M.S. in International Security

The single-year Master of Science in International Security (MSIS) will offer students the opportunity to understand conceptual foundations and practical policy analysis of issues related to international security. With increasing concerns about a globalizing international environment and the ability to address emerging technological and political challenges, this master’s degree is timely. Students will be exposed to issues related to energy, the environment, information and communication technologies, space policy, disruptive technologies, intelligence, arms control, and other contemporary issues. These substantive areas reflect ongoing, evolving, and emerging technological trends currently facing policy makers, analysts, non-governmental organizations, the military, and other relevant actors.

The curriculum allows students to customize their program of study among a diverse set of subjects—including 21st Century great power rivalry; defense policy analysis and military strategy; crisis decision-making; comparative forms of statecraft; transnational terrorism; peacekeeping; regional security; challenges and opportunities for arms control; geopolitics of energy, environmental security, and Space; proliferation of nuclear weapons and emerging technologies; cross-cultural bargaining and negotiations; and cyberwarfare. In addition to exposure to qualitative and quantitative research methods, students can acquire proficiency with tools such as data and visual analytics and modeling and simulation—in understanding ongoing international security challenges.

Why Study at the Sam Nunn School?

The Nunn School is uniquely placed within a premier technological institute, and students will have the opportunity to engage not only with their peers in international affairs, but also students studying engineering, sciences, and business. In addition, students are positioned to study with Distinguished Professors of the Practice – policymakers and practitioners who have experience applying concepts learned in the classroom to real world situations. These include General Philip Breedlove, USAF, ret., former Supreme Allied Commander Europe; Elizabeth Sherwood-Randall, former Deputy Secretary of Energy; and Admiral James “Sandy” Winnefeld, USN, ret., former Vice-Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff.

A 30-credit hour course load prepares graduates with the substantive knowledge and skills to distill, assess, and communicate the drivers and strategic consequences associated with emerging global security problems as experts and leaders in foreign and security policymaking, defense planning, the intelligence community, non-governmental organizations, and the private sector. The International Security program is part of the Nunn School’s mission of developing global policy makers for the 21st Century.

MSIS Core Objectives

Problem Solving

The program provides students with the theoretical foundation and practical policy analytical skills to tackle issues directly related to contemporary International Security.

Scientific Analysis

Students will develop a toolkit in visual analytics and modeling and simulation to understand ongoing international security challenges.

Career Development

Career counseling can help students discover their strengths and limitations, type of work environment they would excel in, and specific career interests.

Degree Requirements – 30 credit hours

  • Required Courses

    • INTA 6102 International Relations Theory (3 hours)

    • INTA 6003 Empirical Research Methods (3 hours)

    • INTA 6103 International Security (3 hours)

  • International Security Courses - INTA 6XXX/8XXX (12 hours)

  • Free Electives - XXXX 6XXX/8XXX (9 hours)

Admission Criteria

  • Statement of Purpose
  • Official Transcripts
  • Three Letters of recommendation
  • Minimum GPA of 3.0 or significant professional or military experience (in cases where an applicant’s GPA dropped below a 3.0 but performed quite well otherwise, admission could still be considered)