Best Online Schools for Master’s in Cyber Security Degree Programs

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Introduction:

Cybersecurity, also known as computer security or information assurance, is a rapidly growing field in both the public and private sectors. Specialists in this field plan and carry out programs to protect their organizations’ computer information and network systems. As web-based technology and reliance upon secure networked information systems have increased, so has the need to set up defenses against ever more sophisticated methods of hacking, cybercrime, and cyber warfare. Personal, economic, and governmental information is now maintained and exchanged electronically within and across networked information systems. In the wake of the information network and criminal attempts to breach and exploit the information on this network, the US government has established a National Cybersecurity Division under the Department of Homeland Security. Personnel of the FBI staff the Internet Crime Complaint Center as well as the National White Collar Crime Center and the Bureau of Justice Assistance. According to U.S. News & World Report, “cybercrime and cyber warfare are some of the most severe threats the US faces today. Hackers have the ability to attack millions of people, stealing personal information and committing virtual espionage from all over the world. Cybercrime is also a chief concern for the US government.” A master’s degree in cyber security equips graduates to prevent and detect such attacks in the interests of personal, economic and national privacy and security. The following is a list of 20 cyber security master’s degree programs that combine academic excellence with a proven track record of student retention and graduation.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics lists the job outlook for professionals within this field at around 18% over the next 8 years, which is much faster than average.

Methodology:

  • All information is cited from the unbiased, independent NCES.gov’s College Navigator
  • To ensure our rankings methodology cannot be duplicated without our knowledge, we have withheld some aspects of the calculations. Please contact us at the email address provided below for more in depth calculations and criteria
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IOWA STATE UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:

The Iowa State University Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering offers an outstanding Master’s degree in Information Assurance. The program affords a great deal of flexibility to students, allowing successful applicants to join the program at the beginning of any semester and to take courses at their own pace. This 100% online degree program conducts its courses through online streaming videos that can be viewed anytime from anywhere. Iowa State University’s information assurance master’s degree program places an emphasis upon “national, collaborative efforts and computer security research, education and outreach… [and] helping to address the national concern for producing more Information Assurance professionals and for advancing the state of the art.” Iowa State University’s Information Assurance program was one of the first of seven programs to be recognized by the National Security Agency as an NSA Center of Academic Excellence.

Campus Location: Ames, Iowa

Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission

Types of Aid: As of 2017, financial aid includes: federal loans; institutional and outside scholarship opportunities. Not all students qualify for financial aid.

Acceptance and Graduation Rates:

  • Acceptance: 87%
  • Graduation: 72%

Admission Requirements:

For applicants without work experience:

  • Three letters of recommendation
  • A statement of purpose
  • The general application
  • GRE scores are required if undergraduate GPA is below 3.0 or one has less than two years of full-time employment

For students with three or more years of work experience:

  • The GRE and the GPA minimum may be waived

Program Options:

  • The Master of Science in Information Assurance offers the degree program either with or without writing a thesis.
  • Sample course offerings:
    • Cryptography
    • Advanced Protocols and Network Security
    • Information Warfare

Degree Outcomes: Coursework emphasizes collaboration and academic research advancement in the field of information security. Graduates will be able to manage information related risks. These risks specifically relate to the protection and defense of information and information systems, which require the insuring of “confidentiality, integrity, authentication, availability, and non-repudiation.” Information assurance practitioners oversee the presence of threat or malice as well as whether users have authorized access to network sources of information.

LEARN MORE ABOUT IOWA STATE UNIVERSITY’S INFORMATION ASSURANCE ONLINE MASTERS DEGREE

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UNIVERSITY OF DENVER

Program Standouts:

The University of Denver’s online Information Systems Security Master’s Degree teaches students how to deal with real world cyber security situations. This program aligns with the common body of knowledge for CISSP certification and was developed in collaboration with the Colorado Springs and Denver chapters of the Information Security Systems Association. The University of Denver has been recognized by the NSA as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance/Cyber Defense Education. This deep and diverse program is designed to give students an ability to assess and analyze an overall situation and to apply specific and technical skills in creative ways to both prevent and respond to information security breaches.

Campus Location: Denver, Colorado

Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission

Types of Aid: As of 2017, financial aid includes: federal loans; institutional and outside scholarship opportunities. Not all students qualify for financial aid.

