ECS 289M, Introduction to Research in Computer and Information Security
This course engages students in national cybersecurity and information systems security problems. Students will learn how to apply research techniques, think clearly about these issues, formulate and analyze potential solutions, and communicate their results. Working in small groups under the mentorship of technical clients from government and industry, each student will formulate, carry out, and present original research on current cybersecurity and information assurance problems of interest to the nation. This course will be run in a synchronized distance fashion, coordinating some activities with our partner schools and our technical clients.
Each student must have the ability, background, and motivation to carry out original research in cybersecurity and information assurance. Students may come from computer science, computer engineering, or any related technical field such as electrical engineering, information systems, math. Students are expected to have a good background in computer science and some knowledge of computer security. Each student is expected to bring significant expertise, interest, and experience in at least one relevant technical area.
Working in teams, each student must complete a research project on a focused topic in cybersecurity. The project must aim to accomplish new, significant results; survey papers are not acceptable. Each student must communicate his or her findings in an oral presentation to the class and in a written report in the format of a computer science technical report of about 10–20 pages. Every aspect of the project, including proposals, reviews, reports, and presentations, is intended to match the process that professional computer science researchers follow in carrying out original research.Project topics may come from lists of problems supplied by government or industrial partners. All proposals must be approved by the instructor.
The main deliverables are a written technical report and an oral presentation describing the team’s new and significant findings. These are to be similar in form and length to those from technical research conferences such as USENIX Security. The teams and technical mentors may agree on other deliverables as well. Each student is expected to participate actively in class.
Students are allowed and encouraged but not required to work in groups of up to at most four members. Typically, everyone in a group will receive the same grade.
By the end of the course, students will be expected to:
This course rests in part on the following principles.
In addition to Canvas, we will be using the Purdue University Research Repository (PURR) to make our work available to other groups, both this year and for future years. So, when you are to submit work to PURR, please prepare it as though you were going to publish it.
Here is some useful information about PURR:
You will need an account on PURR to access these. Please send the instructor your name and email so the co- ordinators can provide you with one.
There are both written assignments and presentations. These, and when they are due, are given in the syllabus, and we will discuss them in class. All of them must be uploaded to Canvas.
In addition, the four main deliverables are to be uploaded to both PURR and Canvas. They are:
Along with each assignment, we will make the rubric used to grade that assignment available. Typically, it will be on the assignment itself.
The assignments are expected to be weighted as follows:
First Quarter (Winter 2018) Assignments and Weighting
|Projects of interest||5%||Literature review||10%|
|Summary of papers||5%||Literature review presentation||5%|
|Project bids||10%||Progress report||20%|
|Paper presentation||5%||Progress report presentation||10%|
|Project proposal||20%||Weekly progress reports||10%|
Second Quarter (Spring 2018) Assignments and Weighting
|Final report||40%||Final poster||20%|
|Final presentation||16%||Weekly progress reports||24%|
The project will be evaluated on the basis of scientific merit, effective presentation, and appropriateness to the assignment:
Please submit all your work to Canvas and, where indicated, to PURR. I will grade it and return the grades, with my comments, on Canvas.
Late work affects others. Peer review is an important aspect of the course, and peer review requires coordinating schedules, including among different universities. Some projects may depend on other projects. To complete the project by the end of the term, it is important to complete each milestone on time. Professional researchers often have deadlines to meet.
If you are one day late, there will be no penalty other than the opprobrium of the instructor and your fellow students. If you are more than one day late, I reserve the right to deduct points — the exact penalty has not yet been determined, but will probably be something like 20% from the full score per day late.
Should you encounter an unanticipated or uncontrollable event that may prevent you from meeting a deadline, please let me know immediately, and request an extension.
One of the course outcomes is to communicate effectively with professional audiences of various types. This requires that one take personal pride in their work, and be held accountable for professional quality work. To this end, I expect your submitted work to meet the following requirements.
Last modified: January 5, 2018|
Winter Quarter 2018
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