Checkout our website for prospective students.

Cybersecurity: Information Assurance Specialization

Undergraduate and graduate students can receive the National Training Standard for Information Systems Security (INFOSEC) Professionals certification, CNSS 4011. This program is evaluated under the IA Courseware Evaluation Program of the National Security Agency (NSA) and the Committee on National Security Systems (CNSS). The CSE department is recognized as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Research (CAE-R).

Degree Requirements (9 Hours of course work) with B or better grade, consisting of core and elective requirements:

Core Requirement (3 Hours) must take:

  • CSCE 522: Information Security Principles (3 credits) – meets CNSS 4011 standard

Elective Requirement (6 Hours) chosen from classes below.

Undergraduate and graduate 500-level courses:

  • CSCE 201: Introduction to Computer Security (3 credits)
  • CSCE 548: Building Secure Software (3 credits)
  • CSCE 557: Introduction to Cryptography (3 credits)
  • CSCE 517: Computer Crime and Forensics (3 credits)
  • CSCE 498: Independent Study in IA (3 credits)
  • Upper Division USC course with a project in IA. Such course is subject to approval by the Director of the Center for Information Assurance Engineering. Note, maximum 3 credits of non-IA course with IA project can be applied towards the IA-concentration.
    • Example courses at the CSE Department are: CSCE416-Introduction to Computer Networks or CSCE 516-Computer Networks with project in network security, CSCE 520-Database System Design with project in secure databases, etc.
    • Example courses at the College of Hospitality, Sport and Retail Management are: ITEC 346-Spreadsheets and Database Design with project in database security or ITEC 362-Web Development and Design with IA project on web application security, etc.

Additional graduate-level elective courses:

  • CSCE 715: Network Systems Security (3 credits)
  • CSCE 727: Information Warfare (3 credits)
  • CSCE 813: Internet Security (3 credits)
  • CSCE 824: Secure Database Systems (3 credits)
  • CSCE 798: Directed Study and Research (3 credits)
  • CSCE 799: Thesis Preparation (3 credits)
  • CSCE 814: Distributed Systems Security (3 credits)
  • CSCE 899: Dissertation Preparation (3 credits)
  1. Courses taken for the completion of the IA concentration can be used toward the student's undergraduate studies.
  2. Non-CSE majors may use the IA specialization courses toward their undergraduate studies according to the requirements of their home departments.

Entrance requirements

  • Fundamental computing education, equivalent to CSCE 145 and CSCE 146,
  • Being admitted to the Bachelor of Science program at the Department of Computer Science and Engineering, or
  • Permission of the Undergraduate Committee of the Department of Computer Science and Engineering

Educational Objectives for the Information Assurance Specialization Program

A few years after graduation, students completing the IA concentration should be:

  • Contributing to their communities and society with innovations in cyber security technology and applications and an understanding of contemporary technological issues
  • Advancing in their careers through their knowledge of cyber security, by communicating and working effectively as team members and by interacting responsibly with others in society
  • Applying cyber security concepts to the general area of their degree
  • Continuing their professional development through professional study and research

Learning Outcomes

  • Students will demonstrate the ability to apply knowledge of cyber security concepts, models and technologies to computer systems.
  • Students will understand cyber security risk management, threats and countermeasures and apply this understanding to develop cyber defense strategies.
  • Students will demonstrate the ability to design cyber security capabilities to meet organizational needs within realistic constraints such as economic, environmental, social, political, and ethical expectations.
  • Students will demonstrate the ability to function on multi-disciplinary teams.

Contact Dr. Farkas in order to apply.