The Doctor of Global Security degree explores the complex global security environment, with a focus on the role actors play in the formulation and implementation of international, bilateral, and state policies and norms, and practices of global scope and concern. The program also addresses the impact of global security issues on domestic security and foreign policy.

The multidisciplinary curriculum integrates research and evidence-based solutions to the complex problems you face in your professional practice, and is designed to prepare you for leadership in the field. Strong emphasis is placed on conducting thorough program and policy evaluations that identify and analyze decisions beyond first order impacts, and on further cultivating your applied research skills at an advanced level. 

This doctoral program embraces a scholar-practitioner model of education. Courses are taught by highly credentialed and experienced instructors, many of whom hold key positions in government agencies or public safety organizations.

Degree Program Objectives

  • Analyze the academic and professional practice of global security.

  • Synthesize the major theories, approaches, and concepts relevant to the global security discipline.

  • Analyze complex issues and challenges related to the global security discipline.

  • Apply theories, approaches, and concepts to real-world examples related to global security.

  • Assess the impact of global security issues on domestic security and foreign policy.

  • Analyze the ideas, beliefs, language, culture, psychology and decision making of actors in the global environment.

  • Design research studies using appropriate qualitative and quantitative approaches for the global security discipline.

  • Operate according to ethical research and professional behavior guidelines in the global security discipline.

Core Requirements (30 semester hours)

  • GLBS710 - Seminar in Global Governance (3 semester hours): This seminar examines the role that global actors play in the formulation and implementation of policy, norms, and practice related problems of global scope and concern. Particular attention is paid to the implications for domestic and international security.  Year 1, Term 1.

  • SSGS711 - Psychology of Actors in the Global Environment (3 semester hours):  This seminar examines the role of theory and applies some of the major psychological theories and approaches, regarding individuals and groups in the global environment. These groups inform the understanding, communication, and decision making of global actors. This is the third program requirement.   Year 1, Term 1.

  • DOCT700 - Qualitative Methods (3 semester hours): This course provides an overview of methods used in qualitative research and its theoretical concepts. Elements of the research design such as ethics, developing research questions, sampling techniques, and data collection methods such as observation, interviews, documentary evidence, and audio-visual materials are addressed and applied. Year 1, Term 2.

  • SSGS712 - Nationalism and Identity (3 semester hours): This seminar analyzes contemporary theories of nationalism and identity. Students will examine the complexities of building a nation state: how diaspora groups challenge national identity, subnational groups threaten national cohesion, and gender relations reevaluate social hierarchies.  By utilizing modern case studies across Europe and the Middle East, participants will utilize multidisciplinary approaches to analyze the rise of contemporary nationalism. This is the fifth program requirement. Year 1, Term 2.
  • GLBS711 - Seminar in Global Security Issues (3 semester hours): This seminar provides an overview of select current issues of significance to global security faced by actors in the global community, and identifies how these challenges influence domestic and international security. It also focuses on the development of international, bilateral, and state solutions to them. Year 1, Term 3.

  • DOCT701 - Quantitative Methods (3 semester hours): This course provides an overview of the scientific method and methods used in quantitative research, addressing theoretical concepts and practical considerations. The basic elements of quantitative research design are examined and applied, including constructing research questions and hypotheses, defining and measuring concepts, identifying threats to validity and reliability, implementing sampling techniques, and designing research instruments. Experimental design, quasi-experimental design, survey research, and statistical research are covered. Year 1, Term 3. 

  • DOCT702 – Statistics (3 semester hours): This doctoral seminar provides an overview of basic statistical procedures used in quantitative research and their application. Its focus is to enable students to develop a foundation of basic statistical literacy. Students will assess the role of statistics in quantitative research and develop the competency to perform basic statistical calculations. Both descriptive and inferential statistics are addressed. Statistical concepts involving variables, sampling, analysis of variance, probability theory, inference, and the foundations of multivariate regression are addressed. Students will use gain competence in the SPSS statistical software program. Students will analyze data and research situations to interpret the meaning underlying the data, and how statistics can be used to address important research questions. Year 2, Term 1.

  • GLBS712 - Seminar in Emerging Global Security Issues (3 semester hours): This seminar provides an overview of select emerging complex issues of significance to global security faced actors in the global community, and identifies how these challenges influence domestic and international security.  It also focuses on the development of international, bilateral, and state solutions to them. Year 2, Term 1.

  • DOCT715 - Strategic Leadership (3 semester hours): This seminar examines classic and contemporary literature on best practices in leadership relevant to developing personal leadership skills, and also on the role of strategic leadership in developing a vision and strategy for an organization. Year 2, Term 2.
  • DOCT716 - Business and Financial Management (3 semester hours): This course will expose doctoral students to practical research in business and financial management. The emphasis will be on developing an integrated framework for understanding issues in financial management. The course will examine the fundamentals of financial management, models in corporate finance, and contemporary topics in financial research. Topics include the theory of the firm's choice, financial statement analysis, financial instruments, capital markets, project and corporate valuation, global finance operations, and ethics in finance. Year 2, Term 3.

