Assembly is the lowest-level programming language and is useful in reverse engineering and malware analysis. It can also be used for direct hardware manipulation or to address critical performance issues. This course requires a background in basic programming concepts and access to a Linux system. Learn Assembly online today!

Course Content

IT Block Example


ARM Architecture
IT Block Assembly


ARM Architecture
Conditional Execution


ARM Architecture
Thumb Mode Example


ARM Architecture
Thumb Mode


ARM Architecture
SIMD Process Data


ARM Architecture
Neon Floating Point


ARM Architecture
Neon Example


ARM Architecture
VFP and Neon


ARM Architecture
Array Indexing Example


ARM Architecture
Array Indexing


ARM Architecture
Push Example


ARM Architecture
Pushing and Popping


ARM Architecture
Shift Example


ARM Architecture
ARM Template


ARM Architecture
ARM Intro


ARM Architecture
Course Description


This Assembly language course requires a background in basic programming concepts. Students should have access to a Linux system or setup a Linux virtual machine.

Course Goals

By the end of the course, students should be able to:

  • Write Assembly Programs (x86, ARM)
  • Read Assembly Programs
  • Understand Different Data Representations (Binary Hex, 2's Complement)
  • Understand how Functions, Stack and Data Storage Work
  • Programmers who understand and can code with assembly programming have the ability to manipulate a computer’s hardware directly, and can do so with great speed compared to that of high-level languages such as Java or Python.

    People who learn assembly online (also known as ASM) will understand the machine code specific to the machine they’re working on. While high-level languages, such as Python and Java, have gained popularity in recent years among the programming community, assembly language programs are more efficient and operate at a quicker pace.

    What is assembly language?

    Assembly language is a low-level programming language for a computer or programming device. A low-level programming language means the instructions are basic and the computer can easily recognize what it is being told to do. Using assembler, assembly language can be converted into machine language, which is the lowest language.

    Why should programmers learn assembly language programming?

    ASM allows programmers to write a language that is easier for people to read than machine language, which is usually a series of numbers. Assembly language also helps a programmer manipulate the computer with maximum control.

    Assembly language helps optimize the speed of the computer and creates a program that runs quicker than high-level language programs can. Learning assembly programming enables programmers to tell the computer not to just do something, but how to execute the command.

    Assembly language can also be useful in reverse engineering and malware analysis. While assembly language can’t be the only language a programmer knows, it is helpful while debugging.

    Is it still relevant to learn assembly online today?

    In 2020, it is not as common for an entire application to be written in assembly. But understanding and writing some of an application in assembly enables the programmer to give additional functionality. Instead of just telling the computer to do something, assembly allows programmers to tell them how to do it with specific instructions.

    Many programmers prefer high-level languages because they are more portable in a world where cloud-based applications are becoming more and more prevalent. But there are still many benefits to understanding assembly for more traditional programs and more complex applications.

    How do you start assembly language programming?

    Students can learn assembly online by taking this course. Cybrary’s online course allows them to learn at their own pace, making it convenient and easy to add assembly language as a skill in one’s repertoire. To start Cybrary’s Introduction to Assembly Programming course, students need a background in basic programming concepts. Students should also have access to a Linux system.

    Students can complete Cybrary’s assembly language course at their own pace, either taking all the modules consecutively to quickly earn the certification or over the course of a few weeks when they have spare time. At the end of the course, students will be able to write and read assembly programs, understand different data representations, such as Binary, hex, and 2’s compliment. Students will also be able to understand Functions, Stack and Data Storage.

    Students could also learn assembly languaging through books or online blogs, but taking an online course like Cybrary provides interactive modules to help master the language.

    Programmers who receive an assembly certification can increase their ability to address critical computer performance issues, as well as, give the processor specific instructions.

    How do programmers use assembly language?

    Programmers use assembly language when they are trying to directly manipulate computer hardware. Assembly allows programmers to create better algorithms than they can create exclusively using C, which is a high-level language. But the best reason and motivation for using assembly remains speed.

    Assembly language can be used in the system’s boot code, general blocks of data, and in reverse engineering.

    Is assembly programming hard?

    Assembly programming is seen as “bare” and “transparent." There are only a small number of operations, which makes it easier for a programmer to debug it and makes for easier algorithm analysis. While assembly programming is specific to each processor, generally once a student has learned assembly they can transfer this knowledge from one CPU to another.

    Commands used in assembly are simple, such as MOV (move), ADD (add), and SUB (subtract). When taking an online assembly programming course, students will learn these commands and how to execute them.

    This course is part of a Career Path:
    Become an Incident Handler
    In this Career Path, you will learn the incident response process, from building an incident response kit and developing an incident response team, to identifying, containing, and recovering from incidents. We then steer away from a traditional “defensive-only” approach to introduce you to the attacker’s world.
    Become a SOC Analyst - Level 3
    This Career Path is for a Security Operations Center Analyst (SOC Analyst). This particular Career Path covers a more advanced-level SOC role. As a SOC Analyst, your primary duty is to ensure that the organization’s digital assets are secure and protected from unauthorized access. That means that you are responsible for protecting both online and on-premise infrastructures, monitoring data to identify suspicious activity, and identifying and mitigating risks before there is a breach. In the event that a breach does occur, a SOC analyst will be on the front line, working to counter the attack.

    Instructed by

    Matthew Miller

    I completed a bachelors degree in computer science at the University of Nebraska at Kearney. I received my Masters and Ph.D. at Kansas State University. I have taught Computer Science, assembly and reverse engineering for 7 years at the collegiate level. I have been called as an expert witness on more than a dozen Federal Cases, where he reverse engineered the NIT code provided by the government. My expert declarations have been used by the ACLU in their "Challenging government hacking in criminal cases" guide for attorneys. Lawyers call me in to explain, analyze and help them understand the meaning of digital evidence.

    After I received my Ph.D. I moved to Madison SD to teach at Dakota State University. There I decided to specialize in Reverse Engineering. This is where I learned how to program in Assembly. I enjoyed the challenge end thrill of programming at the lowest level. At DSU I built up the assembly programming class to meet the standards required for Reverse Engineering. After attending many different Cybrary courses, I decided that I could give back to the community by providing a course that provides a great base for Reverse Engineers.

    I enjoy programming in assembly language. The creation of binary programs that can be used in as challenges in capture the flags is very interesting challenge. One of the fun parts of this is trying to hide the true execution of the programmer. For many platforms, I create a variety of different challenge levels. Some easy challenges for first time reverses and then increased difficulty for the more advance crowd. Examples of hiding the true execution include, using return-oriented programming (ROP), string obfuscation and encryption. Each platform requires some knowledge of the architecture and how mnemonics and memory make for fun learning cyber security skills.

    I am married and have 3 kids. They enjoy soccer, baseball, reading and even some Python programming. My wife lets me collect Legos (technic and Star Wars) and build wooden projects out of recycled barn boards. I also enjoy coaching, gardening, teaching and programming as well. Languages that I enjoy programming in include Java, Python, Bash, C, C++ and of course Assembly.

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    Certification Body
    Certificate of Completion

    Complete this entire course to earn a Assembly Certificate of Completion