This 36-credit Master of Science degree is composed of 8 Required Core Courses and 4 Elective Courses. Within the Required Core Courses is the culminating experience of a Capstone course.

Core Courses - Required

Complete all 8 courses.

• Enroll in "The Art & Practice of Intelligence" during your first semester.
• Enroll in "Capstone: Current Issues in Intelligence" during your final semester, and ensure "Research Seminar" is completed in a prior semester.

This course introduces students to the field of intelligence, particularly as practiced in the United States. After a brief overview of the historical foundations of modern intelligence, it discusses how intelligence is conducted including collection, analysis, counterintelligence, covert action, and oversight. It also discusses intelligence ethics, as well as the disruptive influences of September 11, new technologies, and emerging social trends.

Intelligence analysis is fundamentally about understanding and communicating to decision makers what is known, not known, and surmised, as it can best be determined. Students will read seminal texts on intelligence analysis, discuss the complex cognitive, psychological, organizational, ethical, and legal issues surrounding intelligence analysis now and in the past, and apply analytic methodologies to real-world problems.

Critical thinking involves the methods and principles of correct reasoning and argumentation. Students will apply a combination of logic, critical thinking skills, and structured analytical techniques to identify biases, promote self-reflective reasoning, and improve the quality of intelligence analysis. Using a selection of empirical case studies and operational exemplars, students will conduct a comparative assessment of analytical outcomes based on the application of course learnings versus outcomes derived in their absence.

This course examines the role that strategic culture plays in intelligence analysis. Students leverage strategic culture analysis to better understand the policies and responses of foreign actors to U.S. policies, increase accuracy in intelligence analysis, and enhance predictive and forecasting capabilities. The course will also highlight the role that U.S. strategic culture plays in responding to foreign actors. Using case studies and current operational scenarios from the U.S. intelligence community, students will decipher nation-states’ and transnational entities’ motives, intent, and capabilities, as well as their ability to actualize political ideologies.

This course will address the ethical dilemmas and issues that challenge intelligence and government decision makers in an increasingly complex operational and technological environment. We will examine basic moral, ethical and privacy considerations at several key points in intelligence operations from collection to covert action. The course will analyze the evolving nature of privacy concerns worldwide, with an emphasis on the balance between individual rights and national security. Students will examine the policy implications inherent in seeking to address these tensions. The readings will include diverse and opposing viewpoints as well as practicums and simulations to allow debate of the key positions. Prior enrollment in 406.665 "The Art and Practice of Intelligence" or 470.711 "Intelligence: From Secrets to Policy" is strongly encouraged.

This course examines the major theories of organizational leadership and their application in the intelligence community. The course will explore structural, human resource, political, and symbolic frameworks for interpreting organizational issues; the psychology of intelligence organizations; the role of organizational culture; performance measurement; and the intersection of knowledge, motivation, and organizational capacity in formulating effective responses to challenges of internal integration and external adaptation.

This course will introduce a variety of research, analytical, and statistical methods intended to provide a basis for designing a research project, including an introduction to quantitative, qualitative, and mixed method research design. Within the context of the course, students will complete foundational work for the capstone project, including identifying and accessing relevant primary and secondary source data, surveying and evaluating the literature, and framing a research question based on the intersection of empirical studies and organizational needs. Special consideration will be given to the unique restrictions placed on research design and publication within the intelligence community. As the culminating assignment in the course, students will formulate and submit a final capstone research design for faculty review and approval.

Pre-requisite: 473.800 Research Seminar. In this culminating course, students complete an independent, faculty-approved project that will address a substantive or methodological challenge in intelligence analysis. A successful capstone will include research that provides evidence of the student’s mastery of the theoretical knowledge and analytical skills central to the degree’s learning outcomes. The capstone provides an opportunity to apply the skills acquired throughout the program to a key challenge facing their organization or community. Students will conduct a literature review, select a research method appropriate to their study, analyze data using qualitative or quantitative methods in their capstone project, and propose and defend their findings.

Elective Courses

Select 4 courses:

This class will examine the interplay between the laws and the practices and policies of the United States’ Intelligence Community and national security system, both foreign and domestic. While discussion of the history of intelligence activities and laws dating from the origins of our colonial days will necessarily shape the framework of the class, the focus shall particularly be on current debates and challenges faced by the United States in the 21st Century.

