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Homeland Security Bachelor's Degree Completion Program

The subject of homeland security is at the forefront of study by law enforcement officials, security professionals, current and former military personnel, intelligence analysts and government contractors.  Our Homeland Security Bachelor’s Degree Completion program will provide you with the knowledge, skills and abilities you need to succeed in these positions. You will be equipped with greater potential for career advancement—whether you are searching for a new job in the marketplace, reaching for a promotion or exploring a second career.

One of the unique features of our program’s cutting-edge education and training is its methodology. You will learn about Threats > Analysis > Response in an organized and logical flow, beginning with the study of current threats to domestic soft targets and national security. You will build on your understanding of threats by next focusing your studies on intelligence and evidence interpretation. Finally, you will focus on response measures and industry best practices. 



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Program at a Glance


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Gain New Skills & Knowledge

You will expand your practical skills & knowledge in three focus areas: 

  1. Homeland security & emergency management best practices

  2. Domestic & international threats

  3. Anti-terrorism strategies

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Complete Fully Online

You can complete your degree fully online. Our flexible program is designed for you to continue to work and fulfill personal obligations while you earn your degree. 

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Career Growth Potential

Median salary for our graduates is $95,000.

Source: GW Undergraduate Employment and Education Outcomes, Classes of 2014-2017.


Alumni Success Stories

Michael Queen

Dr. Richard F. Southby Police Science Prize

Michael A. Queen, Jr., Homeland Security B.P.S., is the 2022 award recipient. The Dr. Richard F. Southby Police Science Prize is presented to an exceptional graduating student. After Mr. Queen realized his true calling was public service he joined GW's Police Department in 2002 where he has since served in multiple roles. His colleagues know him as a mentor to many new police officers and a dedicated public safety professional.


2021 Distinguished Commencement Speaker

Program alumnus Robert J. Contee III, Chief, Metropolitan Police Department, Washington, D.C., gave the address for CPS’s virtual commencement celebration. Contee, a native of Washington, D.C., joined the MPD as a police cadet in 1989. He quickly rose through the ranks, serving in a variety of roles, before being appointed chief.


Dr. Richard F. Southby Police Science Prize

Alicia Viviana Ramirez, Police and Security Studies, is the 2021 award recipient. The Dr. Richard F. Southby Police Science Prize is presented to an exceptional graduating student.

""Where You'll Study

Where you'll study-Online
This program is fully online

This program is fully online so the content and schedule are designed to meet your needs as a full-time professional who is balancing a demanding job and family obligations. The courses are fully online, with regular synchronous discussions. You will have live discussions with your professor and fellow students every two weeks, at a minimum. These discussions provide opportunities for you to review course materials, discuss current events and maintain open lines of communication with your faculty member and fellow students.


What You'll Study

Our cutting-edge curriculum was developed in consultation with metropolitan area law enforcement experts and police specialists, and draws faculty expertise from six schools at GW.

Through the program you will be a more effective homeland security professional and will be able to:

  • Understand best practices of Homeland Security and emergency management
  • Analyze the characteristics of domestic and international threats
  • Develop strategic anti-terrorism strategies
  • Analyze cyber threats and effective countermeasures
  • Analyze the challenges of intelligence and information sharing
  • Examine the methodology and process of conducting threat and vulnerability assessments
  • Make ethical decisions based upon personal and professional standards
  • Communicate effectively

Homeland Security Schedule of Classes


These requirements must be fulfilled to earn the bachelor’s degree – a total of 120 credit hours earned in three parts:

  • 60 credit hours of core coursework at GW in Homeland Security

  • 38 credits in elective courses

  • 22 transferable credits in general education courses (may be completed at any regionally accredited institution), including:

    • Mathematics or Statistics (3 credits)

    • Natural or Physical Science with Lab (4 credits)

    • Arts or Humanities (3 credits)

    • Social and Behavioral Sciences (6 credits)

    • Written Communication or Composition (6 credits)

Note: Acceptable transfer coursework must be successfully completed from a regionally accredited institution and earned with a grade of C or higher (C‐, D and F do not transfer)

PSHS 3150: Transnational Threats and Security
Prepares students to recognize established and emerging security issues that are largely transnational in nature. The course will focus on how terror organizations and criminal groups challenge long-held norms and how global threats impact U.S. national security interests.

