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University Bulletin

Undergraduate Degree Programs

Information Sciences and Technology

Security and Risk Analysis

Penn State Altoona (SRAAL)
Penn State Berks (SRABL)
Penn State Harrisburg (SRACA)
University Park, College of Information Sciences and Technology (SRA)
World Campus

Not all options are available at every campus. Contact the campus you are interested in attending to determine which options are offered.

PROFESSOR FRED FONSECA, Associate Dean for Undergraduate Studies

The Bachelor of Science in Security and Risk Analysis (SRA) in the College of Information Sciences and Technology is intended to familiarize students with the general frameworks and multidisciplinary theories that define the area of security and related risk analyses. Courses in the major will engage students in the challenges and problems associated with assuring information confidentiality and integrity (e.g., social, economic, technology-related, and policy issues), as well as the strengths and weaknesses of various methods for assessing and mitigating associated risk.

The major provides a grounding in the analysis and modeling efforts used in information search, visualization, and creative problem solving. This knowledge is supplemented through an examination of the legal, ethical, and regulatory issues related to security that includes analyzing privacy laws, internal control and regulatory policies, as well as basic investigative processes and principles. Such understanding is applied to venues that include transnational terrorism, cyber crimes, financial fraud, risk mitigation, and security and crisis management. It also includes overviews of the information technology that plays a critical role in identifying, preventing and responding to security-related events.

Advisory groups from within and outside the University involved in the design of the major have agreed that graduates who can understand the cognitive, social, economic, and policy issues involved in security and risk management as well as the basics of the information technology and analytics that are included in the security/risk arena will be very successful. These observations drove the design and objectives of the SRA major.

SRA majors will choose one of the following options:

INTELLIGENCE ANALYSIS AND MODELING OPTION. This option focuses on developing a more thorough knowledge of the strategic and tactical levels of intelligence collection, analysis, and decision-making. This includes examining the foundations of decision analysis, economic theory, statistics, data mining, and knowledge management, as well as the security-specific contexts in which such knowledge is applied.

INFORMATION AND CYBER SECURITY OPTION. This option includes a set of courses that provides an understanding of the theories, skills, and technologies associated with network security, cyber threat defense, information warfare, and critical infrastructure protection across multiple venues.

SOCIAL FACTORS AND RISK. This option includes the legal, regulatory, ethical, and other theories associated with security and risk. Such an examination is focused on understanding the social factors and causes that are linked to transnational terrorism, investigations and litigation involved in business, and other security-related environments.

Entrance Requirements: To be eligible for entrance to the Security and Risk Analysis (SRA) major, students must:

  1. be taking, or have taken, a program appropriate for entry to the major as shown in the Bulletin, including approximately 60 credits of course work.
  2. have completed the following entrance-to-major requirements with grades of C or better in each: IST 110(3); SRA 111(3); and SRA 211(3). These courses must be completed by the end of the semester during which the entrance-to-major procedure is carried out.
  3. have achieved a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.00 prior to and through the end of the semester during which the entrance-to-major procedure is carried out.

For the B.S. degree in Security and Risk Analysis, a minimum of 120 credits is required.

Scheduling Recommendation by Semester Standing given like (Sem: 1-2)

GENERAL EDUCATION: 45 credits
(22 credits are included in the REQUIREMENTS FOR THE MAJOR)
(See description of General Education in front of the Bulletin.)

FIRST-YEAR SEMINAR:
(Included in ELECTIVES or GENERAL EDUCATION course selection)

UNITED STATES CULTURES AND INTERNATIONAL CULTURES:
(Included in REQUIREMENTS FOR THE MAJOR)

WRITING ACROSS THE CURRICULUM:
(Included in REQUIREMENTS FOR THE MAJOR)

ELECTIVES: 3 credits

REQUIREMENTS FOR THE MAJOR: 94 credits
(This includes 22 credits of General Education courses: 6 credits of GQ courses; 6 credits of GS courses; 3 credits of GWS courses, 3 credits of GH, and 4 credits of GN courses)

COMMON REQUIREMENTS FOR THE MAJOR (ALL OPTIONS): 73 credits

PRESCRIBED COURSES (39 credits)
CMPSC 101 GQ(3)[1], SRA 111 GS(3)[1] (Sem: 1-2)
IST 110 GS(3)[1] (Sem: 1-3)
IST 210(4)[1] (Sem: 1-4)
SRA 211(3)[1], SRA 221(3)[1], SRA 231(3)[1] (Sem: 2-4)
STAT 200 GQ(4) (Sem: 3-6)
IST 495(1)[1] (Sem: 3-8)
IST 432(3)[1], SRA 311(3)[1], STAT 460(3) (Sem: 5-6)
IST 440W(3)[1] (Sem: 7-8)

ADDITIONAL COURSES (12 credits)
AG BM 101 GS(3) or ECON 102 GS(3) (Sem: 1-4)
PL SC 001 GS(3), PL SC 014 GS;IL(3), or GEOG 040 GS;IL(3) (Sem: 1-4)
PSYCH 100 GS(3) or SOC 005 GS(3) (Sem: 1-6)
ENGL 202C GWS(3) or ENGL 202D GWS(3) (Sem: 5-8)

SUPPORTING COURSES AND RELATED AREAS (22 credits)
Attainment of third-level proficiency in a single foreign language (12 credits). Proficiency must be demonstrated by either examination or course work. See the admission section of the general information in this Bulletin for the placement policy for Penn State foreign language courses. (Sem: 1-4)
Select 4 credits of lab lecture series (GN) in consultation with adviser (Sem: 1-6)
Select 6 credits of international courses from College-approved list or other courses approved by adviser. (Sem: 5-8)

REQUIREMENTS FOR THE OPTION: 21 credits

INTELLIGENCE ANALYSIS AND MODELING OPTION: (21 credits)

PRESCRIBED COURSES (12 credits)[1]
ECON 302 GS(3), SRA 321(3) (Sem: 3-6)
SRA 433(3), SRA 468(3) (Sem: 5-8)

SUPPORTING COURSES AND RELATED AREAS (9 credits)
Select 9 credits from College-approved list (Sem: 5-8)

INFORMATION AND CYBER SECURITY OPTION: (21 credits)

PRESCRIBED COURSES (12 credits)[1]
IST 220(3) (Sem: 1-6)
IST 451(3), IST 454(3), IST 456(3) (Sem: 5-8)

SUPPORTING COURSES AND RELATED AREAS (9 credits)
Select 9 credits from College-approved list (Sem: 5-8)

SOCIAL FACTORS AND RISK OPTION: (21 credits)

PRESCRIBED COURSES (9 credits)[1]
IST 452(3), SRA 471(3), SRA 472(3) (Sem: 5-8)

SUPPORTING COURSES AND RELATED AREAS (12 credits)
Select 12 credits from College-approved list (Sem: 5-8)

[1] A student enrolled in this major must receive a grade of C or better, as specified in Senate Policy 82-44.

Last Revised by the Department: Spring Semester 2011

Blue Sheet Item #: 39-06-096

Review Date: 04/12/2011

UCA Revision #1: 8/14/06
UCA Revision #2: 7/30/07

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