Critical Security Studies


The Masters in Critical Security Studies (MCSS) program seeks to provide outstanding prospective graduate students and professionals with the skills and knowledge to analyze and evaluate emerging security issues related to Qatar, the region and the international community. The program is designed for Qatari and other Arabic-speaking graduate students seeking to launch or advance their careers in academia, research, governmental defense policy, foreign affairs, security, public policy, public administration, and journalism. Hence, the MCSS graduates will develop skills relevant to a wide range of organizations, including universities, think tanks, foreign and defense ministries, and militaries. Students undertaking the program will become more confident critical scholars and strategic analysts with the potential to lead on the development and execution of strategic security policies in an uncertain, culturally diverse and resource - constrained world.

A main objective of the MCSS is to proffer Qatari and other Arabic-speaking graduate students an opportunity to master security studies, including in-depth understandings of non-state armed actors, terrorism and its causes, civil-military relations, and human and environmental security. The uniqueness of the program stems from several components, including the critical approaches to the existing body of knowledge in Security Studies, Arab knowledge-contribution tailored to Qatar and the region, the breadth and depth of the issue-areas covered (classic, new, soft and hard security issues) in 12 different courses, and the international excellence and world-renowned faculty. The other objective of the MCSS is to create a center of excellence that has the ability to generate first class knowledge in Critical Security Studies and disseminate best practices capable of supporting policy and decision-making across the Middle East and North Africa.

The MCSS is a two-year Master's degree program that offers students the opportunity to engage with a wide range of subjects. Each course of the program aims to develop the students' abilities to apply the knowledge and insights gained about security environments and critically reflect on it. This will be delivered through a range of teaching methods.

The MCSS program consists of four semesters offered over a span of two years. A minimum of 42 credits, including the successful completion and the oral defense of a Master's Dissertation (6 credit hours), are required for the Master's degree in Critical Security Studies. The course list below presents the core and elective (or special topics) courses.

Critical Security Studies Program Learning Outcomes:

  1. 1- Demonstrate in-depth knowledge and cognitive skills in both Security Studies and Critical Security Studies.

  2. 2- Research and apply established theories and concepts and exercise expert judgement in strategic, military, security and/or policy contexts as they apply to Qatari, regional and international settings.

  3. 3- Possess the skills and knowledge needed to access and evaluate the academic literature and the sources in the fields of study associated with Critical Security Studies 

  4. 4- Systematically analyze current problems and/or new insights pertaining to evolving 21st century security challenges.

  5. 5- Make informed and independent judgements about how actors plan and execute security strategy in real world situations.

  6. 6- Apply strategic concepts and knowledge to practical, contemporary problems using case studies from a range of comparative environments and global circumstances.

  7. 7- Possess an integrated understanding of the conduct of strategy, security, and its relationship to policy.

  8. 8- Undertake security analysis and be able to critically analyze, reflect on and synthesize complex information relating to the conduct of strategy and security policy.

  9. 9- Assess the significance of multidisciplinary and cross-sector concerns and questions for the implementation of strategy during security crises and armed conflicts. 

  10. 10-  Conduct scholarly research, express ideas and construct evidence-based arguments in both written and oral form.