Professional Practice Requirements (6 semester hours) 

  • DOCT703 - Professional Practice I (1 semester hour): During this seminar students will work with their faculty to plan out their semester. The seminar also lays the foundation for peer mentoring between cohorts. Students will be introduced to principles of the research process, collaboration, research ethics, and academic integrity. Year 1, Term 1.

  • DOCT704 - Professional Practice II (1 semester hour): During the course, students gain familiarity with the professional academic conference circuit, and presentation expectations.  Students will also begin to create their research framework based on dissertation interests. Students will begin background research for their second residency requirements. The course includes professional development for writing proposals and abstracts.Year 1, Term 2

  • DOCT705 - Professional Practice III (1 semester hour): The focus of this course is on final preparations for the 2nd year residency. All students will gain experience developing conference proposals. Peer reviewed presentations and communication skills will be a focus of this course. During the final weeks of the course students will schedule and complete their formal year one annual review which assesses their overall progress in their doctoral program of study. Year 1, Term 3.

  • DOCT706 - Professional Practice IV (1 semester hour): In this course, students begin pre-work on their dissertation proposal.  Students will gain additional insight into strategies for building their dissertation committees and will review year two and three program milestones.  Students will also receive additional training on the Institutional Review Board as well as on research grant writing.  Within this course students will be introduced to emotional intelligence and its impact on personal and professional development. Year 2, Term 1.

  • DOCT707 - Professional Practice V (1 semester hour): The focus of this course is on portfolio development and the dissertation proposal. Peer review will be critical to this process. Students will work in study groups to prepare for the upcoming portfolio defense. Within this course students will craft their portfolio to reflect doctoral learning outcomes and career aspirations. Students will also gain additional detail on the practicum planning process, and the development of personalized practicum learning objectives.  Finally, students will take a deeper look into emotional intelligence to include the different EQ-I elements and levels. Year 2, Term 2.

  • DOCT708 - Professional Practice VI (1 semester hour): Students will continue to work in study groups to prepare for their oral portfolio defense at the end of this course. Students will complete a portfolio reflection piece to help shape the portfolio and place the artifacts within the current body of knowledge. In preparation for the dissertation proposal defense, students will give a 3 Minute Thesis-style presentation to articulate the academic and professional practice significance of their doctoral work. To be eligible for their portfolio defense, students must have completed all required artifacts, to include the residency 2 requirement. Year 2, Term 3.

Elective Requirements (9 semester hours)

Select 3 courses from the following:

  • GLBS740 - Technology and Global Security (3 semester hours): This seminar focuses on advances related to science, technology, and innovation in the global environment.  It also examines on the impact that advances in science, technology, and innovation have on domestic and international security, and international, bilateral, and state strategies for addressing them.

  • GLBS741 - Health and Global Security (3 semester hours): This seminar examines the role that global actors play in the formulation and implementation of policy, norms, practice, and domestic and international consequences with regard to current and emerging priorities in global health to address the prevention of disease and the promotion of health. It also examines the impact that global health issues have on domestic and international security, and international, bilateral, and state strategies for addressing them.
  • GLBS742 -  Democracy, Governance, and Human Rights (3 semester hours): This seminar addresses the role that global actors play in formulation of policy, norms, and practice with regard to democracy, governance and human rights. It also focuses on the impact that these have on domestic and international security, and the international, bilateral, and U.S. strategies for addressing them.
  • GLBS743 - Political Economy and Global Security (3 semester hours): The seminar examines the role that global actors play in the formulation of policy, norms, and practice with regard to global economic security related priorities such as trade, monetary policy, foreign investment, development, foreign aid, and globalization. It also focuses on the impact that these have on domestic and international security, and international, bilateral, and state strategies for addressing these issues.

  • GLBS744 - Conflict Resolution (3 semester hours): This seminar examines different theories and approaches related to conflict.  It also addresses the impact conflict has on domestic and international security.  International, bilateral, and state strategies for addressing these challenges are also addressed.

  • GLBS745 Defense Security Cooperation (3 semester hours): This seminar examines defense and security cooperation such as training and education, foreign aid and military sales, alliances and multinational cooperation in the global environment, and how these factors impact global security, and in particular, U.S. national security.

