The Role of Mathematics in Information Security Education

  • Stephen D. Wolthusen
Conference paper
Part of the IFIP Advances in Information and Communication Technology book series (IFIPAICT, volume 237)


There exists a disconnect between the expectations of students of information security and the requirements imposed on their mathematical abilities and maturity at both the M.Sc. and Ph.D. levels. In this paper we discuss efforts at Gjøvik University College, Norway, to bridge this gap on one hand by providing a targeted curriculum component intended to provide the necessary mathematical tools for conducting research at the doctoral level. On the other hand we are critically examining the curricular dependencies and requirements at the M.Sc. level where two factors are becoming evident. First, not all students at this level have adequate mathematical backgrounds to be able to profit fully from the program even though they may meet all formal prerequisites. Second, there may exist areas where the depth and rigor of the mathematical foundations currently in place in the curriculum is not be strictly necessary. Both of these factors can impede access and subsequent success of graduate programs and must therefore be addressed carefully with the aim of striking a balance between these competing objectives.


Information Security Degree Program Abstract Algebra Theoretical Computer Science Doctoral Level 
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Copyright information

© International Federation for Information Processing 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • Stephen D. Wolthusen
    • 1
    • 2
  1. 1.Gjøvik University CollegeGjøvikNorway
  2. 2.Royal HollowayUniversity of LondonEghamUK

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