• Program Overview

    Program Overview

    As the world’s dependency on computers and mobile technologies increases, so does the demand for digital forensic experts that can investigate and effectively present evidence recovered from digital crimes. The use of digital evidence in litigation continues to be more prevalent and requires professionals that are prepared to assist in litigation support services in the area of electronic evidence. 

    Stevenson University Online's Master of Science in Digital Forensics prepares students to identify, acquire, restore, and analyze electronic data. Our graduate program provides students with the knowledge to design a comprehensive methodology to cover the acquisition, preservation, and analysis of various forms of digital evidence.

    Developed for working professionals, Stevenson's Digital Forensics graduate program is offered fully online. Stevenson’s master’s program equips students with the skills to communicate their findings, analysis, and conclusions effectively, especially as expert witnesses during trials. Courses in Stevenson University’s online master’s in Digital Forensics program are taught by practicing digital forensic experts and focus on the integration of auditing, computer forensics, and investigative analyses into coherent, defensible conclusions.

    New Positions in the Digital Forensics Field

    In a 2017, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) report, data indicates that job opportunities for positions similar to digital forensic experts are likely to significantly increase and could equate to 160,000 new jobs in the field. The Maryland Long-Term Projections indicates the number of openings in digital forensics will grow significantly between 2014 and 2024 and the State will require more than 9,000 professionals trained in digital forensics fields.

    The Mock Trial Capstone

    A distinction of Stevenson University Online’s forensic programs, the Mock Trial Capstone provides students with real-world experience and training in investigation, evidence collection, and presenting forensic evidence in a courtroom setting. The capstone can be completed online and is also offered on campus in our state-of-the-art mock trial courtroom.

    Certificate Option

    Stevenson also offers an 18-credit, online Post-Baccalaureate Certificate in Digital Forensics.

  • Courses

    Courses

    • FSIS 640 - Technology Law and Enforcement Activities

      3 credits

      Examines civil litigation and electronic discovery as they relate to the existing and emerging body of technology law enforcement activities at the federal level. Topics will include antitrust, patent, copyright, trade secret, trademark and domain name, privacy, and contract law matters. Coursework will focus on digital age entities and case examples as they impact contemporary civil litigation and electronic evidence practices.

    • FSIS 642 - File Systems Forensic Analysis

      3 credits

      Prepares students with a thorough knowledge of file system structures and the ability to analyze digital evidence found in the various implementations of FAT, NTFS, EXT3 file systems, and other disk allocation structures. This knowledge and associated skill is essential for a complete understanding of evidence imaging and the analysis required to provide testimony in court as an expert in the field of computer forensics.

    • FSIS 643 - Incident Response and Evidence Collection

      3 credits

      Examines relevant laws regarding the search and seizure of digital evidence, the tools available to create a ''best evidence'' image of the digital evidence, and how to properly document the seizure, validate the image set, and establish a proper chain of custody for all evidence seized.

    • FSIS 644 - Windows Forensic Examinations

      3 credits

      Provides information essential to the performance of a forensic examination on a computer running the Microsoft Windows operating system. Exercises focus on disk level forensic tools and techniques. This course focuses on the underlying operation of automated forensic tools, identifying the most appropriate forensic tool to be used in specific circumstances, and defending the selection of forensic tools in the courtroom under cross examination. The course will use leading edge tools from X-Ways, Helix, and EnCase. This course must be completed prior to taking Mock Trial.

    • FSIS 646 - Windows Intrusion Forensic Investigations

      3 credits

      Describes how operating system intrusions occur and what can be learned from the artifacts left behind. This course covers the categories of intrusions, targeting vulnerabilities in the Microsoft Windows environment. Students examine intrusion evidence to determine a time line of events, and collect evidence of the intrusion source.

    • FSIS 650 - Intrusion Detection Systems (IDS), Firewalls, Auditing

      3 credits

      Explores the network forensic components that detect, block and track network intrusions. Students learn how to configure IDS, firewalls and network analysis tools to protect network resources. Steps in recovering digital forensic evidence from these devices are examined. The various categories of IDS, firewall and network analysis products are compared and evaluated.

    • FSIS 662 - Network Penetration Testing

      3 credits

      Explores the need for conducting ethical network penetration testing as a means to better secure existing networks and to identify artifacts that appear from attacks. Students will develop network penetration testing plans in accordance with approved industry standards. Tests, which include active and passive reconnaissance, footprinting, vulnerability identification, and exploitation, will be conducted on multiple targets. Students will generate results, including recommendations for improving the security posture of the network.

