Through curricular and experiential learning, START educates, mentors and trains the next generation of national security scholars and practitioners.

Graduate Certificate in Terrorism Analysis


Program Description Eligibility Application Information Required Coursework Meet the Faculty & Staff FAQs


Welcome from our Head Faculty and Program Directors

Thomas Guarrieri
Thomas Guarrieri

Acting Director of Graduate
Studies, START

Amy Pate
Amy Pate

START Acting Director

Liberty Day
Liberty Day

Program Director for
Education and Training, START

START offers a fully online Graduate Certificate in Terrorism Analysis through the University of Maryland's Graduate School. The program is delivered in a synchronous format using multiple online platforms provided by the University of Maryland, College Park.


Application Deadlines:

Fall 2024: Aug 9, 2024 (domestic/international)

Apply Here

Program Description

START's Graduate Certificate in Terrorism Analysis provides participants with advanced education on the causes, dynamics and impacts of international and domestic terrorism. Participants also develop the methodological skills necessary to pursue advanced research on and analysis of terrorism. Our certificate program is appropriate for both academicians and practitioners, is flexible in structure and will provide students with a thorough understanding of terrorism studies and terrorism analysis. Students can complete the program in as little as one academic year.

For more information, please fill out the request form.


The admissions process for the Graduate Certificate in Terrorism Analysis is designed to determine whether the program is a good fit for your background, education and professional development goals. 

Domestic students must have: 

  • Received at least a baccalaureate degree from a regionally accredited U.S. college or university with at least a 3.0 grade point average (on a 4.0 scale);
  • Experience, education, and/or substantial interest in terrorism and counterterrorism studies and research; and
  • GRE scores or any other standardized scores are not required for this program.

International students must have: 

  • Received at least a baccalaureate degree at a foreign university or college equivalent to that of a U.S. institution;
  • A TOEFL score of 100 or higher unless otherwise exempt*; and,
  • GRE scores are not required for this program.

*All International students must show evidence of acceptable scores on the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), Pearson's (PTE), or International English Language Testing System (IELTS). See information on the University of Maryland Graduate School website for specific admissions requirements, including minimum scores. If admitted with an English language requirement provision, the graduate student must complete an English course available only at the University of Maryland, College Park. Please visit the University of Maryland Graduate School website for more information regarding these courses. The exempt countries and minimum scores are found here.

For individuals that complete the TOEFL, the test must be valid at the time of your application. TOEFL scores are valid for two years after the test date​. For the University of Maryland to receive your TOEFL scores, please use our code: 5814.
For the University of Maryland to receive your IELTS scores, please have your score sheet mailed to:

University of Maryland
Enrollment Service Operations
Application for Graduate Admission
Room 0130 Mitchell Building
College Park, MD 20742​

Note for International Graduate Students: University of Maryland is dedicated to maintaining a vibrant international graduate student community. We encourage applications from international students, however as a fully online program we are not able to sponsor any educational visa for travel to the University of Maryland. 

Application Information


Fall 2024: Aug 9, 2024 (domestic/international)

Admission Requirements 
Graduate Application

University of Maryland's Graduate Application Process 

The application is available through University of Maryland Graduate School application system. Before completing the application, applicants must check the Admissions Requirements site for specific instructions for this program.

As required by the Graduate School, all application materials are to be submitted electronically:

  • Graduate application
    • In the Educational Intent section, select the following:
      • Application Type: Certificate
      • Intended Program of Study: Terrorism Analysis (Z039), CERT GR
  • Within the Online Application, you will be able to upload:
    • Unofficial Transcripts for all college-level coursework outside the University of Maryland, College Park**;
    • Statement of purpose;
    • Resume/CV;
  • You will also be able to pay the non-refundable application fee of $75 USD

**Official Transcripts will be requested if admitted.

Completed applications are reviewed by an admissions committee in each graduate degree program. The recommendations of the committees are submitted to the Dean of the Graduate School, who will make the final admission decision.


Required Coursework

Students must complete four (4) courses. The program format is online and synchronous and the courses occur after 6:00pm ET or on weekends, and are 2.5 hours long. These courses follow a standard Fall or Spring academic semester of 15 weeks.


