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As a professional discipline, homeland security is complex, dynamic, and interdisciplinary and not given to facile definition. As an academic discipline, homeland security is relatively new and growing, and its workforce aging. As such, there is an acknowledged need to develop academic homeland security programs to try and meet anticipated workforce needs. However, the lack of an accreditation system or a set of available published outcomes (or standards) have complicated efforts towards homeland security program development. At present, determining which courses to teach and which outcomes in each course to pursue must be left to anecdotal conversations, reviews of the scant textbooks available, and idiosyncratic experience and judgment. Consequently, as homeland security programs have proliferated throughout the country even a cursory review of these programs on the Center for Homeland Defense and Security (CHDS) website reveals an uneven and inconsistent set of core student outcomes. Using practicing professionals in a variety of homeland security areas as subject matter experts, this study was designed to elucidate a set of core academic areas and student learning outcomes that could characterize the intellectual underpinnings of the discipline and the outcomes on which an undergraduate degree in homeland security could be based.

Publication Title

Homeland Security Affairs