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About the Digital Forensics Program

 

How to Get Started

To get started in the Digital Forensics program, complete the admissions process at Richland College. When you meet with an academic advisor, mention your interest in the Digital Forensics program so he or she can help you determine which courses you should take.

If you are planning to earn an associate degree or certificate, please note that you must complete 25 percent of your degree requirements at the college awarding the degree.

Tuition

Dallas County residents pay $156 per three-hour class — that is $52 per credit hour, or just $624 for a full-semester load of 12 credit hours.

Compare that to what you’d pay elsewhere! See our tuition rates for tuition according to your place of residency.

Rising Star Program

If you are a Dallas County high school graduating senior, you may qualify for Rising Star funds to help pay for this program. The Rising Star program offers academic support services and up to $4,000 for tuition and books, if you have established financial need.​​

Courses Offered (Curriculum)

Find out more about courses required for the Digital Forensics Associate in Applied Sciences degree.

You can also see individual descriptions for courses in Digital Forensics (ITDF) for the Cyber Crime Specialization or in Information Technology/Security (ITSY) for the Information Assurance specialization.

If you are pursuing CNSS certifications 4011 or 4012 (specific to Information Assurance), you must take designated, required courses at Richland College to qualify for those certifications. See the required Richland CNSS certification courses.

photo of shredded evidence

Certification Programs in Information Security and Information Assurance

Richland College is the only two-year college in the state of Texas to offer certification programs in Information Security and Information Assurance as set by the Committee on National Security Systems (CNSS).

CNSS’ standards for information systems security professionals provide the minimum training and education standards for executing the duties and responsibilities of many specific job positions in this industry. A combination of approved courses and specific electives allows students to receive applicable federal certifications.

Learn more about CNSS certifications available at Richland, including which Richland courses are designated as required for the 4011 and 4012 certifications specific to Information Assurance.

Accreditation and Affiliations

The colleges of Dallas County Community College District — Brookhaven, Cedar Valley, Eastfield, El Centro, Mountain View, North Lake and Richland — are individually accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges. The official statement of accreditation for each college is published on the college’s accreditation Web page.

Related Programs

Not sure exactly what you want to study? Check out other programs in Technology and Data Systems.

Other Degree and Certificate Options

The colleges of DCCCD offer nearly 350 career and technical degrees and certificates, plus more than 50 academic degrees. For more information, see a chart of degree plans by college or visit the credit programs home page.​​

More on Digital Forensics

Find out what exactly computer/digital forensics is and more on the website of Global Digital Forensics, an international company providing computer forensics analysis, electronic discovery and computer expert testimony.

Developing Skills for Success

Focused, hands-on training in software and other professional tools in this program includes:

  • A state-of-the-art lab environment
  • Individualized hands-on labs
  • The latest forensics technology and software training
  • Forensic toolkit (FTK)
  • EnCase
  • Paraben device seizure
  • Forensic talon kit
  • CellDeck
  • The Sleuth Kit and Autopsy
  • Other open source and commercial tools

Richland’s Digital Forensics program has a Facebook Group managed by current and former students for communication with student peers (the group is not accessible by faculty). Interested students can request entry to the group on the site.

Current announcements are posted by Program Director Zoltan Szabo on the program’s Twitter page.

Federal Grants Provide State-of-the-Art Lab, Curriculum and Faculty Training

The Digital Forensics program was developed with the help of federal grants that ensure a cutting-edge training program.

A U.S. Department of Education (DOE) Title III grant funded the startup of the program and helped to build a state-of-the art lab environment and develop the degree plan and courses. The DOE promotes scientific and technological innovation in support of advancing the country’s national, economic and energy security. Cybersecurity is a critical part of its national security initiative.

The Cyber Security Education Consortium (CSEC), funded by a grant by the National Science Foundation (NSF), allows Richland to maintain up-to-date faculty training and curriculum. The CSEC includes the state of Oklahoma’s Career and Technology Education System, four of its largest community colleges and the University of Tulsa, which serves as the principal training provider for the two-year institutions it mentors. Community colleges in Texas, Arkansas, Colorado, Tennessee and Kansas are members of the consortium.

Faculty Profiles

Our Digital Forensics faculty are not only academically qualified but also have real-world experience that makes them able to relate to the challenges you’ll face in your career. Our instructors work with you one-on-one, encouraging you and helping you to succeed in school and on the job. See profiles of our Digital Forensics faculty.

Transfer Information

The Digital Forensics program can prepare you for direct entry into the workforce in an entry-level information security position.

However, if you’d like to continue your education to earn a bachelor’s degree, Richland College has an articulation (transfer) agreement with Oklahoma State University Institute of Technology’s (OSUIT) digital forensics program.

Students completing Richland’s Associate in Applied Sciences degree in Digital Forensics can transfer up to 63 credit hours into the OSUIT Bachelor of Technology degree in information assurance and forensics. This bachelor’s degree is a technology-intensive, application-focused program of study. It prepares graduates to protect computers, computer systems and networks from threats such as hackers, viruses and worms, and to investigate and trace illicit cyber activities such as Internet-based fraud and slander and personal identity and information theft.

See the Digital Forensics associate degree plan for a list of extra courses to complete in addition to the Information Assurance specialization for better transferability of courses to a four-year institute of higher education.

Visit the Transfer Services website for general information on the transfer process.

Links for More Information

Note: Links to the following websites are provided for your convenience and information and do not constitute official endorsement by the colleges of DCCCD.

Contact Us

If you have questions about the Digital Forensics program that aren’t answered on our website, please feel free to contact us.