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PICT802 – Terrorism

2017 – S1 External

General Information

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Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff Senior Lecturer
Julian Droogan
Contact via 9850 1425
Y3A
Thursdays 1-3 pm
Credit points Credit points
4
Prerequisites Prerequisites
Admission to MPICT or MCPICT or PGDipPICT or GradDipPICT or GradDipCPICT or PGCertPICT or GradCertCPICT or MPICTMIntSecSt or MCPICTMIntSecSt or MIntSecStud or GradDipIntSecStud
Corequisites Corequisites
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Unit description Unit description
Few security issues define our times more than that of terrorism. This unit provides a solid foundation for terrorism studies, encouraging students to build a thorough understanding of the definitions, origins, and history of terrorism around the world, and considering terrorism as a tactic, as a strategy, and as a mode of communication. Students will explore the wider effects that terrorist discourse plays in contemporary global society, including debates around local, regional and global responses, terrorist overreach, and state overreaction. The unit will also critically examine a series of key themes and questions in terrorism studies such as religion and terrorism, state sponsored terrorism, the future of terrorism, and how academics can best conduct terrorism field research.

Important Academic Dates

Information about important academic dates including deadlines for withdrawing from units are available at http://students.mq.edu.au/student_admin/enrolmentguide/academicdates/

Learning Outcomes

  1. Demonstrate a high level of critical comprehension regarding the concept of terrorism and its academic investigation
  2. Display engagement with the field of terrorism studies through the examination and exploration of critical texts, concepts and theories.
  3. Investigate a substantial body of contemporary terrorism and politically motivated violence literature.
  4. Demonstrate higher order communication skills including the ability to present sustained and persuasive arguments cogently and coherently.
  5. Model research skills, particularly the ability to select appropriately and integrate knowledge from diverse sources to evaluate its significance and relevance; synthesise material and present findings, rationally and lucidly.
  6. Demonstrate higher level skills in critical analysis.

Assessment Tasks

Name Weighting Due
Active Participation 20% Ongoing
Primary Source Critical Review 30% Sunday Week Six
3500 Word Research Essay 50% Sunday Week Eleven

Active Participation

Due: Ongoing
Weighting: 20%

Active participation refers to the demonstration of sustained informed and critical contributions to seminars or online forums, the demonstration of reflective intellectual practice, the completion of some online or in-class tasks, and the demonstration that you have engaged with the set reading materials for the course. Active participation will be primarily seminar based for internal students, and online forum based for external and OUA students. Details on the requirement are available to enrolled students through the unit iLearn site.


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Demonstrate a high level of critical comprehension regarding the concept of terrorism and its academic investigation
  • Display engagement with the field of terrorism studies through the examination and exploration of critical texts, concepts and theories.
  • Investigate a substantial body of contemporary terrorism and politically motivated violence literature.
  • Demonstrate higher order communication skills including the ability to present sustained and persuasive arguments cogently and coherently.
  • Model research skills, particularly the ability to select appropriately and integrate knowledge from diverse sources to evaluate its significance and relevance; synthesise material and present findings, rationally and lucidly.
  • Demonstrate higher level skills in critical analysis.

Primary Source Critical Review

Due: Sunday Week Six
Weighting: 30%

This assessment requires you to compare, contrast and critically assess two important peer-reviewed academic journal articles on terrorism studies. You will be expected to identify and cogently argue the strengths and weaknesses of these pieces, and contextualise them within the broader field of research on terrorism. Further instructions on this assignment will be available on the iLean site, and will be communicated in lectures. This task is due at midnight on the Sunday of Week Six. 


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Demonstrate a high level of critical comprehension regarding the concept of terrorism and its academic investigation
  • Display engagement with the field of terrorism studies through the examination and exploration of critical texts, concepts and theories.
  • Investigate a substantial body of contemporary terrorism and politically motivated violence literature.
  • Demonstrate higher order communication skills including the ability to present sustained and persuasive arguments cogently and coherently.
  • Model research skills, particularly the ability to select appropriately and integrate knowledge from diverse sources to evaluate its significance and relevance; synthesise material and present findings, rationally and lucidly.
  • Demonstrate higher level skills in critical analysis.