BSST630: Motivations and Intents of Terrorists and Terrorist Groups

  • ​This course will provide an introduction to the study of terrorism, and will focus on explaining the formation of terrorist groups and the motivations behind terrorist behavior. To do so, it will draw upon theories from social psychology, sociology, political science, criminology, and history. The course will draw heavily from historical examples as well as current examples of international and domestic terrorist groups around the world.
  • ​Offered during Fall semesters (August-December)

BSST631: Societal Impacts of and Responses to Terrorism

  • This course will address the manners in which a variety of different actors respond to both terrorist incidents and the threat of terrorism. The course will examine local responses to terrorist incidents (9/11 and other events) through emergency response organizations, community organizations, and volunteerism. The course will also look at local impacts of terrorism including effects on individual and group attitudes and behaviors. The course will then move to policy decisions made in response to both terrorist attacks and the threat of terrorism, addressing such issues as homeland security planning, border security, and surveillance. Finally, the course will address individual and community recovery from terrorist attacks, looking at such issues as psychological impacts of trauma, historical memory, and effects of disaster on civil society. The goal of the course will be to develop a multifaceted perspective on individual and community resilience in the face of terrorist threats.
  • ​Offered during Spring semesters (January-May)

Research Methods Course


BSST633: Research Methods in Terrorism and Counterterrorism

  • Provides students with the opportunity to conduct original research, while exposing them to analytical tools relevant to the study of terrorism. Students will work with a range of data sources on domestic and international terrorism, and will be tasked with using data to test hypotheses related to the causes, behaviors, and/or impacts of terrorism.
  • Offered during Spring semesters (January-May)


(Students may choose one from the list here. Other electives must be approved by the Director of the Graduate Certificate Program.)

​​BSST634: ​Legal and Criminal Approaches to Counterterrorism

  • The United States and many of her allies have challenged long-standing legal boundaries in their effort to combat terrorism. This course examines these responses, including: increased criminalization of terrorism related activities; aggressive criminal prosecutions; detention of suspected terrorists indefinitely in far-off prisons; implementation of enhanced interrogation techniques; launch of drones to kill alleged terrorists, even U.S. citizens; and deployment of a vast system of mass surveillance.
  • Offered during Fall semesters (August-December)

BSST635: Countering Violent Extremism: Policy and Practice

  • In recent years, the understanding of how and why individuals engage in violent extremism and terrorism has evolved and become more nuanced, as have the tools to mitigate these threats. A field of policy and practice called Countering Violent Extremism (CVE) has emerged that focuses on countering the pull of terrorist recruitment and influence by building resilience among populations vulnerable to radicalization.
  • Offered during Fall semesters (August-December)

Meet the Faculty

  • Marcus Boyd – Geospatial Research Unit (GRU) Director, Director of Graduate Studies, START
  • Jeffrey Davis – Department of Political Science Associate Professor and Chair at the University of Maryland, Baltimore County
  • Michael Egnoto – Affiliated Faculty, Clinical Informaticist at Walter Reed Army Institute of Research
  • Thomas Guarrieri - Director of Undergraduate Studies and Unconventional Weapons and Technology (UWT) Assistant Research Scientist, START

Meet the Staff

  • Deanne Winslett – Communications and Transition Manager, START
  • Liberty Day – Program Director for Education and Training, START

Frequently Asked Questions

Q: If I am accepted to the program, would I be considered a full-time student?

A: No. All students in the Graduate Certificate program are considered part-time students.

Q: Do I have to complete the program in one year? 

A: No. It is up to you to determine your coursework plan that best fits with your goals and other commitments. Students will work with the program coordinator before the start of each semester. Students will have up to five (5) years from the time of admittance to complete the program. The coordinator will work with you to accommodate any registration issues that may arise during the time you are enrolled in the program. 

Q: I live in Maryland. Will I be charged in-state tuition even though the program is online?

A: All students are charged the tuition and fee rates posted on the program’s Tuition & Fees website page. 

Q: Is financial aid available for this program? 

A: Students seeking the Graduate Certificate in Terrorism Analysis are not eligible for federal financial aid. However, students can use employer provided assistance, many Veteran's Benefits programs, and alternative private student loans. 

Q: Does the admissions committee have a preference for the letters of recommendation?

A: We prefer academic and/or professional letters. Your recommenders should be able to discuss your ability to succeed in graduate level coursework. 

Q: Will I ever need to come to the University of Maryland Campus?

A: No. The program is entirely online. Instructors often teach from locations all over the country.

Q: Will I be required to buy books for the courses?

A: Yes. The instructors often require the students to buy at least one book. The book list for each course may change from one semester to the next. Students will be informed of the required textbooks prior to the start of the course. Instructors may make other readings available online.

Q: What benefits will I have as a University of Maryland student? 

A: As an online graduate student, you have access to UMD resources listed on the Online Learning & Resources website page.

Interested in more information?

Please direct questions to Fill out this brief form to receive more information about START's Graduate Certificate in Terrorism Analysis.


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College Students

Undergraduate Students

  • Global Terrorism Studies Minor
  • Study Abroad
  • Online Courses
  • Internships

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Graduate Students

  • MPS in Security & Terrorism Studies
  • Graduate Certificate in Terrorism Analysis
  • Study Abroad
  • Summer/Winter Courses
  • Internships

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Professional Development

  • MPS in Security & Terrorism Studies
  • Graduate Certificate in Terrorism Analysis
  • Online Courses
  • Training


Check out START's flagship internship program.