Exploring the opportunities of cisco packet tracer for hands-on security courses on firewalls

Zouheir Trabelsi, Heba Saleous

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

10 Citations (Scopus)


Along with teaching the fundamental and theoretical information security concepts, nowadays, hands-on lab activities are key to any information security education program. Moreover, the use of a hands-on approach that is based on a virtual or simulated lab environment is important. Such an environment offers a safer, more secure, and affordable solution to build security laboratories where students can experiment with offensive and defensive techniques. This is especially beneficial for academic institutions with limited lab budgets. Cisco Packet Tracer is an educational simulation tool that is designed to simulate the creation and testing of network architectures based on Cisco networking devices. This paper explores the opportunities of using this tool for hands-on information security education, along with teaching networking concepts. Practically, the capabilities of Cisco Packet Tracer for the development of hands-on lab activities on firewall concepts (Network traffic filtering) will be demonstrated. The goal is to use Cisco Packet Tracer to allow students to better understand the basic concepts of firewalls through experiments on in a virtual laboratory. This paper also discusses the impact of offering Cisco Packet Tracer to the students and the instructors' opinions on the tool. Using the tool was found to help students understand course material easier at a lower cost but affected the amount of material that could be covered by the instructor.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of 2019 IEEE Global Engineering Education Conference, EDUCON 2019
EditorsAlaa K. Ashmawy, Sebastian Schreiter
PublisherIEEE Computer Society
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9781538695067
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2019
Event10th IEEE Global Engineering Education Conference, EDUCON 2019 - Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Duration: Apr 9 2019Apr 11 2019

Publication series

NameIEEE Global Engineering Education Conference, EDUCON
ISSN (Print)2165-9559
ISSN (Electronic)2165-9567


Conference10th IEEE Global Engineering Education Conference, EDUCON 2019
Country/TerritoryUnited Arab Emirates


  • Cisco packet tracer
  • Firewalls
  • Network security

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Engineering
  • Information Systems and Management
  • Education


Dive into the research topics of 'Exploring the opportunities of cisco packet tracer for hands-on security courses on firewalls'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this