Undergraduate Catalog F12-S13 with Spring 2013 Course Updates

National Security Studies Minor

The National Security Studies Minor prepares students with diverse majors for careers in homeland security, intelligence collection and analysis, foreign relations, Department of Defense, Department of State, and related areas, or to enter graduate programs that will further prepare them for careers in these areas. These careers might be as diverse as being a diplomat, a cryptologist, an area studies specialist, a linguist, an intelligence analyst, an energy economist, or a policy analyst. The program culminates in a capstone course that integrates student experiences in other courses within the minor into a Crisis Management Exercise (CME, or "wargame"). The CME requires students to play the roles of civilian officials and military officers tasked with addressing the crisis situation at hand in an interagency environment.


  • Students complete a National Security Studies Minor by completing a minimum of eighteen hours in approved courses.
  • Students must take the capstone course in National Security Affairs (AFSC 4301 or AFSC 4302).
  • Students must take at least one course from the "Contemporary Security Environment" list.
  • Students must take at least one course from those included under "National Security Policies and Institutions."
  • Students must take a total of three courses (9 hours) from the "Contemporary Security Environment" and the "National Security Policies and Institutions" lists.
  • Students must maintain a GPA of 2.5 or better in their minor courses.
  • A student may not use more than six hous of work in the NSS Minor to satisfy requirements for a major field and/or any other minor.

Of course, eighteen hours is a minimum requirement - students may take additional NSSM courses as their schedules and other requirements permit. The remainder of the hours requirement can be satisfied by choosing electives from the NSSM courses listed below. Students with very specific interests may petition the director to have a course in another department/program substituted as an elective course for the NSSM.

During the sophomore year, students are also encouraged to apply for internships with the State Department, Department of Defense, National Security agency, Central Intelligence Agency, U.S. Department of Homeland Security and other federal agencies in the attempt to enhance their understanding of various aspects of national security in a non-academic setting.


Capstone Courses (Pick 1)

POLS 4396. Selected Topics: Wargames (Fall course only)

AFSC 4301. National Security Affairs (Fall) - This course in only available to Student Cadets.

AFSC 4302. National Security Affairs (Spring) - This course in only available to Student Cadets.


The Contemporary Security Environment (Pick 1 or 2)

POLS 2342. Introduction to National Security Studies

POLS 3335. Political Terrorism

POLS 4343. Causes and Politics of War

POLS 4348. Contemporary Islamic Political Thought

POLS 4349. International Energy Politics

POLS 4394. Ideologies and Political Movements

HIST 3394. War, Globalization, and Terrorism


National Security Policy and Institutions (Pick 1 or 2)

POLS 3313. Introduction to International Relations

POLS 3331. American Foreign Policy

POLS 3344. International Law and the Law of War

POLS 3345. National Security Law

POLS 4365. National Defense Policy

HIST 3312. U.S. Diplomatic History to 1898

HIST 3313. U.S. Diplomatic History since 1898

HIST 3321. U.S. Foreign Policy since 1900

HIST 3322. The Vietnam War

HIST 3323. U.S. Military History to 1898

HIST 3324. U.S. Military History since 1898

HIST 3375. The CIA in the Third World


Applications and Skills (Elective)

POLS 3382. Strategy of Politics (Game Theory and Decision Analysis)

POLS 4340. Intelligence Analysis

POLS 4341. Risk Analysis and Assessment

ITEC 2337. Fundamentals of Information Security

ITEC 4355. Enterprise Assessment and Evaluation (with permission of instruction)

AFSC 3301. Air Force Leadership Studies I

AFSC 3302. Air Force Leadership Studies II



Additional courses in the categories appearing above may be taken as electives.


Students interested in the National Security Studies Minor should contact:

Gregory R. Weiher , Ph.D.
Director, National Security Studies Minor
Department of Political Science
University of Houston 77204-3011

Catalog Publish Date: August 22, 2012
This Page Last Updated: July 12, 2012