3500 Word Research Essay

Due: Sunday Week Eleven
Weighting: 50%

This assessment requires you to write a sustained 3500 word critical research essay on a key scholarly debate in terrorism studies. The essay will demonstrate that you have engaged with the academic literature on terrorism, that you have critically evaluated a range of perspectives, and synthesised them into a coherent argument. A series of possible essay questions that you can choose from will be displayed on the iLearn site. Instructions on the essay questions and further guidance for this task are available on the iLearn site, and will be communicated in lectures. This task is due at Midnight on the Sunday of Week Eleven. 


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • Demonstrate a high level of critical comprehension regarding the concept of terrorism and its academic investigation
  • Display engagement with the field of terrorism studies through the examination and exploration of critical texts, concepts and theories.
  • Investigate a substantial body of contemporary terrorism and politically motivated violence literature.
  • Demonstrate higher order communication skills including the ability to present sustained and persuasive arguments cogently and coherently.
  • Model research skills, particularly the ability to select appropriately and integrate knowledge from diverse sources to evaluate its significance and relevance; synthesise material and present findings, rationally and lucidly.
  • Demonstrate higher level skills in critical analysis.

Delivery and Resources

DELIVERY AND RESOURCES

 

UNIT REQUIREMENTS AND EXPECTATIONS

  • You should spend an average of 12 hours per week on this unit. This includes listening to lectures prior to seminar or tutorial, reading weekly required materials as detailed in iLearn, participating in Ilearn discussion forums and preparing assessments.
  • Internal students are expected to attend all seminar or tutorial sessions, and external students are expected to make significant contributions to on-line activities.
  • In most cases students are required to attempt and submit all major assessment tasks in order to pass the unit.

 

REQUIRED READINGS

  • The citations for all the required readings for this unit are available to enrolled students through the unit iLearn site, and at Macquarie University's library site.  Electronic copies of required readings may be accessed through the library or will be made available by other means.

 

TECHNOLOGY USED AND REQUIRED

  • Computer and internet access are essential for this unit. Basic computer skills and skills in word processing are also a requirement.
  • This unit has an online presence. Login is via: https://ilearn.mq.edu.au/
  • Students are required to have regular access to a computer and the internet. Mobile devices alone are not sufficient.
  • Information about IT used for this unit is available at  http://students.mq.edu.au/it_services/

 

SUBMITTING ASSESSMENT TASKS

  • All text-based assessment tasks are to be submitted, marked and returned electronically.  This will only happen through the unit iLearn site. 
  • Assessment tasks must be submitted as a MS word document by the due date.
  • Most assessment tasks will be subject to a 'TurnitIn' review as an automatic part of the submission process.
  • The granting of extensions is subject to the university’s Disruptions Policy. Extensions will not in normal circumstances be granted by unit conveners or tutors, but must be lodged through Disruption to Study: http://www.students.mq.edu.au/student_admin/manage_your_study_program/disruption_to_studies/.

 

 

LATE SUBMISSION OF ASSESSMENT TASKS

  • If an assignment is submitted late, 5% of the available mark will be deducted for each day (including weekends) the paper is late.
  • For example, if a paper is worth 20 marks, 1 mark will be deducted from the grade given for each day that it is late (i.e. a student given 15/20 who submitted 4 days late will lose 4 marks = 11/20).
  • The same principle applies if an extension is granted and the assignment is submitted later than the amended date.

 

 

WORD LIMITS FOR ASSESSMENT TASKS

  • Stated word limits include footnotes and footnoted references, but not bibliography, or title page.
  • Word limits can generally deviate by 10% either over or under the stated figure.
  • If the number of words exceeds the limit by more than 10%, then penalties will apply. These penalties are 5% of the awarded mark for every 100 words over the word limit. If a paper is 300 words over, for instance, it will lose 3 x 5% = 15% of the total mark awarded for the assignment. This percentage is taken off the total mark, i.e. if a paper was graded at a credit (65%) and was 300 words over, it would be reduced by 15 marks to a pass (50%).
  • The application of this penalty is at the discretion of the course convener.

 

REASSESSMENT OF ASSIGNMENTS DURING THE SEMESTER

  • Macquarie University operates a Grade Appeal Policy in cases where students feel their work was graded inappropriately: http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/gradeappeal/policy.html
  • Conformably to the Grade Appeal Policy, individual works are not subject to regrading.

 

STAFF AVAILABILITY

  • Department staff will endeavor to answer student enquiries in a timely manner. However, emails or iLearn messages will not usually be answered over the weekend or public holiday period.
  • Students are encouraged to read the Unit Guide and look at instructions posted on the iLearn site before sending email requests to staff.

