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Join us at Laurier

Being a Golden Hawk means more than just cheering on our (really good) varsity teams – it means being a student who cares about your community, who works hard in the classroom, and who takes advantage of all the learning opportunities that can happen outside the classroom, too.


Required Courses

SAFE600: Public Safety in Canada (0.5 credit)

This course provides advanced knowledge on the structure, components, and mandates of how governments keep their respective citizens safe from natural disasters, crime, and terrorism. More specifically, this course reviews and examines how the coordination across all federal departments and agencies responsible for the public safety of citizens is articulated and enacted. The focus of this course is upon the four pillars of public safety in Canada: National Security, Border Strategies, Countering Crime, and Emergency Management. A review and comparison of international structures for public safety and national security is also examined for comparative purpose.

SAFE601: Issues in Contemporary Public Safety (0.5 credit)

This course focuses on issues in contemporary Canadian and global public safety, including the internal and external forces that are shaping current practices. Topics can include professionalization; refugees and immigration; migration; intercultural competencies; racism; technology; fiscal restraints; impacts of social media; and training. A key component of this course is the opportunity to critically examine current/emerging issues facing public safety professionals.

SAFE602: Public Safety Administration (0.5 credit)

Drawing upon theories and research findings in public administration and management, this course examines administrative approaches, issues, and debates arising in public safety organizations and governments in a changing environment. Students learn how the complex and unstable environment of public safety organizations produces both challenges and opportunities for public safety managers, and work through case material that requires them to apply insights from management and public administration literature to real-world public safety settings. Topics include strategic planning; program evaluation; organizational learning and development; interoperability; cultural diversity; and leadership and decision-making skills in public safety environments.

SAFE603: Intelligence and Analytics in Public Safety (0.5 credit)

This strategic level course analyzes and evaluates the intelligence function within the Canadian public safety context, with a focus on federal and provincial levels. It examines established intelligence doctrine and practices within the four mandated areas of Public Safety Canada – national security, border strategies, countering crime, and emergency management. This course examines the fundamental and foundational intelligence concepts and analyzes how intelligence is directed within public safety sectors. Modern data and information collection technique, including traditional and modern technological means are explored. Contemporary intelligence analysis and assessment practiced are analyzed, highlighting the growing impact of modern predictive analytics. Various challenges and methods of intelligence dissemination among government departments and agencies, as well as with private sector entities, are also evaluated. Of particular importance to our modern liberal democratic society, this course also analyzes issues of intelligence responsibility, accountability, oversight, and review, highlighting lessons learned and corrective measures established.

SAFE604: Leadership and Ethics in Public Safety (0.5 credit)

This course is an intermediate treatment of major theories of leadership and their application. Topics to be covered may include: leading effective and culturally diverse teams; organizational decision making; change management; ethics and leadership; and succession planning. Students will be required to discuss case studies with other students and the instructor, and to practice their own leadership skills through exercises, such as responses to scenarios, reflections on previous experiences, and/or presentations.

SAFE605: Research Methods and Statistical Analysis in Public Safety (0.5 credit)

This course offers advanced qualitative and quantitative research methods for public safety research. An examination of topics such as ethics; research design; operationalization and measurement of variables; sampling; surveying; interviewing; content analysis; qualitative analytical software use; and interpreting data is reviewed. This course also focuses on the common tools utilized to analyze quantitative outputs, charts, statistical comparisons, and critical reviews of methodology in policy, program analysis, and data found within the sphere of public safety. In addition, this course examines the advantages and shortcomings of each method and the appropriateness of each process for research in the public safety realm, including careful description, overview, and application of the varied options to place the learner on the path to self- and guided-research within the social-scientific paradigm of real-world threats to public safety, national security, and the potential impact on individual rights and freedoms.

Courses for National Security Pillar

SAFE606: International Rule of Law (0.5 credit)

This course examines the concept and core principles of the Rule of Law. It examines the fundamental aspects required to ensure adherence to the Rule of Law, including equality before the law, reliability of the justice system, fairness in the application of the law, transparency, and equal access to justice. It also explores the major impediments to the Rule of Law, such as impunity and corruption; war crimes and genocide; human rights violations; discrimination; and political abuse, among others. Students examine how the Rule of Law breaks down in societies in conflict and how the different actors in the justice system, including security, police, the judiciary, lawyers, and civil society, have to work together to rebuild the Rule of Law and societies’ faith in the legal and justice system. Historic injustices and the mechanisms to address them to ensure the continued development of peace and national reconciliation will also be examined.

SAFE607: International Crime and Terrorism (0.5 credit)

With the perceived increase in violence perpetrated by extremist groups, there has been a dramatic shift in the nature, study, and practices of Public Safety. Against a background of intensifying economic, political, cultural, and military globalization, there is now a heightened perception of terrorism and international organized crime as threats to global security. This course critically analyzes the features of these respective threats and explores the challenges to public safety both in Canada and abroad. It offers the advanced expertise, methodological tools, and approaches required to determine the validity of and understand, analyze, prevent, disrupt, and detect crime and terrorism. It also provides evaluative tools for critiquing those areas of weakness that are hampering the state’s ability to address issues of terrorism and international crime from a global perspective.

