Assignment: The psychological and behavioral factors of terrorism

Assignment: The psychological and behavioral factors of terrorism

Assignment  The psychological and behavioral factors of terrorism

Terrorism and the emergence of radicalized political groups comprise an ever-increasing section of global news. While mainstream media tend to focus mainly on the atrocious acts of terrorism and the devastation thereof, the public understands little about what encourages individuals towards becoming violent, radicalized extremists. As such, this discussion seeks to explore the possible psychological and behavioral factors that tend to have the greatest impacts on the radicalization of individuals. It then extends to argue that the existence of such psychological factors could perhaps be the key to preventing radicalization, and suggests some of the formidable ways through which government and the international community might employ to counter radicalization.

The concept of terrorism is by no means new. Yet, modern events such as the September 2001 attacks on the World Trade Center have been the hallmarks of a new era of terrorism in which terrorist groups have been able to recruit, train and unleash armies of radicalized fighters faster than ever before, making them very difficult to contain. Contrary to what many may believe, research has shown that almost all members of terrorist groups have no signs of abnormal psychological conditions since the organizations extensively screen their recruits for any instability that may compromise their course. As observed by Gorzig and Al-Hashimi (2014), abnormal psychopathology has proved to be an inaccurate predictor of an individual’s predisposition to become a radicalized extremist. On the contrary, such psychological factors as the quest for identity and significance remain highly influential in prompting an individual to join an extremist group.

Studies have shown that for individuals in need of social connections, extremist groups tend to provide well-knit, loyal and highly intimate groups. For instance, Abrahams (2008) found sufficient evidence that the quest for social relations and solidarity is the primary reasons for which individuals join terrorist organizations. Often, recruits tend to show exceptionally high levels of social alienation, which means that their perceived discrimination was the motivating factor. Gorzig and Al-Hashimi describe radicalization as an intersubjective process in which peer groups, leaders and recruitment specifics are at the core. As such, the transmission of radical ideas occurs within social networks in which such social connections as bonding, peer pressure and indoctrination gradually influence the individual’s perception of the world.Assignment  The psychological and behavioral factors of terrorism

Perverse perception of fairness is another factor that compels individuals to embrace the discourses of radical and extremist organizations. Perception of injustice and morality split within disconnected people are likely to mobilize and eventually unify them around a given grandiose cause. According to Hogan (2008), morality split for both in-group and out-group members alongside identification with victims precipitate an inclination towards terrorist organizations. The premise of split morality is that what is just and fair for an individual’s group may not be so for an outsider, which in turn justifies and deems as fair any aggression against the outsider. Drawing from the humiliation and revenge theory of behavior, terrorists tend to have the conviction that their reaction is always against unjust situations as opposed to being the oppressors themselves. The perception of unfair treatment, therefore, makes the individual part of a bigger moral cause that they perceive as aimed at correcting the unjust situation.

Within the context of religious radicalization, Islamic radicalization in particular, the promise of martyrdom emerges as an attractive incentive for individuals. While leaders of terrorist organizations draw their motivation from intimidating and demoralizing governments, often with the objective of forcing them to give in to their political demands, individual terrorists do not necessarily share such goals. Instead, the leaders ensure that members’ attachment to the organization is via value and norm creation. Moghadam (2009) argued that the hallmark of Islamic extremism is the creation of a cult of martyrdom and glorification of death. The glorification, according to Moghadam, serves two interrelated purposes. The first is that of convincing the individuals that their deaths are sacrifices for a higher cause and that such death contributes to the continuity of the cause for which they are fighting. The second is that through martyrdom the individual will have access to more benefits in the afterlife compared to what is available in the current life.

