Cybersecurity Analytics and Operations, B.S. (Berks)

Program Code: CAOBK_BS

Program Description

The Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity Analytics and Operations in the College of Information Sciences and Technology (IST) is an interdisciplinary program that prepares students for careers as cybersecurity professionals. It educates students on the essential concepts of cyber-defense and the analytical fundamentals of cybersecurity, with a focus on the analytical and risk management underpinnings and associated cyber-defense techniques and strategies for ensuring the safety of online information stored in large and heterogeneous networks that are embedded within and across the complex socio-technical infrastructures that are pervasive in today's business, government and military organizations. Students will acquire the knowledge and skills needed to critically assess and respond to modern information security threats, using approaches that are grounded in a holistic understanding of adversarial strategies and effective responses. More specifically, it will offer an in-depth and domain-independent approach to the development of skills in cyberdefense technologies, tools and processes; cybersecurity analytics and visualization; and cybersecurity risk analysis and management. The major draws from concepts and skills associated with a number of disciplines, including information science, management science, statistics and data science, human behavior, and law/policy. Graduates will be prepared to join the rapidly growing cybersecurity workforce deployed across organizations of diverse sizes and missions.

What is Cybersecurity Analytics and Operations?

Cybersecurity is a field that deals with the protection of computer systems, networks, programs, and data from attacks and unauthorized access. This includes the development of cyber defense tools to protect critical infrastructure as well as the analysis and mitigation of cyber threats.

Cybersecurity is a very broad field. This program focuses students beyond the information technology field and instead focuses on the analysis of cybersecurity data, identification of cyber incidents, understanding the actions of malware, communication of concerns to business  stakeholders and the general public. High performing cyber analysts have a strong mathematical and computational background. They often employ computer programming and scripting to solve problems and integrate existing tools. They analyze the data they are presented with from intrusion detection sensors, firewalls, and anti-malware tools.

Cybersecurity professionals apply their skills for organizations to prevent cyber criminals, hacktivists, and persistent nation-state actors. They protect organizations, companies, healthcare institutions, and government agencies from the loss of confidential data. They keep abreast of new developments technically, as well as those in the work domain of the organization and events that occur in the world at large.


You Might Like This Program If...

  • You enjoy working with and on computers as well as their operating systems and applications.
  • You have an interest in business and organizations and securing
  • You want to protect digital information, data stores, and computer networks from threats.
  • You want to learn the cyber defense strategies used to anticipate, recognize, and defend against computer attacks.
  • You're passionate about how we can keep sensitive information out of the hands of hackers, cybercriminals, and terrorist organizations.
  • You enjoy working on a team to solve technical problems for organizations.
  • You are interested in computer programming and mathematics.


Entrance to Major

To be eligible for the Cybersecurity Analytics and Operations major, students must:

  1. Have completed the following entrance-to-major requirements with a grade of C or better in each: CYBER 100 or CYBER 100S, IST 210, IST 220, IST 242 or CMPSC 122 or CMPSC 132, and STAT 200 or SCM 200.
  2. 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 is requested.

Degree Requirements

For the B.S. degree in Cybersecurity Analytics and Operations, a minimum of 123 credits is required:

Requirement Credits
General Education 45
Electives 3
Requirements for the Major 87

12 of the 45 credits for General Education are included in the Requirements for the Major. This includes: 6 credits of GQ courses, 3 credits of GS courses, 3 credits of GWS courses.

Requirements for the Major

To graduate, a student enrolled in the major must earn a grade of C or better in each course designated by the major as a C-required course, as specified by Senate Policy 82-44.

