Afghanistan and Pakistan

While there is widespread agreement among U.S. policymakers and military leaders that the ongoing conflicts in Pakistan and Afghanistan cannot be resolved solely by military means, there is no clear agreement on a methodology to address the governance and related issues in both states that tend to generate conflict and exacerbate instability. Because governance is in part a function of culture and history, it is essential that analysts grasp and accommodate these foundational factors, as well as a range of related social, economic, religious, and educational factors, in order to provide optimal support to policymakers and military commanders. The Afghanistan-Pakistan Certificate is designed to provide students with a solid foundational knowledge of Afghanistan and Pakistan and of the dynamics between them across a spectrum of core issues.

The Afghanistan/Pakistan Certificate of Intelligence Studies program comprises four ten-week courses taken sequentially.  The first course, Islam and the Modern World, provides a general introduction to Islam as well as more in-depth focus on Islam and Islamic issues in Pakistan and Afghanistan.  The Certificate’s second segment provides students with a grounding in key regional issues and includes an overview of South Asian states; the focus on this course, however, is primarily on India, Kashmir, and the regional interests of key outside states, including the US, China, Iran, and Russia.  The first two courses in the Certificate program provide the foundation for the last two: in-depth exploration of Pakistan (course 3) and Afghanistan (course 4).  All courses are taught by NIU faculty.


  • Islam and the Modern World
  • South Asia Regional Issues
  • Pakistan Intelligence Issues
  • Afghanistan Intelligence Issues

For full course descriptions, please see our Catalog.