Graduate Certificate of International Security Studies - 2016

Please note: This course has recently undergone a major change. Please refer to Transition Arrangements for more information.

This page is for past year, View 2017 course details.

Course summary

Course summary - 2016

Level: Postgraduate
Qualification: Graduate Certificate
Number of units: 4 units to complete

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Mon - Fri: 8am - late

Sat & Sun: 9am - 5pm

All times in Australian Eastern
Standard Time (AEST) or Australian Eastern Daylight Time (AEDT)

The International Security Studies (ISS) courses cover a broad spectrum of traditional and non-traditional security issues examined from a regional and global context. International security studies is no longer limited to traditional security challenges such as military threats, terrorism and law enforcement. It also includes non-traditional challenges to human, societal, economic and environmental security. This postgraduate program examines the theoretical and practical frameworks that serve to critically explain and evaluate the security landscape in the ‘Asian Century’.

By the end of this program it is anticipated you should be able to:

  1. identify contemporary and emerging security threats, whilst applying critical thinking skills in conceptualising risk and threat assessment.
  2. explore a range of research principles and methodologies that are utilised to underpin independent research within the field of International Security Studies (ISS).
  3. analyse a significant and contemporary body of literature related to key concepts that underpin the field of International Security Studies and which identify key theoretical and thematic concepts, as well as traditional and emerging security threats.
  4. communicate acquired knowledge and skills effectively to a range of professional audiences.
  5. present informed, considered and logical judgements supporting and contradicting the arguments of others, in a professional manner, and within a relevant contextual framework applicable to graduate employment opportunities.
  6. critically evaluate academic scholarship and literature pertinent to professional practice parallel to the production of documentation relevant to graduate employment opportunities in a variety of related fields.
  7. model research skills, specifically the ability to select and integrate knowledge from a diverse range of relevant sources; critically evaluate significance and relevance; and synthesise findings in a coherent, rational and sustained academic argument.
  8. synthesise theoretical, thematic and practical positions in relation to International Security Studies which evidence sustained engagement throughout the duration of the degree and permit graduates to present positions on contemporary security scholarship and practice necessary for employment in directly related fields
  9. apply ethical principles that manifest a global outlook built on interdisciplinary and international engagement.

Graduates may find employment with, defence forces, intelligence agencies, and law enforcement. There are also opportunities with NGOs and in the private sector including consulting, insurance and banking, and in the in the private security industry and the cyber security sector.

Applicants must hold the following:

Australian level 7 bachelor's qualification or recognised equivalent with GPA of not less than 2.0 out of 4.0; AND Minimum English Language Proficiency: IELTS or IELTS equivalent of 6.5 overall, with minimum 6.0 in each band..


Substantial professional experience in a setting relevant to the field, see the Recognition to Prior Learning (RPL) Plan on the PICT website for details; GPA of not less than 2.0 out of 4.0 ; AND Minimum English Language Proficiency: IELTS or IELTS equivalent of 6.5 overall, with minimum 6.0 in each band.

Graduate Certificate students must complete four units as per the course structure.

Please note: It is not recommended to enrol in more than 2 units per Session.

To qualify for the award of Graduate Certificate of International Security Studies students must complete four units as indicated in the course structure at the time of admission.

On completion of admission you are bound by the University Terms and Conditions and must comply with present and future By-laws, Rules, Codes, and Policies, Procedures and Schedules of Macquarie University

A student who is taking an unduly long time to complete a program of study may be excluded from further enrolment. An unduly long period of time is considered to be effective enrolment longer than 4 years for this Graduate Certificate.

Not applicable.


All students in the Graduate Certificate of International Security Studies must complete the following compulsory units.

  • Compulsory 600 series Units (one unit)
  • Compulsory 800 or 900 Series Units (three units)
Total number of units to complete: 1 unit Required Elective Optional
Unit name Code Provider Availability
Foundations of Modern Security: Challenge and Practice
PICX601 Macquarie Sess 1 Sess 2 -
Complete 3 units from the following 7 units Required Elective Optional
Unit name Code Provider Availability
Insurgency and Non-State Security Challenges
PICX838 Macquarie Sess 1 - -
International Security
PICX901 Macquarie Sess 1 - Sess 3
Weapons of Mass Destruction: Proliferation and Control
PICX905 Macquarie Sess 1 - -
Border Security and Migration
PICX907 Macquarie - Sess 2 -
Globalisation and Security
PICX908 Macquarie Sess 1 - -
Asia Pacific Security
PICX913 Macquarie - Sess 2 -
Humanitarian Intervention and Peacekeeping
PICX915 Macquarie - Sess 2 -

Macquarie University may recognise prior formal, informal and non-formal learning for the purpose of granting admission into, a program. The recognition of these forms of learning is enabled by the University’s Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) Policy and its associated Procedures and Guidelines. Applicants should contact the Centre for Policing, Intelligence and Counter Terrorism (PICT) at Macquarie University for information about eligibility for credit and RPL procedures via

To request for a prerequisite waiver, please refer to Macquarie's website at

You can pay fees in one of two main ways:

Eligible OUA students can access the government loan scheme known as FEE-HELP. You pay back the loan through your taxes once your income reaches a minimum threshold.

Who can access it?

  • Australian citizens who will undertake, in Australia, at least one unit of study contributing to their course
  • Permanent humanitarian visa holders who will be resident in Australia for the duration of their unit
  • Permanent visa holders who are undertaking bridging study for overseas-trained professionals, and will be resident in Australia for the duration of their study

Find out more about FEE-HELP

You can pay your fees upfront - in full at the beginning of a unit - using:
  • Credit card (Visa and MasterCard)
  • Cheque
  • Money order

You should make cheques and money orders payable to 'Open Universities Australia' and send them to:
Open Universities Australia
GPO Box 5387
Melbourne 3001

Students who did not commence their program in the current year are required to follow the program structure provided to them at the time of admission.

Please contact Macquarie University for further assistance at