Prescribed Courses
Prescribed Courses: Require a grade of C or better
CYBER 262Cyber-Defense Studio3
CYBER 342WCyber Incident Handling and Response3
CYBER 362Cybersecurity Analytics Studio3
CYBER 366Malware Analytics3
CYBER 440Cybersecurity Capstone3
IST 210Organization of Data3
IST 220Networking and Telecommunications3
IST 230Language, Logic, and Discrete Mathematics3
IST 432Legal and Regulatory Environment of Information Science and Technology3
IST 451Network Security3
IST 454Computer and Cyber Forensics3
IST 456Information Security Management3
IST 495Internship1
SRA 111Introduction to Security and Risk Analysis Keystone/General Education Course3
SRA 211Threat of Terrorism and Crime3
SRA 221Overview of Information Security3
SRA 231Decision Theory and Analysis3
SRA 311Risk Analysis in a Security Context3
SRA 365Statistics for Security and Risk Analysis3
Additional Courses
Additional Courses: Require a grade of C or better
CYBER 100Computer Systems Literacy3
or CYBER 100S Computer Systems Literacy
ENGL 202CEffective Writing: Technical Writing Keystone/General Education Course3
or ENGL 202D Effective Writing: Business Writing Keystone/General Education Course
MATH 110Techniques of Calculus I Keystone/General Education Course4
or MATH 140 Calculus With Analytic Geometry I Keystone/General Education Course
STAT 200Elementary Statistics Keystone/General Education Course4
or SCM 200 Introduction to Statistics for Business Keystone/General Education Course
Select one of the following:3
Introduction to Programming Techniques
Programming and Computation I: Fundamentals
Introduction to Application Development
Select one of the following:3
Intermediate Programming
Programming and Computation II: Data Structures
Intermediate & Object-Oriented Application Development
Select one of the following:3
Programming for the Web
Application Development Design Studio I
Application Development Design Studio II
Supporting Courses and Related Areas
Select 9 credits from one of the Application Focus course lists. At least 3 credits must be at the 400-level. Students may also complete a custom Application Focus sequence with approval from an academic adviser and a CYBER undergraduate program coordinator.9

General Education

Connecting career and curiosity, the General Education curriculum provides the opportunity for students to acquire transferable skills necessary to be successful in the future and to thrive while living in interconnected contexts. General Education aids students in developing intellectual curiosity, a strengthened ability to think, and a deeper sense of aesthetic appreciation. These are requirements for all baccalaureate students and are often partially incorporated into the requirements of a program. For additional information, see the General Education Requirements section of the Bulletin and consult your academic adviser.

The keystone symbol Keystone/General Education Course appears next to the title of any course that is designated as a General Education course. Program requirements may also satisfy General Education requirements and vary for each program.

Foundations (grade of C or better is required and Inter-Domain courses do not meet this requirement.)

  • Quantification (GQ): 6 credits
  • Writing and Speaking (GWS): 9 credits

Breadth in the Knowledge Domains (Inter-Domain courses do not meet this requirement.)

  • Arts (GA): 3 credits
  • Health and Wellness (GHW): 3 credits
  • Humanities (GH): 3 credits
  • Social and Behavioral Sciences (GS): 3 credits
  • Natural Sciences (GN): 3 credits

Integrative Studies

  • Inter-Domain Courses (Inter-Domain): 6 credits


  • GN, may be completed with Inter-Domain courses: 3 credits
  • GA, GH, GN, GS, Inter-Domain courses. This may include 3 credits of World Language course work beyond the 12th credit level or the requirements for the student’s degree program, whichever is higher: 6 credits

University Degree Requirements

First Year Engagement

All students enrolled in a college or the Division of Undergraduate Studies at University Park, and the World Campus are required to take 1 to 3 credits of the First-Year Seminar, as specified by their college First-Year Engagement Plan.

Other Penn State colleges and campuses may require the First-Year Seminar; colleges and campuses that do not require a First-Year Seminar provide students with a first-year engagement experience.

First-year baccalaureate students entering Penn State should consult their academic adviser for these requirements.

Cultures Requirement

6 credits are required and may satisfy other requirements

  • United States Cultures: 3 credits
  • International Cultures: 3 credits

Writing Across the Curriculum

3 credits required from the college of graduation and likely prescribed as part of major requirements.

Total Minimum Credits

A minimum of 120 degree credits must be earned for a baccalaureate degree. The requirements for some programs may exceed 120 credits. Students should consult with their college or department adviser for information on specific credit requirements.

Quality of Work

Candidates must complete the degree requirements for their major and earn at least a 2.00 grade-point average for all courses completed within their degree program.

Limitations on Source and Time for Credit Acquisition

The college dean or campus chancellor and program faculty may require up to 24 credits of course work in the major to be taken at the location or in the college or program where the degree is earned. Credit used toward degree programs may need to be earned from a particular source or within time constraints (see Senate Policy 83-80). For more information, check the Suggested Academic Plan for your intended program.