Acceptance and Graduation Rates:

  • Acceptance: 73%
  • Graduation: 77%

Admission Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university
  • Minimum GPA of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale or a 2.5 on a 4.0 scale for the last 60 semester credits or 90 quarter credits. A master’s degree or higher from a regionally accredited institution supersedes the minimum standards for the bachelor’s degree
  • Application form
  • Application fee
  • Official transcripts
  • Two references
  • Personal statement
  • Resume

Sample Courses:

  • Foundations of Information and Communication Technology
  • Principles of Information Security
  • Principles of Cryptography

Degree Outcomes: This degree gives students the knowledge and skills needed to develop and implement security policies and procedures, to design secure networks, develop strategies for secure network operations, evaluate encryption standards and solutions and conduct computer forensics analysis.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE UNIVERSITY OF DENVER’S MASTERS DEGREE IN INFORMATION SYSTEMS SECURITY

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DEPAUL UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:

Depaul University’s online Master of Science in Cybersecurity emphasizes hands-on learning combined with convenience and ease of accessibility. This degree has three areas of concentration, which gives this program a great degree of diversity and flexibility. Students are trained in the security aspects of the information technology field and are provided theoretical and practical knowledge and skills that equip them to design, implement and manage information technology infrastructures and risks. Depaul University’s degree program, in terms of its academic excellence, has been designated a Center of Excellence in Information Assurance by the department of Homeland Security and the NSA.

Campus Location: Chicago, Illinois

Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, the Higher Learning Commission

Types of Aid: As of 2017, financial aid includes: federal loans; various grants. Not all students qualify for financial aid and/or grants.

Acceptance and Graduation Rates:

  • Acceptance: 72%
  • Graduation: 73%

Admission Requirements:

  • Completed online application
  • Official transcripts
  • Optional: letters of recommendation, resume or industry certification or GRE test scores

Program Concentrations:

  • Network Infrastructure
  • Computer Security
  • Compliance

Degree Outcomes: Depaul University’s Master of Science in Cybersecurity offers a wealth of instructional and specialization opportunities. Depending upon specialization, graduates will gain the skills needed in the various fields of network infrastructure and security, identity authentication access control auditing, assessment and prevention of software vulnerabilities, or security risk management, compliance and business continuity. Depaul University’s broad and diverse degree program “assures that its students leave the program fully ready to contribute in the corporate world… [providing] a great work product for students to show prospective employers.”

LEARN MORE ABOUT DEPAUL UNIVERSITY’S MASTER OF SCIENCE IN CYBERSECURITY

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UNIVERSITY OF ALABAMA BIRMINGHAM: COLLAT SCHOOL OF BUSINESS

Program Standouts:

The University of Alabama-Birmingham’s online Master of Science Degree in Management Information Systems offers an excellent education, recognized by such outlets as U.S. News & World Report and the Princeton Review. The degree equips graduates to understand the way in which business and technology interrelate. The University of Alabama-Birmingham is designated as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance research by the Department of Homeland Security and the National Security Agency. Employing a 100% online platform this degree is designed to be open and accessible to graduate students with varying amounts of experience in the field. With six areas of concentration the University of Alabama-Birmingham offers cyber security education that is extremely diverse, providing a multitude of career options for its graduates. This degree program also offers an excellent range of career resource assistance.

Campus Location: Birmingham, Alabama

Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges

Types of Aid: As of 2017, financial aid includes: federal and private/alternative loans. Not all students qualify for financial aid.

Acceptance and Graduation Rates:

  • Acceptance: 60%
  • Graduation: 55%

Admission Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited college or university with a minimum GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  • Completed the UAB MS MIS Bridge program; or submitted evidence to UAB of work experience in information security/information technology/computer programming, enterprise systems, databases, and/or system design and analysis; and
  • Submitted evidence of information security/information technology/computer industry certifications in computer programming, enterprise systems, databases, and/or system design and analysis; or
  • Applicants must have GMAT score of 500 or higher; or provide a GRE, combined verbal and quantitative, score of 940 or show five years of work experience; or demonstrate the completion of a graduate degree in any discipline with a minimum GPA of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale
  • Online application
  • Current resume
    Personal statement
  • Two references

Degree Specialization Options:

  • Information Security
  • Information Technology Management

Degree Outcomes: This degree equips students to understand and engage in the field of information technology and security as these pertain to the inextricable relationship between business and modern technology. Graduates will be able to take an active role in managing information systems by using and developing technology that pertains to data management, security and business goals. Depending upon concentration, this degree equips its graduates for success in project management, social media, information technology governance, business intelligence and data security.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE UNIVERSITY OF ALABAMA-BIRMINGHAM’S MASTER OF SCIENCE IN MANAGEMENT INFORMATION SYSTEMS 

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REGIS UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:

Regis University’s online Master of Science in Information Assurance is recognized and designated by the national security agency and the US Department of Homeland Security as a center of academic excellence in information assurance education. This program’s courses are modeled on the curricular guidelines and recommendations provided by the Committee on National Security Systems, the International Information Systems Security Certification Consortium, the Information Systems Audit and Control Association, the National Institute of Standards and Technology National Cyber Security Workforce Framework and the National Initiative on Cyber Security Education. Through its two concentrations, delivered fully online, students at Regis are taught through hands-on training application the essential elements of information security and provided with a wealth of core options that translate into greater and more diverse career opportunities.

