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Cyber Defense
Professional Certificate

Accelerated Programs| Weekend & Evening Classes

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Built for those with little to zero professional background in the tech field, this program is designed to fast-track careers into IT and cybersecurity. The Cyber Defense Professional Certificate program provides you with the education you need to make a career change into the cybersecurity industry. According to Forbes, the IT field is one of the fastest growing in the US, with cyber professionals ranking at the top of the country’s list of happiest workers.

Our curriculum integrates hands-on learning with simulation labs that prepare you to take some of the cyber industry's most essential certification exams.


30-Hour Trial Course | 370-Hour Extended Program

The UCF Cyber Defense Professional Certificate curriculum is crafted to get students job-ready and 100% prepared to meet the demands of today's market. It focuses on teaching you the exact skills you need to find employment in the field.

Introductory Course

30 in-classHours

The Introduction to Cybersecurity course provides students with insight to the fundamentals of networking, the Linux and Windows operating systems, and virtualization concepts. Students will also learn to run basic commands and computer communication protocols, develop a firm understanding of basic operating system structures, and will become familiarized with the "Cyber Attack Cycle." Experiential education methods will provide students hands-on exercises and provide a better understanding about cybersecurity countermeasures and defense techniques.

Windows Security

45 in-classHours

Countless companies worldwide rely on Windows Server 2012 to manage their organization's computers and networks using Group Policy Objects. Students will learn how to set up domain environments using Active Directory, which enables central control of all computers and users in a domain. This course will also teach students how to manage network services, such as DNS and DHCP servers, how to configure security servers to harden systems, and the differences between Windows Server 2012 and newer versions, such as 2016 and 2019.

The course teaches students how to manage and operate a Microsoft domain environment that includes Windows Server 2012 operating systems, which is the most common Data Center in use today. Students will learn the differences between the newer OS versions of Windows Server, 2016 and 2019, and the security aspects and hardening of those environments and systems.

Computer Networking

50 in-classHours

Today, network devices are installed in almost all business sectors, including government, finance, transportation, technology, healthcare, manufacturing, hospitality, and more. This course will provide you with an in-depth understanding of various protocols, network layers, and devices.

Cybersecurity professionals must have a comprehensive knowledge of networking. This course will teach all the necessary networking concepts, including protocols, topologies, and network devices. While participating in this course, you will be able to obtain your first cyber-related certificate, as it helps prepare students to take the CompTIA Network+ exam.*

Cloud Security

15 in-classHours

This course focuses on the growing use of cloud platforms, and teaches how environments are managed and secured in the cloud. You will also build the knowledge-base and skill set required to take the AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner exam.*

Many organizations today are moving their infrastructure to cloud platforms that include centralized managed solutions for all their needs. All their servers and databases are migrated to solutions such as Amazon’s AWS, Google Cloud, or Microsoft Azure. These platforms provide services ranging from basic physical servers, to completely managed solutions.

Knowing how to leverage such platforms, work with them, and secure them, is a crucial aspect of today’s cyber industry.

Linux Security

30 in-classHours

This course teaches you how to manage and operate the Linux open-source operating system, and specifically the cybersecurity distribution known as Kali Linux. Students will be taught the security aspects and hardening of such environments. This course also prepares you for the LPI Linux Essentials certification exam.*

Linux has grown very popular in recent years due to its use in IoT products and the benefits it lends to Information Security personnel. Students will learn to navigate the Linux file system, run basic commands, configure network services, handle access permissions and exploit mitigations.

Network Security

60 in-classHours

The purpose of this course is to build the skill set needed to secure, manage, and operate network communication equipment and systems, for a variety of organizational types. This course will help prepare you for the Cisco CCNA Cyber Ops exam.*

The curriculum focuses on enabling students to achieve high level positions in organizations specializing in technological fields and business operations, by giving you the digital skill set needed to stand out to potential employers in the market.

Cyber Infrastructure & Technology

30 in-classHours

This course provides you with the knowledge and practical training needed to design and maintain secure infrastructures. Students will also learn to implement various security countermeasures and build the knowledge-base and skill set required to take the CompTIA Security+ certification exams.*

This course provides an in-depth examination of the many different methods of defensive infrastructure. You will focus on how to design a secure architecture, and familiarize yourself with various security measures that can be used to harden networks, devices, and cloud infrastructures. Students will also learn how to work with Security Information & Event Management (SIEM) solutions, with an emphasis on Splunk, a widespread open-source solution currently available on the market.

Introduction to Python for Security

25 in-classHours

This course introduces you to basic programming concepts and how to implement them using Python, the Cyber and Information Security industry's leading programming language. You will learn to set up a Python environment in Windows and Linux, advanced Python programming, and how to use external libraries. All material is taught via immersive training exercises so students can gain first-hand experience in building tools to automate cybersecurity tasks.

Offensive Security: Ethical Hacking

50 in-classHours

This course delves deeper into the mindset of criminal hackers to provide you with an in-depth understanding of how black-hat hackers think, where they come from, and what they intend to do, in order to beat them at their own game and stay ahead of impending threats. Students will learn how to execute and defend against a variety of cyber attacks, including social engineering attacks, network attacks, application attacks, and cryptographic attacks. Hands-on labs provide students with the tools, knowledge, and specialized skill set needed to discover and exploit system vulnerabilities. This course provides further preparation for the CompTIA Security+ and CompTIA CySA+ certification exams.*

Incident Response & Threat Hunting

45 in-classHours

This course covers digital forensics and incident response (DFIR). Curriculum focuses on preparing you for the CompTIA Security+ and CompTIA CySA+ certification exams* and teaches how to conduct successful threat hunting procedures and identify elusive threats that evade existing security countermeasures. You will learn how to handle cyber attacks as they occur and about working on a Security Operation Center (SOC) team.