Program Learning Objectives

  • Knowledge/Application: Understand and apply the interdisciplinary knowledge of information sciences in a security context to recognize, analyze, defend against, and manage cyber risks.
    • Understand the components and interoperability of computer hardware, operating systems, networks and databases.
    • Demonstrate proficiency in programming and scripting to perform Cybersecurity automation and analysis.
    • Understand Cyber threats and appropriate defensive designs and tools to mitigate the risk of attack.
    • Understand the procedures for Cybersecurity Incident Handling and Response.
    • Understand the static and dynamic analysis of malware.
  • Problem-Solving: Understand, apply and adapt various problem solving strategies, using appropriate technology and methods.
    • Identify Cybersecurity threats and implement complementary defensive measures to mitigate risk.
    • Apply data analytics in a security context to analyze, predict and prevent cyberattacks.
    • Perform malware analysis and forensics to understand the nature and origin of attacks.
    • Evaluate several Cybersecurity frameworks and provide analysis that culminates in a high level executive briefing exercise.
  • Evaluation and Communication (Individual and Team): Communicate and work effectively (both individually and in teams) with a range of perspectives and audiences through a variety of media.
    • Synthesize data from multiple sources to help make informed decisions.
    • Communicate effectively to a variety of audiences through writing and the spoken word.
  • Professional Responsibilities: Understand professional responsibilities in terms of the ethical, legal and security policy aspects of information assurance and security.
    • Understand the rules, regulations and issues related to compliance with applicable laws and regulations related to Information Security and Privacy.
    • Understand the legal and ethical ramifications of violating the trust that organizations will place in you as a Cybersecurity professional.
  • Lifelong Learning: Commit to the continuous acquisition of relevant knowledge for professional development by self-teaching and/or on-going education and certification.
    • Employ information-seeking strategies and self-directed learning in pursuit of current knowledge.
    • Enroll in professional development and pursue industry certifications to enhance your career and the profession.

Academic Advising

The objectives of the university's academic advising program are to help advisees identify and achieve their academic goals, to promote their intellectual discovery, and to encourage students to take advantage of both in-and out-of class educational opportunities in order that they become self-directed learners and decision makers.

Both advisers and advisees share responsibility for making the advising relationship succeed. By encouraging their advisees to become engaged in their education, to meet their educational goals, and to develop the habit of learning, advisers assume a significant educational role. The advisee's unit of enrollment will provide each advisee with a primary academic adviser, the information needed to plan the chosen program of study, and referrals to other specialized resources.



Tricia Clark
Program Coordinator, Instructor
Gaige 211
Reading, PA 19610


Joseph Oakes
Program Chair
1600 Woodland Road
Abington, PA 19001


David Barnes
Teaching Professor
3000 Ivyside Park
Altoona, PA 16601


Richard Lomotey
Assistant Professor, Information Sciences and Technology
100 University Dr.
Monaca, PA 15061


Nannette D'Imperio
Lecturer, Information Sciences and Technology
25 Yearsley Mill Road
Media, PA 19063

Greater Allegheny

Jennifer L. Breese, D.Sc.
Assistant Professor of Information Sciences and Technology and Program Coordinator of Cybersecurity Analytics and Operations
Frable Building, 201Q
4000 University Drive
McKeesport, PA 15132


Andrew B. Morrow
Program Coordinator
Olmsted Building, E355
Middletown, PA 17057

Lehigh Valley

Kermit Burley
Coordinator of Information Sciences and Technology
2809 Saucon Valley Road
Center Valley, PA 18034


Brian Gardner
Program Coordinator
200 University Drive
Schuylkill Haven, PA 17972

University Park

Undergraduate Academic Advising Center
E103 Westgate Building
University Park, PA 16802

World Campus

Undergraduate Academic Advising
301 Outreach Building
University Park, PA 16802


Bill Cantor
Assistant Teaching Professor in Information Sciences and Technology
1031 Edgecomb Ave.
York, PA 17403

Suggested Academic Plan

The suggested academic plan(s) listed on this page are the plan(s) that are in effect during the 2024-25 academic year. To access previous years' suggested academic plans, please visit the archive to view the appropriate Undergraduate Bulletin edition.

Cybersecurity Analytics and Operations, B.S. at Berks Campus

The course series listed below provides only one of the many possible ways to move through this curriculum. The University may make changes in policies, procedures, educational offerings, and requirements at any time. This plan should be used in conjunction with your degree audit (accessible in LionPATH as either an Academic Requirements or What If report). Please consult with a Penn State academic adviser on a regular basis to develop and refine an academic plan that is appropriate for you.

