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2021/22 Taught Postgraduate Programme Catalogue

MA Security, Terrorism and Insurgency

Programme code:MA-SEC/T&IUCAS code:
Duration:12 Months Method of Attendance: Full Time
Programme manager:Dr Hugh Dyer Contact

Total credits: 180

Entry requirements:

Good honours degree or equivalent. English language in line with current POLIS requirements

School/Unit responsible for the parenting of students and programme:


Examination board through which the programme will be considered:

POLIS MA Examination Board

Programme specification:

This programme introduces students to all aspects of contemporary international security. It includes the structure of global security, relations between the major powers, approaches to the study of arms control and nuclear deterrence, contemporary issues in the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction, the evolving nature of inter-state warfare, international crisis regions, the "new wars" involving non-state actors and the relationship between development and security as well as legal approaches to the use of force.

Drawing on the School’s research strengths in international security and sub-state conflicts, this programme addresses the phenomena of terrorism and insurgency in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries. It will introduce you to the history of terrorism, from state sponsored terrorism in the Cold War period and urban terrorists in Western Europe to the emergence of radical Islamism in the form of Al-Qaeda and ISIS. You will explore the dilemmas of preserving democratic liberties whilst developing counter-terrorism strategies and assessing the necessity and effectiveness of anti-terrorism legislation in the UK, the US and beyond.

You will consider the wider political context and causes of radicalisation and terrorist violence, including the analysis of situations in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Syria and Iraq as well as an in-depth study of the geo-politics of the Middle EastStudents should acquire an in-depth knowledge and understanding of the history of terrorism since World War II, of modern insurgency and other sub-state conflicts, and theoretical and practical approaches to counterinsurgency, with in-depth knowledge of the cases of Iraq and Afghanistan.

By the end of the programme students should:

- Possess an in-depth knowledge and mastery of Security, Terrorism and Insurgency as a tool of analysis and critique.
- Demonstrate mastery in the use of generic and specialised research techniques in Security, Terrorism and Insurgency.
- Communicate ideas effectively in both written and verbal form.
- Possess the capacity to conduct in-depth and sustained independent enquiry in Security, Terrorism and Insurgency.
- Possess the capacity to evaluate and criticise existing research in Security, Terrorism and Insurgency.

Year1 - View timetable

[Learning Outcomes, Transferable (Key) Skills, Assessment]

Compulsory modules:

Candidates will be required to study the following compulsory modules:

PIED5512MInsurgency30 creditsSemester 2 (Jan to Jun)
PIED5570MTerrorism30 creditsSemester 1 (Sep to Jan)
PIED5800MDissertation60 creditsSemesters 1 & 2 (Sep to Jun)

Optional modules:

Candidates will be required to study 60 credits from the following optional modules:

PIED5213MConflict, Complex Emergencies and Global Governance30 creditsSemester 1 (Sep to Jan)
PIED5323MEuropean Defence and Security Analysis30 creditsSemester 1 (Sep to Jan)
PIED5400MThe Rise of China30 creditsSemester 2 (Jan to Jun)
PIED5410MContemporary Politics of the Middle East30 creditsSemester 2 (Jan to Jun)
PIED5527MTheories and Concepts in Global Political Economy30 creditsSemester 1 (Sep to Jan)
PIED5528MCapitalism in Practice30 creditsSemester 2 (Jan to Jun)
PIED5547MPopular Culture: World politics, Society and Culture30 creditsSemester 2 (Jan to Jun)
PIED5548MThe Responsibility to Protect30 creditsSemester 1 (Sep to Jan)
PIED5578MTheoretical Approaches in International Relations30 creditsSemester 1 (Sep to Jan)
PIED5580MClimate Security30 creditsSemester 2 (Jan to Jun)
PIED5626MGlobal Justice30 creditsSemester 2 (Jan to Jun)

Last updated: 30/06/2021 11:54:53


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