Increased cybersecurity threats and new homeland security policies have produced a growing national demand for cybersecurity professionals with knowledge of cybersecurity, ethical hacking, intrusion testing, vulnerability assessment, and computer forensics. In addition, the growth of universal and mobile computing require new approaches to information security and the protection of information systems from unauthorized access, modification, or destruction. The Cybersecurity and Computer Forensics program prepares students for entry level employment in cybersecurity and computer forensics careers including cyber incident and response, vulnerability detection and assessment analyst, computer forensic analyst, and computer forensics investigator. Foundation courses introduce students to the legal, ethical, and theoretical issues in cybersecurity and computer forensics technology. Core courses expand student depth and skills in ethical hacking, criminal justice, evidentiary analysis, and the development of a forensically sound environment. Capstone courses provide practicum experience and opportunity to participate in the Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition (CCDC). Successful completion of this program leads to an Associate in Applied Science-Transfer (AAS-T) degree Cybersecurity and Computer Forensics. Students are required to have access to computer, internet, and browser.
*Note: CS& 141, CS 142, MATH& 141, MATH& 142, MATH& 151, and ENGL& 102 are required for transfer to Western Washington University. Students should work with the Cybersecurity Program Advisor to ensure transfer requirements are met.
Program Length: 6 Quarters
Program Code: CISCCAAS
Career Opportunities and Earnings
There is a high demand for talented people with cybersecurity skills; and an increasing number of employers are seeking workers with knowledge of computer forensics tool. Graduates may find positions with a variety of critical infrastructure companies and organizations in the public and private sectors. Some employers may require employee background checks.
- Computer forensic analyst
- Cybersecurity specialist
- Incident responder
- Information security analyst
- Security monitoring and event analysis
- System and network penetration tester
For current employment and wage estimates, please visit and search for the relevant occupational term: bls.gov/oes.
When this program is completed, the student will be able to:
- Demonstrate an understanding of the core concepts, tools, and methods used to secure computer systems
- Identify and present indicators that a cybersecurity incident has occurred
- Apply criminal justice methods to cybersecurity and computer forensic investigations
- Plan, implement, and evaluate penetration testing and ethical hacking of computer systems
- Identify, analyze, and mitigate threats to internal computer systems
- Collect, process, analyze, and present computer forensic evidence
- Work in teams to analyze and resolve cybersecurity issues
- Apply critical thinking skills to risk analysis of computer systems
- The program encourages students to explore the legal, ethical, and global impact of cybercrime on private, public, and personal computing infrastructures
- The courses are based on the CNSSI standards established by the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) for training information systems security professionals
- The program provides up to date curriculum that adapts to the rapidly changing field of cybersecurity and computer forensics
- The Peninsula College Cybersecurity and Computer Forensics program is significantly more cost effective than most private and public schools
Approximate Additional Costs
- Books, supplies and miscellaneous fees (per quarter): $200 - $250
This sample schedule is provided as a guide for a full-time student starting in fall quarter whose goal is to earn the AAS-T. The typical student schedule is based on entering the program during the fall quarter, however some programs allow students to enter in the winter or spring as well. Since not all do, please confirm with an advisor whether this program must be started during a specific quarter or not.
First Quarter (Fall)
An introduction to fundamentals of computer science. Topics covered include algorithmic design; problem-solving techniques for computer programming; fundamentals of digital logic and computer organization; the role of the operating system; introductory programming methodology, including variables, assignment statements, control statements and subroutines (methods); programming paradigms; the compilation process; theoretical limits of computation; database structures; and social and ethical issues. This class may include students from multiple sections. (Natural Sciences, Elective)
Analysis of linear, piecewise, quadratic, polynomial, rational, inverse, exponential, and logarithmic functions; their applications; and their graphs. This class may include students from multiple sections. (Quantitative Skills, Natural Sciences, Elective)
Second Quarter (Winter)
An introduction to the Unix/Linux operating system and Unix/Linux system administration. Prepares student for CompTIA Linux+ Part A exam. This class may include students from multiple sections.
Conic sections; trigonometric functions; identities; inverse trigonometric functions; trigonometric equations; solutions of right triangles; laws of sines and cosines; vectors; polar coordinates; and complex numbers. This class may include students from multiple sections. (Quantitative Skills, Natural Sciences, Elective)
Third Quarter (Spring)
Provides an introduction to the field of Cyber Security through the analysis of technology and concepts in the field of cyber security and cybercrime. This course provides a complete introduction to the protection of business information and systems that support business process. The objective is to identify common threats and attacks, analyze the role of security techniques and architectures, explain the role of cryptography, and analyze issues related to managing security. This class may include students from multiple sections.
Limits and continuity; techniques and applications of derivatives of algebraic and transcendental functions; an introduction to antiderivatives. This class may include students from multiple sections. This class may include students from multiple sections. (Quantitative Skills, Natural Sciences, Elective)
Fourth Quarter (Fall)
This course serves as an introduction into the skills, steps and concepts related to the field of penetration testing and ethical hacking. The modern penetration tester or “pen tester” relies on a specific set of skills to help secure IT infrastructure by testing defenses. This course places a heavy emphasis on the ethical issues and practices required by all professional penetration testers. This class may include students from multiple sections.
Active reading, effective writing, and critical thinking, using subjective and objective approaches. Introduction to research techniques. This class may include students from multiple sections. (Communication Skills)
Fifth Quarter (Winter)
This course introduces the "algorithmic thinking" and the design and implementation processes necessary for you to solve complex, real-world problems with computers. We introduce the Java programming language to learn to write programs; understand the features of programming languages; decompose problems; develop algorithms; and use important software practices. We include software architecture (structure), classes (ways of modeling things), handling data, some computer ethics, standards, and maintaining program correctness. This course and its successor, CS 142 will help you become more competent and comfortable on the paths to both computer science and professional software development. CS 100 is strongly recommended for students with no programming experience. This class may include students from multiple sections. (Elective)
Introductory course to develop the analytical skills necessary to understand major developments in the contemporary world and to provide the basis for more advanced study in the field of world politics. The course deepens students’ understanding of globalization and the need for common solutions to global problems that transcend borders. This class will include students from multiple sections. (Social Sciences, Elective)
Sixth Quarter (Spring)
This course continues CS& 141, delving more deeply into computer science principles and professional software development principles and practices. We cover and use object-oriented and functional programming paradigms, basic top-down context-derived software processes and architectures, abstract data types, generics, data structures, recursion, complexity analysis of algorithms and O-notation, computer ethics, handling and querying data, unit tests, developing to standards, modeling physical processes, graphical user interfaces. We use a modern, intelligent professional development environment to implement concepts concretely. This course will help you become more competent and comfortable on the paths to both computer science and professional software development. This class may include students from multiple sections. (Elective)
Provides cybersecurity students with the opportunity to develop a complex, quarter long project working in the field of information security. Students will work with their instructor to determine career readiness and develop a project focused on honing specific individual skills based on areas of need. Students will have the opportunity to collaborate with others and learn from real world needs, often working with industry on projects. This class may include students from multiple sections.
Introduction to science of behavior. Emphasis on biological foundations of behavior, cognition, learning, intelligence, motivation, memory, personality, and psychological disorders. This class may include students from multiple sections. (Social Sciences, Elective)
Your personal educational plan will vary based on many factors including: