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Course content

About the course

Intelligence and security policy issues are now one of the fastest growing areas of academic and public concern, especially since '9/11' and the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Today more than ever before national governments, international agencies and most major international corporations have an identified need for staff with a strong grasp of intelligence and security issues who can also demonstrate first-rate skills of research and assessment.

Taught by the internationally respected scholars of the Brunel Centre for Intelligence and Security Studies, backed up where required by practitioner expertise, the MA in Intelligence and Security Studies offers a unique opportunity for practical, policy-oriented graduate study of intelligence issues applicable across the private and public sectors around the world.

Attendance for lectures full-time: 2 days per week - for 24 weeks
Attendance for lectures part-time: 1 day per week - for 24 weeks (in each of 2 years)

Aims

This course will be of value to individuals seeking to go into security-oriented careers in both the private and public sectors. It is suitable to individuals engaged in the security professions who seek further qualifications and professional enhancement.

A distinctive feature of the course lies in its combining the rigorous study of intelligence and security policy studies with practical opportunities to develop intelligence skills through case studies and simulation exercises dealing with intelligence analysis.

Course Content

The professionally-oriented course is offered on either a full-time basis, taught over two terms and a dissertation during the summer, or part-time basis taught over four terms with the dissertation completed during the summer of the second academic year.

The MA consists of both compulsory and optional modules, a typical selection can be found below. Modules can vary from year to year, but these offer a good idea of what we teach.

Compulsory modules:

Intelligence Concepts: Issues and Institutions
Intelligence History: Failure and Success
Contemporary Threats and Analytical Methodology
Intelligence and Security Studies Project

Optional modules:

Intelligence Analysis Foundations, Methods and Applications
Counterintelligence and Security

Assessment

All modules are taught on the basis of lectures, seminars and directed reading. Additionally, the second term Case Studies course is a student-led seminar programme in which participants present detailed case studies and are peer reviewed on their presentation skills.
The second term Analytical Simulation Exercise will involve students working in groups in a simulated joint, all-source intelligence assessment modelled on the actual joint assessment processes in the US and UK governments. Students are assessed on a mixture of individual and group work.

Special Features

The Brunel Centre for Intelligence and Security Studies is Britain's first academic centre dedicated to intelligence scholarship and policy-analysis. It includes one of Britain's most innovative scholars in the field, Dr Philip H J Davies, as well Dr Kristian Gustafson (director of the MA programme), an expert on covert action and military intelligence doctrine.

The newest member of staff is Mohamed Gaballa. An alumni of this course, he is a specialist in Structured Analytic Techniques, with a focus on Analysis of Competing Hypothesis.

The former senior military imagery analyst, Geoff Oxlee, OBE, joined BCISS as an Honorary Fellow and completes the core team.

Together, these scholars not only produce important original research, published worldwide, but actively contribute to the success of government and business in the UK.

The Centre, though, is an inter-disciplinary endeavour, and includes participation from some of the leading Brunel University London academics in the fields of cryptography, computer networking, imagery, economics and even law. Many of these experts already assist our teaching.

The centre also benefits from the assistance, from time to time, of various officials of Her Majesty’s Government.

The degree, therefore, benefits from practitioner input and insight as well as instruction by leading international academics.

Visit the Intelligence & Security Studies - MA page on the Brunel University London website for more details!

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