Terrorism Prevention Degree Program Information

Oct 20, 2019

Essential Information

Degree programs related to terrorism prevention are more commonly referred to under a homeland security degree title. Graduates of a two-year associate's degree program might pursue entry-level employment or they could possibly transfer their credits to a four-year bachelor's degree program. Students of a bachelor's program can further their knowledge of homeland security and increase their capacity to handle emergency situations. They may also complete internships. While enrolled in a two-year master's-level program, students may develop their leadership abilities and participate in practicum experiences. At this level, applicants may need to be already working in homeland security to be considered for admission.

Associate of Applied Science in Homeland Security

Students who pursue an associate's degree in the homeland security field learn principles of criminal psychology, disaster relief and critical thinking. Although there are not usually specific prerequisites for entering an associate's degree program in this discipline, most schools require students to take a general placement exam and meet with an adviser before enrolling in classes. Students learn a combination of general education subjects, as well as concepts that are specific to homeland security. Common courses teach:

  • English composition
  • Emergency management techniques
  • Sociology
  • Homeland security law
  • Data analysis

Bachelor of Science in Homeland Security

Enrollees enhance their skills in conflict resolution, global policies and emergency preparedness. They gain an acute understanding of terrorism risk factors within the modern world and learn practical ways to counteract terrorism. Students also learn how to function efficiently in a team environment to solve problems and increase public safety. As with the associate's degree program, admissions candidates are not generally required to fulfill any educational prerequisites for this major beyond what is normally required to enroll. Students develop analytical skills that prepare them to react quickly in emergency situations and recognize potential terrorism threats. They often have the opportunity to participate in an internship program. Coursework may include:

  • Cross-cultural awareness
  • Homeland security legal concerns
  • Disaster preparedness
  • International politics
  • Criminal psychology

Master of Science in Homeland Security

Students who choose to enroll in a master's-level program strengthen previously learned skills by participating in practicum opportunities. They also attend lectures that focus on the development of leadership skills and successful implementation and development of counter-terrorism strategies. Some programs require applicants to already be employed in a homeland security position. Letters of recommendation, educational transcripts and personal statements are also usually required. Students learn the complex global aspects that trigger terrorism acts and become equipped with tools to provide defense with an emphasis on public safety and border security. Coursework may address:

  • History of terrorism
  • Weaponry training and awareness
  • Principles of bio-terrorism
  • Terrorism characteristics
  • Stress and trauma management

Popular Career Options

Career paths exist for those who like to work on the front lines, as well as within administrative roles. Associate's degree graduates may find careers with the federal government. Options may include:

  • Border patrol employee
  • Private security guard
  • Airport security checkpoint guard

Those who decide to pursue a bachelor's degree can begin a variety of careers, including:

  • Contingency planner
  • Facilities manager
  • Law enforcement member

Those with master's degrees are equipped to enter into a variety of fast-paced careers such as:

  • Computer scientist
  • Policy analyst
  • Criminal investigator

Employment Outlook and Salary Information

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that detective and criminal investigator positions were predicted to grow by 3% from 2018-2028. Detectives and criminal investigators earned an average yearly salary of $85,020 in May 2018. Operations research analyst jobs were projected to grow 26% from 2018-2028. These professionals earned a mean annual wage of $88,350 in May 2018.

Those interested in terrorism prevention may start with an Associate of Applied Science in Homeland or Bachelor of Science in Homeland Security. Those who wish to secure a higher-level position may go on to earn a Master of Science in Homeland Security.

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