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Best Cyber Security Schools: The Top Colleges and Universities for Cyber Security Programs

Sana Uqaili - June 19, 2022

The best schools for cyber security prepare students to protect government and private institutions from cyber attacks and network malfunctions. Cyber security is an important field in our increasingly online world. In 2020 alone there were over 150 million exposed records from data breaches , accordingly to Statista.

In this article, you will learn about the best cyber security schools as well as cyber security degree and certificate options at the undergraduate level and the graduate level. We’ll also cover cyber security careers and salaries for graduates with different kinds of degrees. Learn more about the best cyber security universities and more below.

Best Cyber Security College and University Rankings: Top 10 Cyber Security Schools at a Glance

School State Formats Available US News National Ranking
Bellevue University NE Online, in-person #119-157 [Regional Universities Midwest]
Carnegie Mellon University PA Online, in-person #25
ECPI University VA Online, in-person #104-137 [Regional Universities South]
George Mason University VA In-person #148
Georgia Institute of Technology GA Online, in-person #38
Liberty University VA Online, in-person #299-391
Miami University OH In-person #103
Purdue University IN Online, in-person #49
University of Arizona AZ Online #103
University of Phoenix AZ Online #299-391

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Cyber Security School Rankings: Best Cyber Security Colleges and Universities

The field of cyber security is all about protecting computer systems, networks, and data. You’ll need a degree or certificate to work in this technical field. Here is a list of the best cyber security universities and colleges with top programs to get you started.


Bellevue University

Graduation Rate: 23%

Bellevue University is a private university in Nebraska that was originally known as Bellevue College when it opened its doors in 1966. Bellevue has over 11,600 undergraduate and graduate students enrolled, many of whom are adult or non-traditional learners over the age of 25.

Bellevue University Overview

  • School Type: Private, non-profit
  • Acceptance Rate: Open admissions
  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission
  • Degrees Offered: Associate, Bachelor’s, Master’s, PhD
  • US News Ranking: #119-157 (Regional Universities Midwest)
  • Times Higher Education Ranking: N/A

Best Bellevue University Cyber Security Programs

  • Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity. This 127-credit program allows you to attend classes online or on campus, either part-time or full-time. This degree is designed for complete beginners, so you don’t need any prior coursework or experience in computer science. You can take classes in any order.
  • Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity (accelerated cohort). The accelerated program is a 100 percent online version of the standard BS in Cybersecurity. For this program, students are required to have an associate degree , and they will follow a predetermined sequence of courses with a group of peers.
  • Master of Science in Cybersecurity . Bellevue’s MS in Cybersecurity is a 36-credit program with 27 credit hours in required core courses and nine credit hours in elective courses. The GRE is not required to apply for this graduate-level degree program.
  • Master of Science in Cybersecurity (accelerated cohort). The accelerated cohort track follows the same curriculum as the traditional master’s degree. However, in the accelerated cohort, students join a peer group to complete two courses per session over six sessions. Students in the accelerated program are required to have three or more years of experience in information technology jobs .

Bellevue University Cyber Security Key Takeaway

Bellevue University has been designated as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education by the National Security Agency (NSA) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS). This gives students access to grants and scholarships through the Department of Defense.


Carnegie Mellon University

Graduation Rate: 93%

Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) is a Pittsburgh-based university that began awarding four-year degrees in 1912 as the Carnegie Institute of Technology. It has seven colleges and schools in the fields of engineering, fine arts, business, information systems, science, humanities, and public policy. CMU has locations around the world, including Qatar, Italy, and Silicon Valley.

Carnegie Mellon University Overview

  • School Type: Private, non-profit
  • Acceptance Rate: 14%
  • Accreditation: Middle States Commission on Higher Education
  • Degrees Offered: Bachelor’s, Master’s, PhD
  • US News Ranking: #25
  • Times Higher Education Ranking: #28

Best Carnegie Mellon University Cyber Security Programs

  • Master of Science in Information Security. In this program, students will cover topics such as network security, applied cryptography, and foundations of privacy. There are four pathways to complete this master’s degree ranging from 123 to 165 credit hours. Depending on the pathway, students may need to complete a master’s thesis and/or internship.
  • Master of Science in Information Security Policy & Management. This master’s degree has an accelerated option and a dual-degree option, where students can earn an MS and a law degree in four years.
  • Master of Science in Information Technology. This online program has an Information Security & Assurance track with classes you can take on your own schedule. You’ll need to complete 60 credit units in core courses and 84 credit units in elective courses.
  • Master of Science in Information Technology-Information Security. Students in this program divide their time between Carnegie Mellon's Pittsburgh and Silicon Valley campuses. It can be completed in three to four semesters, and there are four degree options ranging from 123 to 165 credit units. This program requires a capstone project.

