National Security Studies, M.S.

The Professional Security Studies Department was jointly designated by the National Security Agency and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security as a National Center of Academic Excellence (effective for 2009-2014, extended to 2018, and renewed in 2018).

In the post-9/11 era, current and future leaders from all aspects of public safety, including law enforcement, security, fire service, emergency management, business, and public health, need to understand the concepts, theories and methods applicable to contemporary risk, terror and vulnerability. Students are increasingly pursuing educational avenues allowing them to function effectively in the new terror environment, where they are able to develop the competencies crucial to collaborate and coordinate with various organizational levels and disciplines.

In pursuit of the war on terror both at home and abroad, lack of long-term planning may be the most dangerous threat of all. New Jersey City University has demonstrated a long history of contemporary educational offerings. It is the only institution of higher education in the State of New Jersey offering a bachelor’s degree in Security, and did so long before the tragedy of 9/11. In considering the needs of current and future professionals in the field of Security, NJCU has initiated a strategy emphasizing prevention over response. It is time to create a common defense: a resilient generation of security professionals prepared to cope with a multitude of potential crises and scenarios. One vehicle of change is the development of rigorous, comprehensive academic programs incorporating intellectual debate, inclusion of diverse backgrounds, experience and views, and the development and demonstration of critical, practitioner-based competencies.

The degree programs are designed for practicing security leaders, as well as for those students who seek careers in this field. Courses are offered at New Jersey City University's main campus and online. Starting in Fall 2020 the degree can be fully completed online through distance-learning. 

Admission Requirements–Master’s Degree

Admission to the master’s in National Security Studies program requires that the applicant:

  1. Has completed a bachelor’s degree and;
  2. Has met all the minimum requirements of the Graduate Studies Office, including recent graduate admissions test results. (Currently, the GRE, GMAT, or MAT are accepted.)

Program Requirements

(36 credits)

This program requires 36 credits and allows students to specialize in one of three distinct areas:

National Security

Develop the ability to analyze the global complexities and implications of National Security policy, procedures, and operations with courses such as “Counterintelligence” and “Contemporary Counterterrorism.”

Corporate Security

Develop the ability to analyze and synthesize organizational continuity, emergency response and risk management policy and procedures with courses such as “critical incident command and response.”

Information Assurance/Cyber Security

Develop the ability to analyze and apply principles of information assurance/cyber security with courses such as “security and privacy of information and information systems,” and “information security strategy and policy development.”

Culminating Experience

Students must elect one of the following options:


As practical fulfillment of a master’s degree, the student has the option of completing a thesis. This option requires 30 credits of course work, plus an additional 6 credits of thesis supervision and the production of a master’s thesis of publishable quality.

Specialized Field Project

As practical fulfillment of a master’s degree, the student has the option of completing a culminating project. This option requires 30 credits of course work, plus an additional 6 credits of project supervision.

Final Comprehensive Examination

As practical fulfillment of a master’s degree, the student has the option of completing the comprehensive examination. This option requires 36 credits of course work.

36-credit program

Core Courses:15
SECU 600National Security3
SECU 605Corporate Security3
SECU 610Cyber Security3
SECU 615Graduate Research Methods I3
SECU 620Research Methods II3
Specialization (Select one area):9
SECU 625Counterintelligence3
SECU 630Domestic Terrorism and Extremist Groups3
SECU 635Contemporary Counterterrorism3
SECU 640Critical Incident Command and Response3
SECU 645Corporate Threat Definition and Vulnerability Analysis3
SECU 650Organizational Crisis Management3
SECU 655Computer Security Topics3
SECU 660Security, Privacy of Information and Information Systems3
SECU 665Information Security Strategy and Policy Development3

Students who complete this concentration and the core course, SECU 610, will be certified as Cyber Defense Graduate Officers under the authority of the National Security Agency, a certification program for information security professionals.

Culminating Experience (Master's Thesis plus six additional elective credits)12
SECU 670Thesis I3
SECU 675Thesis II3
SECU XXX Security Elective Course6


Specialized Field Project (plus six additional elective credits): *12
SECU 680Specialized Field Project6
SECU XXX Security Elective Course6

 The Specialized Field Project must be approved by a faculty committee and the Dean of the College of Professional Studies.


Final Comprehensive Exam (plus 12 additional elective credits): **
SECU XXX Security Elective Course12

To earn the degree, students must first fulfill all course requirements and then pass the Final Comprehensive Exam.

Additional Elective Courses
SECU 6483
SECU 661Global Threat Assessment: Public & Private Sectors3

Student Learning Outcomes

Upon completion of the National Security Studies Master program, students will be able to:

  1. Understand the importance of the role policy plays in the development of governmental, non-governmental and private sector organizational goals and objectives with regard to national security initiatives (AN)
  2. Demonstrate an understanding of national, corporate, and cyber theories and practices to analyze critical national security strategies (SWOT)
  3. Demonstrate superior executive level communication skills in both written and oral communications (COM)
  4. Critique organizational decisions made to eventually play a role in governmental, non-governmental, and private sector organizations (TM)