MSc International Security and Risk Management

Understanding complex risks and the dangers they pose, is crucial to managing security and countering threats in a global world.

If you are already working in security, or have aspirations of working in the field, our MSc International Security and Risk Management will help you gain a deeper knowledge of problems that have a significant influence on society.

Developed by leading academics from the International Centre for Policing and Security, this course is aimed at those who seek to develop their career prospects in the world of public, private and military security sectors.

Students will graduate with greater employment opportunities, coupled with the capacity to add greater value to their existing workplace.

We are pleased to provide the following provision to meet your requirements as you pursue your aspirations within international risk and security:

MSc International Security and Risk Management

  • On campus (Full Time or Part time) - Crime Security and Justice Professional Development Hub (Glyntaff Campus) 
  • Online (Hybrid) (Full Time or Part time)

MSc International Security and Risk Management (Counter Terrorism)

  • On campus (Full Time or Part time) - Crime Security and Justice Professional Development Hub (Glyntaff Campus)
  • Online (Hybrid) (Full Time or Part time)

Course highlights: 

  • Develop security-related academic and professional expertise.
  • Select modules that complement your interests and professional goals in subjects including organised crime, counter-terrorism, and intelligence studies.
  • Be taught by leading academics and security practitioners from the International Centre for Policing and Security including Director of Studies, Professor Christian Kaunert and Dr Joana Pereira. 
  • Have the option to convert relevant prior learning or work experience from previous study, employment, voluntary work and training courses into credits and complete the course in less time.

Please note: Recognition of Prior Experiential Learning (RPL/RPEL) opportunities exist within this course. 

You may have professional experience and/or undertaken professional courses throughout your career that the university can formally recognise as part of your application. 

If you feel that this may apply to you and would like to discuss this prior to or during your application, please contact the course leader, who can advise and help you with this process. 

Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
Full-time 1 Year September Glyntaff A
Full-time 1 Year September Online 8
Part-time 2 Years September Glyntaff A
Part-time 2 Years September Online 8
Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
Full-time 1 Year September Glyntaff A
Full-time 1 Year September Online 8
Part-time 2 Years September Glyntaff A
Part-time 2 Years September Online 8

There are two versions of this course: 

  • MSc International Security and Risk Management 
  • MSc International Security and Risk Management (Counter Terrorism)

Both versions are available in full time and part time formats on campus and online.  

You are required to complete modules worth a total of 180 credits for the successful completion of the course including 7 modules worth 20 credits each and 1 module (research project) worth 40 credits. 

Modules contained within the MSc International Security and Risk Management are:

Core 20 Credit Modules:

  • International Security Theories and Methods
  • Terrorism and Counter-terrorism in Europe
  • Intelligence Studies
  • Risk Management and Analysis
  • European Union Security
  • Governing and Securing Cyber Space

Optional 20 Credit Modules:

  • International Security of Drugs, Organised Crime and Human Trafficking
  • Geopolitics of Natural Resources

Core 40 Credit Module

  • Dissertation


Modules contained within the MSc International Security and Risk Management (Counter Terrorism) are:

Core 20 Credit Modules:

  • International Security Theories and Methods
  • Terrorism and Counter-terrorism in Europe
  • Intelligence Studies
  • Risk Management and Analysis
  • Terrorism, Hybrid Warfare And Conflict Analysis In Europe And Beyond
  • Radicalisation, Psychology and Migration in Terrorism Studies
  • Terrorism, the Middle Eastern Conflict and Europe

Core 40 Credit Module

  • Dissertation


Supported digital learning is used to provide and to enhance this course. Our online learning environment, Blackboard, will provide you with high-quality course resources.

You will have the opportunity to interact with other students, discuss and present your work, and maintain contact with your instructors.

Throughout your studies, you will receive lots of aid, including advice on writing and formatting academic papers, as well as how to conduct ethical research.

These provide you the opportunity to meet faculty and other students, as well as participate in traditional learning methods like lectures and tutorials.

With a strong focus on horizon scanning and risk analysis, this MSc offers students the opportunity to use advance simulators, like Hydra, and will give them an advantage in the job market as they will be experts in designing and operating in different scenario building situations, to identify threats and conceiving constructive and tailor-made solutions for complex security scenarios.

As the International Centre for Policing & Security is involved in EuroSim, an annual transatlantic simulation of the European Union, bringing together 200 students and faculty from 20 colleges and universities in the United States and Europe, they will also have a unique opportunity to work and learn in an exciting multicultural environment. 

