Category: Cyber Security

Sign up for CyberFirst Girls Development Days!

This year’s CyberFirst Girls Competition was a great success with over 6,000 entries from across the UK! And we’re not stopping there – girls that entered the 2020/2021 competition are now eligible to attend free Development Days and continue their CyberFirst journey.


The CyberFirst Girls Development Day initiative is inspired and led by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) – a part of GCHQ to encourage understanding of the different specialisms within cyber security and equip the girls with practical, in-demand skills.


On the day, the girls will be role-playing as cyber security experts working for a fictitious app company, Sirius Cyberworks. Unfortunately, disaster has struck and there has been a serious breach of the company network – a new flagship app has been leaked.


The girls’ role is to work through four different parts of the company, uncovering how the leak happened whilst learning new cyber skills along the way.


The development days are running throughout October and:

  • are open to girls now in S2/S3 in Scotland
  • consist of a series of fun, interactive one day face-to-face courses; or two half-day virtual sessions (depending on the preferred delivery model)
  • feature guest speakers and videos from trailblazing women leaders working in the cyber industry


Places fill up fast, so make sure you secure yours as soon as possible. Reserve your place today with your priority booking voucher code: CFSCOT2021


Click here to find out more and reserve your place or share with any friends or family who may be interested.

uhi cyber course reflections


“Courses like this are vital to give teachers the skills and confidence to deliver Cyber Security to their pupils.”

by Darren Brown, Computing Science Teacher from Inverness High School in Highland (@invernesshigh), Northern Alliance

I’ve been keen for a few years to bring in more Cyber Security into my school but admittedly I was a little put off due to my lack of knowledge and having no idea how to even start to approach the practical work.

The Intro to Cyber Security course from UHI was exactly what I needed. It did require a few hours a week of work but I progressed through all the basics of Cyber Security building my knowledge. Having done online courses before I was used to working independently but on this course although I could work when suited it me we also had a specific recorded lecture a week to watch and tutorial session where all the students could tune in, ask questions and share ideas. There was also a discussion board for interaction and posting ideas, issues or questions anyone had. There were various extra resources, links, videos and websites available to go into more detail if I wanted to and all related to the latest real world scenarios. There were plenty of practical tasks on various online systems to do hands-on work to build on the theory as well as setup of virtual machines to do proper Ethical Hacking.

At all times what was studied was brought back to thinking about how you could introduce and bring concepts to life in your own classroom. Even the assessments are tailored to creating materials and ideas for classes.

The course had a mix of primary, Computing and other subject secondary teachers so was very accessible for all introducing the key building blocks of Cyber Security but allowing those who wished to do hands on Ethical Hacking to upskill to think about delivering the SQA National Progression Award (NPA) in Cyber Security.

Everyone is very busy but this is a CPD course that will directly help your teaching on the ground of Cyber Security. The lecturers were very approachable, gave any help required, answered questions as well as being flexible to teacher’s busy weekly schedules with deadlines. Like general Computing Science it is very clear we need to bring more Cyber Security into all schools at all levels.

“Courses like this are vital to give teachers the skills and confidence to deliver Cyber Security to their pupils.”

abertay cyber security course


In today’s world I am sure I don’t need to point out how important cyber security is and it will be even more central in the future. Understanding how to protect both your financial and personal data is vital for all pupils and not just those interested in a career in computing. As a Computing Science teacher it is therefore my duty to ensure I do all I can to have the next generation as prepared as possible. 

So that I can give the skills needed for all levels, I realised I needed to have a good understanding of language and skills around cyber security as well as having up to date course material. This would then allow me to both develop a curriculum to suit all BGE pupils as well those interested in Cyber Security as a career. 

I have been attempting to introduce the National Progression Award in Cyber Security to senior pupils over the last couple of years. I attended various SQA courses and seminars, I read all the material and I did some online courses from other providers. This all gave me some confidence but I still never quite felt able to have real discussions or importantly problem solve when inevitably things go wrong. I still spent most of my time responding to pupils with “let me go find out” and start asking colleagues and web searching.  

When I was offered the chance to do the Ethical Hacking Module with Abertay University I jumped at the chance.  

For the first couple of weeks I felt completely out of my depth but I re-watched lectures, re-attempted the practical work and in the weeks following I was feeling confident in at least discussing topics with the NPA students using the industry language and giving them anecdotes that I wouldn’t have previously. 

The course was clearly designed to align with the NPA and this meant that the same issues I  came across are likely to be those that  the pupils might also find challenging. Although I am far from being a cyber security expert, I now have much more confidence and the increased skills needed to support pupils who will go on to specialise. I have been able to bring to BGE classes a new ethical hacking and data security topic added to S2.  

If you are a Computing Science teacher, whether presenting pupils to NPA Cyber Security or not, I would recommend taking the chance to do this course if offered.