Unit Schedule

  1. Introduction
  2. Evaluating the Motivations, Means and Symbolism of Terrorism
  3. Critics Debates in Terrorism Studies
  4. The History of Terrorism from its Beginnings to the French Revolution 
  5. The History of Terrorism from the French Revolution to 911
  6. Risks and Responses to Al-Qaeda
  7. Risks and Responses to ISIS 
  8. CBRN Terrorism?
  9. Cyber Terrorism? 
  10. Terrorism and the Media
  11. Terrorism and Region
  12. In the Field - Doing Terrorism Research
  13. Conclusion

Policies and Procedures

Macquarie University policies and procedures are accessible from Policy Central. Students should be aware of the following policies in particular with regard to Learning and Teaching:

Academic Honesty Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/academic_honesty/policy.html

Assessment Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/assessment/policy_2016.html

Grade Appeal Policy http://mq.edu.au/policy/docs/gradeappeal/policy.html

Complaint Management Procedure for Students and Members of the Public http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/complaint_management/procedure.html​

Disruption to Studies Policy http://www.mq.edu.au/policy/docs/disruption_studies/policy.html The Disruption to Studies Policy is effective from March 3 2014 and replaces the Special Consideration Policy.

In addition, a number of other policies can be found in the Learning and Teaching Category of Policy Central.

Student Code of Conduct

Macquarie University students have a responsibility to be familiar with the Student Code of Conduct: https://students.mq.edu.au/support/student_conduct/

Results

Results shown in iLearn, or released directly by your Unit Convenor, are not confirmed as they are subject to final approval by the University. Once approved, final results will be sent to your student email address and will be made available in eStudent. For more information visit ask.mq.edu.au.

Student Support

Macquarie University provides a range of support services for students. For details, visit http://students.mq.edu.au/support/

Learning Skills

Learning Skills (mq.edu.au/learningskills) provides academic writing resources and study strategies to improve your marks and take control of your study.

Student Enquiry Service

For all student enquiries, visit Student Connect at ask.mq.edu.au

Equity Support

Students with a disability are encouraged to contact the Disability Service who can provide appropriate help with any issues that arise during their studies.

IT Help

For help with University computer systems and technology, visit http://www.mq.edu.au/about_us/offices_and_units/information_technology/help/

When using the University's IT, you must adhere to the Acceptable Use of IT Resources Policy. The policy applies to all who connect to the MQ network including students.

Graduate Capabilities

PG - Critical, Analytical and Integrative Thinking

Our postgraduates will be capable of utilising and reflecting on prior knowledge and experience, of applying higher level critical thinking skills, and of integrating and synthesising learning and knowledge from a range of sources and environments. A characteristic of this form of thinking is the generation of new, professionally oriented knowledge through personal or group-based critique of practice and theory.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Demonstrate a high level of critical comprehension regarding the concept of terrorism and its academic investigation
  • Display engagement with the field of terrorism studies through the examination and exploration of critical texts, concepts and theories.
  • Investigate a substantial body of contemporary terrorism and politically motivated violence literature.
  • Demonstrate higher order communication skills including the ability to present sustained and persuasive arguments cogently and coherently.
  • Model research skills, particularly the ability to select appropriately and integrate knowledge from diverse sources to evaluate its significance and relevance; synthesise material and present findings, rationally and lucidly.
  • Demonstrate higher level skills in critical analysis.

Assessment tasks

  • Active Participation
  • Primary Source Critical Review
  • 3500 Word Research Essay

PG - Capable of Professional and Personal Judgment and Initiative

Our postgraduates will demonstrate a high standard of discernment and common sense in their professional and personal judgment. They will have the ability to make informed choices and decisions that reflect both the nature of their professional work and their personal perspectives.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Demonstrate a high level of critical comprehension regarding the concept of terrorism and its academic investigation
  • Display engagement with the field of terrorism studies through the examination and exploration of critical texts, concepts and theories.
  • Investigate a substantial body of contemporary terrorism and politically motivated violence literature.
  • Demonstrate higher order communication skills including the ability to present sustained and persuasive arguments cogently and coherently.
  • Model research skills, particularly the ability to select appropriately and integrate knowledge from diverse sources to evaluate its significance and relevance; synthesise material and present findings, rationally and lucidly.
  • Demonstrate higher level skills in critical analysis.