PSHS 3151: Combating Domestic Terrorism
Provides an in-depth look at the methods used to conduct attacks within the Nation’s borders. Topics include lone wolf, directed and coordinated attacks.  The Alt-Right Movement, Eco-Terrorism, Homegrown Violent Extremism and the Sovereign Citizens Movement will be examined and students will analyze the complex challenges of developing strategies to counter these threats.   Legislative responses such as the U.S. Patriot Act and the U.S. Freedom Act will be examined to understand how the U.S. government perceived and responded to acts of terrorism. 

PSHS 3152: Cyber Terrorism
Enhances the students’ understanding of the various cyber threats that exist and learn the latest in cyber security countermeasures. Students will analyze cyber terrorist tactics and how terrorist organizations have effectively used the Internet and social media platforms to spread propaganda, radicalize and recruit vulnerable people to fight for their cause. This course also focuses on the technological threat that places critical infrastructure, public and private industries, and personal information at risk of being compromised for political, religious or ideological purposes.

PSHS 3160: Crisis and Emergency Planning
Introduces the students to modern emergency management protocol and best practices. This course includes the phases of emergency management (prevention, preparedness, mitigation, response, recovery). This course focuses on the assessment of risk in urban areas and human-caused hazards. Students will demonstrate an understanding of the incident command system and the National Incident Management system. 

PSHS 3161: Intelligence Data Analysis
Introduces the students to the basic concepts related to data analysis and information sharing among the intelligence community. Students will examine the best practices, successes, and failures related to intelligence gathering and sharing and the implications of failed policy and procedures.  This course will examine human intelligence, signals intelligence, measure and signal intelligence and geospatial intelligence. 

PSHS 3162: Crime Scene Investigation
Students will learn crime scene procedures such as note taking, sketching and photography, as well as the basic steps that minimize the omission or contamination of evidence. Students also learn overall crime scene management, chain of custody, the importance of following proper procedure and protocol when searching, collecting and packaging crime scene evidence and courtroom procedures.

PSHS 3170: Infrastructure Protection
Focuses on the analysis of security measures that can be utilized for the protection of critical infrastructure, public facilities, large gatherings, and open spaces. Students will explore concepts that relate to the prevention of and response to intentional acts of harm.

PSHS 3171: Introduction to Forensic Science
This course provides students with a comprehensive understanding of forensics and its role in investigations. Evidence analysis and preservation techniques are examined in detail. Students learn how different law enforcement and forensic disciplines collaborate to ensure proper evidence presentation in the courtroom. 

PSHS 3172: Computer Crime Investigation
This course is designed to introduce the students to the investigation of computer-based crimes and its importance to the law enforcement community on a national level. The course material will review the history of computer crime, associated terminology and the types of crimes committed in cyberspace. Other topics include legal issues in cyberspace, the proper collection and preservation of digital evidence and an overview of live forensic investigations. This is not a technical course and no advanced computer skills are required.

PSHS 4180: Security Threat Assessments
Examines the risk assessment, threat, and vulnerability assessment processes. Students will study the methodology used for the identification of potential threats, the analysis of potential impacts and the identification of potential countermeasures that will mitigate harm to people and assets. Students will identify security vulnerabilities of specific critical infrastructure, identify the international, domestic, and cyber threats, analyze intelligence data and apply these measurements to a security risk assessment.

PSHS 4181: Incident Management
This course will introduce students to basic concepts related to the management of critical incidents, beginning with the historical birth of the National Incident Management System and its reformation in the aftermath of 9/11 in Homeland Security Directive #5 (HSPD-5). Using case studies, video lectures, peer discussions and independent studies, students will examine the successes and failures related to incident management and their implications in shaping future processes and procedures.

