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Graduate Certificate in Information Systems Security




Program Description

This certificate assesses and demonstrates competence in 10 information security domains: Access Control, Application Security, Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Planning, Cryptography, Information Security and Risk Management, Legal, Regulations, Compliance and Investigations, Operations Security, Physical (Environmental) Security, Security Architecture and Design, and Telecommunications and Network Security based on the principles of proven and universally-accepted information security models. These domains are the common knowledge areas for testing for the international information security gold standard certification: Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP).

This certificate prepares an IT professional to seek higher level career positions such as Information Systems Analyst, Information Systems Manager, Security Policy Analyst, Security Planner, Security Auditor, and Chief Security or Technology Officer. Program graduates will know how to design secure networks, develop security policies, use cryptography, and create business continuity and information security plans.

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Program Objectives

Upon completion of this certificate, students will be able to:

  • Compare and contrast the differences between the various network topologies (both physical and logical) and appraise the various types of Security Architecture and Design models.
  • Examine the seven-layer OSI networking model and its relation to common protocol stacks and inspect the components of a packet (header, body, CRC, etc.).
  • Examine the principles of network security and assess cellular architecture.
  • Evaluate the process for securing current and next generation telecommunications networks.
  • Examine the principles of intrusion detection and intrusion prevention.
  • Differentiate between the different types of cryptographic algorithms.

Graduate Certificate in Information Systems Security

To enroll, you must provide an official transcript of your previously-completed bachelor's or master's degree and meet one of the following:

  • Associate or bachelor's degree in information technology or a related field (ex: computer science, information systems, database development, etc.)
  • Two years of work experience in the specific sub-field for this certificate
  • Completion of one of our undergraduate IT certificates
  • Completion of 6 upper-level (300-400) undergraduate credits in IT-related courses
  • Completion of an IT-related minor or concentration during your undergraduate program
  • Certification from CompTIA A+ (2010 – Present) or a combination of the following (must have two) CompTIA Network +, CompTIA Project +, CompTIA Security+ (all 2010-Present)
  • A valid and current Project Management Professional certification from the Project Management Institute
  • Completion of CISSP certification (valid up until the expiration date)

If the IT-specific requirements are not noted in the official bachelor's or master's transcript, you must provide official copies of your undergraduate transcripts that show the appropriate coursework. The verification of the 2-years work experience needs to be sent to the university from your current/previous employer on company letterhead.

Send your official transcripts to:

American Public University System
Attn: Document Services
10110 Battleview Parkway, Suite 114
Manassas, VA 20109

An admissions representative will be assigned to work with you and will contact you via email or phone to assist you with the enrollment process. Your admissions representative will also be reviewing documents verifying your previous education or work experience and will notify you when you have been admitted and can register for classes.

*Preadmission courses completed at the undergraduate level must be graded C or better; B or better at the graduate level.

Certificate Requirements
18 Hours
Computer Forensics
3 hours

This course examines information concealment techniques, technologies, hardware, software, and relevant legislation for cyber forensics to reveal and track legal and illegal activity. The course examines the process for investigation and introduces the tools and procedures required to legally seize and forensically evaluate a suspect machine. Also covered are the rules of evidence, chain of custody, standard operating procedures, and the manipulation of technology to conceal illegal activities, and revealing concealed information using cyber forensics.

Computer Networks and Data Systems
3 hours

This course is a study of computer networks and the evolution of modern communication systems. It examines the various layers of the basic reference models such as the five-layer IP model or the seven-layer OSI model, by scale, connection method, network architecture, or topology. This course also includes an in-depth analysis of transmission protocols, communications systems, and networks. A prior knowledge of networks and networking is recommended.

Telecommunications and Network Security
3 hours

Telecommunications networks are a critical component of the global economic and social infrastructures. Securing critical infrastructure is an established priority within Information Security Management. This course examines the field of secure telecommunications networks, including emerging threats, system vulnerability, network evolution, and network defense mechanisms.

Intrusion Detection and Incident Handling
3 hours

This course examines the tenets of Intrusion Detection, Intrusion Prevention, and Incident Handling. Intrusion Detection focuses on the methods to detect attempts (attacks or intrusions) to compromise the confidentiality, integrity or availability of an information system. Also included is an analysis of the principles and practices of intrusion detection, intrusion prevention, and incident handling; network-based, host-based, and hybrid intrusion detection; identifying attack patterns; deployment of resources and responses to handle the incident, surveillance, damage assessment, risk assessment, data forensics, data mining, attack tracing, system recovery, and continuity of operation.

Information Assurance
3 hours

The course analyzes computer and systems security measures by examining a model for information assurance; it also examines the components of a comprehensive Information Assurance plan. Topics included are: asset identification, human factors, compliance with regulations, personnel security, risk assessment and ethical considerations, IA policy, as well as computer and network security tools.

Information Security Management
3 hours

Information Security includes an evaluation of the techniques, policies and strategies to ensure that data stored in an organization's computers cannot be accessed or processed without the consent of the organization. Also included, is an analysis of Information Security & Risk Management, Access Control, Physical Security, Security Architecture & Design, Business Continuity & Disaster Recovery Planning, Telecommunications & Network Security, Application Security, Operations Security, Law, Compliance & Investigations. This course also reviews the building blocks of information systems and cryptography is provided to reinforce the scope of security management.

Program Completion Rates, Median Debt and More

View more details regarding our graduation rates, the median debt of students who completed the program, and other important information.


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