Carnegie Mellon University Cyber Security Key Takeaway

Carnegie Mellon has strong relationships with large tech companies and new startups, making it easy for students to find internships and jobs. The NSA and DHS have designated the university as a Center of Academic Excellence (CAE) for government job possibilities.


ECPI University

Graduation Rate: 42%

ECPI University was founded in 1966 in Norfolk, Virginia, and today it has locations in five states across the southeast US. It began offering accelerated computer science and programming courses, but gradually included other majors like electrical engineering technology, medical sciences, healthcare, and food science.

ECPI University Overview

  • School Type: Private, for-profit
  • Acceptance Rate: 82%
  • Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges
  • Degrees Offered: Associate, Bachelor’s, Master’s
  • US News Ranking: #104-137 (Regional Universities South)
  • Times Higher Education Ranking: N/A

Best ECPI University Cyber Security Programs

  • Associate of Science in Computer and Information Science with a Concentration in Cyber and Information Security Technology. This in-person or online associate degree can be completed in 1.5 years and covers 70 credits in core computer science courses, arts and sciences courses, and cyber and network security concentration courses.
  • Bachelor of Science in Computer and Information Science with a Major in Cyber and Information Security Technology. This is a 120-credit bachelor’s degree program that you can complete in 2.5 years, unlike a typical four-year degree. This degree can be completed in person or online.
  • Master of Science in Cybersecurity . With this year-round, accelerated master's program, you can graduate in 16 months. Students can choose from concentrations in Cyber Operations or Cybersecurity Policy. This 36-credit degree is available in person and online.

ECPI University Cyber Security Key Takeaway

ECPI provides in-person and online, accelerated cyber security degrees. You can earn an associate, bachelor’s, and master’s degree in just four years.


George Mason University

Graduation Rate: 70%

Located in Fairfax County, Virginia, George Mason University (GMU) is a public research university. GMU was first established as a college in 1949 as a northern extension of the University of Virginia. It is a large school with around 39,000 students enrolled.

George Mason University Overview

  • School Type: Public
  • Acceptance Rate: 91%
  • Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges
  • Degrees Offered: Bachelor’s, Master’s, PhD
  • US News Ranking: #148
  • Times Higher Education Ranking: #251–300

Best George Mason University Cyber Security Programs

  • Bachelor of Applied Science with Cybersecurity Concentration. For students who have already completed an Associate of Applied Science degree, the BAS degree provides is unique option aimed at mature students. It’s a four-year degree with 120 to 126 total credits.
  • Bachelor of Science in Cyber Security Engineering. This is a four-year, 126-credit degree that teaches students to design resilient systems that guard computer and network systems. Students have the option of continuing their education in an accelerated MS after completing the BS program.
  • Master of Science in Cyber Security Engineering. This degree has a 30-credit curriculum, and students can choose an additional concentration in secure advanced manufacturing and supply chains. Graduate students who already have a Bachelor’s Degree in Cyber Security can earn this degree in only one year as an accelerated degree.

George Mason University Cyber Security Key Takeaway

GMU's location in the Washington, DC metro region gives students the opportunity to get an intimate look at cyber security careers in the federal government.


Georgia Institute of Technology

Graduation Rate: 92%

Georgia Institute of Technology (Georgia Tech) is an Atlanta-based public research university. It was founded in 1885 and now features six colleges with over 30 departments. The school focuses on science and technology. It is known for its computer science, engineering, and business degrees.

Georgia Institute of Technology Overview

  • School Type: Public
  • Acceptance Rate: 16%
  • Accreditation: Council on Occupational Education
  • Degrees Offered: Bachelor’s, Master’s, PhD
  • US News Ranking: #38
  • Times Higher Education Ranking: #45

Best Georgia Institute of Technology Cyber Security Programs

  • Master of Science in Cybersecurity. This 32-credit, on-campus program is offered with a specialization in technology through the School of Computer Science, a cyber-physical and energy systems specialization through the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering, or a policy specialization through the School of Public Policy.
  • Online Master of Science in Cybersecurity. This completely online degree program offers the same training in energy systems, information security, and public policy as is available for on-campus degree students. As a working professional, you can graduate from this program in two to three years without having to put your career on hold.