Campus Location: Denver, Colorado

Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission

Types of Aid: As of 2017, financial aid includes: federal and private/alternative loans, and numerous military and veterans’ benefits. Not all students qualify for financial aid and/or grants.

Acceptance and Graduation Rates:

  • Acceptance: 66%
  • Graduation: 73%

Admission Requirements:

  • Official transcripts of any previous undergraduate and graduate level work
  • Admissions essay
  • Current resume
  • Completed application

Program Specializations:

  • Cyber Security Specialization
  • Information Assurance Policy Management Specialization

Degree Outcomes: Graduates of this program are given the necessary skills and knowledge to acquire professional certification. In addition to preparation for industry certification this degree provides expertise for the protecting of the “confidentiality, security, integrity and availability of data whether it is in storage, processing or in transit.” The skill set and knowledge this degree provides allows cyber security and information assurance practitioners to secure and protect data from hackers and viruses.

LEARN MORE ABOUT REGIS UNIVERSITY’S ONLINE MASTER OF SCIENCE IN INFORMATION ASSURANCE

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ROBERT MORRIS UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:

Robert Morris University offers masters of science degrees in several disciplines in Information Technology. This program focuses upon information management as well as threat security. Widely recognized for its academic excellence as well as breadth of course and specialization options, Robert Morris University provides its graduates with needed skills to meet both information management as well as network security requirements in a rapidly changing world of information management, security and exchange.

Campus Location: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania

Accreditation: Commission on Higher Education, Middle States Association of College and Schools

Types of Aid: As of 2017, financial aid includes: federal and private/alternative loans, and numerous military and veterans’ benefits. Not all students qualify for financial aid and/or grants.

Acceptance and Graduation Rates:

  • Acceptance: 78%
  • Graduation: 58%

Admission Requirements:

  • Online application
  • Official transcripts of all undergraduate and graduate coursework
  • Two current letters of recommendation
  • Possibly needed: GMAT/GRE scores

Program Specialization Options:

  • Information Technology Project Management
  • Internet Information Systems
  • Data Analytics
  • Cyber Security and Information Assurance

Degree Outcomes: This degree, according to one’s specialization, equips its graduates with leadership and management skills, skills in the maintenance of effective information systems, data collection, storage and analysis and/or information system threat recognition and security.

LEARN MORE ABOUT ROBERT MORRIS UNIVERSITY’S ONLINE MASTER OF SCIENCE IN INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY 

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SYRACUSE UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:

Syracuse University boasts a world-class research facility, and its Master of Science in Cyber Security is designated by the National Security Agency and Department of Homeland Security as a Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education as well as a Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Research. Syracuse offers an online Master’s Degree in Cybersecurity that combines online classes, interactive coursework, and collaborative group exercises. This degree program offers a wide variety of course options that provide students with the opportunity to give more specific and intense focus in those areas that interest them. Although this online program is not asynchronous, the program’s world-class faculty and institutional backing more than offset the program’s more restrictive course schedule for those who can meet on predetermined days and times.

Campus Location: Syracuse, New York

Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education

Types of Aid: As of 2017, financial aid includes: federal and private/alternative loans, and numerous military and veterans’ benefits. Not all students qualify for financial aid and/or grants.

Acceptance and Graduation Rates:

  • Acceptance: 48%
  • Graduation: 81%

Admission Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree in Cybersecurity, Computer Science, Computer Engineering, or a related field from an accredited institution
  • GPA of 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale
  • Core competencies in
    • Basic Systems Knowledge
    • Data Structures
    • Discrete Mathematics
    • High-level Programming

Course Options:

  • Computer Security
  • Internet Security
  • Machine Learning

Degree Outcomes: This degree focuses on five main objectives. The design of new systems that are inherently secure. The protection of systems such as mobile and critical infrastructures. System assurance through the application of mathematical logic. Analysis and detection of malware and other cyber-attacks. Data mining and anomaly detection to identify suspicious cyber behavior.

LEARN MORE ABOUT SYRACUSE UNIVERSITY’S ONLINE MASTER OF SCIENCE IN CYBER SECURITY

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GEORGE WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:

George Washington University’s online Master of Cybersecurity Strategy and Information degree brings together expert instruction and experience from the cyber security field and the convenience and accessibility of online education. This program was designed specifically to train strategic cyber security experts, rapidly growing in demand, in the fields of public safety as well as military and homeland security. George Washington University’s degree program emphasizes policy, experience and strategic application of theoretical knowledge acquired in the classroom. This degree program “was designed in consultation with the Department of Homeland Security, The Integrated Justice Information Systems Institute, experts in law enforcement and the military, and key private organizations working in the field of cyber security and information management.” This mix of expertise and experience, coupled with the convenience that comes through online education, helps George Washington University’s online master’s degree in cyber security to stand out.

