Graduate Catalog
Policies, Procedures, Academic Programs
Homeland Security Policy
1021 Prince Street CPAP (0804) Virginia Tech
Alexandria, VA 22314
Contact this Certificate
Email Contact(s):
Web Resource(s):
Phone Number(s):
Scott Weimer:
Karen Hult:
Stephanie Davis:

Certificate Overview

The graduate certificate in homeland security focuses on U.S. domestic security and emergency management issues. The certificate serves either as a stand-alone credential of advanced educational achievement for non-degree students or as a supplement to a master's or doctoral degree. Four homeland security courses will introduce students to the complexity of the homeland security environment, from analyzing the terrorist threat, to considering questions of hazard mitigation, preparedness, and resilience, to investigating response and recovery strategies.

Taught by a mix of scholars and practitioners, the certificate addresses issues of homeland security strategy, policy design, planning, operations, managing across and among networks, and implementation.

The certificate is composed of four courses (12 hours of graduate coursework). The core courses focus on 1) the threat (PAPA 5264), 2) prevention (PAPA 6264), and 3) response and recovery (PAPA 5354). A fourth course is selected from specified electives.

The certificate is open to non-degree students as well as degree seeking graduate students across Virginia Tech. MPA students may use the certificate as their concentration and reflect upon the certificate and homeland security issues in their portfolio or internship. Ph.D. students may use the certificate as a foundation for dissertation research in homeland security policy and management. Up to 6 credit hours can be double-counted for the degree and the graduate certificate. Transfer credits are not permitted.

How to Apply:
Fill out the online application for participation in the certificate program.
Upon processing of the application, you will be contacted
with information about the submission of additional
required materials. Thank you for your interest.

Admission Requirements

Non-degree candidates may apply for admission to the certificate program using the Virginia Tech Graduate School's online application system found at Admissions. Interested students must submit an official copy of their college transcript documenting receipt of a bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited college or university with an acceptable grade point average mailed to the Virginia Tech Graduate School as part of the application process. Current graduate students also may pursue the certificate. 

Course Requirements

Students must take four courses (12 hours), including three required classes to receive the certificate. 

  • PAPA 5254 Homeland Security and the Terrorist Threat
  • PAPA 6264 Advanced Topics in Policy Systems Management: Homeland Security and Prevention
  • PAPA 5354 Homeland Security Response and Recovery¬†

Electives (choose one):

  • PAPA/STS 6664 Advanced Topics in Science and Technology: Complexity, Emerging Policy, Doctrine, and Reality
  • PAPA 6254 Advanced Topics in Homeland Security Policy: Critical Infrastructure Protection and Resiliency
  • GIA 5514 Global Security
  • PAPA 5904/5974 Independent Study, Project and Report