Georgia Institute of Technology Cyber Security Key Takeaway

Georgia Tech is tied for second place in the best undergraduate cybersecurity programs ranking by US News & World Report.


Liberty University

Graduation Rate: 62%

Liberty University is a private institution in Lynchburg, VA.  It is one of the world's largest Christian schools. It has a total enrollment of over 100,000 students in over 7,000 programs, and most of its students study online.

Liberty University Overview

  • School Type: Private, non-profit
  • Acceptance Rate: 99%
  • Accreditation: Southern Association of Colleges and Schools, Commission on Colleges
  • Degrees Offered: Associate, Bachelor’s, Master’s, PhD
  • US News Ranking: #299-391
  • Times Higher Education Ranking: N/A

Best Liberty University Cyber Security Programs

  • Bachelor of Science in Computer Science with Cybersecurity Cognate. This program is a traditional four-year degree with a total of 120 credits. This program is for on-campus students.
  • Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Science Cyber Security. This is a 100 percent online degree that the average student completes in three and a half years. It requires 121 credit hours, and prospective students can transfer up to 75 percent of credits from previous education.
  • Master of Science in Cyber Security . This 36-credit degree is for in-person students. On-campus students can access the Center for Cyber Excellence to practice their cyber defense skills.
  • Online Master’s in Cyber Security. In this 100 percent online program, students learn sophisticated computer and network security, how to handle current threats, and how to strengthen systems to withstand future attacks. It takes one and a half years on average to complete the 36-credit-hour degree.

Liberty University Cyber Security Key Takeaway

Liberty University has online programs for Christian students.


Miami University

Graduation Rate: 83%

Miami University is a public research university located in Hamilton, Ohio. It was founded in 1809, making it the 10th-oldest public university in the US. Miami University's eight schools and colleges provide over 120 undergraduate and graduate degree programs.

Miami University Overview

  • School Type: Public
  • Acceptance Rate: 89%
  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission
  • Degrees Offered: Bachelor’s, Master’s, PhD
  • US News Ranking: #103
  • Times Higher Education Ranking: N/A

Best Miami University Cyber Security Programs

  • Bachelor of Science in Business with Information and Cybersecurity Management Major. In this four-year on-campus program, you will learn how to build, control, and exploit an organization's information and data resources. Students can choose a concentration in business analytics or information systems.

Miami University Cyber Security Key Takeaway

Miami University data shows that 96% of graduates are employed or enrolled in a new degree within one year of graduating.


Purdue University

Graduation Rate: 83%

The main campus of Purdue University is part of the larger Purdue University System in Indiana. The Purdue University System has over 200 undergraduate majors and more than 160 graduate programs, including PhD degrees .

Purdue University Overview

  • School Type: Public
  • Acceptance Rate: 69%
  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission
  • Degrees Offered: Bachelor’s, Master’s, PhD
  • US News Ranking: #49
  • Times Higher Education Ranking: #105

Best Purdue University Cyber Security Programs

  • Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity . This is a 120-credit, four-year program for on-campus students. Students have the opportunity to complete cyber security internships and prepare for a job in the field.
  • Online Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity. This online program takes an average of four years to complete. Students take 180 credits of coursework in 10-week courses. Each course requires 15 to 18 hours of work per week.

Purdue University Cyber Security Key Takeaway

Purdue’s cyber security programs are accredited by the Computing Accreditation Commission of the Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology (ABET).


University of Arizona

Graduation Rate: 64%

The University of Arizona was established in 1885. This public institution is affiliated with both the Association of American Universities and the Universities Research Association. The university has 46,932 students enrolled, consistingof 36,503 undergraduate students and 10,429 graduate students.

