Online Bachelor of Arts in Security Studies
- All-new, convenient fully online security studies bachelor’s degree offered through UTEP Connect
- Flexible study options that fit busy work and family schedules
- Study of complex security problems facing the United States
- Strong foundational curriculum with a focus on real-world security challenges
The University of Texas at El Paso (UTEP) is excited to offer this security degree online—an all-new learning opportunity to students interested in national and international security issues. This is a brand-new program developed with funding from the Department of Homeland Security, Science and Technology Directorate. The fully online format is convenient and allows working professionals and military personnel the opportunity to balance schoolwork with other responsibilities.
WHY A SECURITY STUDIES DEGREE ONLINE?
The need for highly qualified and competent security personnel is growing—this is why UTEP created its unique security studies bachelor's degree program. Students interested in working with homeland security, local law enforcement or cyber security will find security studies ideal. Many entry-level personnel in these areas, plus those in the military, also find that earning a degree in security studies could help them with career advancement.
The curriculum has been designed with security and intelligence agencies and the military in mind. A security studies bachelor's degree could help students:
- Advance within law enforcement, the national security enterprise, or the armed forces
- Play a key part on the security team of a corporation
- Work with national intelligence
- Secure sensitive data belonging to corporations or government
The government is a big employer in this area. Typical government employers include:
- Central Intelligence Agency
- Defense Intelligence Agency
- Department of Defense
- Department of Homeland Security
- Department of State
- Drug Enforcement Administration
- Federal Bureau of Investigation
- National Geospatial Intelligence Agency
- National Security Agency
Types of positions graduates might hold include:
- Customs and border protection officer
- Military officer
- Cyber security specialist
- Emergency management specialist
- Intelligence collector
- Federal special agent
- Risk analyst
- Intelligence analyst
- Defense program analyst
- Corporate security consultant
- Security operations manager
The UTEP Career Center can assist graduates with a number of resources to help them pursue their career goals in the field of security studies.
All of our faculty in the security studies program have practical experience in cyber security, homeland security, intelligence and national security, and security operations. They have designed the curriculum to meet the needs of the security and intelligence agencies and the military and will teach students a solid theoretical foundation plus critical thinking skills key for success in the industry. Our faculty also belong to the federally sponsored UTEP National Security Studies Institute —An Intelligence Community Center for Academic Excellence (IC CAE). This is a national recognition without equal in the field of security studies and separates this from all other similar programs, regardless of format.
The University of Texas at El Paso and its access and excellence mission are redefining public higher education not only in Texas, but also across the nation. At UTEP, we believe that an accessible and affordable education should be available to all. Online degrees such as these help make higher education a possibility for those who are unable to come to campus because of other responsibilities. Here’s what sets UTEP apart:
- UTEP is one of the major economic engines in the Paso del Norte region, adding $1.4 billion to the local economy annually.
- UTEP enrolls more than 25,000 students – about 80% of them Hispanic – and is the only doctoral research university in the nation with a majority Mexican-American student body. With its 36%-Hispanic faculty composition, UTEP also boasts one of the highest proportions of minority faculty among research universities in the United States.
- UTEP has attained a coveted R1 designation (top tier doctoral university with very high research activity) in the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education. UTEP is one of only 130 (4.5%) top tier universities among the 2,883 four-year higher education institutions across the U.S. to earn this prestigious R1 distinction, joining the ranks of such universities as Stanford, M.I.T., Michigan, Arizona and California-Berkeley.
- With $90 million in total annual research expenditures, UTEP ranks third among University of Texas System academic institutions in federal research spending. Funding is received from the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, the Department of Energy, the Environmental Protection Agency, National Endowment for the Humanities and other agencies.
- UTEP is ranked as the best return on investment and one of the most affordable emerging research institutions in higher education in the country according to collegecost.ed.gov. Also, per collegescorecard.ed.gov, the average net price per year at The University of Texas at El Paso was significantly lower than other universities across Texas.
- Affordableschools.net also ranks UTEP as one of the top most affordable Latinx/Hispanic-Serving Institutions with online bachelor’s degrees.
- UTEP awards $88 million in scholarships annually and $192 million in financial aid (over 88% of UTEP students receive financial aid).
- The Brookings Institution in 2017 ranked UTEP as the No. 1 leader in equal access to higher education, based on a combination of research productivity and student social mobility.
- The Carnegie Corporation of New York also recently recognized the University for its institutional vision and commitment to quality, diversity, curricular innovation and investment in our community.
- UTEP is a part of the Military Times’ Best: Colleges 2018 rankings.
- Hispanic Business magazine consistently ranks graduate programs in both Business Administration and Engineering in the Top 10 in the nation.
- UTEP is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools (SACS).
ONLINE SECURITY STUDIES BACHELOR'S DEGREE CURRICULUM
The online security studies bachelor's degree has a comprehensive curriculum that provides a broad understanding of complex security problems and the relevancy of real world applications. It is our intention to give UTEP security studies graduates a competitive edge by providing the domain knowledge and analytical skills in demand by federal and private security employers.
Students take a full complement of required courses in English, mathematics, literature, social science, science, the arts, history, economics and other core subjects that provide a broad general education foundation. Click here to see the core curriculum.