Campus Location: Washington, District of Columbia

Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education

Types of Aid: As of 2017, financial aid includes: federal and private/alternative loans, scholarship opportunities, and numerous military and veterans’ benefits. Not all students qualify for financial aid and/or grants.

Acceptance and Graduation Rates:

  • Acceptance: 46%
  • Graduation 83%

Admission Requirements:

  • Completed application
  • Transcripts for undergraduate and graduate courses
  • Two professional references: each should be able to address the candidate’s experience, knowledge and competency in the areas of homeland security
  • Statement of purpose

Sample Courses:

  • Information Systems Protection
  • Cyber Defense Strategies
  • Information Sharing and Safeguarding

Degree Outcomes: This degree provides its graduates with an understanding of policy and law related to information security and information management. Students learn how to apply strategies to improve information protection, computer system defense and information management. Graduates will learn how to analyze emerging cyber threats and their impact in the various areas of law, policy, management, and technology. Finally, this degree program enhances critical thinking and management skills as well as effective and scholarly communication skills as these relate to cyber security.

LEARN MORE ABOUT GEORGE WASHINGTON UNIVERSITY’S ONLINE MASTER’S DEGREE IN CYBER SECURITY STRATEGY AND INFORMATION MANAGEMENT

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LEWIS UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:

Lewis University’s Master of Science in Computer Science with the Cyber Security Concentration offers an online educational experience that deals with every phase of cyber security in terms of prevention and recovery. This degree teaches students how to “identify, monitor and investigate organizational cyber threats.” This degree program also teaches students how to actively design and encrypt software and networks so that they will be less vulnerable to cyber-attacks. Lewis University’s online courses are not self-paced, and students are required to submit assignments and engage in classroom discussion according to a pre-established schedule. Depending upon one’s preferences and life situation, this experience can be very enriching because students have the opportunity to engage and discuss with fellow students working on similar research projects. Lewis University also prides itself not only on its academic excellence but also on its strong personal support as well as career counseling services.

Campus Location: Romeoville, Illinois

Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, the Higher Learning Commission

Types of Aid: As of 2017, financial aid includes: federal and private/alternative loans, and numerous military and veterans’ benefits. Not all students qualify for financial aid and/or grants.

Acceptance and Graduation Rates:

  • Acceptance: 62%
  • Graduation: 66%

Admission Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree from an accredited college or university in computer science, computer engineering, electrical engineering, mathematics or information systems is preferred
  • GPA of 3.0 or higher on a 4.0 scale
  • Completed application
  • Official academic transcripts
  • Two-page statement of purpose
  • Resume
  • Two letters of recommendation

Program Options:

  • Advanced Digital Forensics
  • Encryption and Authentication
  • Intrusion Detection, Response and Recovery
  • Wireless Security

Degree Outcomes: Holders of this degree will be able to identify risks due to cyber threats and recommend steps to combat them. They will be able to skillfully apply knowledge to new situations and emerging cyber security threats. They will be able to establish ways of monitoring and investigating cyber-attacks. Holders of this degree will also be able to explain and apply symmetric and asymmetric encryption and authentication systems. This degree will also train its graduates to design software and networks that resist and/or mitigate cyber threats and attacks.

LEARN MORE ABOUT LEWIS UNIVERSITY’S MASTER OF SCIENCE IN COMPUTER SCIENCE-CYBER SECURITY CONCENTRATION

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BOSTON UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:

Boston University’s online Master of Science in Computer Information Systems with a concentration in Security offer students a wide variety of course offerings taught by some of the best faculty in the world. Recognized as one of the top online programs for computer information technology, US News & World Report ranked Boston University #3 in 2016 among the best online graduate computer information technology programs. And Boston University is recognized as a Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education and Research by the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security. The Boston University online course delivery format seeks to “challenge the notion that the most effective learning is face-to-face.” Course content, developed in close conjunction with Boston University’s distance education team, is available online 24/7. Students are therefore able to pursue studies at their own pace. Employing the latest tools, apps and innovative technology, Boston University’s Online Master of Science in Computer Information Systems with Concentration in Security provides cutting-edge, high-quality cyber security education that “provides in-depth knowledge of emerging security threats and solutions to prepare technical leaders who identify, develop, and implement highly secure systems and networks.”

Campus Location: Boston, Massachusetts

Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Commission on Institutions of Higher Education

Types of Aid: As of 2017, financial aid includes: federal and private/alternative loans, scholarships, and numerous military and veterans’ benefits. Not all students qualify for financial aid and/or grants.

