Vassil Roussev, a computer science professor at the University of New Orleans, has decided to use the two-year $300,000 grant awarded to him by the National Science Foundation to improve how cybersecurity education is delivered.
“Realistic hands-on experiences in the lab are key to building strong cybersecurity skills for the real world,” Roussev said. “It takes a substantial effort on the part of the instructor to create, monitor and grade dozens of student lab assignments throughout the course.”
Roussev plans to develop an automated platform for cybersecurity education, called the Automated Platform for Cyber Security Learning and Experimentation (AutoCUE), which will give instructors the chance to spend less time managing and grading assignments and more time teaching the students. AutoCUE was developed with to make instruction more efficient by providing a language that gives specific lessons and exercises. The program was also designed to automate humdrum and time-wasting management tasks, and provides instructors with the ability to embed hints and sub-tasks within lessons.
“Ultimately the successful implementation of the project will allow cybersecurity educators to spend more time working with students and developing class materials, which they will also be able to easily share with colleagues,” Roussev said.