Skip to Content - Skip to Navigation

SWMD: Strategic Studies in Weapons of Mass Destruction

College of Health and Human Services

SWMD 600 Theoretical Perspectives and Threat Assessment in Strategic Studies in WMD 3 cr.

This course examines the nature, trends, context, causes, and responses to terrorism and other related threats to critical assets and infrastructures. This examination incorporates a variety of perspectives including criminological, political, psychological, and sociological. Theoretical causes of critical asset destruction are linked to proposed policy recommendations.

SWMD 605 Research Methodology in Strategic Studies in WMD 3cr.

This course examines the methods and techniques of research in Strategic Studies in WMD. The course will offer an in-depth examination of the role of research in the analysis, interpretation, and clarification of problems in Strategic Studies in WMD. The focus is on understanding and critiquing research methodologies and applying this knowledge to existing problems in security and Strategic Studies in WMD.

SWMD 610 Legal Issues in Strategic Studies in WMD & Terrorism 3cr.

This course examines the legal basis for measures taken in the interest of national security and the protection of critical assets and infrastructures. A balanced approach will be taken to analyze legal and ethical issues associated with preventing, investigating, prosecuting, and otherwise responding to threats to our nation’s critical assets. These issues are wide in breadth and depth and will focus on a number of specific topics. Contemporary statutes and cases will be included throughout the course.

SWMD 612 Advanced Bioterrorism for Law Enforcement 3cr.

This course will address the microbial agents thought to comprise significant potential as weapons. Topics are organized according to biological classification (bacteria, viruses, biotoxins) as well as pathogens in special settings such as the food supply. Content will include biological properties, transmission and epidemiology, pathogenic mechanisms, diagnosis, control and management. Antimicrobial therapy and vaccines will also be covered.

SWMD 614 Advanced Chemical Terrorism for Law Enforcement 3cr.

This course will address a variety of toxic syndromes likely to be encountered following exposures to Toxic Industrial Chemicals (TICs) and Toxic Industrial Material (TIMs) and other chemical agents of opportunity. In recent years, there has been growing concern that many of the most likely threats of chemical terrorism involve so-called “agents of opportunity.” Both common and unusual industrial agents may pose a considerable threat as potential terrorist weapons. While an understanding of the traditional military chemical weapons (e.g. nerve agents) remains essential, an appreciation of the myriad of other potential toxic chemicals readily available in our society is crucial if we are to optimally prepare, identify and defend against chemical threats. This course will utilize a symptom-based clinical approach to describe the medical impact of various chemical poisons. The course will provide a framework to enhance recognition of the common health effects of apparently disparate chemical toxins, describe the risk, and introduce clinical and public health management strategies.

SWMD 618 Design and Evaluation of Critical Asset Protection Systems 3cr.

This course provides an in-depth examination of Critical Asset Vulnerability and Risk Assessment – Performance-Based Evaluation Methodologies (CAVRA-PBEM) and how they are applied to protection systems. It is designed to educate students about the process of identifying potential vulnerabilities in protection systems, quantitatively assessing their risk of failure and then minimizing this risk, and quantitatively re-assessing the remaining risk. This process is widely applicable to any number of potential threats. The focus of this course is on the protection system itself, and the design of a number of different types of protection systems will be discussed (e.g., alarms, interior intrusion sensors, access control, etc.).

SWMD 698 Directed Readings in Strategic Studies in WMD 3cr.

This is a seminar-based course conducted with faculty supervision and participation. Students will read at least six major works on the topic of the course and discuss them in class.

SWMD 791 Synthesis Project in Strategic Studies in WMD 3cr.

This course will provide each student with an opportunity to write a substantial research paper that is a synthesis of theory, research, and policy in Strategic Studies in WMD. This course will be taken during the student’s final semester in the program, unless exceptional circumstances exist. The development of a substantial paper and oral presentation will be the required end products of this course.

  • School of Graduate Studies and Research
  • Stright Hall, Room 101
    210 South Tenth Street
    Indiana, PA 15705-1048
  • Phone: 724-357-2222
  • Fax: 724-357-4862
  • Office Hours
  • Monday through Friday
  • 8:00 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.
  • Summer: 8:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.