contractor organizations, email [email protected].

Continuing Education Unit Credits

This course provides 1 CEU.