SEED Workshops

The objective of the SEED workshop is to help instructors improve their hands-on skills in cybersecurity and learn how to do actual attacks (in a contained environment) and defenses. Many instructors in cybersecurity can teach theories quite well, but they often lack practical skills. For example, they can teach students how attacks work in theory, but they have a hard time helping students perform the actual attacks. Without engaging students in hands-on activities, teaching will not be very effective in the field of cybersecurity.

The SEED labs, initially sponsored by the US National Science Foundation for the past 17 years, provide hands-on activities to students. They are now being used by over 1000 schools worldwide. To incorporate SEED labs into their courses and curricula, instructors need to do these labs by themselves. Each lab may take 10 to 30 hours (or even more) to finish without guidance, depending on the practical skills of the instructors. Not many instructors can afford to spend this much time. Such a heavy time commitment may hinder instructors from adopting the SEED labs.

The SEED workshop is intended to solve this problem by guiding the participants to work on the SEED labs, so that they can finish each lab in 2 to 3 hours. We will also cover the essential background knowledge for each lab. This is not a typical workshop, where participants sit and listen to lectures. In this workshop, participants will be busy doing things, and the pace will be quite intense. Many participants say that the SEED workshop is not a workshop; it is a boot camp. We take that as a compliment.

Interested in sponsoring a SEED Workshop? From 2015 to 2019, sponsored by NSF, we have held 11 SEED workshops, and trained over 400 faculties from the US. If your organization is interested in sponsoring a SEED workshop to benefit the faculties (or employees) in your community, company, or country, please contact us (, and we will be glad to come to deliver such a program.