National CAE Designated Institution
  • Classroom
  • Online, Instructor-Led
Course Description

This course prepares students to participate in national and international cyber competitions. Two competition archetypes are explored in detail: Capture The Flag (CTF) and jeopardy. Students will gain practical experience in these competition archetypes, as well as specific competition subtypes, through a rigorous schedule of hands-on challenges, laboratory exercises, and full scale competitions. This course will explore strategies of game play within the competition archetypes; review the skills necessary to compete in cyber competitions, as well as the cognitive science that empowers competitions as learning devices. Individual classes will be a mixture of lecture, laboratory exercises, as well as puzzle solving. The course will conclude with students participating in a real cyber competition.

Learning Objectives

  • Discuss the main archetypes of cyber competitions and identify the various challenges participants encounter within each archetype.
  • Demonstrate a basic technical acumen in the critical areas of cybersecurity as necessary to participate in cyber competitions. Such acumen includes cryptography, digital forensics, network security, and software reverse engineering.
  • Discuss prominent puzzle-based learning strategies as such apply to the primary cyber competition archetypes.
  • Demonstrate a fundamental level of proficiency in the most common challenges encountered in cyber competitions.
  • Operate independently or as part of a small team as may be necessary to succeed in cyber competition.
  • Work proficiently in two of three primary Operating Systems (Windows, Linux, and Mac OS X); including installing tools, troubleshooting, and modifying the system as necessary to achieve cyber competition goals.

Framework Connections

The materials within this course focus on the Knowledge Skills and Abilities (KSAs) identified within the Specialty Areas listed below. Click to view Specialty Area details within the interactive National Cybersecurity Workforce Framework.