Fall 2014

Syllabus for CSC 9010-001, Networks and Cybersecurity




Mirela Damian, MSC 167A

Phone: (610)519-7414

Office Hours

T 10:00 am – 11:00 am

Th 10:00 am – 11:00 am

Course Meets

Th 6:15 pm - 9:00 pm in Mendel G88


Operating Systems, Programming Skills



Course Description


This course explores networking fundamentals and the current state-of-the-art in computer networks and cybersecurity. It begins with an overview of the Internet architecture, then zooms into the structure of each of the five Internet protocol layers. At each layer it delves into cybersecurity, covering both attack and defense techniques. At the end of the course students should have a general knowledge of how the Internet works, and appreciate the complexities of designing secure modern networks.


Learning Outcomes:


1.     Understand the hierarchical structure of the Internet.

2.     Differentiate between circuit-switching and packet-switching technologies.

3.     Understand the functions of the Internet protocol layers and the interactions among them.

4.     Differentiate between P2P and client/server networks.

5.     Understand the trends in the development and deployment of new malware.

6.     Analyze network traffic for a deeper understanding of protocols and security vulnerabilities.

7.     Understand cyberattacks and what you can do to defend against them.




The textbook for this class is


Chwan-Hwa (John) Wu and J. David Irwin

Introduction to Computer Networks and Cybersecurity

CRC Press, ISBN 978-1466572133



Other course material will be posted online at



Please make sure you check the class page regularly.

Course Requirements

1.     Assignments: weekly assignments, some involving programming.


2.     One exam. The exam will be closed books, closed notes. However, you are allowed to bring one sheet of paper (letter size) with any information you think will help you during the exam. Please note that notes may not be shared during the exam.


3.     Final Project: a short video explaining a topic or concept in computer security not covered in class.


4.     Class Attendance. Regular attendance is expected of all students. Each student is responsible for all material, announcements, and assignments covered during any class missed.


5.     Late Policy. All assignments are due at the beginning of the class on the due date. No credit will be given to late assignments. Exceptions will be granted only in extraordinary circumstances.



Tentative Grading Procedure


The following allocation of points is tentative and may change during the semester:






Final Project:



Academic Integrity


I encourage you to collaborate on assignments and learn from your fellow students. However, there is a fine line between collaboration and cheating. Collaboration means discussing problems and solution approaches with other students and independently writing your own answers; cheating means copying solutions from someone else or giving someone else your solutions. If you have questions about what is acceptable, please bring them to me before submitting your work.


Cheating, plagiarism and helping others commit these acts are all forms of academic dishonesty. The penalty for any act of dishonesty is an F grade for the course. Please consult the Code on Academic Integrity at





Special Arrangements


If anyone has a disability or other problems that warrant the need for special accommodation to complete the course work, please contact me at your earliest convenience.



Tentative Course Schedule


The course schedule below is approximate and subject to change as the semester progresses. It is the responsibility of the student to learn and adjust to changes. Please read chapter material to be covered prior to each session.




Week 1: Aug. 28

Course Overview

Ch. 0

Week 2: Sep. 4

Application Layer. DNS

Ch. 1, 2

Week 3: Sep. 11

Physical and Data Link Layers

Ch. 6, 7

Week 4: Sep. 18

Network Layer

Ch. 10, 11

Week 5: Sep. 25

Internet Routing

Ch. 12, 13

Week 6: Oct. 2

Transport Layer

Ch. 14, 15

Week 7: Oct. 9

TCP Congestion Control

Ch. 16

Oct. 11 – 19

Fall Break – ENJOY !

Week 8: Oct. 22

Cybersecurity – Firewalls, IDS/IPS

Ch. 18, 19

Week 9: Oct. 29

Cybersecurity – Hash and Authentication

Ch. 20

Week 10: Nov. 5

Cybersecurity – Symmetric and Public Key Cryptography

Ch. 21, 22

Week 11: Nov. 12

Cybersecurity – SSL/TLS, IPsec, IKE

Ch. 23, 24

Week 12: Nov. 19

Cybersecurity – Cyber Threats and Defenses

Ch. 26

Nov. 25 – 30

Thanksgiving Recess – ENJOY !

Week 13: Dec. 4

Final Project Presentations.

Week 14: Dec. 11