Acceptance and Graduation Rates:

  • Acceptance: 33%
  • Graduation: 85%

Admission Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution
  • Proficiency demonstrated in the fundamentals of information technology

Sample Course Options:

  • Business Data Communication Networks
  • Database Design and Implementation for Business
  • White-Collar Crime

Degree Outcomes: Graduates of this program demonstrate advanced knowledge in the analysis and documentation of requirements for architecture, design, and implementation of computer application systems. This program gives the students proficiency in software and computing skills that concern database systems, data communications, systems analysis, and design. Graduates gain competence in identifying current and emerging information technologies that have strategic impact for business enterprise and where these technologies can be best implemented.

LEARN MORE ABOUT BOSTON UNIVERSITY’S ONLINE MASTER OF SCIENCE IN COMPUTER SCIENCE IN COMPUTER INFORMATION SYSTEMS WITH CONCENTRATION IN SECURITY 

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SAINT LEO UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:

An online Master’s of Cyber Security degree from Saint Leo University offers its graduates a complete education in the field of cyber security, ranging from computer and network security to cryptography to compliance and legal issues. The curriculum of the Master of Science in Cyber Security degree aligns with the standards set forth by the National Security Agency and is designed also to cover the requirements of the various professional certifications in the field. Students in this degree program are afforded the ability to study at their own pace through coursework delivered in a video format on CD-ROM. Students also interact with peers and professors via discussion board settings. This program equips its graduates for careers in the growing cyber security, information assurance and information security fields.

Campus Location: Saint Leo, Florida

Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges

Types of Aid: As of 2017, financial aid includes: federal and private/alternative loans, and numerous military and veterans’ benefits. Not all students qualify for financial aid and/or grants.

Acceptance and Graduation Rates:

  • Acceptance: 73%
  • Graduation: 45%

Admission Requirements:

  • Completed application
  • Current resume, demonstrating two or more years of progressively responsible professional work experience
  • Two professional recommendations
  • Statement of professional goals
  • Transcripts of undergraduate and graduate coursework

Sample Course Options:

  • Cyber Security Compliance and Legal Issues
  • Cloud Computing Security
  • System Security Risk Management

Degree Outcomes: This degree is designed to provide needed information for security and assurance professionals that will allow them to work in a wide range of cyber security occupations. This degree also equips students to engage in research in information security and assurance. Graduates from this program will be versed in the technical aspects of information security, database security, software applications and security and cryptography among many other technical fields.

LEARN MORE SAINT LEO UNIVERSITY’S MASTER OF SCIENCE IN CYBERSECURITY

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FLORIDA INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY

Program Standouts:

The Florida Institute of Technology offers a 100% online Master of Science in Information and Cybersecurity degree that seeks to address security needs affecting corporations, governments as well as military agencies. Designated a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Research by the National Security Agency and the US Department of Homeland Security, Florida Tech’s Master’s Degree in Information Assurance and Cyber Security was developed in partnership with the global security leader Harris Corp. Through this partnership, Florida Tech’s degree program offers cutting-edge and rigorous academic instruction and research that is accessible in an asynchronous class schedule format that allows students to access course content at any time day or night. Graduates from this degree program “will gain expert level knowledge on protecting and securing information from cyber intruders and will be able to recognize threats and vulnerable by studying complex attack models.”

Campus Location: Melbourne, Florida

Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges

Types of Aid: As of 2017, financial aid includes: federal and private/alternative loans, and numerous military and veterans’ benefits. Not all students qualify for financial aid and/or grants.

Acceptance and Graduation Rates:

  • Acceptance: 57%
  • Graduation: 57%

Admission Requirements:

  • Completed online application
  • Transcript request form

Sample Course Options:

  • Biometric Authentication Technologies
  • Data Mining for Cybersecurity
  • Cryptography and Information Hiding

Degree Outcomes: This degree program will have taught students how to recognize threats, vulnerabilities and security structures, as well as how to analyze attack models, forensics, operation processes and biometric technology. Graduates from this program will also have explored communications encryption, data mining and machine learning techniques as these methods are applied to cybersecurity scenarios.

LEARN MORE ABOUT FLORIDA INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY’S MASTER OF SCIENCE IN INFORMATION ASSURANCE AND CYBERSECURITY

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NORWICH UNIVERSITY ONLINE

Program Standouts:

Norwich University’s online Master of Science in Information Security and Assurance is oriented towards training working professionals in the many areas of information security in order to mold them into practitioners of cybersecurity and information assurance that can take the lead in their fields. This degree program features a state-of-the-art online learning platform that allows 24/7 access to course materials from anywhere in the world. Following an assignment schedule outlined by each course’s professor, students have continuous access to technical support throughout the course of the program. Corroborating the excellence of this online cybersecurity degree program, Norwich is designated by The National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense.

