Well, I have taken a skim on the Introduction to Vulnerability Assessment course (this is really my deepest area of expertise, and where I've published in the technical literature) and it passes the sniff test for usefulness. The structure seems pretty coherent and complete for an intro course:
There are slides in PowerPoint or PDF - 474 slides in the case of this course. There's real training info here.This is a lecture and lab based class giving an introduction to vulnerability assessment of some common common computing technologies. Instructor-led lab exercises are used to demonstrate specific tools and technologies.Course Objectives are- Learning a general methodology for conducting assessments- Scanning and mapping network topology- Identifying listening ports/services on hosts- Fingerprinting operating systems remotely- Conducting automated vulnerability scans- Auditing router, switch, and firewall security- Auditing UNIX and Windows configuration and security- Performing Web application and associated database security assessmentsThis class will serve as a prerequisite for later class on vulnerability assessment which dive deeper into specific areas such as Windows VA or web application VA.
Given the state of the economy, anyone looking to switch career paths to a field where there will be long term (and well paying) demand, this is a good place to start. Perhaps the most useful part of this is that it will gauge your interest - if this is boring or impenetrable, you should look at a different field. If it's interesting and comprehensible, do more of the classes.
In particular, the CISSP Common Body Of Knowledge course is probably the most important if you want to break into the field. CISSP is a general security certification that is recognized and accepted pretty much anywhere. It will open doors for you even if you don't have any experience at all.
I must say that the Internet is truly a wonderful place. Free knowledge. It's raining soup, all you have to do is hold out a bucket.