The fact that no terrorists tend to show abnormal psychopathic conditions does not imply the absence of others that may well pass for normal behaviors, such as narcissism. Narcissistic injuries emanating from difficult or problematic childhood or adolescent stages of development or due to parental inadequacies, may result in altered self-perceptions. Such damage may lead the individual towards grandiose fantasies, the type often promised by extremist organizations. Alternatively, such traumas, when experienced during early childhood, might re-emerge in adulthood through such dissociated behaviors as excessive paranoia or absolutist thinking, resulting in behaviors exhibited by extremists. Secondly, as explained by Routledge, Juhl and Vess (2010), individuals also develop varied, at times problematic reactions to the external world, which is often the result of cognitive rigidity, defined as the need for clarity and certainty and intolerance to ambiguity. In this case, the individual is unable to develop behaviors that fit the outside conditions such as life’s uncertain and mundane nature.

The fact that terrorist organizations employ conventional means to attract and recruit new members implies that countering such initiatives must employ conventional, yet imaginative and adaptive means. For instance, counterterrorism campaigns must seek to interrupt strong group relationships that define these organizations. To tackle the quest for significance, for instance, governments, the society and interest groups must focus on morally acceptable goals achieved through non-violent means that eventually reassign one’s beliefs and disengages the individual from violence. Another remedy could be through initiatives that challenge the group’s collective identity. These include strategies that inhibit potential members from joining the radicalized groups, cultivating dissent within the group, crafting and facilitating exist from the group and reducing the group’s support and delegitimizing its leaders.

Another formidable strategy for de-radicalizing individuals entails disproving the propaganda spread by the terrorist group(s). Here, the society must seek to leverage modern technology, the very ones used by terrorist groups to spread propaganda, to counter their messages. Propaganda is only effective if people see the issuer as reliable or possessing some legitimacy. As such, initiatives that discredit the propaganda churned out by terrorist organizations can be crucial in reducing the number of recruits that such can harness. The key element here lies in demonstrating to the public the extent to which involvement with the group can bring devastation to the individual or the individual’s family members and friends, hence discarding the notion that terrorism could be a means to a given end, real or perceived.

Based on the careful analysis presented in this discussion, one can conclude that appeals to radicalization are the result of the

need for social connections, perverse perception of fairness, the promise of martyrdom within the context of Islamic extremism as well as subtle psychopathic problems as narcissism. The insidious nature of terrorist actions not only make them detestable, but also difficult to counter. To that end, this study suggests such means as interruption of strong group relationships, focusing on morally acceptable norms to address the inherent quest for significance, challenging the group’s collective identity and using the media to disprove the propaganda spread by the terrorist groups.


Click here to ORDER an A++ paper from our MASTERS and DOCTORATE WRITERS: Assignment: The psychological and behavioral factors of terrorism

A fundamental issue established at the outset of this course is the fact that becoming involved in terrorist activities is a process, where numerous factors can affect the mindset and actions of an individual. We have covered many of these issues and influences, so concerning this matter, relay what you feel are those psychological and behavioral factors that have the greatest impact on the radicalization of an individual. Conversely, what efforts do you feel might be effective in countering them in a proactive manner?

The body of your report is to be five pages in length (points will be deducted if the minimum page requirement is not met) and is to contain the following:
A brief introduction, conveying what the report is about
A main body, containing the \”meat\” of the report, where you provide the requested information
A conclusion, summarizing the content of the report clearly and concisely
Include an appropriate title page
Typewritten in double-spaced, Times New Roman 12-point font, 1\” margins.
A minimum of five (5) academically acceptable sources are to be utilized. Use those provided to you throughout the course, as well as other material obtained from conducting your own research to support your work. However, such information is to supplement your work, not replace or serve as the major part of it. Therefore, assignments will be automatically submitted for review through Turnitin and will be graded in accordance with the writing assignment grading rubric. Freely utilize appropriate sources, summarize in your own words and cite accordingly, but be mindful of excessive direct quotes, as they should not make up more than 10% of your report.
Sources utilized are to be cited and listed in accordance with the APA writing style

Lopes Write Policy

For assignments that need to be submitted to Lopes Write, please be sure you have received your report and Similarity Index (SI) percentage BEFORE you do a “final submit” to me.

