2nd International Workshop on Digital Forensics Curriculum Standards (DFCS 2014)

Date: Thursday, August 7, 2014
Cost: $100 (USD)
Location: Magnolia Hotel, Denver, CO
Registration: DFCS Only
Organizing Committee: Roy Campbell, Eoghan Casey, and Masooda Bashir

There is a marked shortage of qualified digital forensics practitioners in the U.S., so the demand for education in this area is high. At the same time, the need for a standardized curriculum is becoming apparent, as digital evidence plays an increasingly important role in criminal cases. Standards have been proposed by various organizations, but there is resistance against widespread adoption. So how do we decide what constitutes a well-rounded educational program for aspiring digital forensics experts? What topics do we cover? How do we balance time spent teaching techniques against time spent explaining their theoretical underpinnings? How do we set prerequisites when so many fields are related to digital forensics, and students from any of them may be interested in pursuing forensics coursework?

The goal of this workshop is to serve as a forum for discussion of digital forensics curriculum standardization, bringing together representatives from digital forensics standardization organizations, practicing digital forensics professionals, and educators from universities and colleges that have established digital forensics curricula or are considering adopting them. Leveraging our own experiences in developing and piloting an all-new multidisciplinary undergraduate digital forensics program at the University of Illinois, as well as the diverse perspectives and experiences of the participants, we hope to discover a common ground of what people would accept as a curriculum standard, and what roadblocks we face for widespread adoption.

The University of Illinois is organizing this workshop as a key step in the creation of its all-new digital forensics curriculum, which is being developed at Illinois but that we intend to disseminate broadly as a standardized approach. Our curriculum will include an introductory course with labs; an advanced course with labs; and a third course addressing special topics, which will be an advanced hands-on laboratory class. We have already developed the introductory lecture class and accompanying labs, and offered a pilot version of them in Fall 2013. We will present our findings on that process and discuss the challenges we experienced in presenting digital forensics concepts to an audience that included students majoring in fields as different as computer science and law. We will also describe the curriculum content that we're making available to other institutions, and our preliminary plans for our second course (the advanced lecture class plus labs). At the same time, we will solicit input from workshop participants on the challenge of choosing appropriate topics and difficulty levels to include in digital forensics course sequences as they progress to advanced levels.

The workshop will consist of presentations, a panel discussion, and breakout sessions focused on defining and evaluating the critical pedagogical elements of various topic areas, techniques for teaching them, and challenges educators are likely to face when developing and presenting them.


8:00AM: Continental Breakfast

8:30AM: Welcome Address by Roy Campbell

8:45AM: Keynote Address - Digital Forensics Education: Past, Present, and Future (Mark Pollitt, Daytona State College)

9:30AM: Experiences of a Practitioner-Teacher-Researcher (Eoghan Casey, MITRE)

9:45AM: Challenges to Consensus and Consistency in Digital Forensic Education (Simson Garfinkel, Naval Postgraduate school)

10:00AM: Legal Roadblocks for Digital Forensics (Anna-Maria Marshall, University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign)

10:30AM: Break (Coffee and Tea)

10:45AM: Panel Discussion - Multidisciplinary Considerations in Digital Forensic Education - Sociology, Law, Privacy, Psychology (Moderator : Richard Lovely - John Jay College. Panelists: Anna-Maria Marshall(UIUC), Jay Kesan (UIUC) , Masooda Bashir (UIUC))

11:30AM: Breakout Session #1 - What is the Roadmap for Digital Forensic Education? (Discussion Leads: Bill Crane (Champlain College), Golden Richard (University of New Orleans))

12:15PM: Summary Briefings of Breakout Session #1 Findings (Outcome: Roadmap Materialization)

12:30PM: Lunch

1:30PM: Breakout Session #2 - Digital Forensic Practitioner Knowledge, Skills and Abilities (Discussion Leads: Jeff Salyards (Defense Forensic Science Center), Nicole Beebe - The University of Texas at San Antonio)

2:15PM: Summary Briefings of Breakout Session #2 Findings (Outcome: Practitioner KSA Consensus)

2:45PM: Breakout Session #3 - Digital Forensic Researcher Knowledge, Skills and Abilities (Discussion Leads: Catalin Grigoras – University of Colorado at Denver, Katrin Franke –Norwegian Information Security Laboratory)

3:30PM: Summary Briefings of Breakout Session #3 Findings (Outcome: Researcher KSA Consensus)

4:00PM: Wrap-up: Final Thoughts


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