Paradigms for cybersecurity education in a Homeland Security Program

Document Type

Journal Article


Faculty of Health, Engineering and Science


ECU Security Research Institute




Kessler, G.C., & Ramsay, J. (2013). Paradigms for cybersecurity education in a Homeland Security Program. Journal of Homeland Security Education, 2, 35-44. Available here


Cybersecurity threats to the nation are growing in intensity, frequency, and severity and are a very real threat to the security of the country. Academia has responded to a wide variety of homeland security (HS) threats to the nation by creating formal curricula in the field, although these programs almost exclusively focus on physical threats (e.g., terrorist attacks, and natural and man-made disasters), law and policy and transportation . Although cybersecurity programs are commonly available in U.S. colleges and universities, they are invariably offered as a technical course of study nested within engineering (or other STEM) programs. We observe that technical and calculus-based courses might not be well suited to HS students and do not necessarily meet a broad suite of professional needs in this discipline. As a result, cybersecurity principles, and strategies tend to be under-represented in the typical HS program. This paper proposes paradigms that could be included in a cybersecurity curriculum that are consistent with the broad array of outcomes now evident in many HS degree programs.