Once you have received your report, please review it. This report will show you grammatical, punctuation, and spelling errors that can easily be fixed. Take the extra few minutes to review instead of getting counted off for these mistakes.

Review your similarities. Did you forget to cite something? Did you not paraphrase well enough? Is your paper made up of someone else’s thoughts more than your own?

Visit the Writing Center in the Student Success Center, under the Resources tab in LoudCloud for tips on improving your paper and SI score.

Late Policy

The university’s policy on late assignments is 10% penalty PER DAY LATE. This also applies to late DQ replies.

Please communicate with me if you anticipate having to submit an assignment late. I am happy to be flexible, with advance notice. We may be able to work out an extension based on extenuating circumstances.

If you do not communicate with me before submitting an assignment late, the GCU late policy will be in effect.

I do not accept assignments that are two or more weeks late unless we have worked out an extension.

As per policy, no assignments are accepted after the last day of class. Any assignment submitted after midnight on the last day of class will not be accepted for grading.


Communication is so very important. There are multiple ways to communicate with me:

Questions to Instructor Forum: This is a great place to ask course content or assignment questions. If you have a question, there is a good chance one of your peers does as well. This is a public forum for the class.

Individual Forum: This is a private forum to ask me questions or send me messages. This will be checked at least once every 24 hours.

Important information for writing discussion questions and participation

Welcome to class

Hello class and welcome to the class and I will be your instructor for this course. This is a -week course and requires a lot of time commitment, organization, and a high level of dedication. Please use the class syllabus to guide you through all the assignments required for the course. I have also attached the classroom policies to this announcement to know your expectations for this course. Please review this document carefully and ask me any questions if you do. You could email me at any time or send me a message via the “message” icon in halo if you need to contact me. I check my email regularly, so you should get a response within 24 hours. If you have not heard from me within 24 hours and need to contact me urgently, please send a follow up text to

I strongly encourage that you do not wait until the very last minute to complete your assignments. Your assignments in weeks 4 and 5 require early planning as you would need to present a teaching plan and interview a community health provider. I advise you look at the requirements for these assignments at the beginning of the course and plan accordingly. I have posted the YouTube link that explains all the class assignments in detail. It is required that you watch this 32-minute video as the assignments from week 3 through 5 require that you follow the instructions to the letter to succeed. Failure to complete these assignments according to instructions might lead to a zero. After watching the video, please schedule a one-on-one with me to discuss your topic for your project by the second week of class. Use this link to schedule a 15-minute session. Please, call me at the time of your appointment on my number. Please note that I will NOT call you.

Please, be advised I do NOT accept any assignments by email. If you are having technical issues with uploading an assignment, contact the technical department and inform me of the issue. If you have any issues that would prevent you from getting your assignments to me by the deadline, please inform me to request a possible extension. Note that working fulltime or overtime is no excuse for late assignments. There is a 5%-point deduction for every day your assignment is late. This only applies to approved extensions. Late assignments will not be accepted.

If you think you would be needing accommodations due to any reasons, please contact the appropriate department to request accommodations.

Plagiarism is highly prohibited. Please ensure you are citing your sources correctly using APA 7th edition. All assignments including discussion posts should be formatted in APA with the appropriate spacing, font, margin, and indents. Any papers not well formatted would be returned back to you, hence, I advise you review APA formatting style. I have attached a sample paper in APA format and will also post sample discussion responses in subsequent announcements.

Your initial discussion post should be a minimum of 200 words and response posts should be a minimum of 150 words. Be advised that I grade based on quality and not necessarily the number of words you post. A minimum of TWO references should be used for your initial post. For your response post, you do not need references as personal experiences would count as response posts. If you however cite anything from the literature for your response post, it is required that you cite your reference. You should include a minimum of THREE references for papers in this course. Please note that references should be no more than 5 years old except recommended as a resource for the class. Furthermore, for each discussion board question, you need ONE initial substantive response and TWO substantive responses to either your classmates or your instructor for a total of THREE responses. There are TWO discussion questions each week, hence, you need a total minimum of SIX discussion posts for each week. I usually post a discussion question each week. You could also respond to these as it would count towards your required SIX discussion posts for the week.

