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Skip to content. Our Assumptions We start with the fundamental assumptions that have shaped the character of what we teach in the Introduction course and, to a degree, the curriculum. Assumptions About The Sponsor The Department of Homeland Security DHS sponsors our program primarily to expand the capability of local and state government, first to prevent terrorism and second to reduce vulnerabilities and improve response and recovery.

Assumptions About Teaching Teaching in the Introduction course is premised on andragogical principles as opposed to pedagogical principles. Adult learning is problem-centered rather than content-oriented. Experience war stories provides a useful basis for learning activities.

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Adults need to be involved in the planning and evaluation of their instruction. Let me decide how I will learn. Tell me where these ideas fit in with the other things I know. Sell me on learning this — make it convincing. Remove the obstacles from my learning path. Assumptions About Homeland Security We noted there are lots of ideas about what constitutes homeland security, and these ideas have not converged on any dominant paradigm.

Assumptions About The Introductory Course Alfred North Whitehead warned against what he called the mental dry rot created by teaching inert ideas. Twelve Competency Domains The first year the Center for Homeland Defense and Security was in operation, we asserted — based on practitioner experience and on empirical evidence 13 — that effective homeland security leaders should be able to demonstrate competency i. The logics, strategies, methods, and consequences of terrorism.

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Public information, crisis communications, and managing the fear terrorists try to create. Conventional and unconventional threats to homeland security e. The strategic leadership challenges and skills demanded by the continuously changing multi-agency, multidisciplinary collaborative environment — e. The science and technology of weapons of mass destruction, weapons of mass exposure, and weapons of mass effects. The lessons learned from other nations and from history about preventing and responding to terrorism.


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The relationship between forms of government and social organization, and the causes, consequences and responses to terrorism. The dynamic tension the war on terrorism triggers between the criminal justice system and the Constitution — this is the civil liberties issue. The sources, methods and uses of homeland security information and intelligence, especially in an environment where many public agencies, private agencies, and the military have acknowledged the new imperative to work collaboratively. The uses and limits of technology in homeland security.

The analytical, planning, budgetary and fiscal frameworks that can assist homeland security leaders design effective policies and strategies for the myriad substantive issues that constitute homeland security. Specific Subjects What we described above is the general knowledge framework that informs our program. The national strategies for achieving that policy. The implications of the national strategy for state and local homeland security strategies, especially with respect to prevention.

The basic vocabulary of homeland security. The role that leadership plays in achieving strategy. How individual, organizational, and social learning affect achieving the strategy. This means how ideas are translated into policy and strategy; how to be effective as a network leader.

The nature and scope of significant homeland security issues and concerns, their causes and consequences. We tend to emphasize different issues each time we teach the course, using them as opportunities to emphasize our core themes.


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Causes, consequences, tactics and logics of terrorism taught in the companion course. The major solutions proposed for homeland security issues and concerns, and the pros and cons of the solutions. The organizational implications of homeland security policies and strategies. The disciplines, processes, and critiques that constitute the emerging profession of homeland security.

Pre-In-Residence We start working with our students as soon as they are admitted into the program, typically six to eight weeks before their first in-residence session. First In-Residence During the first in-residence session we emphasize five of the core ideas in our curriculum: Prevention — It is the first priority of the National Strategy. Strategy — Our program concentrates more on homeland security strategy than on homeland security operations. Leadership — Our mission is to educate homeland security leaders. Critical analysis — We want students to identify assumptions and know how to use evidence to inform action.

Creativity — We want students to see homeland security more as a canvas to paint on than a puzzle to be solved. Videos are not needed, however. One can conduct a tabletop exercise using a case study, 17 or any hypothetical or actual homeland security-related situation.

This exercise is intended to illustrate the self-organizing property of systems in homeland security. A homeland security futures analysis , intended to model how one can conceptualize a desired future by focusing on critical environmental variables. The Non-Residence Session A dedicated course website is used to conduct the non-residence session. Learning Activities: The learning activities are based on an expanded homeland security narrative that we discuss on the course website.

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Depending on the structure of the course during a particular quarter, we use one of two types of learning activities. The second kind involves Questions of the Week.


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  7. Weak Signals Blog: The blog, and the purpose of the weak signals exercise, are explained below. Question of the Week: We use a short version of this activity when we use the Lines of Inquiry as the centerpiece of the non-residence experience. When we are not using the Lines of Inquiry, we do an extended Question of the Week exercise. This activity is described later in this article. Strategy Memo: This seminar paper is a memo designed to address a real-world strategic problem that the student selects.

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    MCRP 3-02E Understanding and Surviving Terrorism

    The Learning Activities A primary non-residence objective is for each student to complete thirty-five points worth of learning activities. The Lines of Inquiry are: Homeland security basics — the minimum an educated homeland security professional should know. The mission — preventing terrorism; why we are doing that and what is meant by prevention. Strategies — options for accomplishing the mission. Frameworks — analysis of how things happen in the world of homeland security.

    Most of the homeland security basics and information about the mission and strategies are espoused theories, predictions about the outcomes that will occur if certain activities are undertaken. Leadership — especially in a networked, non-hierarchical, multi-agency, multi-sector, multi-professional environment. Essentially this is an environment where command and control does not operate very effectively. This element is designed to underscore the need for life-long learning in homeland security. Weak signals have the following characteristics: They indicate the potential for change, rather than mainstream thinking.

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    They relate to strategic themes in homeland security. They can suggest strategic blind spots.

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    Question of the Week We use the Question of the Week exercise to continue the homeland security dialogue that started during the first in-residence session. Select one of the homeland security presidential decision directives HSPD and identify how it has affected your agency or jurisdiction.

    In your response, identify the problems and opportunities created by the HSPD. Starting with the criteria suggested in the attached GAO report, 27 identify the strengths of your selected strategy and areas where the strategy could be improved.