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Security Studies Advising


The Security Studies Certificate program takes a very broad approach to the concept of security, including not only military and national defense issues but also issues of human security including migration, human rights, international ethics, pandemics, conflict resolution, climate change, and environmental degradation.

Recommended Courses and Requirements for Minors and Programs

Suggested Curricular Flow Through the Major


INST/POSC 170: International Relations

Sophomore Year

INST/POSC 281: American National Security Policy
One or two SEST electives

Junior Year

Additional SEST electives
INST/POSC 281: American National Security Policy (if not taken sophomore year)

Senior Year

SEST Capstone Seminar*
Any other SEST requirements not completed

*Note: SEST capstone seminars include all sections of INST 401 (Fall semester only) and selected sections (consult Banner and your SEST advisor) of POSC 390. Occasionally other options are available (again, consult your advisor).

Additional Remarks

To date, most of the students who have pursued the Security Studies Certificate have come from Political Science or International Studies. But we actively encourage students from other departments and disciplines to investigate the Security Studies Certificate. Indeed, some of the most interesting combinations of interest and coursework may come from students who are pursuing majors in other social sciences (East Asian Studies, INBM, etc.) in the humanities (Religion, English, etc.) or in sciences (Biology, Physics, etc.)


Seven courses are required to complete the security studies certificate. At least three of the courses must be courses that do not count toward the student’s major.

Two Core Courses
INST 170/POSC 170: International Relations
INST 281/POSC 281: American National Security Policy

Four Elective Courses
Electives taken should come from a minimum of two departments and should be selected in consultation with one’s security studies advisor. Students may choose among a range of courses focusing on the following issues:

  • National security
  • Transnational security
  • Conflict resolution & security promotion
  • Human rights and human security

A Senior Capstone Seminar
A senior seminar in international studies or an approved seminar in another department is required.