I understand this is a lot of information to cover in 5 weeks, however, the Bible says in Philippians 4:13 that we can do all things through Christ that strengthens us. Even in times like this, we are encouraged by God’s word that we have that ability in us to succeed with His strength. I pray that each and every one of you receives strength for this course and life generally as we navigate through this pandemic that is shaking our world today. Relax and enjoy the course!

Hi Class,

Please read through the following information on writing a Discussion question response and participation posts.

Contact me if you have any questions.

Important information on Writing a Discussion Question

  • Your response needs to be a minimum of 150 words (not including your list of references)
  • There needs to be at least TWO references with ONE being a peer reviewed professional journal article.
  • Include in-text citations in your response
  • Do not include quotes—instead summarize and paraphrase the information
  • Follow APA-7th edition
  • Points will be deducted if the above is not followed

Participation –replies to your classmates or instructor

  • A minimum of 6 responses per week, on at least 3 days of the week.
  • Each response needs at least ONE reference with citations—best if it is a peer reviewed journal article
  • Each response needs to be at least 75 words in length (does not include your list of references)
  • Responses need to be substantive by bringing information to the discussion or further enhance the discussion. Responses of “I agree” or “great post” does not count for the word count.
  • Follow APA 7th edition
  • Points will be deducted if the above is not followed
  • Remember to use and follow APA-7th edition for all weekly assignments, discussion questions, and participation points.
  • Here are some helpful links
  • Student paper example
  • Citing Sources
  • The Writing Center is a great resource

As we begin this session, I would like to take this opportunity to clarify my expectations for this course:

Please note that GCU Online weeks run from Thursday (Day 1) through Wednesday (Day 7).


Course Room Etiquette:

  • It is my expectation that all learners will respect the thoughts and ideas presented in the discussions.
  • All postings should be presented in a respectful, professional manner. Remember – different points of view add richness and depth to the course!


Office Hours:

  • My office hours vary so feel free to shoot me an email at [email protected] or my office phone is 602.639.6517 and I will get back to you within one business day or as soon as possible.
  • Phone appointments can be scheduled as well. Send me an email and the best time to call you, along with your phone number to make an appointment.
  • I welcome all inquiries and questions as we spend this term together. My preference is that everyone utilizes the Questions to Instructor forum. In the event your question is of a personal nature, please feel free to post in the Individual Questions for Instructor forumI will respond to all posts or emails within 24 or sooner.


Late Policy and Grading Policy

Discussion questions:

  • I do not mark off for late DQ’s.
  • I would rather you take the time to read the materials and respond to the DQ’s in a scholarly way, demonstrating your understanding of the materials.
  • I will not accept any DQ submissions after day 7, 11:59 PM (AZ Time) of the week.
  • Individual written assignments – due by 11:59 PM AZ Time Zone on the due dates indicated for each class deliverable.


  • Assignments turned in after their specified due dates are subject to a late penalty of -10%, each day late, of the available credit. Please refer to the student academic handbook and GCU policy.
  • Any activity or assignment submitted after the due date will be subject to GCU’s late policy
  • Extenuating circumstances may justify exceptions, which are at my sole discretion. If an extenuating circumstance should arise, please contact me privately as soon as possible.
  • No assignments can be accepted for grading after midnight on the final day of class.
  • All assignments will be graded in accordance with the Assignment Grading Rubrics


