APG5094 - Global jihad? - 2017

12 points, SCA Band 1, 0.250 EFTSL

Postgraduate - Unit

Refer to the specific census and withdrawal dates for the semester(s) in which this unit is offered.



Organisational Unit

Politics and International Relations


Associate Professor Pete Lentini

Not offered in 2017


Numerous states, including Australia, have declared that their greatest security threat comes from groups (and individuals) that utilize a selectively literal interpretation of jihad to justify violence in the name of Islam. The unit aims to examine the contemporary phenomenon of global jihadism/neojihadism. Students will analyse in detail the various factors that have contributed to the emergence and growth of this religio-politico-paramilitary/terrorist movement: rules of military engagement, tactics and targeting, the politicizing of religion, intellectual currents, and how various Islamist groups utilize information and communication technologies and social media to advance their causes, generate narratives and recruit. Case studies of particular groups, conflicts in specific regions and countries, and notable terrorist events, including those that have occurred in or affected Australia, offer students opportunities to develop an enhanced understanding of jihadism/neojihadism's dynamics, and those ideological, religious and other attributes that are common amongst its diverse array of actors. It also compares and contrasts jihadism/neojihadism to other forms of extremism, and evaluates how various states develop counter-narratives to jihadism/neojihadism and encourage disengagement and rehabilitation. The unit also addresses mainstream Muslim communities' experiences and reactions to states' confrontations with jihadism/neojihadism and anti-Muslim backlashes, and how Muslims develop counter-narratives to violent extremism.


Upon completing the unit students should:

  1. develop an understanding of the most significant theological, political, social and martial factors which have facilitated the emergence of jihadism/neojihadism as a diverse, global phenomenon;
  2. develop a greater appreciation of the importance of the globalization of ideas, technologies and global movements of people and how they impact upon international, national and human security on global, national and local scales;
  3. develop an intermediate to advanced understanding of the complexities surrounding contemporary security debates and events of global significance;
  4. develop skills to read various forms of text critically (audio-visual materials, scholarly literature, internet sources) and incorporate them in their assessed work;
  5. continue their development of critical skills and abilities to communicate effectively. Specifically to:
    1. develop a topic for investigation;
    2. familiarise themselves with a wide range of sources; and
    3. recognise and be able to present a logically ordered argument.
  6. demonstrate a nuanced understanding and appreciation of relevant conceptual frameworks pertaining to jihadism/neojihadism, terrorism, fringe and extremist political movements and political violence, and social cohesion.


Within semester assessment: 80%

Exam: 20%

Workload requirements

Minimum total expected workload to achieve the learning outcomes for this unit is 288 hours per semester typically comprising a mixture of scheduled learning activities and independent study. A unit requires on average three/four hours of scheduled activities per week. Scheduled activities may include a combination of teacher directed learning, peer directed learning and online engagement.

See also Unit timetable information

Chief examiner(s)

This unit applies to the following area(s) of study