The Bachelor of Arts in Security Studies explores the foundations of security studies in all its dimensions— geographic, historical, theoretical and strategic. Effective writing and quantitative skills are also emphasized as you ready yourself for advanced coursework in the following areas:
|History and Security||Gain an introduction to history and security in the long twentieth century (ca.1870-2000); specifically examine major wars, diplomatic initiatives and military developments that proved significant to the international state system and develop a critical foundation for more advanced courses in security studies.|
|Geography and Security||Examine why geographic knowledge is critical to U.S. national security. Analyze a wide variety of geographic issues including demography and climate change. Explore the geographic manifestations of terrorism and discuss the geographic importance of China, Russia, and Africa in the contemporary security environment.|
|Modern Strategy||Focus on the application of power through strategy. Informed by theory and history, the use of military power is the primary focus, but you will also discuss and apply three other primary instruments of power: diplomatic, economic, and informational. You will learn to distinguish between hard versus soft power in the conduct of strategy and look at major challenges that impact the making of strategy: nuclear warfare, asymmetric warfare, and the changing environments across the domains of land, sea, air, space and cyberspace.|
|Security Studies||Examine security from a global perspective and discuss security issues that transcend borders and which can only be adequately addressed through global security cooperation. Most of these global security issues are non-traditional in the sense that they are not directly related to traditional nation state competition and interstate war. Learn about the concept of “global security” and explore the key theories, concepts, and issues that fall under its domain, such as realism, liberalism, great power politics, regional issues and asymmetric conflict.|
|Writing for Security Professionals||Learn how to employ specific stylistic requirements and lucid prose in order to communicate efficiently and clearly as a security professional in this undergraduate writing course. Use a “learning by doing” model to become skilled at conveying information to national security consumers in writing using both the Bottom Line Up Front (BLUF) paragraph format and the Conclusion Centric report format. Learn to write in a way that is accurate, brief and coherent.|
|Statistics for Security Studies||Examine the basic statistical methods and the analytical techniques highly useful in security studies. Applications come from relevant intelligence and security examples. You will learn to illustrate the benefits of statistical thinking and develop a deeper conceptual understanding of complex security problems.|
|Seminar in Intelligence and National Security Studies||Study the process of intelligence and its role specifically in U.S. national security. Gain exposure to the theory and practice of intelligence. Special emphasis is placed upon understanding the major issues and challenges associated with the various intelligence disciplines and the organization of the U.S. Intelligence Community. At the end of the course, gain a better understanding of intelligence and be prepared to conduct more advanced study as it pertains to intelligence and national security.|
|Seminar in Homeland Security||Gain an introduction to the history and organization of the Homeland Security Enterprise, particularly in terms of national, state and local policymaking. Examine all threats and hazards that confront the United States with a special emphasis on specific responses to terrorism; also study broader issues of emergency planning, risk analysis, incident command, and the protection of civil liberties.|
|Cyberspace and National Security||Critically examine the ubiquitous nature of the cyber domain in U.S. national security. Study fundamental principles and case studies in cyber warfare to learn the importance of cyber power in national military strategy and in joint and combined operations, including defensive and offensive operations in cyberspace. Explore Russian and Chinese cyber warfare capabilities and operations in particular in addition to newly emerging threats from non-state actors.|
|Security Operations||Explore the fundamental principles of security operations and security management in the post-9/11 era with a special emphasis on personnel security, physical security, information security and industrial security. Also learn about risk assessment and management strategies within the context of homeland security environment.|
|Intelligence Collection and Analysis||Review the collection methodologies and analytic processes of U.S. intelligence agencies. Begin with a description of the basic collection disciplines and examples of their application in the field and move on to the processes and products of intelligence analysis. You will also apply the tools of analysis, including structure analytic techniques, to a current national security issue.|
|Intelligence and Transnational Threats||Study a wide variety of transnational threats/dangers and the actors, activities, or forces involved in their conduct; their impact on U.S. national security and the special challenges they pose for the Intelligence Community. Examine specific transnational threats such as WMD proliferation, terrorism, narcotics, and financial crime as both unique and interrelated phenomena. Conclude with an assessment of the Intelligence Community’s attempts to deal with these fluid and adaptable threats to our security.|
|Ethics and Security||Get a brief introduction to moral philosophy with a primary focus on applied ethics relevant to many aspects of national security. Study military ethics, intelligence ethics and bioethics; gain an awareness and sensitivity to ethical issues that you may encounter in daily work and learn how to resolve these complicated moral issues.|
|Critical Infrastructure Protection||Examine the various fields of security protection, corporate security, asset protection, vulnerability and risk assessments with an emphasis on security management concepts, target hardening and other proactive activities for protecting critical infrastructures: the people, physical assets, and the communications/cyber systems that are indispensably necessary for both homeland and national security.|
|Cybersecurity||Study a wide range of cybersecurity concepts; topics include: computing, networking, and internetworking fundamentals; cyber threats and attack vectors; malware; risk analysis; and continuity planning. Learn about information security concepts such as access control, authentication, encryption, computer and network forensics, and security in Linux and Windows environments are covered. Also examine important legal issues related to information, computer, and network security. For students entering non-technical security careers, but who still need a basic understanding of how to protect information systems.|
|Senior Capstone||Synthesize student learning across the entire Security Studies curriculum in this capstone course. Produce a formal research paper with distinct applicability for U.S. national security to demonstrate a broad understanding of the theories, facts, and methods in this discipline. Focus your research on a critical security issue as a final preparation for future graduate studies or employment.|