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Homeland Security

Master of Arts

The Master of Arts in Homeland Security offers an advanced-level understanding of homeland defense, intelligence methods, terrorism, weapons of mass destruction, consequence management, interagency government issues, emergency management, public health, and information security. Members of the homeland security enterprise – such as the Department of Homeland Security, state and local public safety entities, and large corporations – are aggressively searching for people who have the advanced education required to become intellectual and strategic leaders in this field. This degree program is designed to enhance your leadership skills and improve your knowledge of national security and defense in order to prepare you for employment as an analyst or manager in government agencies, the military, or similar organizations dedicated to protecting public safety.

This master's program is taught by highly credentialed and experienced instructors, many who hold key positions in government agencies or public safety organizations.

Program Courses

The curriculum for this program follows industry trends to help ensure relevancy to today's marketplace. View all courses.

Program Objectives

In addition to the institutional and degree level learning objectives, graduates of this program are expected to achieve program specific learning outcomes and be able to:

  • Evaluate specific domestic security challenges for the 21st century that face the United States and other industrialized nations.
  • Evaluate and propose changes at federal, state, and/or local levels, to reflect the evolving strategic policy issues associated with a statutory and presidential direction for.
  • Recognize terrorist group proclivities in order to forecast the risks, types, and orders of magnitude of terrorist threats most likely to confront the nation-state.
  • Define and describe by example the statutory, policy, strategy and legal differences between homeland security and homeland defense.
  • Describe the roles/missions of USNORTHCOM and the DSCA mission, and compare and contrast these with the DHS mission.
  • Recognize the interdisciplinary nature of homeland security functions and be able to assess and integrate various functional areas.
  • Evaluate existing policies, procedures and protocols by DHS and the inter-agency community to allow seamless agency integration through prevention, protection, incident response and recovery scenarios.
  • Validate literal and procedural alignment/compliance with the National Response Framework, National Incident Management System, and Homeland Security Presidential Directives (HSPDs).

View learning outcomes assessment results.

Degree at a Glance


Concentrations are designed to help you group courses together so you can further specialize in your field and pursue a more focused path to degree completion. You will be asked to select a concentration when you enroll in this program.

Explore the concentrations available for this program.


Business Administration

Analyzes the legal, regulatory, and compliance issues affecting managers in homeland security. Covers the decision-making and financial tools needed to conduct business analysis and to communicate possible solutions and implementation plans. Studies the role and function of leadership, and the impact of effective leaders on individuals, organizations and society.

Sample Courses

  • BUSN602 - Managerial Analysis
  • BUSN625 - Applied Decision Making
  • EDMG530 - Economics of Disaster
  • EDMG503 - Emergency and Disaster Planning and Management
  • BUSN620 - Strategic Management
  • MGMT605 - Leadership

Counter-Terrorism Studies

Delves into the causes of and threats from domestic and international terrorism. Covers counterterrorism intelligence methodologies and analytic tools, as well as the challenges, opportunities, and assumptions related to forecasting terrorism. Topics include analysis of terror groups from a political psychological perspective, problems presented by terrorism to U.S. national security, and links to terrorism from transnational crime and narcotics.

Sample Courses

  • INTL650 - Counterterrorism
  • INTL652 - Terrorism: Assessing the Past to Forecast the Future
  • NSEC614 - Political Psychology of Terror Groups
  • SCMT529 - International Terrorism
  • HLSS522 - Weapons of Mass Destruction and the New Terrorism
  • INTL646 - Transnational Crime and Narcotics

Criminal Justice

Examines the rule of law and its changes as they pertain to influencing and impacting social reactions to crime, corrections, and homeland security. Compares the new criminal threats of terrorism in relation to traditional criminal behavior theories. Topics include criminal justice major systems; interface between police, prosecution, courts, and corrections; and immigration law.

Sample Courses

  • LSTD512 - Immigration Law
  • LSTD510 - Constitutional Law
  • CMRJ524 - Organized Crime
  • CMRJ526 - Drug Cartels and the Narcotics Threat
  • INTL646 - Transnational Crime and Narcotics
  • CMRJ620 - Policing and Corrections in Homeland Security


Covers cyber intelligence from its nascent stages to its current operational and policy impact, including its effect on intelligence collection, operations, and analysis across America’s intelligence and defense communities. Topics include: Signals Intelligence (SIGINT) application to military and civilian intelligence questions; laws and ethics pertaining to intellectual property and right to privacy; and the collection of electronic evidence.

