Department Department of Political Science
Biola AffiliationsFaculty, Employee



  • ​Ph.D. University of Pittsburgh, PA,
  • M.A. University of Pittsburgh, PA
  • B.A. Geneva College, Beaver Falls, PA​


Tom Copeland is an associate professor of Political Science, teaching classes in International Relations and leading off-campus study programs. He is especially interested in national security, intelligence, terrorism and the relationship between free markets and prosperity. He has written a book on mass casualty terrorism and edited another on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. He enjoys golf, hiking, Pittsburgh sports teams and anything related to Middle Earth.

Copeland's teaching philosophy can be summed up in two statements: "There is no such thing as a dumb question in my classroom" and "I rarely give 100's, because there is always room to improve." He would rate this bio as about a 80%.


  • American Enterprise Institute’s Values & Capitalism Initiative, Faculty advisory board
  • Foundation for Defense of Democracies, Fellow, 2010
  • American Political Science Association, member

Publications (Selected)

  • “Hobbit Hermeneutics: Politics and Philosophy in J.R.R. Tolkien’s Prose,” Christian Scholars Review, forthcoming Fall 2015.
  • Drawing a Line in the Sea: The 2010 Gaza Flotilla Incident and the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict. Lexington Books, 2011. Editor.
  • “The Failure of Intelligence Failure Theory,” essay chapter in the International Studies Association Compendium on International Affairs. Blackwell Publishing, 2010.
  • Fool Me Twice: Intelligence Failure and Mass Casualty Terrorism. Martinus/Nijhoff (Brill), 2007.
  • “Is the ‘New Terrorism’ Really New? An Analysis of the New Paradigm of Terrorism,” Journal of Conflict Studies, Winter 2001/2002.
  • The Information Revolution & U.S. National Security. U.S. Army War College Strategic Studies Institute, April 2000. Editor.
  • “Please, Impeach my Commander-in-Chief: Article 88 and the U.S. Military,” Ridgway Viewpoints, 99-1. University of Pittsburgh, Ridgway Center for International Security Studies, 1999.


Invited papers & Conference Presentations

  • “The 2010 Gaza Flotilla Incident,” Association for the Study of the Middle East and Africa, Fall 2010
  • “The Failure of Intelligence Failure Theory,” International Studies Association, San Francisco, March 2008
  • “Surprise, Intelligence Failure, and Mass Casualty Terrorism,” International Security Studies section of the ISA, Tucson, AZ, October 2006
  • “Gangs, Organized Crime, and Ethnicity,” Academy of Criminal Justice Sciences, Spring 2003
  • “How States Respond to the Information Revolution,” Yale University, Spring 2002
  • “Is the ‘New’ Terrorism Really New?” Open Source Solutions conference, Spring 2003 and El Paso Border Patrol conference, Fall 2002
  • “Ethnicity and Transnational Organized Crime,” International Association of Law Enforcement Intelligence Analysts, Summer 2002 and Fall 2002
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