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 both students from 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 two 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 10 minutes) that are also in video format.  These are designed to be used in class or in a “flipped” course (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 a curriculum for a school that wants to teach an entire course on security literacy.  The modules are designed for upper middle school and high school.  The full course is most appropriate for upper level high school and college level.

In addition to the classroom materials we have created a website that provides a lab environment designed to let students and teachers experience certain aspects for security.  The web site for the lab is