Bachelor of Science in Homeland Security


This degree focuses on domestic and international security issues and the rudiments of management. Studies include:

  • infrastructure protection 
  • preparation for natural and man-made disasters
  • local and regional crisis response
  • strategic planning for security
  • international relations
  • the ethics of leadership
  • legal and moral issues and responsibilities of the security leader
  • international and domestic terrorism
  • intelligence operations and evaluation
  • program management.

Graduates are provided a grounding in general education offerings, development of a more global outlook, attention to interpersonal skills and relation-building in small classes, and a keen awareness of current issues in national security. In sum, graduates will receive an educational foundation that will help them become “leaders for the transformation of society.”

Through a combination of education, training and experience, candidates will gain the specific knowledge and skills that will enable them to think, analyze, and process as security and emergency responder specialists. Throughout their careers, candidates will face new threats and risks that do not yet exist. This program will provide skills and practice in how to adapt to emerging situations and leverage one’s education to create new and effective prevention strategies and crisis responses.


The Concordia University Homeland Security Program graduates leaders to ensure the safety and resiliency of communities throughout our state, the nation, and the world.

Program Goals and Objectives

Program Goals

  • Provide service-oriented professionals with the requisite knowledge, skills, personal ethics and attitudes to provide the leadership necessary to ensure the safety of America’s citizens
  • Prepare a unique team of community and state leaders who, trusting in the importance of a faith-based foundation, protect the rights of our citizens, insure progress is made with guidance from a moral and ethical foundation, and secure the safety of our citizens within the framework of the law
  • Provide critical, trained leadership that can successfully lead communities through an emerging crisis and help them prevent, prepare, respond and recover
  • Develop cooperative skills among all community stakeholders to capitalize on the synergy created by partnerships and collaboration
  • Provide specific knowledge and skills that enable candidates to mentally process and analyze manmade and natural threats so communities can anticipate, prevent, and counter such threats
  • Teach the necessary skills required to properly obtain and process information regarding risk to communities, the citizens of our land, and critical state and national resources
  • Provide the requisite skills necessary to properly obtain critical information required by decision makers, as well as the ability to analyze this same information for additional meaning and relevance

Laurie J. Holien, M.A., Assistant Professor,


This course provides an initial exposure to national security studies and is designed to provide a basic understanding of this topic to those pursuing a major as well as those with an interest in this field of study. Students will explore the definition of homeland security, identify the stakeholders and current issues, explore its relevance in today’s society, and explore what may be emerging under the national security umbrella. Homeland Security has become part of the American lexicon, and students in this class will give the discipline an academic scrutiny.

HLS 302      THE PSYCHOLOGY OF TERRORISM      Credits: 3

This course emphasizes the study of the psychology of terrorism, and reviews those conditions that foster terrorism and suicide bombers as well as the psychological impact of terrorism on our local, national, and international communities. Candidates will study the social aspects of terrorism, and how its use fits into the political spectrum of existing and emerging countries. Radical terrorist groups will be investigated from a cultural, religious and philosophical perspective. 
Prerequisites: PSY 201 with a D or higher.


This course explores the roles, duties and responsibilities of Emergency Management (EM) on the local, state, federal and private levels as well as the duties and responsibilities of each. The course will also explore how EM differs from other security functions through its involvement with crisis management: decisions made with limited data, new or non-customary relationships, changing scale of responsibilities, and an evolving role of private industry and citizens. Students will also gain an exposure to the Incident Command System.

HLS 320      CYBER SECURITY      Credits: 3

This course will study security in the virtual world. Course work will study the threat, as well as policy issues that thrust cyber activity into the criminal realm, or the realm of international conflict and the rules of war. Threat analysis will include some types of threat, theft of intellectual property, and infrastructure disruption.


This course includes the study of terrorism as the impetus for the development of Homeland Security as a discipline and industry. It will define and address those conditions that foster domestic terrorism, as well as study the psychological impact of terrorism on our nation’s communities. Further, it will address the social aspects of terrorism, and how terrorism works into the political spectrum and can thus impact domestic policy. A number of domestic terrorist groups will be investigated including left wing and right wing groups, as well as single purpose entities such as environmental or radical antiabortion groups. Students will consider counter-radicalization, the media campaign, counter-terrorism, and the exploration of the human terrain initiative.

