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New minor in information assurance and security available through APSU’s Department of Computer Science and Information

CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. – As the world continues towards an all-digital future, the demand for workers trained in security and data protection has never been higher. With that in mind, the Department of Computer Science and Information Technology at Austin Peay State University has introduced a minor in the field of information assurance and security.

The minor, which is currently in place, requires the completion of 24 credit hours in courses including data communications and networking, network security, cryptography and computer forensics, among others.

CLARKSVILLE, Tenn. – As the world continues towards an all-digital future, the demand for workers trained in security and data protection has never been higher. With that in mind, the Department of Computer Science and Information Technology at Austin Peay State University has introduced a minor in the field of information assurance and security.

The minor, which is currently in place, requires the completion of 24 credit hours in courses including data communications and networking, network security, cryptography and computer forensics, among others.

The program’s first group of graduates are expected to complete the minor program in Summer 2016.

APSU assistant professor Joseph Elarde said the minor was created in response to a desperate need from employers.

“Information security is hot right now, due to the many high-profile security breaches and the clear need for improvement in cyber security due to the expanding role of the Internet in our lives,” Elarde said. “One important aspect of the program that we strive to achieve is relevancy and alignment with industry.”

The Department of Computer Science and Information Technology structures its curriculum design around input from professional organizations and government agencies, such as the Department of Homeland Security, the FBI and the NSA. In addition, it actively seeks input from financial services and healthcare businesses when organizing an education plan for students.

APSU’s Department of Computer Science and Information Technology is proud of its tradition of bringing higher education to non-traditional and military-affiliated students, and 2014-15 continued that mission with at least 52 percent of non-traditional students (54 percent in total) reporting as military affiliated. In 2013-2014, non-traditional students made up almost 63 percent of all computer science majors.

It is that strong military influence, Elarde said, that has positioned APSU – as well as the new minor in information assurance and security – as a potential sleeping giant in the field.

“I believe APSU is in an excellent position to build a top information security program, due to the strong military presence on campus,” Elarde said. “Many of these (students) have security backgrounds, or come to us with security ingrained in their mindset.”

For more information on the Department of Computer Science and Information Technology, visit www.apsu.edu/csci, or call 931-221-7840.