University of Arizona Overview

  • School Type: Public
  • Acceptance Rate: 87%
  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission
  • Degrees Offered: Bachelor’s, Master’s, PhD
  • US News Ranking: #103
  • Times Higher Education Ranking: #150

Best University of Arizona Cyber Security Programs

  • Undergraduate Certificate in Cybersecurity. This is an 18-credit online program that covers both the defense and offense of the cyber world. Students get hands-on experience using the state-of-the-art Cyber Virtual Learning Environment.
  • Bachelor of Applied Science Cyber Operations. This is an online bachelor’s degree where students take 120 credits, 60 of which can be transferred from a regionally accredited university. Students can choose a track in engineering, defense and forensics, or cyber law and policy.
  • Bachelor of Science in Cyber & Data Security Technology. This program is offered by the Forbes School of Business and Technology. This is an online, four-year program with 120 required credits. Courses are taken one at a time every five to six weeks.
  • Master’s in Cybersecurity. This 100 percent online master’s degree program requires 33-credits of coursework. Students take 12 credits of core courses and take 21 credits in  information systems or physical systems.

University of Arizona Cyber Security Key Takeaway

The University of Arizona offers multiple online degree programs in the field of cyber security that are affiliated with the National Security Agency. They offer undergraduate and graduate degrees and certificates in nine program areas like business, technology, and criminal justice.


University of Phoenix

Graduation Rate: 14%

University of Phoenix is an Arizona-based, for-profit university. The university has an open admissions policy, which means it accepts almost all applicants to its academic programs.

University of Phoenix Overview

  • School Type: Private, for-profit
  • Acceptance Rate: Open admissions
  • Accreditation: Higher Learning Commission
  • Degrees Offered: Associate, Bachelor’s, Master’s, PhD
  • US News Ranking: #299-391
  • Times Higher Education Ranking: N/A

Best University of Phoenix Cyber Security Programs

  • Undergraduate Advanced Cybersecurity Certificate. This certificate program takes only seven months to cover 17 credits. Students can transfer these credits to a BS in Information technology or a BS in Computer Science at the University of Phoenix.
  • Undergraduate Cybersecurity Digital Forensics Certificate. In this seven-month, 18-credit program, you will learn about computer forensics, security risks, and insider threats. The digital forensics certificate is focused on discovering what happened after a cyber attack, while other cyber security programs focus on preventing attacks.
  • Associate of Science in Cybersecurity. The goal of this two-year online degree requires students to complete a total of 63 credits in seven core courses, nine general education courses, and five elective courses.
  • Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity. This 120-credit degree takes around four years to complete and is only offered online. Students take one five-week course at a time.
  • Master of Science in Cybersecurity. This program takes approximately 20 months to complete 39 credits online. To make it easier to juggle school and work, you'll only take one six-week course at a time.

University of Phoenix Cyber Security Key Takeaway

At the University of Phoenix, students take one class at a time in five to six-week sessions.

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The Best Schools for Cyber Security: Types of College Degrees and University Programs Offered

Certificates and degrees are available at the undergraduate or graduate levels. An associate degree and bachelor’s degree are both undergraduate-level programs, and a master’s degree and doctoral degree, or PhD, are graduate-level programs. Certificates can be offered as undergraduate certificates or graduate certificates.

In the following sections, we describe what students can expect from different cyber security programs at various educational levels. We will also include details about program durations, admission requirements, and commonly required courses.


Cyber Security Community College Certificate

One type of cyber security undergraduate program is a community college certificate. Certificates are shorter programs that require fewer credits and have lower tuition costs. Earning a certificate is a great option for potential students who are looking to land an entry-level position, like a network systems administrator, network security technician , or IT security analyst.

A certificate can also help more advanced tech professionals who already have a degree in a different discipline, and want to switch careers to cyber security . Credit hours earned during a certificate can also usually be applied toward a full degree later on.


Cyber Security Associate Degree

Cyber security associate degrees are 60-credit programs that take one and a half to two years to finish. Some of the most common courses are database management systems, network security, and computer networking. At the associate level, students learn to identify and mitigate standard cyber hazards.

An associate degree can be an Associate of Arts (AA), an Associate of Science (AS), or an Associate of Applied Science (AAS). Both an AA and AS degree cover the same material as the first two years of a four-year bachelor's degree, but an AAS usually covers more technical skills.

Associate degrees are a type of cyber security undergraduate degree, and students can follow in-person or online courses. You can find these types of degrees at the best cyber security colleges or universities . The admission requirements for most associate degrees are a GED or high school diploma.


Cyber Security Bachelor’s Degree

Cyber security bachelor's degree programs generally take four years to complete, and most programs require students to take around 120 credits. Accelerated options are usually available for online students and sometimes available for on-campus students.

