Boyd’s Cycle Applied to Conflict Survival

A review of Boyd's Cycle applied to conflict situations.

This is an online only (virtual) training course that reviews Boyd’s Cycle (OODA Loops) and all of the ways knowledge of the human decision-making cycle impacts performance, training and learning. The course includes a PowerPoint slide show that corresponds to the three training videos. The total viewing time for the videos is approximately 25 minutes broken down into three approximately equal segments. For viewer’s reference there is also a downloadable PDF version of the PowerPoint presentation, perfect for use in taking notes. A course syllabus and extra reading resources are also included in the training materials. 

If there are any questions with regard to the content, please contact the instructor: Lt. Frank Borelli via email to

Course Description

In this course, Instructors Borelli and Nance discuss Boyd’s Cycle – otherwise known as the decision making cycle – and how it applies to emerging victorious in conflict situations. The Cycle is broken down, examined, and reviewed for application in arrest scenarios. Part one of the course reviews and examines Boyd’s Cycle, otherwise known as an OODA Loop or the human decision making cycle. Part two examines panic, its impact on conflict situations and how it can be avoided through training. Part three examines the value and proper use of After Action Reviews (AARs) or debriefs. 


There are no prerequisites for attending this program. 

Course Sequencing

This course is a personal-knowledge-only (no continuing education or in-service credits) program. It is recommended that this course be completed before taking any other Officer Virtual Academy courses. 

Course Objectives

  • The student will be able to describe Boyd’s Cycle and the four formal parts of it 
  • The student will be able to identify and describe the third hidden “O” not a formal part of the cycle 
  • The student will understand and be able to describe various methods for interrupting a criminal subject’s OODA Loop 
  • The student will understand and be able to describe the impact of panic on completing OODA Loops 
  • The student will understand and be able to describe how panic can be avoided through training 
  • The student will understand and be able to articulate the value of debriefs/after action reviews in general 
  • The student will understand and be able to articulate the most common items covered in an AAR 
  • The student will be able to articulate the difference between criticism and critique and the differing value of each. 
  • The student will be able to articulate the difference between personal perception and objective observation and the value of such in any AAR

About the Instructors

Lt. Frank Borelli – LE Instructor / Editorial Director
With over 35 years of operational experience and more than 30 years of instructional experience, Lt. Borelli has taught programs involving firearms, defensive tactics, officer survival, active shooter response and more to officers from all levels of government to include city, county, state, federal and military. He remains active in law enforcement, continually training and being trained to keep his skills up to date and sharp. 

Sgt. Richard Nance – LE Instructor / SWAT experience / TV personality 
Richard Nance is a veteran police officer and former SWAT team leader. He is the co-owner of WARTAC, a company that provides training in firearms, tactics, and personal defense. Nance cohosts Handguns & Defensive Weapons, a new television series on the Sportsman Channel. 

Not Enrolled

Course Includes

  • 3 Lessons
  • Course Certificate