The Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity program is designed to provide students the critical knowledge and skills required to keep the information and communication systems and their data safe, secure and resilient against modern-day attacks. Students aspiring to join the cyber workforce to protect our critical information, systems and infrastructure against cyber-attacks will find this cybersecurity program to be a rewarding and challenging experience. The program will focus on hands-on learning supported by traditional lecture-based teaching and, hence, will provide students with ample opportunities to develop proficiency in subfields of cybersecurity, such as cyber defense, operations, and forensics.
What will I study?
The Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity curriculum provides a computing-based foundation and covers a broad spectrum of concepts applicable to a range of cybersecurity specializations. The core courses within the program provide the requisite body of knowledge regarding essential cybersecurity concepts and skills. Students begin with foundational mathematics and computer science programming coursework in their first year along with a special cybersecurity exploration course introducing the principles and concepts of cybersecurity. In the second and third years, students engage in core computer science and cybersecurity courses that emphasize hands-on laboratory experiences (e.g., web development, firewalls, intrusion detection systems, vulnerability assessment). These foundational cybersecurity courses prepare students for a capstone cybersecurity project, and upper-level focus areas (cyber operations and cyber defense), technical electives or internships. Besides the technical rigor, the program throughout its curriculum strongly emphasizes the socio-ethical aspects associated with the field.
Why study Cybersecurity at SHU?
Unique Curricular Offering
The bachelor's in cybersecurity program “pioneers” SHU’s entry into the niche market of schools offering similar programs in the State of Connecticut in particular, and in New England area in general. The 120 credit program lay’s a strong foundation in computer science and core cybersecurity before providing students a unique opportunity to choose between one of the two upper-level focus areas – cyber operations and cyber defense – two of the most sought-after areas in cybersecurity jobs. The program ensures that students can complete the degree within four years and students even have opportunities to pursue industry internships during their program of study.
The proposed cybersecurity curriculum conform to the latest recommendations from Joint Task Force (JTF) on Cybersecurity Education in their recent version of Cybersecurity Curricula 2017 – Curriculum Guidelines for Post-Secondary Degree Programs in Cybersecurity. The designed curriculum offers courses from five computing disciplines – computer science, computer engineering, information technology, information systems, and software engineering, and closely aligns with the cybersecurity-related Knowledge Areas (KAs) and Knowledge Units (KUs) as authorized by the US National Security Agency (NSA) and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Centers of Academic Excellence (CAE), and National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) Cybersecurity Workforce Framework.
Experienced Intellectual Community
All the courses within the program are taught by a homogeneous mix of experienced faculty from academia and leading experts from different sectors of cybersecurity, thereby instructing students with a fine balance between academic theoretical rigor and invaluable practical experience from a fast-paced industry.
Does this program require internship?
Yes, the program requires students to undertake an internship, preferably after their junior year, in a cybersecurity-related business organization or research lab. The project undertaken during the internship will count towards the required credits and will be co-supervised by a faculty member from the School of Computer Science and Engineering. The students will be required to submit a project report upon completion of the internship.
School of Computer Science and Engineering faculty along-with the staff in Career Development & Placement Center work with a number of nearby companies in developing internship opportunities for the growing fields in cybersecurity. There are also internship opportunities in The Factory (our computer support center) and the Information Technology Department.
Are there special admission requirements?
No, we have an open admission policy. Incoming first-year students and transfer students may declare the Cybersecurity major when they apply for admission to Sacred Heart University.
What facilities and resources are available to me?
We have a dedicated cybersecurity lab, a networking lab, and three dedicated computer labs.
What are my career options with a Cybersecurity degree?
The program establishes the foundations for lifelong learning and development, preparing students for a professional career in cybersecurity. Some examples of key jobs within Cybersecurity include but not limited to:
- Cybersecurity Technician
- Incident Analyst/Responder
- Security Analyst
- Penetration and Vulnerability Tester
- Forensic Investigator
- Security Consultant
- Security Engineer/Architect
What are the Student Learning Objectives for a Cybersecurity Major?
The accrediting agency for the cybersecurity program (ABET) prescribes the following learning objectives (a.k.a. student outcomes). Graduates of the program will have an ability to:
- Analyze a complex computing problem and to apply principles of computing and other relevant disciplines to identify solutions.
- Design, implement, and evaluate a computing-based solution to meet a given set of computing requirements in the context of the program’s discipline.
- Communicate effectively in a variety of professional contexts.
- Recognize professional responsibilities and make informed judgments in computing practice based on legal and ethical principles.
- Function effectively as a member or leader of a team engaged in activities appropriate to the program’s discipline.
- An ability to apply security principles and practices to the environment, hardware, software, and human aspects of a system.
- An ability to analyze and evaluate systems with respect to maintaining operations in the presence of risks and threats.