First Year
ENGL 15 or 30H (GWS)3CAS 100A or 100B (GWS)3
MATH 110 (GQ)*‡4STAT 200 (GQ)*‡#4
IST 140*#3IST 210*#3
CYBER 100*#3IST 242*#3
General Education Course (GN or GA or GH)3SRA 111 (GS)*†3
First-Year Seminar (IST 111S recommended)1 
 17 16
Second Year
IST 220*#3ENGL 202C or 202D (GWS)3
SRA 211*3IST 256 or 261*3
SRA 221*3SRA 231*3
General Education Course (GN or GA or GH)3CYBER 262*3
General Education Course (GN or GA or GH)3General Education Course (GN)3
 15 15
Third Year
IST 230*3IST 454*3
SRA 311*3CYBER 342W*3
SRA 365*3CYBER 366*3
Application Focus Selection3Application Focus Selection3
General Education Course (Integrative Studies)3General Education Course (Integrative Studies)3
General Education Course (GHW)1.5 
 16.5 15
Fourth Year
IST 432*3IST 451*3
IST 495*1IST 456*3
CYBER 362*3General Education Course (Exploration)3
CYBER 440*3Application Focus Selection3
General Education Course (Exploration)3Elective2
 General Education Course (GHW)1.5
 13 15.5
Total Credits 123

Course requires a grade of C or better for the major

Course requires a grade of C or better for General Education


Course is an Entrance to Major requirement

Course satisfies General Education and degree requirement


For General Education Course notations, please be sure to include three (3) credits of United States (US) Cultures and three (3) credits of International (IL) Cultures. Consult adviser for details.


The following courses are offered Fall Semester only: CYBER 362, CYBER 440IST 432, SRA 311, SRA 365.


The following courses are offered Spring Semester only: CYBER 262, CYBER 342W, CYBER 366, IST 261, IST 451, IST 456, SRA 231.


For Application Focus Selection, students must select three (3) credits at the 400 level. Consult adviser for list.

University Requirements and General Education Notes:

US and IL are abbreviations used to designate courses that satisfy Cultural Diversity Requirements (United States and International Cultures).

W, M, X, and Y are the suffixes at the end of a course number used to designate courses that satisfy University Writing Across the Curriculum requirement.

General Education includes Foundations (GWS and GQ), Knowledge Domains (GHW, GN, GA, GH, GS) and Integrative Studies (Inter-domain) requirements. N or Q (Honors) is the suffix at the end of a course number used to help identify an Inter-domain course, but the inter-domain attribute is used to fill audit requirements. Foundations courses (GWS and GQ) require a grade of 'C' or better.

Advising Notes:

Students pick one of five (5) tracks below or create a custom three (3) course application focus. Students must pick three (3) credits at the 400-level. All nine (9) credits must be in the same application focus area.

Application Development

IST 110Information, People and Technology Keystone/General Education Course3
IST 311Object-Oriented Design and Software Applications3
IST 331Foundations of Human-Centered Design3
IST 361Application Development Design Studio II3
IST 402Emerging Issues and Technologies3
IST 411Distributed-Object Computing3
IST 412The Engineering of Complex Software Systems3


Understanding the geopolitical landscape is key to understanding and modeling cyberthreats from nation-states and other threat actors. The Geopolitics focus is for students who have an interest in pursuing cybersecurity careers in government or related consulting sectors.

GEOG 160Mapping Our Changing World Keystone/General Education Course3
GEOG 260Geographic Information in a Changing World: Introduction to GIScience Keystone/General Education Course3
IB 440Globalization and Its Implications3
PLSC 14International Relations Keystone/General Education Course3
PLSC 461Politics of the European Union3
PLSC 467International Relations of the Middle East3
PLSC 481Global Political Economy3
GEOG 333Human Dimensions of Natural Hazards3
GEOG 363Geographic Information Systems3
AFR/PLSC 440Globalization and Its Implications3
SRA 450Cyber-Crime and Cyber-Warfare3
SRA 480Crisis Informatics3

Law and Policy

Cybersecurity careers in law enforcement require knowledge of laws and policies focused on the handling of evidence related to digital forensics and monitoring. Individuals in the private sector and government agencies must also understand and adhere to these topics as they involve cybersecurity. The Law and Policy focus is for students who want to understand law and policy as they relate to digital data.

