Page 27 - Cybersecurity Career Guide for Alexandria College
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      Coastline College,
in Fountain Valley, CA
 Free Online University Courses
MOOCs (Massive Open Online Courses) are a good introduction to the field of cybersecurity. MOOCs are basically teasers to excite students about the subject and interest them in the university’s fee-based programs. Because they’re free and self-directed, you won’t receive college credit. You may be able to get a certificate of completion, but that usually comes with a price tag. Classes are offered throughout the calendar year, but check the university’s schedule because even online classes usually have fixed starting dates.
The classes are usually pre- recorded video lectures, although instructors interact with students in virtual forums, live chats, and/or during virtual office hours. See resources/free-online-courses.
   Bismarck State College, in Bismarck, ND
  for IT security and is a foundation for other certifications.
Palo Alto Networks, a worldwide cybersecurity company (see page 40), has a Cybersecurity Academy with a free online Cybersecurity Foundation course, as well as longer online courses with labs. These courses help prepare you for Palo Alto’s PCCSA certification, qualifying you for an entry-level position in cyber- security. The online classes are also offered through a site called
More advanced cyber certificates, such as the management-focused CISM (Certified Information Security Man- ager) offered by ISACA, a nonprofit in- volved in cybersecurity, and EC Council’s
CEH (Certified Ethical Hacker), are geared toward established cyber professionals looking to move up the career ladder.
Another way to break into the cyber industry is to take classes at a university or community college. In North Dakota, for instance, high school students can earn a cybersecurity certificate from Bismarck State College. Check your local schools to see if that’s possible where you live. These courses boost employ- ability and can help prepare for certifi- cates or further academic studies. Cybersecurity bootcamps are also offered by a number of certifiers.
A simple Google search will yield plenty of options on where and what to
study—just be sure to use an accredited program for a recognized certificate. The National Cybersecurity Institute, the American National Standards Insti- tute, ISACA, the Committee on National Security Systems, and IEEE Computer Society are all good sources of informa- tion on cyber certificates that meet standards for employment.
For a state-by-state list of schools offering certifications, please see our website at certifications.
Once you have your first certification, you may decide that a degree from a community college or university is the next step for you.

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