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Information on Master’s Degree Programs in National Security

Majors Overview November 8, 2015

This article talks about master’s degree programs in national security and their education requirements, coursework, career choices, job and wage outlook, and continuing education choices.

Master’s Programs in National Security

The political, economic, and military components needed to defend a nation or country against enemies is defined by the term, national security. Master’s degree programs in national security are available at some specialty schools, such as universities and colleges with substantial foreign affairs and political science programs.

Program coursework covers a wide array of subject areas, including comparative government, psychology, and criminal justice. The main focus of master’s programs is on issues in international affairs such as terrorism, diplomatic relations, and economic theories. Publicly supported institutions affiliated with the military are among the schools that often offer specific programs in national security.

Aspiring analysts, educators, and consultants enrolled in national security master’s degree programs are required to prepare a research-based presentation supervised by a faculty member assigned for the purpose.

Education Requirements

Admission criteria typically require incoming students to hold an accredited bachelor’s degree, in addition to submitting an essay, application, and processing fee.

Some form of standardized test, such as the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), is usually taken by applicants for admission. At some highly selective universities and colleges, potential students might be required to attend an admissions interview with a representative, such as an alumni.

Coursework

Program coursework often covers subject areas such as management, security, and international relations, and includes specific courses in media studies, intelligence studies, and foreign relations areas. Core coursework may cover topic areas such as:

•U.S. international relations
•Contemporary geopolitics
•Collecting intelligence
•Political warcraft
•Public diplomacy

Career Choices

Program graduates can seek jobs in industries related to government relations or weapons manufacturing. They may choose from possible job positions such as:

•Intelligence Analyst
•Military officer
•Government bureaucrat
•Educator
•Security consultant

Job and Wage Outlook

Over the 2012 – 2022 decade, a slower-than-average job growth has been predicted for intelligence analysts (categorized with criminal investigators and detectives) (U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics). In May 2013, these professionals brought in an average annual wage of $76,730.

Over the 2012 – 2022 decade, a slower-than-average job growth rate of 3-9% has been predicted for security management specialist jobs (classified as business operations specialist jobs) (BLS). In May 2013, these workers brought in a median annual wage of $66,090 (BLS).

Continuing Education Choices

Program graduates may seek continuing education by earning an additional graduate degree. Master’s, doctoral and professional degree programs are available at many schools in areas associated to national security such as law, economics, and business.

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In 2017, workers with a bachelor's degree or higher had almost twice as much
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