Design recommendations for online cybersecurity courses Articles uri icon

publication date

  • January 2019

start page

  • 238

end page

  • 256


  • 80

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0167-4048

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1872-6208


  • Nowadays, a significant amount of free online cybersecurity training courses are offered. When preparing further courses, the designer has to decide what to teach and how to do it. In this paper, we provide with a set of recommendations for both issues. Concerning topic selection, 35 free online courses are analysed using NIST's NICE reference framework. Thus, several training gaps are discovered. Concerning the way of preparing the course (or refining it after the first edition), a set of good practices is proposed based on students' performance and commitment in a cybersecurity MOOC with +2,000 initially active students. To foster further research in this area, an open-source framework is released to enable the analysis of students' performance in EdX MOOCs.


  • Computer Science


  • cybersecurity teaching/learning strategies; cybersecurity distance education and telelearning; media in cybersecurity education: cybersecurity course guidance; nice framework