Understanding Terrorism

Professor: TBD
Units: 0.5
Elective Course
Concentration: Social and Behavioral Science

This course provides an introduction to the subjects of radicalization and terrorism and counter-radicalization and counter-terrorism strategies. The first part of the course will examine the concept of terrorism and types of terrorism and terrorist groups. The second part will review the current state of research on radicalization into violent extremism and examine the factors and processes at play, including structural societal-level factors, psychological and political factors, the role of ideology, and group dynamics in terrorist groups. The third part will involve a review of the evolution of al-Qaeda and its affiliated and associated groups over the last decade, including the factors that accounted for their success or failure, as well as emerging trends in terrorism. The course will conclude with a review of counter-terrorism and counter-radicalization approaches in selected countries and of the factors and conditions that produce the disengagement of militants from terrorist groups.