Project Overview

How to teach Security Literacy?

We have developed a module based approach to teaching security literacy.  There are several levels of modules intended for different methods of inclusion into the classroom or learning environments.  These modules are designed to provide students from both technical and non-technical majors with the opportunity to formally learn about the many components of practical computer security.  The prime goal of practical computer security literacy is to provide students with security context for many of the activities they encounter throughout their everyday use of computers and the Internet.  As a result, the topics and objectives of the corresponding modules are designed specifically to meet this object and presented in a tangible format for students of all backgrounds to learn.

We have designed several types of materials to support various classroom settings and curricular objectives. The links on the side bar describe ways that security literacy can be taught based on the age group.

  • The first set of materials are called Cyber-Toons and are short (1-2 minutes) videos designed to be played in a class to simulate discussion around a topic.  The Cyber-Toons can be included into any class and are more targeted at middle schools.  With each of the Cyber-Toons we provide an instructors guide, discussion questions, and short assessments.
  • The second set of materials are longer modules (5 to 15 minutes) that are instructional videos.  These are designed to be used in class or in a “flipped classroom” setting (where students watch the videos before class).  Like the Cyber-Toons, instructors can pick modules based on topic to be included in any existing course.
  • We also provide curricula, college level and high school level, for any school that wants to teach an entire semester long course on security literacy. The high school models can be modified to fit a middle school setting. The full courses are most appropriate for college level and high school level.

In addition to the classroom materials we have created a website that will provide a lab environment designed to let students and teachers experience certain aspects for security.  The web site for the lab is www.hackerville.org. We are also beginning to expand into developing materials for the middle school level and elementary school level.