Web terrorism course is sellout with security pros

Security professionals from around the world have snapped up places on a Scottish university's pioneering new terrorism course, which went live on Monday via the Internet.

Organizers said some 140 people have so far signed up for the University of St Andrews's Web-based "Certificate in Terrorism Studies," with about half starting on Monday and bookings now running into 2007.

Participants include police, military, coastguard and aviation officials from Britain, Australia, Canada, Scandinavia and Thailand, among other countries.

"A lot of the training they undergo is very operational -- which bag to open, and so on. What they would like deepened is their background understanding of what these (terrorist) movements are about -- the modus operandi, the philosophy," said Oliver Gadsby of publishing and training group Informa Plc, which launched the new course in collaboration with St Andrews.

The venture, whose homepage is at www.terrorismstudies.com, is billed as the first transnational e-learning course of its kind. It requires about four hours of study each week and is designed to last 16 weeks.

Participants have the chance to contact leading academics and each other, although Gadsby said it was possible some would not want to disclose their real names.

"Some will be fully comfortable to share information. Others won't want to, and it's entirely in the students' control," he said.


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