PenTesting Syllabus
CSCI 3370 Fall 2023

Instructor Information

Name : Terry Sergeant   Office Hours
E-Mail :   MW 8:30–9:00; 11:00–11:30; 1:30-3:30
Office : JB 322   Tue 8:30–9:30; 10:30–11:30
Phone : 325-670-1292   Thu 9:30–10:30; 3:00-4:00
Web Site :      


Description : Students will learn techniques and tools for testing the security of networks and applications. Students will also learn how to mitigate such attacks and to provide a secure computing environment. This course includes a significant amount of hands-on work in a virtual lab environment and, among other topics, targets the popular PenTest+ certification.
Prerequisites : CSCI 2370
Textbook : None. Will will utilize Ascend learning environment for lab work and online learning.
Format : Online (but not self-paced).

Course Objectives

Students who satisfactorily complete this course will (hopefully) be able to:


Your grade in the course will be earned / calculated as follows:
Weekly Quizzes   20%
Homework   25%
Ascend Labs   20%
Ascend Lectures   15%
Final Exam   20%
A $\rightarrow$ 90 100
B $\rightarrow$ 80 89
C $\rightarrow$ 70 79
D $\rightarrow$ 60 69
F $\rightarrow$ 0 59

Weekly Quizzes

Most weeks there will be a quiz on Tuesday mornings (between 7:30am and noon). Quizzes will be taken in Canvas. Quizzes must be taken in the prescribed window. If you know in advance you will not be able to complete a quiz, notify the instructor to discuss options for taking the quiz early. Quizzes will cover material from the Ascend learning materials and labs as well as course lectures, notes, and homework assignments. Each student is given 10 free quiz points to help cover situations involving a missed quiz.

Late Work Policy

Homework assignments and Ascend work is considered late if it is not submitted at or before the beginning of the class period on the day it is due. Late work will receive a 30% point penalty and must be completed within a week or the original due date. Work that misses the one week deadline will receive a grade of 0 (unless there are extenuating circumstances).


Homework assignments will be given regularly and are intended to reflect your individual effort. As such it is expected you will complete assignments independently. Assignments that clearly reflect collaboration or copying of some source will be subject to penalty according to HSU's Academic Integrity Policy.

Final Exam

The final exam will take place at the scheduled time during finals week. The exam is not collaborative in nature so receiving any form of assistance from anyone other than the instructor is a violation of the academic integrity policy. You may only use study aids during the exam if they are expressly allowed by the instructor for that particular exam.

Students with Disabilities

An individual with a disability is defined by the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) as a “person who has a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.” Any student with a documented disability may choose to seek accommodations. Eligible students seeking accommodation should contact the Director of Undergraduate Advising and Disabilities as soon as possible in the academic term (preferably during the first two weeks of a long semester) for which they are seeking accommodations. The director will prepare letters to appropriate faculty members concerning specific, reasonable academic adjustments for the student. The student is responsible for delivering accommodation letters and conferring with faculty members. Please refer to the most recent version of the Undergraduate Catalog for the complete policy. (Carol Krueger, Director of Undergraduate Advising and Disabilities, Office: Sandefer Memorial, 1st floor Academic Advising Center, Phone: 670-5867, Email:

Student Support

Peer-to-peer academic support (tutoring) is available for all undergraduate HSU students. The Academic Center for Enrichment (ACE) is open for virtual tutoring sessions via Zoom. To access instructions or make an appointment, open the ACE course on your Canvas dashboard. For additional information regarding academic support, contact the Advising Center at 325-670-1480 or

In addition, all full or part-time students are eligible to receive free, confidential, and voluntary counseling services at HSU. Services include consultation, evaluation, counseling, and crisis support services for students facing issues impacting their overall well-being. To obtain any of these services, students may call The Office of Counseling Services at (325) 671-2272, email, or begin the intake process by completing our online forms at:

Academic Integrity

Violations of academic integrity have been described to some degree in other sections of this syllabus.

Cases of suspected academic dishonesty will be handled in accordance with university policies outlined in Undergraduate Catalog and in the Student Handbook. The current catalog prescribes that “no student who has violated the Academic Integrity Policy will be allowed to graduate from Hardin-Simmons University with honors.” Penalties will be assigned at the discretion of the instructor and typically range from failure on the assignment to failure of the course. A general rule-of-thumb is that a first offense (if not too major) will result in a zero on the assignment and a second offense will result in an F for the course. The current catalog states that an F earned in this way cannot be replaced by retaking the course.

Computer Account Use

The instructor may occasionally use email to communicate with the class as a whole or with individuals. When contacting you for this course the instructor will use your HSU email account. You are expected to check your HSU email account at least once per day and you will be held responsible for any content distributed in this way.


Regarding class attendance, the Undergraduate Catalog states:
Accordingly, absence from more than 25 percent of class meetings and/or laboratory sessions scheduled for a course (including absences because of athletic participation) is regarded as excessive, and a grade of F may be assigned as deemed appropriate by the professor.

Course Calendar and Class Structure

All course materials are provided via Canvas, including a week-by-week overview of the course.