MA Security and Terrorism Law (PgDip, PgCert)

Start date(s)
September 2022
Study mode
Distance learning
Course enquiries should be made to Knect365:
+44(0)20 7017 4483

About this course

Explore the underpinnings of security and counter-terrorism law.

This 100% distance learning programme is delivered in partnership KNECT365/Informa.

  • Provides a solid understanding of the many problems facing the international community today
  • Investigates relevant human rights law and international law issues; connects global legal issues to the broader role of security and counter-terrorism
  • Enables you to reflect, analyse, understand and develop your own area of expertise within the fields of law making, law enforcement, counter-terrorism and intelligence analysis
  • Enables you to understand and apply intelligence and analytical thinking to practical problems by looking at current and emerging problems as well as evaluating potential solutions to these issues
  • Explores how law making, law enforcement, security forces and politicians are trying to counter and combat threats in a global environment

Security and Terrorism Law is ideal for those seeking to enter or advance related careers in the public and private sectors, as well as professionals 


already engaged in such fields who seek to enhance their knowledge, critical thinking and career prospects by undertaking further qualifications.

The Security and Terrorism Law programme is an excellent preparation for many careers, roles or associated areas.


Fees and funding

Money - postgraduate funding informationHow to fund your postgraduate study

You can enrol straight onto the Masters or you will be able to build up to the full Masters in future years if you enrol for the Postgraduate Certificate or Postgraduate Diploma first.

Application fee

An application fee of £400 is payable to KNect365 with your application to enrol. This fee must be paid before your application to enrol commences processing. For convenience the online KNect365 Learning registration form includes the ability to pay this fee securely by credit card in GBP, USD or EUR. On acceptance to the course, this application fee is deducted from the full course fee.

Note: The application fee will be refunded if your application for enrolment is rejected by Liverpool John Moores University on academic grounds. It is not refundable if your application is rejected due to incomplete information being provided, if you withdraw your application before all documents have been submitted or before acceptance.

Payment by instalments

There is an interest free instalment plan available. You may pay in 2 instalments for the Postgraduate Certificate, 4 for the Postgraduate Diploma and 5 for the Masters. More information is available by downloading the payment information sheet here.

If you are a UK or EU national, or have UK ‘settled status’, have lived in the UK or the EU (or wider EEA) for the last 3 years, will be living on the UK on the first day of your course and haven’t been awarded a MSc, MA, MBA or PhD already, you may be eligible for a loan of up to £10,609 from the UK Government to study this course.

Visit the UK Government site for information, download the PDF guide or call the Student Loan Company on +44 (0)30 0100 0031.


Further your career prospects

LJMU has an excellent employability record with 96% (Graduate Outcomes, 2018/19) of our postgraduates in work or further study 15 months after graduation. Our applied learning techniques and strong industry connections ensure our students are fully prepared for the workplace on graduation and understand how to apply their knowledge in a real world context.

This programme will benefit anyone wishing to work in security or legally orientated careers or gain promotion in public, private or international organisations. It is ideal for those whose career plans involve dealing with international security and/or legal affairs and would benefit from a solid academic grounding in the field. The programme will also be of interest to students who seek to develop a deeper understanding of the key aspects of international relations and of the world in which we live.

On graduation you can look forward to careers in: the police, armed forces and security services (senior roles); intelligence agencies; government (policy and research posts); private security sector companies; local and public 

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services; insurance risk management; financial institutions; The European Union or the United Nations, the civil and foreign service; academia (including research roles); non-governmental organisations; private firms; consultancy and advisory roles; security management; strategic security analysis; international relations and public policy.

The student experience

Discover life as a postgraduate student at LJMU.

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Course modules

Discover the building blocks of your programme

Your programme is made up of a number of core modules which are part of the course framework. Some programmes also have optional modules that can be selected to enhance your learning in certain areas and many feature a dissertation, extended report or research project to demonstrate your advanced learning.

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Core modules

Security Studies (PgCert)
20 credits

This two-part module addresses a number of fundamental issues, the most important of which defines what we actually mean by the concept.

This pursuit is dominated by debates between a variety of discourses: namely, those who seek to retain the discipline’s focus purely on military conflict and those who argue that in a globalised world Security Studies needs to be expanded to a consideration of economic, environmental as well as social issues. This module will seek to address these debates in the context of national and international security issues. It will show that the debates between the traditionalists and the advocates of “new thinking” are having a profound impact on the discipline as both military and non-military issues begin to compete for the attention of academics and policy elites.

International Law and International Human Rights Law (PgCert)
20 credits

Develop an understanding of the contending concepts of rights and human Rights, and critically assess the concept of the universality of human rights. This module will evaluate and critique various international conventions on protection of rights, including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Examine violations of rights in the light of various social and political contexts across the world.

