What Exactly Is a “Military Degree”?

A number of military institutions may offer military degrees, and the different available programs that are available will depend largely on the institution itself. For example, the United States offers a number of homeland security programs as well as studies in military history and national security, many of which are necessary to get a job in the government.

Some universities may also offer courses like studies in security policies or concentrations in operational warfare, leadership and joint warfare for those interested in getting a job with the military in the future. Some universities can also put students in an interdisciplinary program in conflict studies.

Basic Programs

There are a number of universities in the world that provide military degrees in national security and a variety of other subjects. Of course, the contents of a specific program will vary depending on the school, the typical military degree requires classes in military ethics and thought as well as history surrounding a conflict or important wars. Several programs also have basic courses in political science.

Getting a master’s in military studies generally will come with concentrations in naval, land and air warfare as well as strategic leadership and joint warfare. Much like any other master’s degree, a master’s military degree would also include compulsory independent courses and electives to pick.

United Stated Programs

There are schools within the United States that offer master’s programs for individuals who are interested in getting a job with homeland security. Some programs may only be access by those who are already in the military or are already employed by a government agency. The courses that are offered will put a specific focus on homeland security rather than military thought in general. There are also other US-specific military degrees that focus just on one branch, such as naval warfare, or on military history.

There are also online courses that can be taken with concentrations in leadership, joint warfare and operational warfare. Again, some of these programs can only be accessed by those employed by the military while others are open to the general public. Programs may include studies in space, air, cyberspace, international security studies and general warfare. Electives would include space operations or weapons instruction.

Security Programs

There are several other kinds of programs that qualify as a military degree program, including a program in security policy studies. These are programs that will introduce students to the concept of security issues throughout the world and the policies related to them, as well as the method in which leaders of the military are expected to respond to these issues. Some of the modules may also focus on a more general concept of security, such as the implications of security as it relates to the global economy.


There are a few universities located throughout the globe that offer a number of considerably interdisciplinary programs known as conflict studies programs or, more commonly, war studies. Unlike other military degree programs, these interdisciplinary programs offer a number of different courses on subjects that are not typically grouped with the courses offered with a military degree, such as philosophy.

Along with military strategy, international relations and history of the military, these programs are designed to have a focus on the social aspect of war, the philosophies surrounding it, how the NGO factors into war and the relationship between locals and the military.