The two main types of bachelor’s degrees are a Bachelor of Arts (AS) and a Bachelor of Science (BS) . There is a lot of overlap between the two degrees, however, a BS focuses on STEM subjects within the major. On the other hand, a BA is more well-rounded and includes classes from many different fields.

The most common courses in this cyber security undergraduate degree are security risk management, visual and cloud system security, and systems analysis. With a Bachelor’s Degree in Cyber Security, you can become an information security analyst , security engineer, or security architect.


Cyber Security Master’s Degree

A Master’s Degree in Cyber Security takes one to two years to complete and consists of 30-36 credit hours of coursework. There are a number of core courses, including systems analysis, risk management, information assurance, and cyber security management. A thesis or capstone project may be required as part of a cyber security master's degree program.

One of the most common requirements for admission is a bachelor's degree along with letters of recommendation and transcripts that demonstrates academic excellence. Some schools require GRE scores, and some applicants may be required to take prerequisite computer science courses, depending on their prior education and experience.

Graduates of cyber security master's programs are well-prepared to work in mid-level and senior jobs. You could work as a security manager, a security director, or an information security consultant.


Cyber Security Graduate Certificate

A graduate certificate is a short program offered by many colleges and universities to give students an opportunity to add graduate-level education to their resume without committing to a full degree. To earn a Graduate Certificate in Cyber Security, you’ll take 18 to 20 credits over a period of six to eight months.

Graduate certificate courses are focused on a core specialty or technical field in the cyber security world. By earning a graduate certificate, students with a non-cyber security degree can transition into roles in cyber security.


Cyber Security Doctorate

A PhD in Cyber Security requires 48 to 75 credits over the course of four to five years. Graduate students pursuing a doctorate degree in the field of cyber security will also need to pass a comprehensive exam, write a dissertation, and defend their dissertation.

A cyber security PhD trains students to design research projects and create new knowledge. Cyber security PhD graduates can go on to work as professors or advanced researchers in cyber defense research.

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Best Cyber Security Schools: Other Cyber Security University Rankings

Previously, we discussed the best cyber security schools overall according to university rankings. Now, we’ll cover the best cyber security schools for different kinds of degrees and different learning formats.

Best Online Cyber Security Schools

  1. Davenport University. Both the National Security Agency (NSA) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) have designated Davenport’s cyber security program as a national center of academic excellence in cyber defense education. Davenport provides graduates with financial and career development resources if they don’t get a job within six months of graduating.
  2. Maryville University. This university provides online learning programs through its Canvas platform. Students at Maryville University can take advantage of schedule and program flexibility as well as one-on-one communication with academic advisors.
  3. University of North Dakota. The online Bachelor’s Degree in Cyber Security at the University of North Dakota uses an interdisciplinary curriculum from electrical engineering and computer science background.

Best Community Colleges for Cyber Security

  1. Casper College. This community college provides a variety of undergraduate programs in cyber security like an Associate of Science, an Associate of Applied Science, and a certificate. The mode of study can be online or in-person depending on the program.
  2. Georgia Military College. Cyber security students at Georgia Military College (GMC) are prepared for a career in cyber security after graduation or they can transfer credits from an associate degree to a bachelor’s degree program. Students at GMC are eligible for financial aid, and military service is not required for admission.
  3. Western Nebraska Community College. The online cyber security programs at Western Nebraska Community College prepare undergraduate students for a Bachelor’s Degree in Cybersecurity. Students can attend classes in person or online.

Best Undergraduate Schools for Cyber Security

  1. Carnegie Mellon University. The Information Networking Institute at Carnegie Mellon University offers a wide range of cyber security and IT degrees. This private university is located in Pittsburgh, an emerging tech city.
  2. George Washington University. The NSA and DHS have declared George Washington University a Center of Academic Excellence for Information Assurance (CAEIA). George Washington University has several educational options available in cyber security at the undergraduate, graduate, and professional levels.
  3. Massachusetts Institute of Technology. This private research university has always shaped the technological landscape due to its research expertise. The cyber security degrees at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology are cutting-edge programs in systems security.