Campus Location: Northfield, Vermont

Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Commission on Institutions of Higher Education
Types of Aid: As of 2017, financial aid includes: federal and private/alternative loans, and numerous military and veterans’ benefits. Not all students qualify for financial aid and/or grants.

Acceptance and Graduation Rates:

  • Acceptance: 57%
  • Graduation 56%

Admission Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree from a regionally or nationally accredited US institution or an equivalent degree from a foreign institution
  • Completed application form
  • Resume, indicating any current industry certifications
  • Official transcript/s of undergraduate courses
  • Letter of intent
  • One letter of recommendation from a professional or academic contact

Program Specialization Options:

  • Computer Forensic Investigation/Incident Response Team Management Concentration
  • Critical Infrastructure Protection and Cybercrime Concentration
  • Cyber Law and International Perspectives on Cyberspace Concentration
  • Project Management Concentration
  • Vulnerability Management Concentration

Degree Outcomes: This degree program blends the managerial and technical aspects of information security/assurance program so that its graduates are able to develop skills required to protect information. This degree will have allowed students to work with NBCUniversal on unique information security and assurance materials projects. This degree provides graduates with courses that meet the academic quality and excellent standards required in the cyber security industry.

LEARN MORE ABOUT NORWICH UNIVERSITY ONLINE’S MASTER OF SCIENCE IN INFORMATION SECURITY AND ASSURANCE

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BRANDEIS UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:

The Brandeis University online Master of Science in Information Security Leadership is designed to meet the security needs of the increasing use of cloud computing, mobile devices and web-based applications. Through small classes with an average size of 12 students, each graduate student will be able to receive personal instruction and attention from faculty and practitioners in the field of cyber security. The quality of education this degree offers is very high because courses are taught exclusively by faculty who are experts in their field, and faculty members continuously collaborate with trained instructional designers in order to create and update courses, according to the latest and most effective online learning practices.

Campus Location: Waltham, Massachusetts

Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Commission on Institutions of Higher Education

Types of Aid: As of 2017, financial aid includes: federal and private/alternative loans, and numerous military and veterans’ benefits, as well as possible employer discounts. Not all students qualify for financial aid and/or grants.

Acceptance and Graduation Rates:

  • Acceptance: 34%
  • Graduation: 86%

Admission Requirements:

  • An undergraduate degree in a technical field such as computer science or software engineering the focus areas in data communications, TCP/IP protocol suite, networking devices, and a programming or scripting language, OR
  • An undergraduate degree in a technical field with work experience
  • Completed application
  • Resume or CV
  • Statement of goals
  • Letter of recommendation

Sample Course Options:

  • Foundations of Information Security
  • Principal Computer Incident Response and Investigation
  • Leading Security in Complex Organizations
  • Applied Cryptography and Identity Management

Degree Outcomes: Graduates from this program will have developed a business case for investing in security and risk management. They will be able to inform and influence senior executives regarding such investments. They will be able to oversee the planning, acquisition and development of secure information infrastructures. They will be able to assess security policies and regulatory requirements, balancing complex systems with organizational objectives.

LEARN MORE ABOUT THE BRANDEIS UNIVERSITY ONLINE MASTER OF SCIENCE IN INFORMATION SECURITY LEADERSHIP 

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NORTHEASTERN UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:

Northeastern University’s online Master of Science in Information Assurance and Cyber Security offers an interdisciplinary degree program that instructs students in information technology as well as physical security on the essential principles from psychology, criminology, law, and business. This interdisciplinary methodology is meant to better integrate the various fields of science into matters pertaining to cyber security. Practitioners, therefore, that graduate from Northeastern University’s degree program arguably are given a more well-rounded and adaptable information technology education. This degree program is carried out entirely online through weekly assignments and readings, and is tailored to the needs and interests of each individual student. Course material can be accessed 24/7, and students and instructors collaborate via discussion board and email.

Campus Location: Boston, Massachusetts

Accreditation: New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Commission on Institutions of Higher Education

Types of Aid: As of 2017, financial aid includes: federal and private/alternative loans, and numerous military and veterans’ benefits. Not all students qualify for financial aid and/or grants.

Acceptance and Graduation Rates:

  • Acceptance: 28%
  • Graduation: 84%

Admission Requirements:

  • Completed online application form
  • Three confidential letters of recommendation
  • Unofficial transcripts: required to be uploaded to the online application
  • Recent professional resume listing responsibilities of each position
  • Written statements of purpose, career orientation, and expected outcomes and benefits from the program

Sample Course Options:

  • Applied Cryptography
  • Information Systems Forensics
  • Terrorism and International Crime

Degree Outcomes: This degree provides students with an interdisciplinary knowledge of cyber security and the social sciences, law, criminology and management. Students will learn how to assess and manage information security risks as well as present recommendations to management.

