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Department of Defense Releases New Science and Technology Protection Course for the Federal Government Workforce

NEWS RELEASE: February 10, 2023

The Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering (R&E) and Defense Acquisition University (DAU) announce the release of a new DAU course, “Fundamentals of Science and Technology Protection.” Developed in partnership between R&E’s Maintaining Technology Advantage (MTA) Directorate and DAU, this free, online training course provides Science and Technology (S&T) managers with guidance on how to conduct risk-informed protection planning and management to mitigate the threat of unwanted technology transfers of programs, projects, systems, and technical information to strategic competitors.

“Members of the defense S&T workforce who are involved in developing and deploying new technologies will particularly benefit from this course,” said Dr. Jessica Appler, MTA Director. “S&T managers will come away from the course with technology protection resources that will enable them to better mitigate adversary efforts that threaten to erode our Nation’s technology advantages.”

The course learning objectives include:

Identifying essential technology elements

Employing decomposition to prioritize protections

Interpreting technology transfer threats and vulnerabilities

Identifying S&T protection policies and processes

Defining roles and responsibilities for S&T managers

Understanding the S&T Risk Management Framework

Identifying elements and technologies that require protection

Understanding how to employ and apply iterative risk management tools

“We are extremely thankful to our partners at DAU for helping to develop this course and for hosting it on their platform for use by the DoD S&T community,” said Mr. Kristopher Gardner, S&T Protection Director in the MTA Directorate. “This course would not have been possible without the many hours of testing, feedback, and quality control that DAU and DoD personnel provided. Their inputs shaped the course and ensured that it meets the needs of defense S&T professionals.”

The course is free and open to personnel who qualify for a DAU account, including DoD and Federal Government civilian employees and contractors. More information on DAU account eligibility is available at To register and take the “Fundamentals of S&T Protection” course, visit: The course takes approximately 10 hours to complete.

This new S&T protection course is one of the tangible ways that the MTA Directorate leads DoD efforts to balance the promotion and protection of critical and emerging technologies throughout the technology development lifecycle. MTA works with S&T professionals to identify and implement best practices, policies, mechanisms, strategies, and standards that protect U.S. technological advantage, foster U.S. technological development, and mitigate exploitation by strategic competitors.

About Defense Acquisition University

DAU is the acquisition learning, development and talent management organization for the Department of Defense. DAU provides a full range of certification and assignment-specific training, credentials, and continuous learning opportunities for acquisition professionals across all Military Services and Defense Agencies. Connect with us on social media @DAUnow or online at

About USD(R&E)

The Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering (USD(R&E) is the Chief Technology Officer of the Department of Defense. The USD(R&E) champions research, science, technology, engineering, and innovation to maintain the United States military’s technological advantage. Learn more at, follow us on Twitter @DoDCTO, or visit us on LinkedIn.

Office of the Under Secretary of Defense,
Research and Engineering (OUSD(R&E))
3030 Defense Pentagon, Washington, DC 20301-3030