Evolvable Microgame for Information Assurance Training (EMIAT)

Award Information
Agency: Department of Defense
Branch: Air Force
Contract: FA8650-10-C-6129
Agency Tracking Number: F083-032-0258
Amount: $749,626.00
Phase: Phase II
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2010
Solicitation Year: 2008
Solicitation Topic Code: AF083-032
Solicitation Number: 2008.3
Small Business Information
Charles River Analytics Inc.
625 Mount Auburn Street, Cambridge, MA, -
DUNS: 115243701
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Scott Potter
 Principal Scientist
 (617) 491-3474
 spotter@cra.com
Business Contact
 Ninos Hanna
Title: Contract Specialist
Phone: (617) 491-3474
Email: nhanna@cra.com
Research Institution
N/A
Abstract
Better Information Assurance (IA) training methods can significantly improve the security of the DoD’s network-centric environment. Existing IA training employs ineffective “tell-and-test” instructional methods, which do not adequately engage students and, more importantly, fail to address the evolving nature of new IA threats. To address the need for better and more adaptive training, we designed a framework—under a Phase I effort—for the development and deployment of Evolvable Microgames for Information Assurance Training (EMIAT). Based on our successful Phase I, we propose a full-scope development effort focused on four components. To ensure that learning objectives comprehensively address emerging IA threats, we will develop an ontology-based curriculum that supports evolvability (i.e., is user-extensible by USAF trainers and IA experts). This evolvable curriculum will be integrated with an intuitive framework for rapidly authoring new microgames. The framework will include graphical development tools for constructing microgame interfaces and logic and templates for rapidly building microgames to address emerging threats. We will iteratively employ this framework to construct and evaluate educational microgames, producing tools for improving IA training while enhancing the framework’s viability. Finally, we will build a web-based distribution environment for deploying microgames and providing a motivating social community for microgame-based training. BENEFIT: The IA training microgames developed in this effort will provide an immediate and tangible benefit to warfighters throughout the DoD by educating them in the IA skills they need to “fight through” in a contested cyber environment, providing them with the means of defending themselves, and creating another layer of security beyond that currently provided by the AFNOC and sister organizations throughout the DoD. Additionally, the EMIAT framework will provide the tools needed to adapt IA training to emerging IA threats, thereby enhancing the capability to address these threats before they become significant security leaks. These benefits could be extended to a wide range of Government and commercial domains that rely on networked computing, including many daily business activities. This broader application of EMIAT is possible because the generic EMIAT framework provides intuitive tools for rapidly authoring and delivering engaging and educational evolvable microgames for corporate education, training, and proficiency maintenance.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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