Throughout this course, you will study advanced threat hunting techniques such as machine learning, situational awareness, user behavior analytics, and intelligence. The curriculum seeks to deeply familiarize you with the role of SOC teams across a variety of organizations and how to prepare for and manage attacks in real time. Students will also conduct an in-depth study of digital forensics and learn to investigate network attacks, host attacks, and how to reverse engineer malware to understand its purpose and execution on vulnerable systems.

Game Theory in Cybersecurity

10 in-classHours

Hackers always seem to be a few steps ahead of us. The only way to stay ahead of impending cyber threats is to become experts at divergent thinking, putting ourselves inside the mind of cyber hackers. This course will introduce you to the basics of Game Theory, a tool that helps you think creatively when securing networks.

Study the minds of criminal hackers and learn the fundamentals of Game Theory as applied to cybersecurity defense and solutions. Develop strategic skills needed to apply game-theoretic methods to real-world attack scenarios and learn to identify solutions and defend a variety of organization types.

Career Services

10 in-classHours

This 10-hour course dedicates itself to providing you with internship placement assistance, personalized interview training, professional network opportunities, as well as resume and LinkedIn profile building tips to help you get a job as a cybersecurity professional after graduation.

*Certification exams are not conducted as part of the program and require additional costs not included in tuition.

Prepare for Internationally
Recognized Certifications Exams

Prepare for Internationally Recognized Certifications Exams

Students who graduate from the Cyber Defense Professional Certificate program will be eligible to sit for all the most recognized certification exams in the industry, including but not limited to:


This certification is a must-have for anyone looking for an entry-level position in IT. The CCENT assesses candidates' competency in basic network security, and the installation, operation, and troubleshooting of branch networks for small-sized businesses. It is a prerequisite for more advanced Cisco certifications like the CCNA Security exam.

Cisco CCNA Cyber Ops

The CCNA Cyber Ops certification prepares candidates to begin a career working with associate-level cybersecurity analysts within security operations centers. The exam assesses candidates' ability to recognize network vulnerabilities and threats to security and the ability to mitigate them. CCNA Security candidates will also need to demonstrate expertise in security network monitoring and troubleshooting, and familiarity with Cisco security technologies.

LPI Linux Essentials

The LPI Linux Essentials certification exam verifies knowledge of the open-source Linux operating system and practical knowledge of various other open-source applications. The exam measures competency in Linux command line, permissions, security, basic networking configuration, working knowledge of Linux administration, and the ability to manage users and groups.

CompTIA Cloud+

The CompTIA Cloud+ is considered a key certification for all IT professionals who want to showcase their competency in cloud infrastrucutres. The certification verifies that candidates have the skillset required to work in data centers. The exam assesses candidates' practical knowledge of troubleshooting and managing cloud performance, security, and configuring and deploying data migration to the cloud.

CompTIA Security+

The CompTIA Security+ is one of the first security certifications that IT professionals should pursue. It is a global certification that validates the baseline skills you need to perform core security functions and pursue an IT security career.

CompTIA Network+

The CompTIA Network+ is the next step up from the CompTIA Security+ exam and is considered a mid-level cybersecurity certification. The CompTIA Network+ exam tests your skill set over a range of disciplines, such as the ability to install, maintain, troubleshoot, and support a network, as well as understand various aspects of networking technologies.


The CompTIA CySA+ is an intermediate-level certification that verifies competency in cybersecurity. This certification tests your skills in security analytics, as well as intrusion detection and response. The certification meets the requirements set forth by the U.S. Department of Defense. It verifies a candidate’s ability to perform data analysis in order to find a variety of system vulnerabilities, threats, and risks. It also tests your ability to employ and configure tools for threat detection and the ability to secure organizational systems and applications.

AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner

The AWS Certified Cloud Practitioner examination is ideal for those students who want to show they have a working knowledge of how to navigate and utilize the Amazon Web Services (AWS) Cloud, regardless of their role or title. The certification exam asserts your practical knowledge of troubleshooting and managing cloud performance and validates the ability to handle cloud security, configuration, and the ability to deploy data migration to the cloud.


Becoming a Systems Security Certified Practitioner can help cybersercurity professional grow their career and assert their knowledge of technical skills related to implementing, monitoring, and administering IT infrastructures. Students must have a minimum of one-year cumulative paid work experience in one or more of the seven domains of the SSCP CBK in order to be certified.

Program Tuition

Tuition for the Cyber Defense Professional Certificate is $15,500, not including $500 for the Introductory Course.
Tuition, fees, and deposits subject to change.

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By clicking “Request Info,” I consent to be contacted by or on behalf of the University of Central Florida, including by eMail, calls, and text messages to any telephone number that I provide, about my educational interest. I understand my consent is not required to purchase or enroll. I also agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy
If you would like to learn more about University of Central Florida Cybersecurity Professional Certificates, give our Cyber Admissions Advisors a call at (407) 605-0575 or fill out the form above.
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