PSHS 4182: Emergency Public Health Issues
Best practices in public health emergency management are continuously evolving based on new experiences and expertise. This course provides a comprehensive introduction to public health emergency preparedness and response, including bioterrorism events/threats and prepares students to recognize, respond and manage natural and unnatural public health emergences.

PSHS 4190: Capstone Project
Students will apply the knowledge, skills and abilities acquired in the Homeland Security BPS program by working through a computer-based simulation of an emergency management scenario. Students will analyze the simulated threat, conduct analysis, interpret evidence and properly respond to the series of events that unfold throughout the simulation. 

PSHS 4191: Ethical Dilemmas in Policing
This course provides and in-depth perspective on ethical dilemmas facing law enforcement and addresses misconduct typologies forms of corruption, issues with the use of force and civil liberties. Students will learn from case studies and will apply their judgment to various scenarios. 

PSHS 4192: Media, Public Relations and Crisis Management
Prepares law enforcement and security professionals to understand media and public relations key principles and practices. By understanding and applying these concepts to their own work, law enforcement and security professionals can develop better relations and ultimately better public perception. This course also establishes a foundation in crisis communication concepts. Students will learn best practices for spokesperson techniques and strategic messaging.

  • Students are required to complete 38 credits of elective coursework as part of the degree requirements.
  • Students complete elective courses at a regionally accredited institution of higher education or from the College of Professional Studies.
  • Students should direct questions about elective coursework selection to their program director.
  • Elective coursework taken outside of GW can be transferred and counted towards the degree requirements, following an official review process.

Note: Acceptable transfer coursework must be successfully completed from a regionally accredited institution and earned with a grade of C or higher (C‐, D and F do not transfer)


Course # Course Title Credits
CPS 2101 The Criminal Justice System 4
CPS 2105 Deviance and Social Control 4
CPS 2170 Domestic Violence 4
CPS 2172 Comparative Police Systems 4
CPS 2177 Crime Prevention and Physical Security 4
CPS 2107 Models of Policing 4
CPS 2103 Particular Forms of Crime 4
CPS 2104 Leading Teams 4
CPS 2108 Criminal Intelligence 4
CPS 2109 Criminal Analysis 4
CPS 2102 Resource Management 4
CPS 2106 Strategic Planning 4
CPS 2110 Predictive Policing 4
CPS 2171 Criminal Mind 4
CPS 2191 Crime Data Analysis 3
CPS 2191 History of Anglo-Saxon Policing 3
CPS 2191 Leadership and Management in Literature 3

By studying online, students complete the core coursework in less than two years by taking three courses per semester for five semesters. The program plan’s structure allows you to focus on two courses at a time, by offering the courses in a staggered format. 

Fall Semester: Year 1

Course # Course Title Session Length Credits
PSHS 3151 Combating Domestic Terrorism A 8 weeks 4
PSHS 3152 Cyber Terrorism B 8 weeks 4
PSHS 3150 Transnational Threats and Security A/B 16 weeks 4

Spring Semester: Year 1
Course # Course Title Session Length Credits
PSHS 3161 Intelligence Data Analysis A 8 weeks 4
PSHS 3162 Crime Scene Investigation B 8 weeks
PSHS 3160 Crisis and Emergency Planning A/B 16 weeks

Summer Semester: Year 1
Course # Course Title Session Length Credits
PSHS 3171 Introduction to Forensic Science A 8 weeks 4
PSHS 3172 Computer Crime Investigation B 8 weeks 4
PSHS 3170 Infrastructure Protection A/B 16 weeks 4

Fall Semester: Year 2
Course # Course Title Session Length Credits
PSHS 4181 Incident Management A 8 weeks 4
PSHS 4182 Emergency Public Health Issues B 8 weeks 4
PSHS 4180 Security Threat Assessments  A/B 16 weeks 4

Spring Semester: Year 2
Course # Course Title Session Length Credits
PSHS 4191 Ethical Dilemmas in Policing A 8 weeks 4
PSHS 4192 Media, Public Relations, and Crisis Communication  B 8 weeks 4
PSHS 4190 Capstone Project A/B 16 weeks 4

Total Credits: 60


Who You'll Study With

As a student in the Homeland Security program, you will learn from expert faculty with extensive experience in homeland security, state and federal law enforcement, the legal profession, and other allied fields.