Courses for Border Strategies Pillar

SAFE608: Beyond the Border (0.5 credit)

This course details the government systems, critical infrastructures, and assets, whether physical or virtual—including water systems; telecommunications; hospitals and health care; airports and transportation hubs; nuclear and other power-generating facilities; and centres of major economic activity—in the context of public safety. Through an examination of such systems, learners discuss the significant implications of the vulnerability, incapacitation, debilitation, or destruction of such systems and/or assets on public safety. In addition, both national and international issues of the interoperability and interconnectedness of critical infrastructures are reviewed. Furthermore, the course looks at the Canadian approach to cyber security, including strategies for maximizing the benefits of digital technologies and advancing the capability, resiliency, and innovation of cyber security.

SAFE609: Immigration and Border Security (0.5 credit)

This course presents advanced-level investigative and interior enforcement aspects of immigration and border security, including their significance to the public safety portfolio. It examines key legislation and policies that govern international border control, customs, trade, and immigration, and how these can impact the various aspects of border management. Learners explore issues of modernization and the use of intelligence within the border security and immigration context. They also critically evaluate the formulation and implementation of immigration and border security policy that involves the complex integration of factors such as criminal and civil enforcement duties; demographic trends including migration and immigration; xenophobia; economic and political circumstance; illicit drug trade; trafficking in human beings and firearms; and the role of technology in immigration and border security.

Courses for Countering Crime Pillar

SAFE610: Intelligence and Evidence-Based Decision Making (0.5 credit)

This course examines the principles, public policy issues, and barriers that guide the gathering and sharing of intelligence in countering crime and the potential value provided through effective policing strategies and enforcement. Learners analyze what intelligence is; define criminal organizations; identify linkages and activities; and investigate the impact on domestic crime and community safety by criminal organizations. Learners also compare and evaluate existing policing models and the capacity to effectively address the gathering and analyzing of intelligence and evidence to facilitate effective operations, as well as the planning and deploying of police resources. The interoperability between crime-fighting agencies within the criminal justice system, including international cross-border, national, and local organizations is critiqued. Learners compare and contrast data verification techniques, sources of data, and implications of use and misuse, through leveraging analytics to reduce policing costs, create efficiencies, facilitate a supportive and informed command structure, and promote community engagement and partnerships. The importance of measuring performance for accountability and evidence-based decision making in the quest for continuous improvement will also be discussed.

SAFE611: Diverse Communities (0.5 credit)

Diversity is a critical social element in the effective leadership and operations of a police agency. This course offers theoretical and practical skills necessary for identifying social diversity within Canadian communities, as well as the characteristics of those groups that present special needs with respect to policing and public safety. Identifying and assessing these needs within the police/public safety context will enable leaders to better protect and work within their communities. In that regard, this course examines how, as the demographics and the dynamics of a community change, so do the ways in which the community should be policed. It also addresses social, legal, and ethical matters related to diversity and indigenous peoples, as well as how these issues are handled in the criminal justice system. In particular, this course explores perspectives on "justice", including criminal, restorative, and social. Students complete the course with advanced knowledge of immigration and integration patterns in Canada, the difficulties that people of marginalized and vulnerable groups face in society in general, and alternative measures to confront these issues in the justice system. Overall, students build on and expand their ethical capacities and sensitivities to deal with diversity in a proactive and professional manner.

Courses for Emergency Management Pillar

SAFE612: Interagency Disaster Management (0.5 credit)

This course deconstructs and evaluates the roles that public safety services play in responding to mass disaster scenes and other interagency cooperation issues/scenarios. Issues pertaining to scene control, preparedness, response priorities, risk mitigation, and tiered response systems amongst fire, police, EMS services, military, and other services are addressed via both a theoretical approach, as well as a case study approach. Each service has its own unique training, education, policies, and expertise, and, as a result, requires critical review and comparison. For example, mass disasters occur in diverse contexts with diverse outcomes; therefore, the need to address all that has happened or inevitably will happen from a variety of perspectives requires intense investigation, review of best practices, and review of research of evidence-based interventions.

SAFE613: Emergency Management Planning (0.5 credit)

This course provides a comprehensive, all-hazards, and multidisciplinary approach to contemporary emergency management. Students consider emergency planning; management history and evolution; theoretical concepts; and technologies. Students deconstruct components of an effective and integrated emergency management program, including assessing risk; developing strategies; planning concepts, techniques and methods; coordinating multi-agency response; and managing crises. Case studies engage students in critical analysis through an all-hazards lens, deliberating multi-agency public safety roles and responsibilities in the four-stage response to disaster (preparedness, emergency planning, mitigation response, and recovery), and considering the concept of resiliency.

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