Assessment tasks

  • Active Participation
  • Primary Source Critical Review
  • 3500 Word Research Essay

PG - Discipline Knowledge and Skills

Our postgraduates will be able to demonstrate a significantly enhanced depth and breadth of knowledge, scholarly understanding, and specific subject content knowledge in their chosen fields.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Demonstrate a high level of critical comprehension regarding the concept of terrorism and its academic investigation
  • Display engagement with the field of terrorism studies through the examination and exploration of critical texts, concepts and theories.
  • Investigate a substantial body of contemporary terrorism and politically motivated violence literature.
  • Demonstrate higher order communication skills including the ability to present sustained and persuasive arguments cogently and coherently.
  • Model research skills, particularly the ability to select appropriately and integrate knowledge from diverse sources to evaluate its significance and relevance; synthesise material and present findings, rationally and lucidly.
  • Demonstrate higher level skills in critical analysis.

Assessment tasks

  • Active Participation
  • Primary Source Critical Review
  • 3500 Word Research Essay

PG - Research and Problem Solving Capability

Our postgraduates will be capable of systematic enquiry; able to use research skills to create new knowledge that can be applied to real world issues, or contribute to a field of study or practice to enhance society. They will be capable of creative questioning, problem finding and problem solving.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Demonstrate a high level of critical comprehension regarding the concept of terrorism and its academic investigation
  • Display engagement with the field of terrorism studies through the examination and exploration of critical texts, concepts and theories.
  • Investigate a substantial body of contemporary terrorism and politically motivated violence literature.
  • Demonstrate higher order communication skills including the ability to present sustained and persuasive arguments cogently and coherently.
  • Model research skills, particularly the ability to select appropriately and integrate knowledge from diverse sources to evaluate its significance and relevance; synthesise material and present findings, rationally and lucidly.
  • Demonstrate higher level skills in critical analysis.

Assessment tasks

  • Active Participation
  • Primary Source Critical Review
  • 3500 Word Research Essay

PG - Effective Communication

Our postgraduates will be able to communicate effectively and convey their views to different social, cultural, and professional audiences. They will be able to use a variety of technologically supported media to communicate with empathy using a range of written, spoken or visual formats.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Display engagement with the field of terrorism studies through the examination and exploration of critical texts, concepts and theories.
  • Investigate a substantial body of contemporary terrorism and politically motivated violence literature.
  • Demonstrate higher order communication skills including the ability to present sustained and persuasive arguments cogently and coherently.
  • Model research skills, particularly the ability to select appropriately and integrate knowledge from diverse sources to evaluate its significance and relevance; synthesise material and present findings, rationally and lucidly.
  • Demonstrate higher level skills in critical analysis.

Assessment tasks

  • Active Participation
  • Primary Source Critical Review
  • 3500 Word Research Essay

PG - Engaged and Responsible, Active and Ethical Citizens

Our postgraduates will be ethically aware and capable of confident transformative action in relation to their professional responsibilities and the wider community. They will have a sense of connectedness with others and country and have a sense of mutual obligation. They will be able to appreciate the impact of their professional roles for social justice and inclusion related to national and global issues

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • Demonstrate a high level of critical comprehension regarding the concept of terrorism and its academic investigation
  • Display engagement with the field of terrorism studies through the examination and exploration of critical texts, concepts and theories.
  • Investigate a substantial body of contemporary terrorism and politically motivated violence literature.
  • Demonstrate higher order communication skills including the ability to present sustained and persuasive arguments cogently and coherently.
  • Model research skills, particularly the ability to select appropriately and integrate knowledge from diverse sources to evaluate its significance and relevance; synthesise material and present findings, rationally and lucidly.
  • Demonstrate higher level skills in critical analysis.

Assessment tasks

  • Active Participation
  • Primary Source Critical Review
  • 3500 Word Research Essay

About this Unit

Unit description

This unit explores the evolution of terrorism and politically motivated violence, considers the motivations of terrorists and terrorist groups, and assesses trends in terrorism. The unit includes studies of terrorist and politically-motivated groups, including al-Qaeda and its affiliates, and the more recent threat posed by Islamic State, in order to enhance students' knowledge and understanding of the practitioners of terrorism and politically motivated violence. Please note: this unit will be offered as a one-week intensive block course.