OpenAcademy® Course Descriptions

Analyst Training: Writing, Analysis, and Preparing Briefings
Instructor: Mark Lowenthal

This is a two-day course designed for students to begin developing analytic skills for any intelligence-related or analytical function. This course examines the role of intelligence in the policy process (within government or business), then offers an introduction to analytic skills, beginning with critical thinking and reading, writing analysis, and preparing and presenting successful briefings. Much of what is required for good analytical writing takes place before the analyst actually begins to write.  The scoping and planning of the intelligence analysis therefore are major areas of emphasis in this course, as well as issues of format, length, word selection, etc.  The course is designed to get analysts off to a good start in as little time as possible, recognizing that there are important time constraints in such training and that much will also be learned on the job.  This course is eligible for CEUs from George Mason University.

Cyberforce Superiority® Introduction
Instructors: Mark Lowenthal, Craig Stevenson
Many experts agree that cyber is a new warfighting domain, requiring new approaches and new skills.  This course is a five-day distillation of the longer, more detailed Cyberforce Superiority “Belts” courses. Unlike most cyber training courses that emphasize either computer security or hacking skills, our course is designed to give students a preliminary integrated understanding of the methodologies and interrelated offensive and defensive factors that come into play when training a cyber warrior.  Students will learn a sample of the introductory, mid-level, and high-level tactics used for Computer Network Operations (CNO) including Computer Network Attack (CNA) & Computer Network Exploitation (CNE), Computer Network Defense (CND), as well as Computer forensics.  Topics of instruction include: ethical hacking, Boolean Logic, networking for both advanced Unix and Windows, vulnerability identification, computer exploit development, and reverse engineering.  This will be a practical course with instruction that is focused on in-class computer exercises and lab work.  This course is eligible for CEUs from George Mason University. This course is offered in partnership with Raytheon Solipsys.

History of U.S. Intelligence
Instructor: Mark Lowenthal
This one-day course reviews the major events and trends that have shaped U.S. intelligence, from its colonial pre-history through the current day. Among the issues that are covered are: responses to external threats; the role of technology; espionage; Congress and partisan politics. This course gives attendees a much better context and understanding of the major forces that continue to influence or determine U.S. intelligence policy.

Intelligence Budget Process
Instructor: Ronald Marks
In this two-day course students will be given a detailed understanding of the intelligence budget process, examining both how the budget is created in the Executive branch, primarily in negotiations between Defense and Intelligence, and then how the budget moves through Congress, and the actual expenditure of funds. This course is extremely helpful to those who are new to the budget process and to those who have programmatic responsibilities that are influenced by federal budget decisions.   Over the two days the instructor will present several modules including Intelligence Resources and Funding; Key Players in Defense and Intelligence Resource Management; Resource Data Structure; the Congressional Budget Process and Oversight of Intelligence; and Budget Execution. This course is eligible for CEUs from George Mason University.

Introduction to U.S. Intelligence
Instructor: Mark Lowenthal
This is a one-day course that offers a broad introduction to the major current issues in U.S. intelligence: the current structure of the Community and the role of the agencies and the DNI; collection; analysis; the intelligence budget; and the role of Congress. This is an appropriate course for those who are fairly new to intelligence issues or as a refresher for those returning to intelligence issues. This course is eligible for CEUs from George Mason University.