""Admissions Information

To be considered for admission to the Homeland Security BPS program, you must have:

  • Completion of secondary school with a high school diploma or GED
  • A Statement of Purpose (a 250-word essay describing the applicant’s affiliation with homeland security, career objectives and professional ethics perspective)
  • Two letters of recommendation (academic or professional)
  • Earned 22 transferable credit hours with a range of courses satisfying the general education distribution requirement:
    • Mathematics or Statistics (3 credits)
    • Natural or Physical Science with Lab (4 credits)
    • Arts or Humanities (3 credits)
    • Social and Behavioral Sciences (6 credits)
    • Written Communication or Composition (6 credits)

Note: Acceptable transfer coursework must be successfully completed from a regionally accredited institution and earned with a grade of C or higher (C-, D and F do not transfer).

Please note that this program is not eligible for students to apply for an F-1 or J-1 international visa. Please review the full admissions requirements for more details. Students are admitted to the online program for the fall semester.




Applicants that have complete applications are eligible to request an application fee waiver by 11:59 p.m. on the Priority Deadline.* To request an application fee waiver, contact your program representative before submitting your application. Fee waiver details. Applications received after the Final Deadline will continue to be processed, space permitting.


leafFall Admissions

Online program only

  • Fall Priority Deadline: May 15*
  • Fall Final Deadline: July 15


illustration of a flowerSpring Admissions

Online program only

  • Students are usually admitted for the fall semester. If you are interested in a spring start, please contact us for details. 


illustration of a summer sunSummer Admissions

Online program only

  • Students are usually admitted for the fall semester. If you are interested in a summer start, please contact us for details. 

""Tuition & Aid

GW tuition and fees are comparable to the national average for private universities. These costs are set by the GW Board of Trustees and generally increase year to year, variable by program and location.

Please use this information as an estimate based on current tuition rates and fee structures. Total tuition and fees will vary according to the courses taken and the timeframe in which you complete your coursework.

2022-2023 Rates in Effect for Summer 2022, Fall 2022 and Spring 2023 Terms  

Tuition: 60 credits @ $925 per credit hour

The curriculum includes 15 courses, typically completed in 2 years/5 semesters.


Registration fees: 5 registration sessions @ $35 each


TOTAL: Tuition + fees over the average completion time

$55,675 (approx.)


Other Costs to Consider: Application fee: $80; Textbooks: $500; Matriculation fee (one time): $200.

Before beginning your application for financial aid, please check financial aid deadlines and watch this video about the undergraduate financial aid process.

More Information:

GW's Military & Veteran Services provides wide-ranging resources and support to the military community, including GW scholarships and assistance with benefits: 

Since Military and Veterans Services was created in 2008, GW has been an annual recipient of the Military Friendly Award and is also annually recognized as a Military Times “Best for Vets” higher education institution.


"My most recent promotion was to the position of Acting Assistant Director in the INTERPOL Washington, Transnational Crime Division. I truly believe that my educational experiences at GW have played a tremendous role in my current and previous promotions. The program brought me out of my comfort zone and magnified the qualities that I have to be a leader."

Michelle Ford-Stepney
Acting Assistant Director
INTERPOL Washington, Transnational Crime Division


Jim Miller


Jeff Delinski




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Upcoming Events

We periodically offer online and in-person information sessions about the Homeland Security Bachelor's Degree Completion Program. Contact the program representative to learn more about upcoming events. 


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