The ACES Minor features a 16 credit customizable curriculum including experiential learning. All ACES Minor students must complete a minimum of 16 credits to earn the ACES Minor.

Foundation Courses (1-5 credits)

Students must complete foundation courses before they are eligible to enroll in experiential learning courses.

Required if did not complete ACES LLP AND have not taken CMSC216

This course introduces students to the technical foundations of cybersecurity through discussion, practice in statistics, and lessons in UNIX.

Required course for students who did not complete the ACES Living-Learning Program

The group project in this course will combine technical, analytical, and communication skills, further engaging students in the practice of cybersecurity as they complete a team project designing, deploying, and collecting and analyzing data from a honeypot.

All ACES Minor students must take at least 1 credit of HACS 318

This course includes opportunities to interact with industry leaders in the cybersecurity field through guest lectures, field trips, and special topic presentations. Topics include cybersecurity threats, entrepreneurship, and innovation in cybersecurity, and cybersecurity policy.

Electives (9-12 credits)

Choose at least three of the following 400-level courses:

HACS408 Advanced Seminar in Cybersecurity (3 credits)

The Advanced Seminars in Cybersecurity explore various topics within the cybersecurity field.

(Offered in Spring) This course is designed to prepare students to participate in culturally responsible and environmentally-appropriate communication in the work force. Students will explore the industry standards for writing technical reports, as well as the variances between persuasive, team, written, and oral communication styles. 

(Offered in Fall/Spring) This advanced digital forensics course will aim to build an in-depth understanding of industry standard techniques to recover and analyze forensic data from multiple environments and devices to characterize and track malicious user activity. Topics include memory forensics, file system analysis, malware detection, timeline analysis, and detection and analysis of execution artifacts. These topics are presented in a lab-centric course using commercial forensics and open source tools.

(Offered in Fall) An exploration of cyber risk management and present-day cyber threats, their impacts, and their mitigations. Students will take a multi-disciplinary approach to understanding cyber threats and risks including the technical, policy, and social aspects. This course is guided by real-world case studies.

(Offered in Fall) This course for ACES Minor students is an introduction to the security implications of interrelated computing devices known as Internet of Things (IoT) and Cyber Physical Systems (CPS). Topics include but are not limited to, secure application development for IoT/CPS, IoT/CPS environment types, IoT/CPS threat categories, security services, distributed application architectures, activity privacy, and intrusion detection/prevention. Students will participate in a semester long group project involving significant research, design, and implementation. Students should have taken CMSC216 in order to be successful in this course.

(Offered in Spring) This course will be a rigorous hands-on, technically challenging experience to prepare students for real-world work in penetration testing and offensive security. Students will gain proficiency and become comfortable using the tools, techniques, and methodologies that represent the state of the art in penetration testing today. Students should be very comfortable on the command line, and a technical exposure to networking and proficiency in some scripting language (Bash, Ruby, Python) is expected.

(Offered in Spring) This course focuses on exploring and analyzing cybersecurity-related data. Data visualization is useful for quickly and easily viewing and identifying features of interest during data exploration, as well as highlighting key aspects when communicating results of data analysis. Understanding the context and interpretation of different sources and types of cybersecurity data commonly available is an important component to performing meaningful data analysis and can help guide the selection of analysis methods useful for extracting information from the data.

(Offered in Fall) This seminar style course will examine notable exploitations of systems from the 1950s to the present. Students will explore the technical aspects of the exploit and the resulting technical, economic, political, and social impacts. Students will learn to define the system identifying the inputs, outputs, and core functionality at a variety of abstraction levels, and then explain the risk associated with the exploitation of the system and the resulting impacts. Students will develop critical thinking, communication, and teamwork skills necessary to be a productive member of society.

Students may also substitute two courses or up to 6 credits from the following 400-level courses: CCJS418B, CMSC412, CMSC414, CMSC417, CMSC/MATH456, CMSC498R, CMSC498Y, BUDT758D, ENEE447, ENEE457, ENEE459B, ENEE459E, ENME442, MLAW358E, INST464, and INST467.

Experiential Learning Requirements

Students will complete 3 credits of experiential learning from research. Please note that students must complete foundation courses before they are eligible to enroll in experiential learning courses.

Students are required to engage in research in order to gain greater insight into a specific area within cybersecurity, obtain an appreciation for the subtleties and difficulties associated with the production of knowledge and fundamental new applications, and to prepare for graduate school and/or the workforce.

Students may receive HASC498 credit for participation on a team project offered by one of the ACES corporate partners. Each participant will work in a small group over the course of one semester working to complete mid-semester and final reports to be submitted for review by the ACES leadership team.