  • GLBS790 - Independent Study (3 semester hours): This course is an opportunity to pursue an independent research project on a global security topic under the mentorship and direction of a faculty member. A research proposal and timeline must be submitted in advance of enrollment to the faculty member, and approved by the faculty member and Program Director. 
  • SSGS741 Big Data and Social Media Analysis (3 semester hours): Big data and social media have been promised to hold critical importance in the current generation of information technology, with applications ranging from business to academic to defense sectors.  Since the pervasiveness of open source data from social media is only increasing, the potential of big data to influence national security and intelligence studies has been trumpeted.  This course reviews the scope of big data sciences in the functioning of global communities/organizations and their overall impact factor on intelligence and global security scholarship.  It focuses not only on the supposed positives, but also on the inherent limitations of big data, which might affect organizations across a broad range of aspects: from the gathering of information to anticipating surprises to even evolving the hiring process for future analysts.  Students will also experiment within the course with producing their own forms of analysis utilizing big data and social media analytic techniques.

  • SSGS770 From Academics to the Profession: Publishing in the Social Sciences (3 semester hours): This professional writing seminar is an introduction to the complex world of academic writing and publication. It is designed to give students in the social sciences an opportunity to overcome anxiety about professional level writing and the publishing process.  Students in this course will gain practical experience in revising their work so that it may be submitted to a peer-reviewed journal for possible publication. Using Wendy Laura Belcher’s best-selling Writing Your Journal Article in Twelve Weeks: A Guide to Academic Publishing Success, the course explains the publication process to students and shares strategies for achieving success in the academic writing arena, including setting up a work schedule, identifying appropriate journals for submission, working with editors, writing query letters, clarifying arguments, and organizing material. In a supportive environment, participants revise a previously completed classroom paper, conference paper, thesis, or other work into a peer-reviewed article and submit it for publication. The goal of this workshop is to aid participants in taking their papers from classroom quality to conference, and ultimately, journal quality.

Residency Requirements (6 semester hours)

  • DOCT720 - Residency: Doctoral Program Foundations (2 semester hours): This course fosters interaction amongst students and introduces them to the Dean, Doctoral Studies Program Directors, Doctoral faculty, the Doctoral Advisor, and support staff. It also provides students an overview of the Doctoral Program and its requirements. Students must complete this course before beginning program coursework. Year 1, Term 1.
  • DOCT721 - Residency: Preparing for the Practicum and Dissertation (2 semester hours): This on-site course fosters interaction amongst student cohorts, program administrators, faculty, and support staff. A detailed overview of faculty research areas, collaborative research opportunities, and the dissertation proposal and dissertation requirements are provided. Students will present their practicum experiential learning plan for approval. With guidance from doctoral program staff, students also choose their dissertation chair. Year 3, Term 1.
  • DOCT723 - Residency: Foreign Experience (2 semester hours):

    This residency involves travel to an international country in order to be exposed    to another country significantly different from the United States. While there, students will collaborate with security related state and non-state officials and will work with a local group on a project related to global security. Students are also exposed to various landmarks that contribute to understanding the foreign culture visited. Year 2, Term 2.

Practicum Requirement (3 semester hours)

  • DOCT897 - Practicum (3 semester hours): The Practicum provides a hands-on experience in a professional environment. This is a supervised opportunity where academic skills and knowledge are applied to a professional environment.  Refer to Practicum guidelines in the Doctoral Manual. Year 3, Term 2.

Dissertation Requirement (variable semester hours)

  • DOCT894 - Dissertation Proposal Defense (3 semester hours): This seminar focuses on the framing and writing of part of the dissertation proposal. This includes analyzing and producing a comprehensive description of the problem/research question(s), a literature review, and detailed research design. By the end of this course students will defend their dissertation proposals. Year 3, Term 1.
  • DOCT899 – Dissertation (1 semester hour):  The dissertation is a comprehensive document that is an original contribution and one that advances theory, research, and practice in the global security discipline. The dissertation is written under the direction of the dissertation committee and students must be enrolled in the dissertation course to proceed to this stage. All program requirements and the proposal defense must be successfully completed before beginning the dissertation. This is a 16-week course and students must continuously enroll in the course until successful completion of the dissertation and scheduling of the defense. Refer to dissertation guidelines in the Dissertation Manual.

Program Milestones

Language Proficiency: Evidence of foreign language proficiency is required before the Dissertation Proposal Defense. We accept the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages reading assessment score of Intermediate mid-level, DoD score of intermediate or 1 (out of 1-3), Common European Framework of Reference rating of B1, or undergraduate foreign language coursework at the intermediate level (generally 202). Other language proficiency tests may be accepted at the discretion of the program. Note that undergraduate coursework will not count toward the doctoral program credits, and financial aid will generally not be available for this coursework.

  • Portfolio Defense: This is an oral defense of the portfolio to demonstrate mastery of disciplinary knowledge and the program learning outcomes for doctoral coursework.

  • Dissertation Proposal Defense: This is an oral defense of the dissertation proposal in order to receive dissertation committee approval of the dissertation concept and research plan.

  • Dissertation Defense: This is an oral defense of the complete dissertation at the conclusion of the research and writing process. Students must pass the dissertation defense, make any necessary revisions, and submit the final dissertation to the library before the doctoral degree can be conferred.

Total = 58 semester hours plus continuing registration for dissertation requirement