Champlain College – New Digital Forensic Curriculum

Jon Rajewski computer forensics, curriculum

Last May (2011) I rewrote the undergraduate digital forensic curriculum at Champlain College. I collaborated with the many people to complete this monumental task including but not limited to Mike Wilkinson, Cristian Balan, Ali Rafieymehr, Michelle Miller, Jim Hoag and others who will be named at a future date (we are waiting to release these names).

This Fall is the first incoming class to experience the newly designed material. Current students will also be able to take advantage of the new curriculum as its developed (we plan to have all of the courses ready by Fall 2013).

The new curriculum will include newly designed content which will be updated each semester to stay current/leading edge. One of the most exciting parts of the curriculum are the 10 (that’s right. ten) digital forensic classes. Don’t confuse these digital forensic classes for “networking” or “security” courses either, these are full blown digital forensic focused classes. Below is a list of the new courses:

  1. Cyber Crime – Criminal and Civil Investigations
  2. Introduction to Digital Forensics
  3. Digital Forensic Tool Evaluation
  4. Anti-Forensics and Network Forensics
  5. File System Forensics
  6. Operating System Forensics
  7. Mobile Device Forensics
  8. E-Discovery and Data Analytics
  9. Advanced Practice in Digital Forensics
  10. Capstone (Senior Thesis)
  11. Digital Forensic Internship (optional)
Other courses that are apart of the curriculum that supports the undergraduates education (aside from general education courses):
  1. Introduction to Networking and Security
  2. Introduction to Computer Theory (programming/scripting)
  3. Operating Systems (Not learning how to use Windows, more focused on how OS’s manage Memory/threads etc)
  4. Introduction to Forensic Science
  5. Technical Writing
  6. Law of Searching and Seizing Digital Evidence
  7. Criminal Law
  8. Statistics
  9. Ethics
Students will all have an option to minor or specialize in the following areas (12-18 credits):
  1. Information Assurance
  2. Criminal Justice
  3. Economic Crime Investigation
  4. Computer Science
  5. Digital Forensic Science 4+1 — you can graduate with a masters degree in Digital Forensic Science in 5 years!!!!!
  6. Choose your own – work with your adviser to build your own specialization/minor
And on top of that, students can easily Study Abroad (if they choose to) at one of our two Champlain College Study Abroad campuses in Dublin, Ireland or Montreal, Canada or another site of their choice. Students also have the flexibility of 3 Electives.
We spent a lot of time asking industry leaders and taking suggestions on how to mold out new program into something that really prepares students for the ever competitive digital forensic industry.