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Volume 63, Issue 1

December 4, 2009

UCCS a partner in military computer security grant

TiER1 Performance Solutions will work collaboratively with UCCS students and faculty to train military supervisors to recognize cyber security threats.

Kentucky-based TiER1 has offices in Colorado Springs and received a $750,000 Phase 11 Small Business Innovative Research Award from the 711 Human Performance Wing, Air Force Research Laboratory Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, Ohio. TiER1 will work with UCCS to develop a comprehensive training system for military supervisors to recognize potential cyber insider threats.

According to Terence Andre, managing director for TiER1, “Our solution will provide a comprehensive training delivery platform that employs serious games and instructional support features for supervisors to practice skills in cyber threat detection.”

The project, known as XL-CITR (Accelerated Learning for Cyber Insider Threat Reduction), is designed to properly teach military supervisors to detect and prevent insider threats to cyber networks. XL-CITR will efficiently decrease time required to meet learning objectives while tracking learner performance for certification.

This is TiER1’s first Phase II award and represents a growth area for the company.

“We partnered with the University of Colorado-Colorado Springs which provided the needed cyber security and game expertise to come up with an innovative accelerated learning approach using interactive game-based learning,” said Andre.

The UCCS effort was supported by Ed Chow, professor of computer science, College of Engineering and Applied Science, and graduate students in computer science as well as by an interdisciplinary team of Bachelor of Innovation undergraduates.

“The XL-CITR concept also brought together digital character animation provided by CodeBaby here in Colorado Springs. The CodeBaby animated characters enhanced the overall learning experience and made our proposal very attractive to the Air Force,” Andre said.

“Winning this highly competitive award provides a strategic entry into the fast growing field of Cyber Security, and positions TiER1 as a leader in training solutions required to combat these threats to our national security,” added Normand G. Desmarais, TiER1’s co-founder and chairman.

Founded in 2002, TiER 1 Performance Solutions provides end-to-end on-line learning and knowledge management solutions to large distributed organizations. Its core service offerings of Learning Solutions and Knowledge Management are supported by a suite of technologies that act as solution accelerators for clients in solving human performance challenges. TiER1 is based in Covington, Ky. with an office in Colorado Springs where future expansion is planned from the growth of this contract and other education and training initiatives.

The Department of Defense (DoD) SBIR program funds a billion dollars each year in early-stage research and development projects at small technology companies, projects that serve a DoD need and have commercial applications. This program encourages small business to explore technological potential while providing the incentive to profit from its commercialization.

Communique is the online newsletter for UCCS faculty and staff. It is published weekly during the fall and spring semesters, monthly during the summer semester. Communique is sent to faculty and staff e-mail lists and, by request, to other e-mail addresses. Previous issues are available in the Communique Archives at, and the current issue is always at Suggestions and comments are welcome. Send ideas to or call Tom Hutton, 255-3439.

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