  • Participation in each week’s Discussion Board forum accounts for a large percentage of your final grade in this course.
  • Please review the Course Syllabus for a comprehensive overview of course deliverables and the value associated with each.
  • It is my expectation that each of you will substantially contribute to the course discussion forums and respond to the posts of at least three other learners.
  • substantive post should be at least 200 words. Responses such as “great posts” or “I agree” do notmeet the active engagement expectation.
  • Please feel free to draw on personal examples as you develop your responses to the Discussion Questions but you do need to demonstrate your understanding of the materials.
  • I do expect outside sources as well as class materials to formulate your post.
  • APA format is not necessary for DQ responses, but I do expect a proper citation for references.
  • Please use peer-related journals found through the GCU library and/or class materials to formulate your answers. Do not try to “Google” DQ’s as I am looking for class materials and examples from the weekly materials.
  • will not accept responses that are from Wikipedia, Business com, or other popular business websites. You will not receive credit for generic web searches – this does not demonstrate graduate-level research.
  • Stay away from the use of personal pronouns when writing.As a graduate student, you are expected to write based on research and gathering of facts. Demonstrating your understanding of the materials is what you will be graded on. You will be marked down for lack of evidence to support your ideas.


  • Plagiarism is the act of claiming credit for another’s work, accomplishments, or ideas without appropriate acknowledgment of the source of the information by including in-text citations and references.
  • This course requires the utilization of APA format for all course deliverables as noted in the course syllabus.
  • Whether this happens deliberately or inadvertently, whenever plagiarism has occurred, you have committed a Code of Conduct violation.
  • Please review your LopesWrite report prior to final submission.
  • Every act of plagiarism, no matter the severity, must be reported to the GCU administration (this includes your DQ’s, posts to your peers, and your papers).

Plagiarism includes:

  • Representing the ideas, expressions, or materials of another without due credit.
  • Paraphrasing or condensing ideas from another person’s work without proper citation and referencing.
  • Failing to document direct quotations without proper citation and referencing.
  • Depending upon the amount, severity, and frequency of the plagiarism that is committed, students may receive in-class penalties that range from coaching (for a minor omission), -20% grade penalties for resubmission, or zero credit for a specific assignment. University-level penalties may also occur, including suspension or even expulsion from the University.
  • If you are at all uncertain about what constitutes plagiarism, you should review the resources available in the Student Success Center. Also, please review the University’s policies about plagiarism which are covered in more detail in the GCU Catalog and the Student Handbook.
  • We will be utilizing the GCU APA Style Guide 7th edition located in the Student Success Center > The Writing Center for all course deliverables.


  • All course assignments must be uploaded to the specific Module Assignment Drop Box, and also submitted to LopesWrite every week.
  • Please ensure that your assignment is uploaded to both locations under the Assignments DropBox. Detailed instructions for using LopesWrite are located in the Student Success Center.

Assignment Submissions

  • Please note that Microsoft Office is the software requirement at GCU.
  • I can open Word files or any file that is saved with a .rtf (Rich Text Format) extension. I am unable to open .wps files.
  • If you are using a “.wps” word processor, please save your files using the .rtf extension that is available from the drop-down box before uploading your files to the Assignment Drop Box.

Grade of Incomplete

  • The final grade of Incomplete is granted at the discretion of the instructor; however, students must meet certain specific criteria before this grade accommodation is even possible to consider.
  • The grade of Incomplete is reserved for times when students experience a serious extenuating circumstance or a crisis during the last week of class which prevents the completion of course requirements before the close of the grading period. Students also must pass the course at the time the request is made.
  • Please contact me personally if you are having difficulties in meeting course requirements or class deadlines during our time together. In addition, if you are experiencing personal challenges or difficulties, it is best to contact the Academic Counselor so that you can discuss the options that might be available to you, as well as each option’s academic and financial repercussions.

Grade Disputes

  • If you have any questions about a grade you have earned on an individual assignment or activity, please get in touch with mepersonally for further clarification.
  • While I have made every attempt to grade you fairly, on occasion a misunderstanding may occur, so please allow me the opportunity to learn your perspective if you believe this has occurred. Together, we should be able to resolve grading issues on individual assignments.
  • However, after we have discussed individual assignments’ point scores, if you still believe that the final grade you have earned at the end of the course is not commensurate with the quality of work you produced for this class, there is a formal Grade Grievance procedurewhich is outlined in the GCU Catalog and Student Handbook.