Homeland Security and Defense - Curriculum 691

Academic Associate

Carolyn C. Halladay, Ph.D.

Code 38, Glasgow Hall, Room 396

(831) 656-6256, DSN 756-6256


Brief Overview

Homeland Security and Defense provides military officers with a theoretical and practical understanding of unconventional threats within the framework of the U.S. domestic security environment, and organizational strategies to deal with such threats. It explores the Department of Defense's primary role in deterring and preventing attacks on the territory of the United States and in consequence management should such attacks occur. The strategic interests and objectives of the United States; the roles missions, structures, and effectiveness of U.S. Homeland Security organizations and intelligence organizations, as well as potential threats to U.S. domestic security are examined.


Students may enter in any quarter. Please refer to the Academic Calendar for quarterly start dates.

Program Length

For U.S. Navy students who wish to complete JPME Phase I while in residence, curriculum 691 is a six-quarter (18-month) program. For all other students, curriculum 691 is a five-quarter (15-month) program.


The minimum APC requirement for entry to this program is 265.


Master of Arts in Security Studies (Homeland Security and Defense)


Navy P-Codes: 2600P

Typical Subspecialty Jobs

Intelligence Officer

Plans Officer, Staff Planner

Various Joint Command Positions

Service Headquarters-Homeland Defense/Critical Infrastructure Protection

Major Staff Jobs in Combatant Commands and Fleet Commands

Curriculum Requirements

Students in curriculum 691 must complete four (4) disciplinary core courses, as follows:

Course NumberTitleCreditsLecture HoursLab Hours
NS3005Great Power Conflict in Modern History



NS3011Research and Writing for National Security Affairs



NS3023Introduction to Comparative Politics



NS3024Introduction to International Relations



In addition, students must complete a minimum of nine (9) curricular core and elective courses in their regional specialization, of which at least three (3) must be at the 4000-level.


Homeland Security and Defense students must complete (5) curricular core courses, as follows:

Course NumberTitleCreditsLecture HoursLab Hours
NS3181Introduction to Homeland Defense and Security



NS3802Counter-terrorism Policy in Comparative Perspective



NS4157Intelligence for Homeland Defense and Security



NS4941National Security Law for Homeland Security and Defense



NS4721/OS4621Critical Infrastructure Analysis and Defense



The additional courses needed to satisfy these requirements, and the quarters when they are offered, can be found on the NSA website at https://www.nps.edu/web/nsa/.

Students are also required to take sufficient general electives to maintain a full-time course load (16 hours). The number of general elective slots will vary somewhat depending upon service affiliation and sponsor requirements.

Students in curriculum 691 must complete NS4080, Thesis Proposal, no later than six months prior to intended graduation. Thereafter students may enroll in NS0810, Thesis Research, up to three times; or they may take additional course work in their area of specialization, with the permission of the Academic Associate.

Educational Skill Requirements (ESR)

  1. Basic Graduate Level Skills
    1. Conduct Research: Assemble information from the full range of data sources to understand international political, economic, and military issues.
    2. Analyze Problems and Demonstrate Critical Thinking: Frame issues as research questions; logically combine evidence and theory to analyze and explain international political, economic, and military developments; and formulate innovative solutions to strategic problems.
    3. Communicate Information: Clearly summarize large quantities of information and persuasively present positions and courses of action using a broad range of verbal and written communications formats, including short oral arguments, visual briefs, policy memos, position papers, and comprehensive student theses.
  2. General Political Science, International Relations, and Security Studies
    1. Great Power Competition: Analyze the factors shaping the new era of increasing geopolitical competition among the major powers.  Understand Chinese and Russian activities and potential U.S. responses across all dimensions of power, including diplomacy, economic competition, influence campaigns, and traditional military force. 
    2. International and Comparative Politics: Understand international relations theories, including realist, liberal, and cultural paradigms; the conditions and world views that shape state interactions in the international system; the history of modern nationalism and the state system; and the roles of domestic politics, non-state actors, and transnational social movements in shaping international politics.
    3. International Economy: Understand the economic factors that shape the international security environment, including the economic dimensions of national security policy and the ways in which economic policies and interests affect military strategy and force structure.
    4. International and Military History: Grasp the principal causes of war in the modern era, and understand the political, technological, economic, and other influences that have governed its conduct; understand the social, political, economic, and cultural forces that have contributed to periods of stable peace; and analyze relations between states, including negotiations of peace settlements, military alliances, arms limitation agreements, economic arrangements, and human rights accords.
    5. International Organizations: Understand the history of international organizations and their role in world politics, including international mediation and negotiations, formal and informal security arrangements, treaty regimes, and the role of international institutions and non-governmental organizations in peacekeeping and humanitarian operations.
    6. U.S. Security Policy and Strategy: Understand how U.S. national security policy and strategy are formulated. Understand the roles of nuclear forces in the security policies of the United States and other nuclear powers; U.S. nuclear force acquisition, planning, deterrence policy, and employment concepts from the Second World War to the present; and the role of nuclear weapons in alliance politics and international relations.
  3. Homeland Security and Defense
    1. Analytical Skills: Graduates will be able to logically combine data and theory to analyze and explain political, economic, and military events in the context of the Department of Homeland Security. Students will demonstrate writing, briefing, and computer skills in preparing and presenting their findings.
    2. National Security Issues: Graduates will be aware of the economic, political, social, and military characteristics of homeland security, homeland defense, and national security issues. These issues include: intelligence gathering and information sharing, posse comitatus, the interaction of law enforcement with military command, and the increasing significance of great power competition for homeland defense. 
    3. Critical Infrastructure Vulnerability: Graduates will be familiar with the full range of critical infrastructure sectors within the United States. They will know what their vulnerabilities are, and how to "harden" the critical nodes in each sector. Particular emphasis will be placed on networked infrastructure and the protection of critical nodes.
    4. Threat Analysis: Graduates will learn about domestic and international terrorism as they pertain to homeland security, as well as plans and capabilities to respond to such threats at the state, local, and federal levels.
    5. Civil-Military Relations: Graduates will understand the field of civil-military relations as it applies to homeland security within the framework of the U.S. Constitution and the history of American civil-military relations. Students will be able to identify key players in homeland security at the various levels of government within and beyond the DoD, including the Department of Homeland Security, Northern Command, FBI, CIA, etc.
    6. Law Enforcement and the Judicial System: Graduates will understand the interface between domestic law enforcement, state and local police, emergency response teams, military support of civilians, and investigations by various agencies such as the U.S. Postal Service, etc. Graduates will know the roles and responsibilities of various law enforcement agencies. Finally, graduates will understand how the judicial system interfaces with the military, at the state and local levels.
    7. Intelligence in Homeland Security: Graduates will understand the role of intelligence in defense of the homeland, including the restraints imposed upon intelligence-gathering within the United States. Graduates will recognize what can be learned from military intelligence and applied to homeland security. Graduates will understand the complexities of information gathering, analysis, and sharing in the context of homeland security.

Curriculum Sponsor and ESR Approval Authority

Deputy Chief of Naval Operations (Plans, Policy and Operations) (N3/N5)