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PICT113 – Terrorism in the 21st Century

2017 – S1 Day

General Information

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Unit convenor and teaching staff Unit convenor and teaching staff Senior Lecturer
Dr Julian Droogan
Contact via 02 98501425
Thursdays 1-3 pm
Credit points Credit points
3
Prerequisites Prerequisites
Corequisites Corequisites
Co-badged status Co-badged status
Unit description Unit description
This unit provides an introduction to terrorism and political violence in the twenty-first century. It explores the global origins and history of terrorism as a means of coercion, evaluates its effectiveness and examines key terrorist organisations and individuals in contemporary case studies. Students will gain an understanding of twenty-first century terrorism as a strategy and as a tactic, terrorist recruitment and group dynamics, the role of global media, cyber terrorism, and terrorist narratives. Special attention will be focused on the sources of successful and ethical counter-terrorism strategies; understanding mechanisms of radicalisation to and from violent extremism, evaluating proportionate state response to terror threats and exploring global relationships between counter terrorism, policing and intelligence. This unit, together with PICT110, PICT111 and PICT112, provides a systematic introduction to the field of security studies.

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. 1. Identify the main types of terrorist events that impact modern society
  2. 2. Identify the principal actors who pose a terrorist security threat to states both now and over the past century
  3. 3. Critically evaluate how the concept of terrorism is used in security discourse in the 21st century
  4. 4. Explain the range of strategic and tactical response counter terrorism options available to governments
  5. 4. Evaluate how states can respond to terrorist events in an effective, balanced and ethical manner
  6. 5. Demonstrate the ability to produce well structured essays examining key critical debates in terrorism studies

Assessment Tasks

Name Weighting Due
Active Participation 10% Ongoing
Essay Structure 20% Sunday Week 4
2500 Word Essay 40% Sunday Week 8
Online Quiz 30% Friday Week 14

Active Participation

Due: Ongoing
Weighting: 10%

Active and attentive participation in tutorials, and their online equivalent, is essential to generating a positive, dynamic, and fulfilling learning environment. Your role in class is to demonstrate that your engagement with the topics at hand by offering informed opinions, asking relevant questions, demonstrating that you have completed assigned readings, and extending collegiality to your teacher and peers. For external students this will be conduced via the iLearn forum


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • 1. Identify the main types of terrorist events that impact modern society
  • 2. Identify the principal actors who pose a terrorist security threat to states both now and over the past century
  • 3. Critically evaluate how the concept of terrorism is used in security discourse in the 21st century
  • 4. Explain the range of strategic and tactical response counter terrorism options available to governments
  • 4. Evaluate how states can respond to terrorist events in an effective, balanced and ethical manner

Essay Structure

Due: Sunday Week 4
Weighting: 20%

This assessment requires you to write an 800 word essay structure on the topic of your final essay. 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 Four. 

 


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • 1. Identify the main types of terrorist events that impact modern society
  • 2. Identify the principal actors who pose a terrorist security threat to states both now and over the past century
  • 4. Explain the range of strategic and tactical response counter terrorism options available to governments
  • 5. Demonstrate the ability to produce well structured essays examining key critical debates in terrorism studies

2500 Word Essay

Due: Sunday Week 8
Weighting: 40%

This assessment requires you to write a 2500 word critical research essay. The essay topic must be the same as the one you wrote your essay structure on. It is allowable for you to include your emended essay structure as an element of the final essay. 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 Eight. 

 


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • 3. Critically evaluate how the concept of terrorism is used in security discourse in the 21st century
  • 4. Explain the range of strategic and tactical response counter terrorism options available to governments
  • 4. Evaluate how states can respond to terrorist events in an effective, balanced and ethical manner
  • 5. Demonstrate the ability to produce well structured essays examining key critical debates in terrorism studies

Online Quiz

Due: Friday Week 14
Weighting: 30%

This assessment requires you to complete an online multiple choice exam. The exam will consist of 30 questions sourced directly from the weekly readings and lectures. Further guidance for this task are available on the iLearn site, and will be communicated in lectures. This task will be held at a time of your choice on the Friday of Week 14 (one week after lectures end). 


This Assessment Task relates to the following Learning Outcomes:
  • 1. Identify the main types of terrorist events that impact modern society
  • 2. Identify the principal actors who pose a terrorist security threat to states both now and over the past century
  • 3. Critically evaluate how the concept of terrorism is used in security discourse in the 21st century
  • 4. Explain the range of strategic and tactical response counter terrorism options available to governments
  • 4. Evaluate how states can respond to terrorist events in an effective, balanced and ethical manner
  • 5. Demonstrate the ability to produce well structured essays examining key critical debates in terrorism studies

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

  • This unit uses a textbook: Brigitte L. Nacos 'Terrorism and Counterterrorism', 5th edition, Routledge, 2016. This book is available from the Macquarie University Coop Bookshop. 

