ISL457 Radicalism, Terrorism and Extremism (8)

This subject analyses critically the process of radicalisation, while addressing the influence of extreme ideological theological interpretation on Muslim societies in the twenty-first century. It examines radical ideology and narrative and provides a Muslim mainstream counter-narrative with consideration of the Islamic theological perspective on violence. It also studies the root causes of violent extremism and terrorism attributed to Muslims. In addition, the notion of jihad is analysed since it is one of the key concepts misinterpreted by extremist Islamic groups.

No offerings have been identified for this subject in 2021.

Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject Information

Grading System



One session


Centre for Islamic Studies and Civilisation

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • be able to discuss critically the key concepts and proposed rationale for terrorism and radicalism in Islamic history;
  • be able to evaluate works on terrorism, radicalism, extremism, fundamentalism, jihad and other related terms as well as the theological responses to them;
  • be able to analyse critically the impact of terrorism on world peace and social harmony;
  • be able to evaluate approaches to government policy and practice relating to radicalism, terrorism and extremism;
  • be able to demonstrate an understanding of the complexity of factors leading to radicalism and terrorism in Muslim societies;
  • be able to compare and contrast the radical and moderate Muslim narratives; and
  • be able to demonstrate independent research, organisation, written and oral communication skills.


This subject will cover the following topics:
  • Introduction to radicalism, terrorism and extremism
  • The emergence of Kharijites and other extreme groups in Islamic history and their interpretation of Islam
  • Extreme Wahhabism and Salafism and their interpretation of Islam
  • Contemporary terror groups: Al-Qaeda, Taliban, ISIS and others
  • Local and geo-political factors involved in modern terrorism
  • Radical and moderate narratives
  • Jihad and its misuse by radicals
  • Islamic legal rulings on military engagement

The information contained in the CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: May 2021. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.