Date of Award


Degree Name

MS in Computer Science


Computer Science


Zachary Peterson


Since the beginning of the 21st century, the United States has experienced the impact of a technological revolution. One effect of this technological revolution is the creation of entirely new careers related to the field of technology, including cybersecurity. Continued growth in the cybersecurity industry means a greater number of jobs will be created, adding to the existing number of jobs that are challenging an under-educated and under-trained workforce. The goal of this thesis is to increase the effectiveness of cybersecurity education. This thesis studies whether an online course in cybersecurity can be enhanced by offline, in-person activities that mirror traditional classroom methods. To validate the research, two groups of high school students participated in an online course with only one group participating in offline activities. The results showed that the group that participated in both the online and offline portions of the course had a higher percentage of student retention, a more positive mindset towards cybersecurity, and an improved performance in the course.