Join virtual study days with live seminars, interviews and question and answer sessions.


You'll be assessed through written exams, practical exams and coursework as well as through real-life simulations (e.g., Hydra Minerva, Crime Scene Training Facility, engaging in covert activities – surveillance, anti-surveillance, intelligence analysis, decision making etc.).



You will gain practical skills in our Hydra Simulation Centre, where you can experience a range of scenarios that will develop your techniques in decision making, interviewing and investigation management.

Featured Lecturer:
Professor Christian Kaunert

Professor Christian Kaunert

Professor Christian Kaunert is one of the foremost experts on European policing and criminal justice co-operation and highly regarded by European institutions and agencies, notably Europol.

Professor Kaunert is the Director of Terrorism and Security at USW. He leads the policing and security research at the International Centre for Policing and Security and hold the current Jean Monnet Chair in Policing and Counter-Terrorism in Europe.

Previously, he served as an Academic Director and Professor at the Institute for European Studies, Vrije Universiteit Brussel, a Professor of International Politics, Head of Discipline in Politics, and the Director of the European Institute for Security and Justice, a Jean Monnet Centre for Excellence, at the University of Dundee.

Professor Kaunert has researched and taught in many international universities. His research has a clear focus on Policing and International Security, especially in the area of European Union (EU) Counter-Terrorism, including its external dimension.


Your tutors will be experts in their field, with many carrying out cutting-edge research into national and international security and risk while others have years of experience in policing and in security and counter terrorism.

  • Professor Christian Kaunert, Programme Director
  • Mike Edwards, Course Leader
  • Dr Joana de Deus Pereira
  • Ori Wertman
  • Dr Ethem Ilbiz
  • Dr Edwin Ezeokafor
  • Dr Eyene Okpanachi

Learn about our current research.

We regularly revalidate courses for quality assurance and enhancement

At USW, we regularly review our courses in response to changing patterns of employment and skills demand to ensure we offer learning designed to reflect today’s student needs and tomorrow’s employer demands.

If during a review process course content is significantly changed, we’ll write to inform you and talk you through the changes for the coming year. But whatever the outcome, we aim to equip our students with the skillset and the mindset to succeed whatever tomorrow may bring. Your future, future-proofed.

A 2:2 Honours degree in a relevant subject or appropriate professional qualification(s). Relevant subjects include, but are not limited to, Policing, Criminology/Criminal Justice, Sociology, Business Management, Public Services, and Psychology. Your application should demonstrate a clear interest in the course.

Those without the formal qualifications above are encouraged to apply if they have relevant experience in the sector. You will be considered on an individual basis where appropriate experience is taken into account.

Please note that whilst this course does not require a DBS Check for entry, some professions will not consider candidates who have certain types of criminal convictions. Therefore, if you have a criminal conviction and you are considering a particular career path we would recommend that you check with the relevant professional body or refer to their recruitment policy to make sure that your conviction will not disadvantage you.

International Entry Requirements

We also welcome international applications with equivalent qualifications. Please visit the country specific pages on our international website for exact details.

English Requirements
In general, international applicants will need to have achieved an overall IELTS grade of 6.0 with a minimum score of 5.5 in each component.

However, if you have previously studied through the medium of English IELTS might not be required, but please visit the country specific page on our international website for exact details. If your country is not featured please contact us.

Full-time fees are per year. Part-time fees are per 20 credits. Once enrolled, the fee will remain at the same rate throughout the duration of your study on this course.

August 2024 - July 2025 Fees

  • Full-time UK:  £10250

  • Full-time International:  £16000 

  • Part-time UK:  £1140 per 20 credits

August 2025 - July 2026 Fees

  • Full-time UK: TBC

  • Full-time International: TBC

  • Part-time UK: TBC

Student Perks

At the University of South Wales, you’re investing in so much more than a degree. We strive to provide our students with the best possible experience, no matter what you chose to study. Whether it’s access to top of the range mac books and PCs, state-of-the-art facilities packed with industry-leading equipment and software, masterclasses and events led by industry experts, or a wide range of clubs and societies to meet likeminded people, better tomorrows start with extra perks.

Each course also has their own unique student benefits to prepare you for the real word, and details of these can be found on our course pages. From global field trips, integrated work experience and free course-related resources, to funded initiatives, projects working with real employers, and opportunities for extra qualifications and accreditations - at USW your future, is future-proofed.

