University of Pittsburgh Courses

Pitt offers a range of cyber-related courses across disciplines throughout the University.

Featured Courses

Pitt Cyber founding director and former US Attorney David Hickton is teaching two Law classes this fall. Learn more about his courses on Cybercrime and Federal Hate Crimes.

Here are a few highlighted courses in Fall 2021 from Pitt Cyber Affiliate Scholars:

Instructor: Christopher Deluzio 

This course will explore the intersection of cybersecurity issues and democracy. The proliferation of technology in the cyber age has not only collided with existing norms and laws around privacy, but also stressed American democracy in profound ways. The proliferation of algorithmic tools within government and cyber threats to our critical election infrastructure (including digital disinformation and hacking) are among the most pressing challenges that our democracy must confront to preserve popular legitimacy in the face of cyber’s growth. By first exploring the legal framework around cybersecurity and privacy, students will have a sufficient grounding to examine these complex issues facing American democracy.

Instructor: Anthony Rodi 

This course provides an overview of ethics concepts and decision-making as they are related to Information Systems and Computing. Emphasis is placed on the study of ethical situations and responsibilities of IS professionals around current and emerging technologies in a global setting. Research papers, Case studies and discussion of current ethical events around technology will be used to facilitate discussions in areas including, but not limited to: Cloud Computing, Data protection, Cyber Security, The Digital Divide, Social Media, Intellectual Property, Whistleblowing, Professional Codes of Conduct, Professional liability, Internet freedom in computing and international laws and governance. Invited Subject Matter Experts will conduct informative sessions on key subject matter areas aligned with the course content.

Instructor: Adam Lee

This course will provide the necessary conceptual background and hands-on experience to understand the most common cryptographic algorithms and protocols and how to use them to secure computers networks and distributed applications.  Topics include: cryptographic algorithms for data confidentiality, authentication, and integrity, user authentication methods (secure tokens and biometrics), internet security protocols, security in local area networks, firewalls, and intrusion detection systems.

Instructor: Mostafa Bedewy

What is flexible device manufacturing?  What is green manufacturing? What is cybermanufacturing?  Importantly, how do these emerging "types" of manufacturing differ from traditional manufacturing?  It is important to recognize that global manufacturing is undergoing major transformations nowadays. The confluence of new advanced materials, emerging fabrication technologies, and connected cyber-physical systems is creating paradigm shifts for the ways products are conceived, made, distributed, used, and disposed.  In the ever-increasing competition of "making things" of value to consumers, many industries are now reinventing themselves to cope with this new reality.  This class covers the fundamentals behind major global trends, and their implication for the future of manufacturing from an engineering perspective. Topics covered include the following:   (1) How the need for flexible and wearable devices is driving innovation in new materials and fabrication processes beyond the traditional microfabrication techniques adopted in the semiconductor industry.    (2) How protein-based materials, degradable polymers, and novel recycling technologies are paving the way for more sustainable manufacturing of consumer products.  (3) How data analytics and internet of things (IoT) technologies are enabling a new generation of digital manufacturing systems referred to as Industry 4.0, and beyond.

Instructor: Lisa Nelson

Information technology and the information that it generates has increasingly become part of our daily lives shaping our practices, discourses, and institutions in fundamental ways. Personal information is used by consumers, professionals, and organizations to a variety of ends and in a number of different settings. The growing reliance on personal information not only challenges long-standing demarcations between public and private institution in terms of responsibilities, obligations, and limits, but also calls for a reconsideration of how to ensure the protection of long standing civil liberties and civil rights. This course will consider the impact of emerging technologies within existing constitutional, statutory, and international guidelines and will then explore a range of policy solutions for managing the use of personal information in our public and private sectors.

Instructor: Michael Kenney

This course will deepen our understanding of the post-9/11 security environment by examining contemporary terrorist groups and the history from which they spring.  We will address a number of questions, including, what is terrorism and how has the terrorist threat changed over time?  What are the data that we use to understand terrorist behavior and the patterns of terrorism?  What motivates terrorists to engage in political violence against non-combatants?  At what point does violent militancy cross over into terrorism?  Does terrorism ever succeed, and, if so, under what circumstances? How does terrorism end?  While much of our focus will be on so-called 'Islamist terrorism,' we will also explore other types of terrorism, including secular and sacred groups active in the United States, Western Europe, and elsewhere. Time permitting, we will also consider a number of other topics, including 'cyber-terrorism,' deradicalization, and state terrorism.  As befitting the complex nature of terrorism, we will draw on numerous academic disciplines in studying these topics, including political science, sociology, psychology, history, anthropology, and economics.

Instructor: Julia Santucci

This course will focus on how the U.S. intelligence community collects and analyzes information to support U.S. national security and foreign policy objectives.  Students will examine the historical foundations of the intelligence community and consider how the role of intelligence has changed over time, particularly after the attacks of September 11, 2001.  Students will also consider the legal, moral, and ethical factors that influence the roles and conduct of the U.S. intelligence community.  Finally, this course will take a closer look at selected current intelligence topics, such as Russia, China, terrorism, weapons of mass destruction, and cyber security.

Instructor: Michael Colaresi (Pitt Cyber Research and Academic Director)

Principles of number theory, cryptographic algorithms and cryptanalysis. Steganography, block and stream ciphers, secret key encryption (DES, res, re-n), primes, random numbers, factoring, and discrete logarithms. Public key encryption (RSA, Diffie-Helman, elliptical curve cryptography, n'tru); key management, hash functions (md5, sha-1, ripemd-160, HMAC), digital signatures, certificates and authentication protocols. Cryptanalytic methods (known, chosen plaintext etc.) For secret and public key schemes (linear and differential cryptanalysis, pollard's rho method, number field sieve, etc.).

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