Bachelor of Science in Security and Risk Analysis

School of Business Administration

The Bachelor of Science in Security and Risk Analysis (SRA) is intended to familiarize students with the general frameworks and multidisciplinary theories that define the area of security and related risk analyses. Courses in the major will engage students in the challenges and problems associated with assuring information confidentiality and integrity (e.g., social, economic, technology-related, and policy issues), as well as the strengths and weaknesses of various methods for assessing and mitigating associated risk.


The major provides a grounding in the analysis and modeling efforts used in information search, visualization, and creative problem solving. This knowledge is supplemented through an examination of the legal, ethical, and regulatory issues related to security that includes analyzing privacy laws, internal control and regulatory policies, as well as basic investigative processes and principles. Such understanding is applied to venues that include transnational terrorism, cyber crimes, financial fraud, risk mitigation, and security and crisis management. It also includes overviews of the information technology that plays a critical role in identifying, preventing and responding to security-related events.

Advisory groups from within and outside the University involved in the design of the major have agreed that graduates who can understand the cognitive, social, economic, and policy issues involved in security and risk management as well as the basics of the information technology and analytics that are included in the security/risk arena will be very successful. These observations drove the design and objectives of the SRA major.

Three options are available on the University Park campus. At Penn State Harrisburg, the Cyber Security option is available.

Entry to Major Requirements:
To be eligible for entrance to the Security and Risk Analysis (SRA) major, students must:

  1. be taking, or have taken, a program appropriate for entry to the major as shown in the Bulletin, including approximately 60 credits of course work.
  2. have completed the following entrance-to-major requirements with grades of C or better in each: IST 110(3); SRA 111(3); and SRA 211(3). These courses must be completed by the end of the semester during which the entrance-to-major procedure is carried out.
  3. have achieved a minimum cumulative grade point average of 2.00 prior to and through the end of the semester during which the entrance-to-major procedure is carried out.

Career Opportunities

The major provides a grounding in the analysis and modeling efforts used in information search, visualization, and creative problem solving. This knowledge is supplemented through an examination of the legal, ethical and regulatory issues related to security that includes analyzing privacy laws, internal control and regulatory policies, as well as basic investigative process and principles. Such understanding is applied to venues that include transnational terrorism, cyber crimes, financial fraud, risk mitigation, and security and crisis management. It also includes overviews of the information technology that plays a critical role in identifying, preventing and responding to security-related events.

Advisory groups from within and outside the University involved in the design of the major agreed that graduates who can understand the cognitive, social, economic and policy issues involved in security and risk management as will as the basics of information technology and analytics that are included in the security/risk arena will be successful. These observations drove the design of the SRA major.

Job Titles

Security and Risk Analysis (SRA) majors can expect to qualify for positions such as these: Business intelligence analyst, Business process analyst, Counterintelligence threat analyst, Counterterrorism analyst,Crime analyst, Crime and counter-narcotics analyst Criminal intelligence analyst, Cyber-intelligence analyst, Economic crime analyst Information security analyst, Intelligence analyst, Intelligence consultant, Intelligence officer, Intelligence operations specialist, Intelligence research specialist Intelligence specialist, International crime officer, Policy analyst, Program and management analyst

Job Outlook

Protection of information assets, as well as physical assets, has become a cornerstone to our digital, global society. It is critical that higher education do more than train and educate its graduates in these areas of protection, security, and the analysis as we become more dependent on those skills to asses and mitigate risk. Additionally, national workforce predictions are that nearly 50% of the security workforce may be leaving in the next 5-7 years as the "baby-boomer generation" begins to retire creating even more need for graduates of the major.

Internships

SRA students are required to participate in at least one and as many as three internship experiences. Through partnerships with industry and government, students will have the opportunity to apply their technology and management skills to real-world problems.

Information and Cyber Security Option

The Information and Cyber Security option is available to SRA majors at Penn State Harrisburg. This option includes a set of courses that provides an understanding of the theories, skills, and technologies associated with network security, cyber threat defense, information warfare, and critical infrastructure protection across multiple venues.

For the B.S. degree in Security and Risk Analysis, a minimum of 120 credits is required.


This page is not a part of the official Penn State University Bulletin.