 

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. What is Terrorism? Understanding Terrorist Strategy, Tactics and Communication
  3. Who are the Terrorists? Terror in a Local, Regional and Global Context
  4. Researching and Writing about Terrorism in the University
  5. The Origins and History of Terrorism
  6. 911 and the ‘War on Terror’
  7. Social Media, Crowd Sourcing and ’New’ Terrorism 
  8. Counter Terrorism - Military and Policing Models
  9. Counter Terrorism - Societal Models
  10. What is the Relation Between Extremism and Terrorism? 
  11. Radicalisation, De-radicalisation and Mobilisation to Violence 
  12. The Problem of Ethical Counter Terrorism
  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

Problem Solving and Research Capability

Our graduates should be capable of researching; of analysing, and interpreting and assessing data and information in various forms; of drawing connections across fields of knowledge; and they should be able to relate their knowledge to complex situations at work or in the world, in order to diagnose and solve problems. We want them to have the confidence to take the initiative in doing so, within an awareness of their own limitations.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • 1. Identify the main types of terrorist events that impact modern society
  • 2. Identify the principal actors who pose a terrorist security threat to states both now and over the past century
  • 3. Critically evaluate how the concept of terrorism is used in security discourse in the 21st century
  • 4. Explain the range of strategic and tactical response counter terrorism options available to governments
  • 4. Evaluate how states can respond to terrorist events in an effective, balanced and ethical manner
  • 5. Demonstrate the ability to produce well structured essays examining key critical debates in terrorism studies

Assessment tasks

  • Active Participation
  • Essay Structure
  • 2500 Word Essay
  • Online Quiz

Effective Communication

We want to develop in our students the ability to communicate and convey their views in forms effective with different audiences. We want our graduates to take with them the capability to read, listen, question, gather and evaluate information resources in a variety of formats, assess, write clearly, speak effectively, and to use visual communication and communication technologies as appropriate.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • 4. Explain the range of strategic and tactical response counter terrorism options available to governments
  • 5. Demonstrate the ability to produce well structured essays examining key critical debates in terrorism studies

Assessment task

  • Active Participation

Capable of Professional and Personal Judgement and Initiative

We want our graduates to have emotional intelligence and sound interpersonal skills and to demonstrate discernment and common sense in their professional and personal judgement. They will exercise initiative as needed. They will be capable of risk assessment, and be able to handle ambiguity and complexity, enabling them to be adaptable in diverse and changing environments.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • 2. Identify the principal actors who pose a terrorist security threat to states both now and over the past century
  • 4. Explain the range of strategic and tactical response counter terrorism options available to governments
  • 5. Demonstrate the ability to produce well structured essays examining key critical debates in terrorism studies

Assessment tasks

  • Active Participation
  • Online Quiz

Discipline Specific Knowledge and Skills

Our graduates will take with them the intellectual development, depth and breadth of knowledge, scholarly understanding, and specific subject content in their chosen fields to make them competent and confident in their subject or profession. They will be able to demonstrate, where relevant, professional technical competence and meet professional standards. They will be able to articulate the structure of knowledge of their discipline, be able to adapt discipline-specific knowledge to novel situations, and be able to contribute from their discipline to inter-disciplinary solutions to problems.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • 1. Identify the main types of terrorist events that impact modern society
  • 2. Identify the principal actors who pose a terrorist security threat to states both now and over the past century
  • 3. Critically evaluate how the concept of terrorism is used in security discourse in the 21st century
  • 4. Explain the range of strategic and tactical response counter terrorism options available to governments
  • 4. Evaluate how states can respond to terrorist events in an effective, balanced and ethical manner
  • 5. Demonstrate the ability to produce well structured essays examining key critical debates in terrorism studies

Assessment tasks

  • Active Participation
  • Essay Structure
  • 2500 Word Essay
  • Online Quiz

Critical, Analytical and Integrative Thinking

We want our graduates to be capable of reasoning, questioning and analysing, and to integrate and synthesise learning and knowledge from a range of sources and environments; to be able to critique constraints, assumptions and limitations; to be able to think independently and systemically in relation to scholarly activity, in the workplace, and in the world. We want them to have a level of scientific and information technology literacy.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • 2. Identify the principal actors who pose a terrorist security threat to states both now and over the past century
  • 3. Critically evaluate how the concept of terrorism is used in security discourse in the 21st century
  • 4. Explain the range of strategic and tactical response counter terrorism options available to governments
  • 4. Evaluate how states can respond to terrorist events in an effective, balanced and ethical manner
  • 5. Demonstrate the ability to produce well structured essays examining key critical debates in terrorism studies

Assessment tasks

  • Active Participation
  • Essay Structure
  • 2500 Word Essay
  • Online Quiz

Creative and Innovative

Our graduates will also be capable of creative thinking and of creating knowledge. They will be imaginative and open to experience and capable of innovation at work and in the community. We want them to be engaged in applying their critical, creative thinking.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • 3. Critically evaluate how the concept of terrorism is used in security discourse in the 21st century
  • 5. Demonstrate the ability to produce well structured essays examining key critical debates in terrorism studies

Assessment task

  • Active Participation

Engaged and Ethical Local and Global citizens

As local citizens our graduates will be aware of indigenous perspectives and of the nation's historical context. They will be engaged with the challenges of contemporary society and with knowledge and ideas. We want our graduates to have respect for diversity, to be open-minded, sensitive to others and inclusive, and to be open to other cultures and perspectives: they should have a level of cultural literacy. Our graduates should be aware of disadvantage and social justice, and be willing to participate to help create a wiser and better society.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Assessment task

  • Active Participation

Commitment to Continuous Learning

Our graduates will have enquiring minds and a literate curiosity which will lead them to pursue knowledge for its own sake. They will continue to pursue learning in their careers and as they participate in the world. They will be capable of reflecting on their experiences and relationships with others and the environment, learning from them, and growing - personally, professionally and socially.

This graduate capability is supported by:

Learning outcomes

  • 2. Identify the principal actors who pose a terrorist security threat to states both now and over the past century
  • 3. Critically evaluate how the concept of terrorism is used in security discourse in the 21st century

Assessment tasks

  • Active Participation
  • Essay Structure
  • 2500 Word Essay
  • Online Quiz

Changes since First Published

Date Description
13/02/2017 The unit texbook was not included in the previous submission.