Skip to main content
Counterterrorism people
Graduate Certificate in


This 12-credit certificate program consists of four required courses.

After completing this certificate, you may only need to take an additional seven courses to obtain Penn State's 33-credit online Master of Professional Studies in Homeland Security — Counterterrorism Option, if you apply and are granted admission into the master's program.

Course List — Graduate Certificate in Counterterrorism 

Courses (12 credits)
Title Abbreviation Description Credits
Root Causes of Terrorism PLSC 836 Investigates the role that economic, political, and social factors play in determining patterns of international and domestic terrorism and terrorist activity with an eye to diagnosing root causes of terrorism and informing counterterrorism policy. The course also contains prominent case studies of the root causes of terrorism and provides an overview of major terrorist threats in world regions.  3 credits
Counterterrorism PLSC 569 Surveys the history, evolution, strategies, techniques, tools, and contemporary issues related to counterterrorism in the world today. The course has a comparative focus, examining both U.S. counterterrorism and counterterrorism in other states and contexts. The course makes use of specific case examples of counterterrorism and engages normative/ethical debates on counterterrorism. 3 credits
Tools and Analysis of Terrorism and Counterterrorism PLSC 838

Introduces students to the various resources and analytical techniques available to terrorism and counterterrorism experts today. It introduces them to the major sources of data on terrorist groups, terrorist incident reports, risk climates, and legal and criminal justice data surrounding terrorism and counterterrorism. It provides students with critical data-gathering and analysis skills useful to practitioners and engages them in reporting and threat-briefing exercises. 

Prerequisite: Students must complete PLSC 569 or PLSC 836 or PLSC 837 BEFORE taking PLSC 838.

3 credits
Radicalization, Counter-Radicalization, and De-Radicalization PLSC 837 Provides a comprehensive summary of the factors that promote the radicalization process, as well as the theoretical and practical foundations of efforts at counter-radicalization and de-radicalization. 3 credits

Students must maintain a minimum grade point average of 3.0 (B) throughout the program.

Course Availability

If you're ready to see when your courses will be offered, visit our public LionPATH course search (opens in new window) to start planning ahead.

Old Main at Penn State

Ready to Learn More?

Get the resources you need to make informed decisions about your education. Request information on this program and other programs of interest by completing this form.

* required 1/3

I agree to be contacted via phone, email, and text by Penn State World Campus and affiliates. Privacy Policy. reCAPTCHA protected. Google Privacy Policy and Terms of Service.