Best Graduate Schools for Cyber Security

  1. Johns Hopkins University. Students at John Hopkins University are expected to select a cyber security concentration in analysis, assured autonomy, networks, or systems when pursuing a master’s degree. In addition, they have the option of doing an independent study on their own time.
  2. University of Southern California. Information systems security is the focus of the University of Southern California’s MS in Cyber Security program. Students will study computer systems assurance, policies for information security, and security and privacy.
  3. Florida State University. As part of its Master’s Degree in Computer Science , Florida State University offers an elective or optional major in cyber security. Courses include active and passive defenses and data and computer communications.

Best Cyber Security Schools With Dual Degree Programs

  1. The University of Arizona | MS in Management Information Systems and MS in Cybersecurity. This degree is a great choice for people who want to transition from a non-IT-related role to one in cyber security, without any prior technical knowledge. It’s a completely online program, and remote learners can complete both degrees in eight semesters.
  2. Marymount University | MS in Information Technology and MS in Cyber Security. This dual degree program gives students a comprehensive understanding of computer systems and how to protect them. Students who graduate with a dual degree in cyber security and information technology are well-equipped to work in both technical and managerial roles.
  3. Eastern Illinois University | MBA and MS in Cybersecurity. Potential students who want to learn about business as well as cyber security can pursue both interests at the same time through this dual degree program. The MBA prepares students for management and leadership roles, while the MS covers key cyber security topics.

Best Schools With Accelerated Cyber Security Programs

  1. Lindenwood University | BS in Cyber Security. This program requires a minimum of 63-semester credits of major coursework in addition to the minimum requirements for graduation. With the help of a faculty advisor, each student will select a sequence of courses to complete their degree.
  2. Bellevue University | BS in Cybersecurity (Accelerated Cohort). Students need an associate degree to enroll in this accelerated degree program, but they do not need any prior education or experience in technology.
  3. Purdue University | BS in Cybersecurity (Online ExcelTrack). If you already have a bachelor’s degree and three years of relevant work experience, you can get credit for the knowledge you already have. At the start of this program, students take a test that determines which classes they don’t have to take.

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Is Graduate School for Cyber Security Worth It?

Yes, it is worth going to graduate school for a cyber security degree because there is a huge demand for cyber security professionals. You will be able to earn higher salaries and access better career options with a graduate-level degree.

What Jobs Can You Do With a Cyber Security Degree?

The jobs you can do with a cyber security degree are information security analyst, IT security administrator, and security engineer. A cyber security degree prepares students for profitable employment in computer and information technology. Most graduates in cyber security earn more than the average worker.

How Much Can I Earn With a Degree in Cyber Security?

Cyber security specialists have higher salaries than their peers with an equivalent degree. According to Payscale, an associate degree holder earns an average annual salary of around $52,000, a bachelor’s degree holder earns $73,000, and a master’s degree holder earns an annual wage of $90,000.

Highest-Paying Cyber Security Careers

Profession Minimum Education Average Salary
Chief Information Security Officer Master’s degree $168,687
Computer and Information Systems Manager Bachelor’s degree $159,010
Computer and Information Research Scientist Master’s degree $131,490
Security Architect Bachelor’s degree $128,414
Computer Network Architect Bachelor’s degree $120,520
Information Security Analyst Bachelor’s degree $102,600
Computer Systems Analyst Bachelor’s degree $99,270
Cyber Security Engineer Bachelor’s degree $97,766
Computer Programmer Bachelor’s degree $93,000
Network and Computer Systems Administrator Bachelor’s degree $80,600

Best Jobs With a Cyber Security Degree

The best jobs with a cyber security degree are management positions in information security. Most of the jobs require a bachelor’s degree, while some of the higher-paid positions also require a master’s degree.


Best Cyber Security Associate Degree Jobs

The best cyber security associate degree jobs are entry-level jobs in the cyber security field. These positions handle day-to-day technical support through roles like cyber security analyst, information technology (IT) support specialist, systems analyst, and vendor manager.

Top Cyber Security Careers With an Associate Degree


Best Cyber Security Bachelor’s Degree Jobs

Most cyber security jobs require a Bachelor’s Degree in Cyber Security, IT, or a related field. These jobs need a higher level of technical skill, and position responsibilities include more planning and designing tasks than associate degree jobs.

Top Cyber Security Careers With a Bachelor’s Degree


Best Cyber Security Master’s Degree Jobs

More advanced jobs will become available to you once you earn a master’s degree. These are cyber security expert roles where workers manage teams of people or complex cyber security projects.