LEARN MORE ABOUT NORTHEASTERN UNIVERSITY’S ONLINE MASTER OF SCIENCE IN INFOMRATION ASSURANCE AND CYBER SECURITY 

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NORTHWESTERN UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:

Northwestern University’s Master of Science in Information Systems Security is a specialization within the university’s broader Information Studies Degree program. Northwestern University admissions is very competitive, but once accepted, graduate students have the advantage of studying at a world-class research university. This degree focuses upon the knowledge and skills needed for security system design and for the protection of the corporate data in accordance with commerce and privacy regulations. The presentation of courses is cloud-based but prioritizes simplicity, ease of use and modern design. The system is easily integrated with Google Docs, Google Calendar, Twitter and RSS.

Campus Location: Evanston, Illinois

Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, the Higher Learning Commission

Types of Aid: As of 2017, financial aid includes: federal and private/alternative loans, private scholarships. Not all students qualify for financial aid and/or grants.

Acceptance and Graduation Rates:

  • Acceptance: 13%
  • Graduation: 93%

Admission Requirements:

  • Bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution
  • Strong undergraduate record
  • Three to five years of professional experience is recommended but not required
  • GRE is not required, but strong scores increase chances of admission
  • Completed online application
  • Official transcripts from all previously attended colleges and universities
  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Statement of purpose
  • Current resume or curriculum vitae

Sample Course Options:

  • Project Management Concepts
  • Fundamentals of Network Security
  • Business Continuity and Disaster Recovery Techniques
  • Management of Information Security

Degree Outcomes: Possessors of this degree will have learned how to secure network systems including LAN, WAN, and wireless networks. This degree also will have provided students with knowledge of managerial and administrative aspects of security, including vulnerabilities, countermeasures, network security architectures, policy development and legal/regulatory issues, risk management and disaster recovery planning.

LEARN MORE ABOUT NORTHWESTERN UNIVERSITY’S ONLINE MASTER OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY WILL INFORMATION SYSTEMS SECURITY SPECIALIZATION 

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PENN STATE WORLD CAMPUS

Program Standouts:

The Master of Professional Studies in Information Sciences – Cybersecurity and Information Assurance Degree offered at Penn State World Campus is an online degree that gives students flexibility combined with a course curriculum that incorporates and simulates real-world business issues. Offered through Penn State’s College of Information and Sciences and Technology, which is a leader in information schools, the degree takes a multidimensional perspective on cyber-domains and uses a socio-technical approach to generate solutions to complex problems. The MPS in IS program consists of basic courses combined with specific cybersecurity and information assurance classes. Penn State has been designated a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education by the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security. Penn State has been recognized by U.S. News & World Report in their category for Best Online Programs in Grad Computer Information Technology for 2017.

Campus Location: University Park, Pennsylvania

Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education

Types of Aid: As of 2017, financial aid includes: federal loans, institutional loans, or scholarships. Not all students qualify for financial aid and/or grants.

Acceptance and Graduation Rates:

  • Acceptance: 61%
  • Graduation: 40%

Admission Requirements:

  • Students will be considered from any discipline. However students will be especially considered with a bachelor’s degree in:
    • A technical or scientific discipline including applied mathematics, computer information systems, computer science, information sciences, engineering, statistics or a related field.
      Students will be considered with a sufficient background gained through work experience or professional training in information technologies such as:

      • Networks
      • Web services
      • Database development
      • Sample Courses:
      • Web Fundamentals
      • Network Management and Security
      • Web Security and Privacy
      • Computer and Cyber Forensics
      • Crisis, Disaster, and Risk Management

Degree Outcomes: An information science professional with a master’s degree can enter the marketplace with a distinct advantage. Acquiring the degree can provide professionals with more opportunities to earn a higher salary than other professionals in the same field.

LEARN MORE ABOUT PENN STATE WORLD CAMPUS’S MASTER OF PROFESSIONAL STUDIES IN INFORMATION SCIENCES – CYBERSECURITY AND INFORMATION ASSURANCE DEGREE

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LIBERTY UNIVERSITY ONLINE

Program Standouts:

Liberty University’s Master of Science in Cyber Security instructs students in advanced defense of computer and network security, giving them the tools to combat threats and create systems to withstand future attacks.  The courses offered for this degree provide students with the ability to prevent, detect, counter and recover from security vulnerabilities and cyber incidents. Students study to be able to utilize the practices, standards and tools that are related to an organization’s cyberspace infrastructure. The skills learned will be enhanced by the numerous practical hands-on lab exercises in the courses which allow students to develop their ability to cope in realistic scenarios and prepare for further enhancement of their expertise by further education.