Click here to learn more about student perks at USW.

Additional Costs

As a student of USW, you’ll have access to lots of free resources to support your study and learning, such as textbooks, publications, online journals, laptops, and plenty of remote-access resources. Whilst in most cases these resources are more than sufficient in supporting you with completing your course, additional costs, both obligatory and optional, may be required or requested for the likes of travel, memberships, experience days, stationery, printing, or equipment.


Funding to help pay for (or cover) course tuition fees and living costs

Whilst you’re studying, you’ll have two main financial obligations – tuition fees and living costs. There’s lots of financial help available from the University of South Wales and external funding sources, that may provide loans (which have to be paid back) and grants, scholarships and bursaries (that don't).

To learn about course fees, funding options, and to see if you are eligible for financial support, visit our Fees and Funding pages.

MSc International Security and Risk Management

The University of South Wales (USW) is committed to helping armed forces personnel, serving and retired to build a new career back in the civilian world. As Wales’ largest University, and one of the biggest in the UK, we offer an extensive range of courses at our three campuses in South East Wales - Pontypridd, Cardiff and Newport.

The MSc International Security and Risk Management is one course that attracts funding from within the UK MOD's Enhanced Learning Credits Scheme (ELC).

The scheme promotes lifelong learning amongst members of the Armed Forces. The scheme provides financial support in each of a maximum of three separate financial years for higher level learning of a nationally recognised qualification at Level three or above or, if pursued overseas, an approved international equivalent qualification with an approved learning provider.

For further information, please visit: or for specific information: MSc International Security and Risk Management on ELCAS

As this course is blended and makes use of synchronous and asynchronous delivery methods you will need to make sure that you have access to a suitable device and necessary internet access. The minimum IT requirements are shown below:

Minimum Hardware Requirements:

  • macOS (10.15 Catalina or higher) or Windows 10 or 11 
  • 4GB RAM (8GB RAM or more is highly recommended)
  • 20GB of available hard-drive space
  • Screen resolution set to 1280x1024
  • Broadband/high-speed uninterrupted Internet access
  • minimum speed of at least 4Mbps download and upload speed
  • Webcam, microphone and speakers(a wearable headset is highly recommended)
  • Please note: Google Chromebook computers are not supported on some applications. 
  • Microsoft no longer supports Office apps in the Google Play store on Chromebooks as of 11/2021.
  • Apple Silicon Macs (M1 Processors) will require installation on Apple’s Rosetta Translation Environment in order to install/run programs that designed for Intel/AMD processors. 

Browser Compatibility

It is extremely important that you use a supported browser when using Blackboard Learn™ so that all course content and the course tools display properly and to avoid usability errors related to browser configurations.

The very latest editions of Mozilla Firefox, and Google Chrome, Apple Safari or Microsoft Edge should work fine on most devices. Microsoft Internet Explorer is no longer a supported browser.

We recommend installing both Chrome and Firefox browsers for use with our technologies, especially if one results in an error message.  Please try using a different browser to see if you experience the same results before contacting help desk support.

Additional Browser Configuration Considerations include;

  • Pop-up window blockers should be disabled, as they can conflict with online exams and assignments.

Additional Considerations:

Many of the modules will contain topics and content which is sensitive in nature.  As a result applicants should be aware that at times they may need to consider carefully their learning environment.

Due to the intensive nature of this degree course, it is strongly recommended that you attend an initial academic touchpoint discussion to ensure expectations regarding time commitment and engagement levels are set and agreed.  

The discussion can be carried out online or in person and will usually last around 30 minutes.  

How do I apply?

Apply directly to the University for this course.

Apply for this part-time course using our online application form.

Our courses fill up quickly, so apply as soon as you decide which course you would like to undertake.

Not sure if you're ready to apply?

Visit us on an Open Day to learn more about our courses, view the campus, and tour our residential halls.

Our Careers and Employability service can assist in helping you find employment that reflects your career goals.

You will also be supported by the team here at the International Centre for Policing and Security who will support the development of a CV and provide a range of career development opportunities.

At the end of the international security course, students can forge exciting careers in law-enforcement, intelligence and security agencies; investigative journalism; civil service and private security businesses, or research. Our careers and academic teams will provide you with as much support as possible in finding employment through close industrial contacts, careers events, recruitment fairs and individual advice. Many students decide to progress on to a PhD or Masters by Research at the International Centre for Policing and Security. You can study full or part time, on campus or remotely.