COMM 180Survey of Electronic Media and Telecommunications Keystone/General Education Course3
COMM 404Telecommunications Law3
CRIM/CRIMJ 100Introduction to Criminal Justice Keystone/General Education Course3
CRIM/CRIMJ 113Introduction to Law3
PLSC 14International Relations Keystone/General Education Course3
PLSC 140Contemporary Controversies in International Relations Keystone/General Education Course3
PLSC 438National Security Policies3
PLSC 442American Foreign Policy3
PLSC/STS 460Science, Technology, and Public Policy3
PLSC 467International Relations of the Middle East3
CRIM/CRIMJ/SOC 467Law and Society3
HLS/PADM 401Introduction to Homeland Security (offered by Harrisburg and World Campus only)3
PLSC/CRIMJ 439The Politics of Terrorism3
PLSC 487International Law and Organizations (not offered at University Park)3


The Economics focus is for students who have an interest in pursuing cybersecurity careers in the financial services sector or government. Designed to help students understand today’s financial and economic environments, this focus highlights the importance of translating the financial and economic impact of cybersecurity activities to effectively manage any program.

ECON 102Introductory Microeconomic Analysis and Policy Keystone/General Education Course3
BLAW 243Legal Environment of Business3
BA 301Finance3
ECON 302Intermediate Microeconomic Analysis Keystone/General Education Course3
ECON 402Decision Making and Strategy in Economics3
ECON 4093
ECON 445Health Economics3
ECON 470International Trade and Finance3
FIN 301Corporation Finance3
HPA 445Health Economics3
PLSC 412International Political Economy3
PLSC 481Global Political Economy3

Health Care

Hospitals, pharmaceutical companies, and government agencies are just a few of the sectors that have strict requirements around protecting health care data. The Health Care focus is for students who have an interest in pursuing cybersecurity careers in a health care environment. Understanding how information is managed in these environments will help students thrive in a health care-related career.

HPA 101Introduction to Health Services Organization3
BBH 101Introduction to Biobehavioral Health Keystone/General Education Course3
ECON 445Health Economics3
HPA 332Health Systems Management3
HPA 445Health Economics3
HPA 450Healthcare Policies and Politics3
IST 110Information, People and Technology Keystone/General Education Course3
NURS 357Introduction to Nursing Informatics (offered at Commonwealth and World Campuses; not at University Park)3
HPA/BBH 440Principles of Epidemiology3
HPA 470Health Care Information Management3
NURS 458Ethical Challenges in Healthcare Informatics (offered at Commonwealth and World Campuses; not at University Park)3

Custom Application Focus

There is an option for a student to create a custom 4-course application focus sequence. It must be a coherent sequence of courses that provides context for the student in terms of cybersecurity content. It should contain three credits of GS coursework and must contain six credits of 400-level coursework. It must be selected in consultation with a teaching CYBER faculty member and an academic adviser.

Career Paths

Cybersecurity blends the technical expertise needed to analyze security issues and create cyberdefense strategies with the interpersonal skills needed to communicate threats to a variety of audiences. The program prepares students to meet the growing need for professionals who can defend against threats to digital information and assets. IST's Office of Career Solutions helps students navigate their internship and career development in the field through coaching, workshops, interview preparation, resume reviews, career fairs, job postings, and networking opportunities.


Because our courses blend technical knowledge with skills in communication and business, a Cybersecurity Analytics and Operations degree allows students to pursue opportunities as cybersecurity analysts, cyberthreat advisers, penetration testers, and a number of other unique careers in fields such as defense, government, and business.




Gaige Building
Reading, PA 19610


1600 Woodland Road
Abington, PA 19001


3000 Ivyside Park
Altoona, PA 16601


100 University Dr.
Monaca, PA 15061


25 Yearsley Mill Road
Media, PA 19063

Greater Allegheny

Frable Building, 201Q
4000 University Drive
McKeesport, PA 15132


Olmsted Building, E355

Lehigh Valley

2809 Saucon Valley Road
Center Valley, PA 18034


200 University Drive
Schuylkill Haven, PA 17972

University Park

411 Eric J. Barron Innovation Hub Building
State College, PA 16801

World Campus

411 Eric J. Barron Innovation Hub Building
State College, PA 16801


1031 Edgecomb Ave.
York, PA 17403