Going back to school for Masters in Intelligence Analysis

Discussion in 'Military' started by emptystep, Jan 22, 2013.

  1. emptystep
    Offline

    emptystep Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2012
    Messages:
    3,653
    Thanks Received:
    219
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Ratings:
    +219
    I am thinking about signing up for a masters degree in Intelligence Analysis. It is from a very reputable online university. I have found posting on this board very enjoyable and perhaps a formal education would increase my skills.

    My wife has a very good job and promotions are regular. I have been at home for the last few years. My background is in computer science. I actually designed a really cool intelligence collection program but VC/angel funding never materialized.

    Three courses a semester is no joke. About 9 chapters a week plus papers. A lot less posting on the message board, that is for sure. In addition extracurricular research would have to become in line with material for the course.

    Any thoughts are greatly appreciated.
     
  2. whitehall
    Online

    whitehall Gold Member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2010
    Messages:
    19,717
    Thanks Received:
    2,442
    Trophy Points:
    247
    Location:
    Western Va.
    Ratings:
    +2,958
    "Intelligence analysis" is a pretty broad field and I wonder if it's even worthwhile judging by the analysis or lack of it that the US has experienced since WW2. Most of the CIA's secret budget must go for media hype because they missed every single important event in the last fifty years including the Korean invasion, Castro's socialist empire, the Berlin Wall, criminally raising an invasion army and abandoning them at the Bay of Pigs, the strange case of Lee Oswald and most of all 9-11.
     
  3. emptystep
    Offline

    emptystep Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2012
    Messages:
    3,653
    Thanks Received:
    219
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Ratings:
    +219
    As you say it is a very broad area. The education could be used for everything from writing for periodicals to analysis for companies. I really don't see me working for the government ever again. Although that is was I said coming out of the Army and then after four years of school I went to work at SAIC.

    Do you work for the CIA? Or have similar experience?
     
  4. Si modo
    Offline

    Si modo Senior Member

    Joined:
    Sep 9, 2009
    Messages:
    39,179
    Thanks Received:
    5,762
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Location:
    St. Eligius
    Ratings:
    +5,762
    I'm always happy to hear about persons going for more education.

    :thup:
     
  5. RoccoR
    Online

    RoccoR Gold Member

    Joined:
    Sep 15, 2010
    Messages:
    3,351
    Thanks Received:
    826
    Trophy Points:
    190
    Location:
    Reynoldsburg, OH
    Ratings:
    +1,286
    emptystep,

    Best of luck to you.

    (COMMENT)

    I was a mentor for CI and HUMINT students a number of years ago. The problem with on-line programs are that they are usually dated and limited to OSINT of an UNCLAS nature. So keep an open mind.

    Best of Luck
    v/r
    R
     
  6. emptystep
    Offline

    emptystep Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2012
    Messages:
    3,653
    Thanks Received:
    219
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Ratings:
    +219
    Thank you for the except point. The school is APU. Your point about material be dated is noted. The instructors of the first courses I would take all point out how many of years of experience they have, a double edged sword. Although everything is unclassified the information databases I have access to is extremely vast with current materials.
     
  7. pinqy
    Offline

    pinqy VIP Member

    Joined:
    Jun 8, 2009
    Messages:
    3,559
    Thanks Received:
    336
    Trophy Points:
    87
    Location:
    Northern Virginia
    Ratings:
    +451
    APU not AMU? Huh. A buddy of mine took courses for his masters through AMU and had nothing but praise for them. Sure they're limited to OSINT, but the basic techniques and theories can be applied. I've taken unclas analyst courses through an intel agency and it was fine. The operational details and specific tools/methodology you pick up OJT anyway. The whole point of academic credentials is to build the basic techniques/theory and learn how to actually apply it working at the operational level.
     
  8. asterism
    Offline

    asterism Congress != Progress

    Joined:
    Jul 29, 2010
    Messages:
    8,336
    Thanks Received:
    875
    Trophy Points:
    190
    Location:
    Central Florida
    Ratings:
    +1,003
    I think it would be hard for you to get any marketable skills and knowledge with a degree without any relevant experience, doubly so without any access to classified information. Military analysis as a career is pretty insular and for most it starts with a military career or one with the different intelligence services.

    You're going to need some real world experience and credentials to garner any interest from publishers and then your specific articles would have to be on current events and that's hard without access to information about what's going on right now.

    Roles in analysis for companies are usually used to complement their existing government contract roles and most of those folks come aboard with existing active security clearances. If you never had one or yours has lapsed for a few years it's too expensive for them to pay for a new set of screening and background checks. There are a LOT of discharging vets with active clearances that they would use before hiring anyone outside of that pool.
     
  9. Big Black Dog
    Offline

    Big Black Dog Gold Member Supporting Member

    Joined:
    May 20, 2009
    Messages:
    22,393
    Thanks Received:
    4,547
    Trophy Points:
    185
    Ratings:
    +4,641
    Not very much intelligence for analysis here on the board. We'll miss you.
     
  10. emptystep
    Offline

    emptystep Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jul 17, 2012
    Messages:
    3,653
    Thanks Received:
    219
    Trophy Points:
    48
    Ratings:
    +219
    There appears to be a somewhat parallel routes APU and AMU just as there is for BS and BA in computer science. I have chosen the more of the humanities route in both cases.

    OJT is where the rubber hits the road in most all instances, where one moves to the hot team or the maintenance team on the legacy system. Thank you for the insight.
     

Share This Page