Contemporary Issues in Crime, Safety and Security (PgCert)
20 credits

This module aims to introduce you to emerging paradigms within criminology, which tackle safety and security at both local and global levels, and to explore some justifications for the increasing ‘securitisation’ of social life. Key theories and policies related to crime, safety and security will be examined and tested and their ethical and legal implications, outlined. 

You will develop your understanding of contemporary trends in security and emerging security threats and how to counter them through relevant scholarly activity, and through reference to the appropriate academic literature and policy documentation. The module also prepares you for further independent research when you embark on your dissertation.

Terrorism and Counter-Terrorism (PgCert)
20 credits

This module examines terrorism and political violence conducted by non-state actors. It is equally concerned to analyse counter-terrorism and other responses by the state, the security services and the police. It aims to explore the phenomena of terrorism, including the different historical definitions of terrorism, and the varying motivational factors for terrorist violence. It also aims to provide an overview of the different theoretical approaches to terrorism studies and an overview of the threat from ‘New Terrorism’ and the ‘War on Terror’. The module engages closely with key texts by leading scholars in terrorism studies, critical terrorism studies and pays special attention to criminological approaches to the subject.

Military and Security Responses to Terrorism (PgDip)
20 credits

This module will examine and evaluate the recent military and intelligence led responses to counterterrorism. It will outline and evaluate these tactics and techniques in relation to both their ethical justifications and their operational effectiveness. The module will review the wide variety of techniques deployed by the military and security services.

International Security and Terrorism Law (PgDip)
20 credits

Designed for students from a variety of different disciplines, this module aims to offer a grounding in the underlying principles of international law in relation to terrorism and security.

The major focus is on the law which is used to define and combat terrorism organised, orchestrated or inspired by Al Qaeda and Islamic State. Close attention is paid to the US led war on terror in all its many guises during the decade that followed the Al Qaeda terrorist attack in September 2001. The module also introduces students to the law regarding hate speech which will be analysed in relation to combatting far right terrorism and political violence. Although the module has as its main focus the law regarding terrorism by non-state actors, it also explains the laws of war generally, and law which is deployed in regards to state terror. The module engages closely with key texts by leading scholars in the legal studies of terrorism.

Security and Terrorism Law Dissertation (MA)
60 credits

The dissertation allows you to undertake an independent and sustained piece of research into a substantive topic of your own choosing. The dissertation must include appropriate extended piece of empirical or theoretical research on a topic in the security studies field.


An insight into teaching on your course

Teaching methods

The course is taught in a distance learning format, with no attendance required on campus. All aspects of the programme are managed over the internet using a dedicated virtual learning environment platform which manages your learning schedule. The course will include access to online study materials plus tutorial and discussion forums for networking and interacting with tutors and peers. Forum discussions allow you to co-operate across time zones and share knowledge, experience or discuss the course content with other students and course tutors.

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How learning is monitored on your programme

To cater for the wide-ranging content of our courses and the varied learning preferences of our students, we offer a range of assessment methods on each programme.

Course tutors

Entry requirements

You will need:

  • a relevant honours degree - minimum 2:2 (such as in criminology, social or political science)


  • an overseas equivalent qualification 


  • a graduate level professional qualification of comparable standard and suitable work experience (such as policing, security or military work) 

Additional requirements

  • Minimum IELTS score of 6.5 or a TOEFL score of 575
  • In some cases applicants who do not possess the standard entry requirements may be permitted to enrol at the discretion of the programme leader
  • On application you will need to submit proof of your prior qualifications, your CV, a copy of your passport page and the £400 application fee
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Please note: All international qualifications are subject to a qualification equivalency check via NARIC.

View country specific entry requirements

Contact LJMU's International Admissions Team for guidance on visa information. Further information is also available from our international web pages.

Application and selection

Securing your place at LJMU

To apply for this programme you will need to complete the online application form (KNect365), which can be accessed here or by clicking the "Apply Now" button on the top right hand side of this page.

As part of your application you will be asked to upload the following documents:

  1. Copies of any academic/ professional certificates
  2. A copy of your CV
  3. A personal statement explaining your reasons for choosing the course and your interest in the subject
  4. A copy of the back page of your passport showing the photo and passport number

These should be uploaded to the application form or can be emailed direct to if you have problems uploading. These must be submitted before you can be accepted.

Once you are ready, please complete the online application form where you will also be asked to submit credit card details for payment of the application fee as detailed above. Students who do not provide credit card details will be 

invoiced and your application will not be submitted for acceptance until the application fee has been paid. The application fee is refundable should your application not be accepted on academic grounds.

Cut-off date

The application deadline for this course is 4 September 2020.

The University reserves the right to withdraw or make alterations to a course and facilities if necessary; this may be because such changes are deemed to be beneficial to students, are minor in nature and unlikely to impact negatively upon students or become necessary due to circumstances beyond the control of the University. Where this does happen, the University operates a policy of consultation, advice and support to all enrolled students affected by the proposed change to their course or module.

Further information on the terms and conditions of any offer made, our admissions policy and the complaints and appeals process.

Important info about this course