    • FSIS 663 - Network and Cloud Forensics

      3 credits

      Explores performing forensic examination of a shared pool of configurable computing cloud resources, such as networks, servers, storage applications, and services. This course will provide a practical approach to obtaining forensic data from always-on, cloud-based resources. Examinations will involve the correlation of information from different network sources. Students will distinguish live analysis from live response and perform both on a network-based resource. Students will produce a report detailing the results of a network/cloud-based forensic examination.

    • FSIS 664 - Mobile Device Forensics

      3 credits

      Explores the growing field of cellular technologies from both network architecture and hand-held device perspectives. This course will provide details regarding the type and manner of data that can be forensically obtained from mobile devices, including call logs, text messages, address books, photos, videos, and Internet history. Exercises focus on using accepted forensic procedures to acquire and analyze data from a variety of mobile devices. Students will generate analytical reports and cross reference results with data form network service providers. The course will use leading-edge tools from Paraben Corporation and Cellebrite Mobile Synchronization. The course is offered online but students are required to attend an 8-hour on-site class.

  • Admissions / Tuition

    Admissions / Tuition

    • Completed online application. 
    • Completion of bachelor's degree from a regionally accredited institution.
    • Official college transcript from your degree-granting institution; additional transcripts may be required to demonstrate satisfaction of program-specific prerequisites or at the discretion of the Admissions Committee.
    • A cumulative GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale in past academic work.
    • Degree in Information Technology (IT) or advanced coursework/work experience in IT.
    • Personal statement.
    Tuition Per Credit $670.00 Cost Per Course
    (3-Credit Hours)
    $2,010.00

    Stevenson University Online has simplified the cost of your education by eliminating all fees. Students are eligible to transfer up to 6-credit hours from a 4-year institution if applicable. 

    We offer financial aid packages to those who qualify, in addition to a reduced-tuition rate through partnerships with community colleges, healthcare organizations, and other organizations and corporations. For a full list of Stevenson's partners, please visit our Partnerships page.

  • Faculty

    Faculty

    Thomas Byrd (2017)
    Program Coordinator and Adjunct Professor, Cyber Forensics
    B.S., University of Nebraska
    M.S., Illinois Institute of Technology
    J.D., Loyola University Chicago School of Law 

    Ronald L. Clark (2017)
    Adjunct Instructor, Forensic Studies
    M.S., Bellevue University

    Thomas D. Coogan (1988)
    Department Chair and Professor of Forensic Studies
    B.A., Hamilton College
    M.A., Antioch College
    J.D., Antioch School of Law

    Dean E. Cook
    Professor, Information Systems
    Ph.D., University of Missouri 

    Emmet Davitt (2005)
    Adjunct Professor, Forensic Studies
    B.A., University of Virginia
    J.D., University of Maryland, Baltimore

    Steven Engorn (2004)
    Program Coordinator, Business and Technology Management and Assistant Professor Information Technology
    A.A., Catonsville Community College
    B.S., American University
    M.B.A., Loyola College of Maryland

    Maria Howell (2006)
    Professor of Forensic Studies
    B.A., The Johns Hopkins University
    J.D., University of Maryland, Baltimore

    Carolyn H. Johnson (1998)
    Professor of Forensic Studies
    B.A., Dickinson College
    J.D., University of Maryland, Baltimore

    Barbara Jung (2015)
    Adjunct Professor, Forensic Studies
    J.D., University of Baltimore

    Pamela Kessler (2005)
    Adjunct Professor, Forensic Studies
    B.A., University of Maryland, College Park
    J.D., University of Baltimore

    Jared Myers (2016)
    Adjunct Instructor, Cyber Forensics
    B.A., Arkansas State University
    M.S., Stevenson University

    Susan A. Schenning (2005)
    Associate Professor of Forensic Studies
    B.A., Notre Dame of Maryland University
    J.D., University of Baltimore

    Ronald L. Shaffer, Jr. (2007)
    Adjunct Instructor, Forensic Studies
    B.S., Strayer University
    M.S., Capitol College

    Richard K. West (2009)
    Adjunct Professor, Forensic Studies
    B.S., Lawrence University
    J.D., Northwestern University

    Jason Zeiler (2010)
    Adjunct Instructor, Forensic Studies
    B.S., Excelsior College
    M.S., Troy University
    M.S., Stevenson University

    Joyce A. Zerhusen (2004)
    Adjunct Professor, Forensic Studies
    B.S., Villa Julie College
    M.S., University of Baltimore