Shona McAlpine (@MsSMcAlpine)

Computing Science Teacher, Stirling High School (SHS Computing (@SHS_CompSci)

10 May, 16:00 – 17:00, CyberFirst summer courses

This webinar is for anyone who works with young people and/or parents. In the webinar you will have the opportunity to hear:

• About the different courses offered as part of the CyberFirst program

• See example of the content of the CyberFirst program

• Have an opportunity to ask any Questions

CyberFirst Advanced, Futures and Defenders learning programmes have been SCQF credit rated by SQA. These courses have also been certified by National Cyber Security Centre and should encourage young people to learn new skills, meet like-minded people and take the first step on their CyberFirst journey. Young people do not need to be studying for a Computer Science qualification but will need to have an interest in tech and computing.

Sign up here

04 May, 16:00 – 17:00, SSERC CRIS mentor programme workshops

SSERC and Education Scotland have teamed up to bring you the CRIS mentor programme. It is designed to build confidence and to develop understanding of a number of issues related to cyber resilience and internet safety in the teacher community across Scotland. The knowledge and experience gained by delegates through the programme can then be used, along with the provided resources, to mentor other staff and pupils within their school communities.

The programme focusses on 4 key areas of CRIS:

  • Digital Footprint
  • Passwords and Encryption
  • Dealing with Online Issues
  • Securing your devices


The Digilearn team will be available for drop-in workshops, where you can ask questions, discuss ideas and share resources. These sessions will be:

  • 04 May, 1600 – 1700
  • 11 May, 1600 – 1700
  • 18 May, 1600 – 1700
  • 25 May, 1600 – 1700

Join the meetings here


Further info and sign up details are available here


26 May, 16:00 – 17:00, CRIS webinar – Mind Your Money

In the UK in 2018:
• Almost 190,000 case of identity fraud were recorded.
• Nearly 30,000 victims of fraud were under the age of 30.
• Over 80% of identity frauds were committed online.
• There was a 26% increase in fraud victims who were aged under 21.

Money Matters


It might be useful to review the information on these pages before attending:


CLPL – Introduction to Cyber Security at UHI

This module is aimed at qualified primary and secondary teachers who wish to develop the knowledge, understanding and problem-solving skills related to teaching basic cyber security, and are configuring an environment suitable for cyber security education. The module will help develop an understanding of cyber security and cyber resilience, as well as the relationship between these two areas of security.

Special features

  • The course is delivered online so you can fit your studies around your personal and professional commitments
  • Online discussion boards allow interaction with fellow students and tutors, as well as peer-review submitted work
  • Induction and tutorials are facilitated through webinars and other online software
  • Course materials and assignments are designed to allow you to develop a range of teaching materials and objects that can be shared with fellow students and used in the classroom
  • You will be part of an ongoing peer group of students that support each other and keep learning materials current, to allow school pupils the most up-to-date experience and information in Computing Studies


Have you studied at UHI? Share your CS experience with our community and inspire someone!


Additional Teaching Qualification (ATQ) in Computing Studies at UHI

The Additional Teaching Qualification (ATQ) in Computing Studies is aimed at secondary teachers in Scotland who want to gain the university credits required to register to teach Computing Studies as a second subject. This course provides the knowledge and skills to teach Computing Studies at all curricular levels. Working, learning… Read more

CLPL – Computing Studies for Teachers at UHI

This CPD Award Computing Studies for Teachers course is designed to help qualified primary and secondary school teachers develop the general knowledge and skills required to deliver the computing curriculum up to SCQF Level 3.   Set up as a part-time, rolling programme with one module being offered each semester,… Read more

CLPL – Introduction to Cyber Security at UHI

This module is aimed at qualified primary and secondary teachers who wish to develop the knowledge, understanding and problem-solving skills related to teaching basic cyber security, and are configuring an environment suitable for cyber security education. The module will help develop an understanding of cyber security and cyber resilience, as… Read more


Jonathan Henderson, Lasswade Primary School, Midlothian, @MrHenderson321 Emma Hedges, Victoria Primary School, Falkirk, @MissHedgesVPS We are delighted to be part of the first cohort of a new program of CLPL aimed at up-levelling primary teachers’ skills in delivering the Technologies curriculum. This online program leverages some of the University of… Read more


The Bebras Computational Thinking Challenge is a great resource to develop your learners to the pattern spotting and problem solving skills required for maths (and it also lends itself to cyber security education too!) The questions are in the form of engaging puzzles that start off relatively easy – so every student can have a go and should get something out of the competition.

Try out previous year’s challenges here.

Here is how Portlethen Academy engaged with the challenges.

The Bebras Challenge was actually the starting point for the Scottish Cyber Champions, the Greenwood Challengers – find out all about their journey here: