Where is the best place to study a course in military history? We look at two Universities offering outstanding courses in the subject.
READING UNIVERSITY – MA or MRes in Military History and Strategic Studies
We define ‘strategy’ as a comprehensive way of pursuing political ends, including the threat or actual use of force, in a dialectic of wills, as there have to be at least two sides to a conflict. Since antiquity, the methodology of Western authors has been based on the assumption that without knowledge of the history of wars, no theory of strategy has any credibility. Even in the 20th century, when some writers neglect this tradition and theorise about strategy on the basis of economic and mathematical formulae, many scholars of strategic studies still regard history as the database for strategic analysis. This is the methodological foundation of this course.
The MA Military History and Strategic Studies is an interdisciplinary programme, taught jointly by the departments of Politics and International Relations and of History. Graduates develop deep understanding of the social, cultural, political, and economic dimensions of war. Students are given the opportunity to acquire advanced archival skills and the research skills needed to undertake higher levels of academic study in the field. It can also be taken as an MRes with a larger research component, as a preparation for doctoral study or further academic development.
Professor Beatrice Heuser, Programme Director email firstname.lastname@example.org www.reading.ac.uk/speir
BRUNEL UNIVERSITY – MA in Intelligence and Security Studies
Military events of the last decade have brought intelligence and security in public life to prominence. As a result, this is now one of the fastest growing areas of academic study. The study of intelligence and its history is no longer only relevant to those working directly in the intelligence services. Governments and major global corporations are looking for staff with a strong grasp of intelligence and security to work in a wide variety of roles. To meet the growing demand, we used our academic experience and our industry knowledge to create a course that is both practical and aimed at providing a good understanding of the historical context of intelligence.
The Intelligence and Security Studies MA is a policy-orientated course that covers the history of intelligence from Plato to NATO by linking political, social, and technological factors. One of the most distinctive elements of the course is the Analytical Simulation Exercise, in which students work in groups on a simulated joint, all-sources intelligence assessment exercise. This exercise takes an issue of topical interest and is modelled on the actual processes