Campus Location: Lynchburg, Virginia

Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges

Types of Aid: As of 2017, financial aid includes: federal loans, scholarships and institutional loans. Not all students qualify for financial aid and/or grants.

Acceptance and Graduation Rates:

  • Acceptance: 22%
  • Graduation: 47% role

Admission Requirements:

  • Graduate Application
  • College transcripts
  • Accredited bachelor’s degree in one of the following:
    • Information Systems
    • Information Systems Management
    • Information Technology
    • Management Information Systems
    • Computer Science
    • Computer Programming
  • 3.0 GPA

Sample Courses:

  • Overview of Computer Security
  • Digital Forensics
  • Ethics, Legal Issues & Policy

Degree Outcomes: “You will be prepared to work as a ‘cyber warrior’ in the government and military arenas or as security professionals in industry.”

LEARN MORE ABOUT LIBERTY UNIVERSITY ONLINE’S MASTER OF SCIENCE IN CYBER SECURITY DEGREE

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NOVA SOUTHEASTERN UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:

The Master of Science in Information Assurance & Cybersecurity is offered through Nova Southeastern University’s College of Engineering and Computing. The program is offered online and on-campus in South Florida for those who are interested in learning to design, program, enhance and develop cyber security technologies that secure information and systems. The security program is recognized by the U.S. National Security Agency (NSA) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Because of this recognition federal agencies may sponsor civilian and military personnel to take the school’s certified graduate courses.

Campus Location: Fort Lauderdale, Florida

Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges

Types of Aid: As of 2017, financial aid includes: federal loans, or scholarships. Not all students qualify for financial aid and/or grants.

Acceptance and Graduation Rates:

  • Acceptance: 59%
  • Graduation: 49%

Admission Requirements:

  • Undergraduate majors in:
    • Computer Science
    • Information Systems
    • Information Technology
    • Engineering
    • Mathematics
    • Physics
  • Knowledge of data structures and algorithms, assembly language and computer architecture, structured programming in a modern high-level language, and discrete mathematics
  • Students without an adequate background may be required to take further 500-level graduate courses during the first two terms of the student’s program. Courses at the 500 level, when required must be completed prior to taking courses at the 600 level and must be completed with a grade of ‘B’ or higher.

Program Options:

  • Individuals may apply to take one or more certified information security courses as non-degree students.

Degree Outcomes:

A graduate with an M.S. in Information Security will have the ability to:

  • Describe the primary types of access control and potential applications of each
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the fundamental concepts, technologies and challenges of telecommunication and network security
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the key concepts of information security governance and risk management
  • Possess an understanding of the major cryptographic algorithms used in information security
  • Understand the common techniques to achieve effective physical security of protected information systems
LEARN MORE ABOUT NOVA SOUTHEASTERN UNIVERSITY’S MASTER OF SCIENCE IN INFORMATION ASSURANCE AND CYBERSECURITY DEGREE PROGRAM

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MARYVILLE UNIVERSITY

Program Standouts:

Maryville University’s M.S. in Cyber Security allows students to elevate their technical abilities in the areas of cloud security, wireless network security and mobile device hacking. As a part of the John E. Simon School of Business, the program allows students to graduate in as few as 18 months and to complete coursework 100% online on any device. The Maryville Virtual Lab is available to students as a professional training ground with a faculty that is “dedicated to the profession, not publishing.”

Campus Location: St. Louis, Missouri

Accreditation: North Central Association of Colleges and Schools, The Higher Learning Commission. Maryville University’s John E. Simon School of Business is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs.

Types of Aid: As of 2017, financial aid includes: federal grants and loans, institutional grants or scholarships and state/local government grants and scholarships. Not all students qualify for financial aid and/or grants.

Acceptance and Graduation Rates:

  • Acceptance: 72%
  • Graduation: 71%

Admission Requirements:

  • Application
  • Personal letter explaining qualifications for graduate work
  • Applicants with a cumulative undergraduate grade point average of 2.5 on a 4.0 scale may apply for conditional acceptance

Sample Courses:

  • Controls for Effective Cyber Defense
  • Cryptography and Network Security
  • Mobile Device Hacking and Forensics
  • Designing and Implementing Cloud Security

Degree Outcomes: The cyber security master’s degree offers a robust curriculum of specialty courses that will boost the student’s technical skill set. From studying drones to wireless networks security to digital forensics, professionals will have a specialized expertise that the industry is seeking.

LEARN MORE ABOUT MARYVILLE UNIVERSITY’S ONLINE MASTER’S DEGREE IN CYBER SECURITY