THE IMPORTANCE OF COMPUTER SYSTEMS SECURITY COURSE IN COMPUTER SCIENCE STUDIES CURRICULA – A CASE STUDY
Lublin University of Technology (LUT) trains students in various domains. One of them is computer science (IT). University offers two levels of studies: bachelor and master one. This structure was introduced according to the requirements of the Polish Ministry of Science and Higher Education (MNISW/MSHE). The curricula of studies has to contain some courses defined by MSHE, but the significant number of courses can be chosen by the university. In 2015 in the curricula of bachelor level studies we have added the course “Computer Systems Security” (CSS). This course contains 30 hours of lectures and 30 hours of laboratories. It has assigned 5 ECTS points. It is important to verify if this course is valuable for students and to find if the course attendance increases students’ knowledge and skills in the IT security area.
To verify these we have put 3 hypotheses:
H1: IT security awareness among bachelor level students is low;
H2: The level of students’ knowledge after the CSS course finishing increases significantly;
H3: IT security is important for students in their life and in a future work;
To confirm these hypotheses we have surveyed students of bachelor level IT studies, who have just finished CSS course. A group of 27 students were asked about the CSS course importance. Most of them have admitted that their knowledge from the IT security area before the course was at the low level. Their confirmed that during CSS course they have significantly increased their knowledge from the IT security area. Surveyed students also are aware about IT security significance in everyday life and they think that this area of knowledge will be very important in their future work. According to the obtained results most of students are aware about IT security and they broaden their knowledge on their own by reading news and articles from this area.
The research proved that CSS course introduction into a bachelor level of studies was a good idea. Knowledge from the CSS course area is important for students and increases their awareness in security domain.