Top Cyber Security Careers With a Master’s Degree


Best Cyber Security Doctorate Jobs

Cyber security PhD degree holders are qualified for academic research jobs and leadership roles in companies or government agencies. Jobs that require a PhD will make use of your advanced training, and you’ll be asked to do high-level problem solving.

Top Cyber Security Careers With a PhD


Best Internships for Cyber Security Students

Internships for cyber security students can be paid internships, unpaid credit-based internships, or externships. The Department of Homeland Security, the National Security Agency, and other government agencies have cyber security internships, as do private companies like Meta, IBM, and Lockheed Martin.

Top Cyber Security Internships

  • US Department of Energy Jefferson Lab Cyber Security Intern: $30,824
  • US Government Information Technology Intern: $48,774
  • Sunrise Credit Services Cyber Security Intern: $33,445

How Can I Pay for Cyber Security School?

You can pay for cyber security school through a range of government and private funding options. Prospective students can apply for scholarships, grants, and fellowships that don’t need to be repaid, or they can apply for student loans. Private student loans should only be used when absolutely necessary because they are difficult to pay back.

  • NSF Graduate Research Fellowship Program. This fellowship is for graduate students in STEM professions. Fellowship winners can pursue research at any US government lab or school.
  • Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). This application covers a wide range of federal grants and loans. Students earning any kind of undergraduate or graduate degree can apply.
  • CyberCorps(R): Scholarship for Service (SFS). Students studying cyber security or related IT fields can apply for this funding through their schools. You have to complete an internship at a government agency during your degree to get this stipend.
  • National Defense Science And Engineering Graduate Fellowship. This funding is only for doctoral degree students in information security or related fields. You will have to work on research at the Department of Defense laboratory for one summer during the course of this funding.

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Choosing the Best Cyber Security School for You

To choose the best cyber security school for you, you should consider factors like school ranking, accreditation, and the cost of tuition and fees. Other factors to consider are the format of the degree, future career opportunities, and employment outcomes.


Accreditation proves the credibility of your degree. With an accredited school, you have a better chance of getting financial aid, earning transferable credits, qualifying for professional certifications, and getting a job after graduation.

School Reputation and Rank

Companies are more likely to hire graduates from the best cyber security universities and schools because they are known to deliver quality, innovative education. School rankings are one way to learn about a school’s reputation.

Tuition and Fees

You should have a clear idea of how much you can afford to pay for your education. Look for schools with better financial support for students. Keep in mind that teaching assistant or research assistant positions can be used to help pay for an advanced degree in cyber security.

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Does It Matter What College I Go to for Cyber Security?

Yes, it does matter what college you go to for a cyber security degree. If you want to build a career in cyber security, it’s better to attend a top-ranked school in this field of study. If you are looking for a career in the federal government, make sure you choose a program with NSA or DHS affiliation.

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Cyber Security University Ranking Methodology: How We Ranked the Best Schools for Cyber Security

We ranked the best cyber security schools by consulting the university rankings conducted by US News & World Report and Times Higher Education. To further refine our cyber security university ranking methodology, we gave special consideration to things like reputation, graduation rate, student-to-faculty ratio, and breadth and depth of cyber security degree program offerings.

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Best Cyber Security Schools FAQ

How long is a cyber security degree program?

The length of a cyber security degree program varies by degree type and program. A typical associate degree takes two years, a bachelor’s degree takes four years, a master’s degree takes two years, and a doctorate takes three or more years.

Is cyber security a good field in IT?

Yes, cyber security is one of the most in-demand fields in information and technology. According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the job outlook for information security jobs is an average  of 33% from 2020 to 2030.

What can you do with a degree in cyber security?

Cyber security graduates are in demand in any workplace that stores sensitive data or has its own computer network. These days, that’s just about every profession. You can work in almost any field as an information security analyst, a cyber security engineer, or a system security manager.

What degree should I get if I want to do cyber security?

You can become a cyber security professional with any level of degree or certificate. However, for many positions, the minimum education requirement is a bachelor’s degree. For management positions, you’ll likely need a master’s degree.

About us: Career Karma is a platform designed to help job seekers find, research, and connect with job training programs to advance their careers. Learn about the CK publication.

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Sana Uqaili

About the author: Sana is a content writer who wants to use her work to spread knowledge and help others. She holds a Master’s in Business Administration from the Binary University of Management & Entrepreneurship.

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