HLS 342      VALUES AND SECURITY POLICY      Credits: 3

This course explores the inter relationship between policy and values. Students will examine in what ways and to what extent Homeland Security policy is driven by the American value system. How do policies such as rendition, using unmanned drones to kill terrorists, and military incarceration of suspected terrorists reflect current values? Policy tends to be somewhat dynamic, which could reflect a changing value system.

HLS 352      LEGAL,MORAL AND CIVIL RIGHTS      Credits: 3

As homeland security has matured, mandates and legal obligations have grown for the security and emergency management practitioner. This course will enable students to explore obligations from both a legal and community expectation standpoint, and will challenge them to consider the parameters of the security or emergency management leader’s moral responsibility to the community including preparation, response and recovery. During a disaster, public expectations vary regarding the government’s role and responsibility. Students will identify these obligations, where the line should be drawn, and how those expectations can best be addressed. Lastly, students will grapple with the question of how to balance individual privacy with national security.


This course gives the student an opportunity to study how risk is determined, and what value this information has for the homeland security practitioner. Students will explore how assessments are conducted, and how data is processed into a picture useful to the preparation, prevention and response to a disaster. Once a risk picture exists, security leaders can decide what to protect, and the impact of the loss of a particular asset. This process is a key element of Critical Infrastructure Protection.

HLS 372      INTEREST INTEGRATION      Credits: 3

One of the most important skills for the future emergency preparedness or national security practitioner is the ability to facilitate the successful integration of stakeholders from disparate groups. As with any complex issue, emergency management and homeland security have a wide variety of interested parties, and their respective agendas may be at odds. This course will explore various interest groups and their agendas, and provide the student with practical methods to coalesce these groups for the benefit of local, regional and national security.


All national security efforts should flow from the National Strategy for Homeland Security since it is this document which drives all subsequent levels to include state, local and business strategies for local and national security. This course explores national strategy development, the existing strategies for homeland security, and provides students with a detailed overview of how these strategies flow into resourcing and budgeting.


Candidates will explore contemporary models of security leadership, synthesize a personal statement of vocation informed by their leadership values and assumptions, and test their synthesis against a variety of assignments and practical experiences. The course also provides a forum where candidates enjoy the opportunity to identify and consider their own character, personal values, and workplace ethics. Each will develop an understanding of the importance of ethical leadership in one’s professional, personal and family life, and will appreciate the personal fulfillment that flows from living and modeling such values and, perhaps most importantly, of serving others.

HLS 451      HLS SEMINAR      Credit: 1


Quality Intelligence provides the homeland security leader on any level with timely analysis of relevant information. The challenge with this intelligence is to guarantee it is collected and utilized within legal guidelines and still provide appropriate assistance from the best sources possible. This course introduces the student to the intelligence community, the intelligence process, the legal and ethical conduct expected and required in gathering intelligence, and intelligence analysis. Students will better understand integration of sources, and how intelligence can be used to optimize the homeland security effort.

HLS 460      RELIGION IN THE MODERN WORLD      Credits: 3

This course explores the role of religion in shaping the politics and conflict in the world today. Students will explore the major religions dominant in the world today, and how they do or do not shape the environment. Also studied will be the misuse and radicalization of religion for the support of political agendas. This includes a deeper view of the various major religions, and how mainstream beliefs play into the international landscape.


Resilient communities are those that have taken appropriate actions to minimize the impact of a catastrophic occurrence. Historical examples show that life is never the same after a disaster, but communities that survive and thrive are those that have resiliency. This course will step students through the emergency management planning cycle (prevent, prepare, respond, recover) to illustrate how to foster community resiliency.

HLS 494      PRACTICUM      Credits: 6

The practicum is the culmination of the learning process where theory is put into practice. For the security studies major, there are two options for this final effort. First, students can elect to research a specific element of foreign or domestic terrorism. This would require an in depth study of a particular group, with a final product of a mitigation or co-opting strategy. The alternative is an emergency management project that would include the creation of a detailed emergency preparation or response action plan. The plan would be based on a risk analysis that includes critical infrastructure protection, threat prioritization, and intelligence analysis.