Teaching about Intelligence

G - J


The Association of Former Intelligence Officers (AFIO) has an Academic Exchange Program (AEP) that can be very useful in building and maintaining a course or courses on intelligence and related areas. For a list of participants and their institutions, see Access to course syllabi is available through As a matter of truth in presentation, it should be noted that this writer has been a participant in the AEP program.

George, Roger Z., and Robert D. Kline, eds. Intelligence and the National Security Strategist: Enduring Issues and Challenges. Washington, DC: National Defense University Press, 2003. Lanham, MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 2005.

According to Peake, Studies 49.2 (2005), "[t]he 39 chapters in this 10-part reader ... provide the foundation for a variety of college-level courses on intelligence. They pull together often hard to find articles by a diverse group of professionals.... Scholars are urged to consult this work for a comprehensive overview of this complex profession -- intelligence." Medby, NWCR 58.4 (Autumn 2005), says that these "essays by an impressive list of authors address[] many of the issues especially salient to intelligence practitioners and their consumers in this time of reflection and reform.... [T]his book is remarkably valuable to any course dealing with the intelligence community."

Godson, Roy, ed. Comparing Foreign Intelligence: The U.S., the USSR, the U.K. and the Third World. Washington, DC: Pergamon-Brassey's, 1988.

Contents: Roy Godson, "Introduction: The New Study of Intelligence"; Kenneth G. Robertson, "The Study of Intelligence in the United States"; Christopher Andrew, "Historical Research on the British Intelligence Community"; John J. Dziak, "The Study of the Soviet Intelligence and Security System"; Dale F. Eickelman, "Intelligence in an Arab Gulf State" [Oman]; Adda Bozeman. "Political Intelligence in Non-Western Societies: Suggestions for Comparative Research."

Goodman, Michael S. "Studying and Teaching About Intelligence: The Approach in the United Kingdom." Studies in Intelligence 50, no. 2 (2006): 57-65.

"[I]n the United Kingdom the modern intelligence establishment can trace its roots to 1909. As an academic discipline, the subject really only extends to the mid-1970s.... The key events of the early 21st century have already defined intelligence as a new cornerstone of government.... One consequence of this has been the large-scale growth of intelligence study and teaching academically.... Yet a review of teaching practices in the United Kingdom today suggests that intelligence studies is one of those odd disciplines that is comfortable in a variety of academic departments, but perhaps never truly at home in any of them."

Goodman, Michael S., and Sir David Omand. "What Analysts Need to Understand: The King's Intelligence Studies Program." Studies in Intelligence 52, no. 4 (Dec. 2008): 1-12.

The authors discuss the "innovative course" for intelligence analysts created in the Department of War Studies at King's College, London.

Haines, Gerald K. "An Emerging New Field of Study: U.S. Intelligence." Diplomatic History 28, no. 3 (Jun. 2004): 441-449.

The author discusses Conboy and Morrison, The CIA Secret War in Tibet (2002); Lewis, Spy Capitalism, Itek, and the CIA (2002); Jeffreys-Jones, Cloak and Dollar (2002); and Powers, Intelligence Wars (2002).

Handel, Michael I. "The Study of Intelligence." Orbis 26 (Winter 1983): 817-821.

Hedley, John Hollister. "Twenty Years of Officers in Residence." Studies in Intelligence 49, no. 4 (2005): 31-39.

The CIA's Officer-in-Residence Program "stands as a model for nurturing relations between intelligence and academia."

Holden-Rhodes, James F. "Intelligence Studies at a U.S. State University." Intelligencer 14, no 2 (Winter/Spring 2005): 71-79.

The author describes the Intelligence Studies Program at New Mexico State University and includes a sample syllabus for an upper-level/graduate course on "The History of US Intelligence."

Hulnick, Arthur S. "Learning About U.S. Intelligence: Difficult But Not Impossible." International Journal of Intelligence and Counterintelligence 5, no. 1 (Spring 1991): 89-99.

The title accurately describes the content and thrust of this on-the-mark article by a former CIA analyst.

Hughes, R. Gerald. "Of Revelatory Histories and Hatchet Jobs: Propaganda and Method in Intelligence History." Intelligence and National Security 23, no. 6 (Dec. 2008): 842-877.

To anyone with a scholarly bent, particularly historians, this is an important article. Its fulcrum point is Tim Weiner's Legacy of Ashes (2007), a work that purports to be "The" history of the CIA. Hughes argues that "much of the praise directed at Weiner's book results from misconceptions about what the discipline of history is and how an understanding of the evolution of historical method can assist those who read history, as well as those who write it."

This article is filled with such high-level and thought-provoking analysis that attempting to capture it in brief is futile. What follows are some "one-liners" that particularly caught this reader's fancy: "[T]he idea that rectitude of analysis automatically follows exhaustive research is entirely [italics in original] fallacious"; "[b]ias lies at the heart of [Weiner's] critique of the CIA and his selective use of material further reinforces those prejudices"; [t]he belief [by reviewers] that Weiner's book contained a large number of revelations betrayed an ignorance of the wealth of CIA material that had been available for many years"; and it is "clear to scholars that a more rigorous methology would have ameliorated many of the book's worst failings."

Clark comment: In the interest of truth in reviewing, please note that this bibliography (Intellit) and its author are cited by name and internet address at page 874, footnote 135.

Jensen, Carl J., III, David H. McElreath; and Melissa Graves. Introduction to Intelligence Studies. Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press, 2012

After pointing out a few flaws, including the absence of source notes, Peake, Studies 57.2 (Jun. 2013), and Intelligencer 20.1 (Spring/Summer 2013), concludes that this text book is overall "a very good primer."

Johnson, Loch K. "Harry Howe Ransom and American Intelligence Studies." Intelligence and National Security 22, no. 3 (Jun. 2007): 402-428.

Interview conducted on 23 September 2006. Johnson provides a detailed introduction to the interview.

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