This course provides students with an overview of intelligence structures within the Five Eyes community (US, UK, Canada, Australia, New Zealand). It covers both foreign and domestic agencies, be they civilian, military or police; HUMINT or SIGINT- enabled; security-intelligence or foreign-intelligence oriented; and tactically or strategically-focused. The course will compare how the various Five Eyes security or intelligence services set priorities and objectives, define national interests (versus shared requirements), develop tactical intelligence, create actionable insights, and how they craft timely and relevant assessments for both domestic and foreign partners. Students are expected to be able to draw conclusions on the value of different types of intelligence, from tactical operations intended to mitigate threat to life cases, to strategic insights relating to proliferation or espionage cases. Upon completing the course, students will understand the dynamics that exist amongst operators and analysts, as well as partners within and outside of the alliance, between domestic intelligence clients and foreign agencies, in regards to sensitive national interests and those of the international partnership.

Know the enemy and know yourself; you need not fear the result in a hundred battles." This quote from Sun Tzu's The Art of War, written roughly 300 B.C.E., and at a time when war was fought in only two domains, remains one of the most important dictums in military doctrine. This course will address the how and why of understanding foreign military capabilities, the seven warfare domains at play today, the impact of innovation, and the implications when analysis is wrong. Students will also obtain visibility into topical issues such as logistical analysis, medical threats to forces, denial and deception, and the critical role of biographic analysis. The course will include several case studies, such as the 2022 Russia-Ukraine conflicts, and offer student opportunities to test their skills in intelligence briefings and writing for decision-makers.

Intelligence exists outside of government, and its application in the private sector is rapidly expanding. This course introduces students to private sector intelligence, exploring how intelligence tradecraft is applied in corporate environments to mitigate risks to people, assets, and operations, and to support better corporate decision-making. Looking beyond government outsourcing to intelligence applied within the private sector, for the private sector, this course examines security and geopolitical intelligence, including travel security, protective intelligence, and strategic intelligence in support of business decision-making. Students will come away from the course with a broader picture of potential career paths for intelligence professionals outside of traditional national security roles, a nuanced understanding of private sector intelligence, and an appreciation for the similarities and contrasts between the practice of intelligence in the private sector and in the intelligence community.

This course covers the application of technologies to intelligence collection. It includes remote sensing technology as applied in geospatial intelligence (GEOINT), measurements and signatures intelligence (MASINT) and signals intelligence (SIGINT). It examines the tradeoffs associated with the use of different imaging, radar, and passive radiofrequency sensors and collection platforms. It also addresses a number of specialized but increasingly important collection methods such as cyber intelligence, materials and materiel collection, and biometrics. The methods for processing, exploiting and analyzing raw intelligence are discussed. The final segment of the course investigates the management issues associated with technical intelligence collection.

This course describes and assesses the role played by intelligence in the formation of national security policy, with a particular emphasis on the relationship between intelligence and policy. It is important to understand that this relationship pervades the entire intelligence process, from requirements through collection, analysis and also operations. Policy makers are broadly defined to include the Executive Branch, Congress and, on occasion, the courts. The course reviews the steps of the intelligence process in detail, assessing the roles played by policy makers and intelligence officers. This course is designed to give students an appreciation and understanding of the role played by intelligence in support of policy, as well as the stresses and strains that exist between intelligence and policy, and within intelligence itself.

This course covers the art and practice of human intelligence, with a special focus on human intelligence operations (HUMINT), counterintelligence (CI) considerations, spy motivations, covert action, and how it contributes to United States policymakers’ decision-making. It will review the authorities behind these actions and the tools (tradecraft) involved in these essential intelligence activities. The course will feature relevant case studies based on practitioners' experiences and interviews with selected former CIA and intelligence officers.

This course provides students with an intellectual foundation for understanding the concepts underpinning homeland security intelligence, as well as an overview of the US national homeland security framework including organization and policies. It examines the underlying intellectual constructs used to frame the comprehension of security issues, intelligence based on those issues and the development of policies and strategies that lead to implementing programs that protect the United States infrastructure and its people from attack. Over the term, students will be challenged to examine the various paradigms that shape homeland security intelligence and critically apply them to contemporary homeland security challenges and examine how well or poorly these paradigms are reflected in current responses, organizations and policies.

Students should be aware of state-specific information for online programs. For more information, please contact an admissions representative.

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