Sample Courses

  • LSTD517 - Law, Ethics and Cybersecurity
  • INTL621 - Signals Intelligence (SIGINT)
  • EDMG600 - Emergency Management Perspectives on Cybersecurity
  • INTL647 - Cyber Intelligence
  • NSEC506 - Cyber Policy and Practice in National Security
  • SCMT537 - Computer Crime
  • ISSC630 - Advanced Cybercrime Analysis
  • ISSC631 - Cyber Ethics: Privacy and Intellectual Property

Emergency Management and Public Health

Provides an overview of what is known about natural hazards, disasters, recovery, and mitigation; how research findings have been translated into policies and programs; and a sustainable hazard mitigation research agenda. Deals with the interaction, coordination, and facilitation between federal, state, and local agencies during preparation, response, and recovery operations. Also looks at public health management during disaster and crisis.

Sample Courses

  • EDMG515 - Hazard Mitigation and Resilient Communities
  • EDMG612 - Risk Communications
  • EDMG503 - Emergency and Disaster Planning and Management
  • EDMG509 - Interagency Disaster Management
  • PBHE605 - Quarantine
  • PBHE540 - Emergency Management Health and Medical Issues
  • PBHE606 - Disaster Health Management


This general concentration allows you to select from all concentration courses offered within this program, enabling you to create your own focused area of study. View course catalog for details.

View other concentrations in this program to see sample courses.

  • EDMG530 - Economics of Disaster
  • EDMG503 - Emergency and Disaster Planning and Management
  • INTL640 - Intelligence and National Security
  • SCMT529 - International Terrorism
  • HLSS505 - Security Risk Management

Intelligence Studies

Traces the evolution, structures, functions, capabilities, and activities of the national intelligence community, both pre- and post-9/11. Evaluates the intelligence cycle, including planning, data collection and exploitation, analysis, production, and dissemination. Threats to homeland security and techniques for improving cooperation and intelligence sharing among agencies are also covered.

Sample Courses

  • INTL501 - Strategic Intelligence
  • INTL502 - Collection
  • INTL507 - Intelligence Operations
  • INTL640 - Intelligence and National Security
  • INTL646 - Transnational Crime and Narcotics
  • INTL508 - Intelligence Analysis

Transportation Security

Upon successful completion of this concentration, the student will be able to:

  • Assess the various components of the maritime based transportation system as it related to the homeland security enterprise.
  • Apply economic principles to evaluate the performance of maritime transportation system.
  • Analyze the history, pattern, and impact of laws and regulation on the various modes of maritime based transportation in the United States.
  • Evaluate the importance of transportation at the organizational and national levels.

Sample Courses

  • TLMT600 - National Transportation Management
  • TLMT605 - Cargo Security Management
  • TLMT607 - Port and Terminal Operations
  • SCMT545 - Airport Security Design
  • HLSS505 - Security Risk Management
  • HLSS645 - Port Security

Admission Requirements

Please be prepared to submit a legible copy of your valid government-issued photo ID (civilian students) or government issued JST or CCAF transcript (military students) upon request.

An APU admissions representative will contact you with further details about how to submit the required documentation after you complete the enrollment application.

Need help?

Selecting the right program to meet your educational goals is a key step in ensuring a successful outcome. If you are unsure of which program to choose, or need more information, please contact an APU admissions representative at 877-755-2787 or

Graduate Tuition Rates 

Per credit hour: $350 | $325 with military grant*

View Tuition and Fees Details  

*To help minimize out-of-pocket costs, APU offers a tuition grant for U.S. active-duty servicemembers, Guard, Reserve, military spouses and dependents, and veterans. See all military-affiliated student benefits.

Paying for School

Because our university is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC), (the same as the Ohio State University, Univ. of Chicago, and U.S. Air Force Academy, to name a few), we can accept the following forms of financial aid and payments:

Ways to Save

Transfer Credits 

Accelerate your degree completion by taking full advantage of our transfer credit options, including credit for your previous college courses, military service schools, American Council on Education (ACE) and College Level Examination Program (CLEP) tests, and prior learning experiences.  

Employer Contributions

APU has educational partnerships with many employers and associations. Be sure to accurately enter your employer information when you complete our admissions application. Your employer might also offer a tuition reimbursement plan as one of your benefits.