If you want to land a high-paying cyber security or information assurance job, then you might want to consider gaining additional education. Cyber security master’s degrees allow students to gain specialized skills and advance in their careers. The best Master’s Degree in Cyber Security programs cover topics like penetration testing, network security, and firewalls.
We’ve compiled a list of the best cyber security master’s degrees and provide details about admission requirements, graduation requirements, and common courses included in the programs. Keep reading to find out how a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security can help you kickstart your lucrative career.
What Is Cyber Security?
Cyber security is an IT field that deals with security analysis, management, and design. Experts in the field can work in several industries, including business intelligence, cloud computing, criminal justice, and information technology.
Depending on the specifics of your cyber security profession, your duties can include penetration testing, risk assessment, cloud engineering, and network security analysis. All cyber security experts help keep critical data and information safe from potential risks.
Where Can I Get a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security?
You can get a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security at a four-year university that offers advanced degrees in information technology. They can be public or private institutions. Some of the schools where you can get a cyber security master’s degree are Boston College, Carnegie Mellon University, and the University of Houston.
What Schools Offer the Best Cyber Security Master’s Degrees?
- George Mason University
- George Washington University
- Northeastern University
- Stratford University
- University of Missouri – St. Louis
What Are the Admission Requirements for a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security?
The admission requirements for a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security include a Bachelor’s Degree in Cyber Security or a related subject. Some schools require prospective students to pass a skills test or provide letters of recommendation to be admitted into a master’s program. You may also need to meet a minimum GPA requirement.
Cyber Security Master’s Degree Admission Requirements
- Bachelor’s degree in a relevant field
- Prerequisite courses or proof of knowledge
- Letters of recommendation
- Minimum GPA (usually between 2.5 and 3.5)
- Professional resume
How to Get a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security
To get a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security, you will need to complete all of the required core and elective courses while maintaining a certain GPA. You may also need to complete a thesis or a capstone project, although some programs allow students to choose between a thesis and a non-thesis option. There may also be a required internship or assistantship.
How Many Credits Do You Need for a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security?
You need 30 credits for a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security. This is usually split into elective and core courses. You may also need to fulfill an internship, thesis, or capstone credit requirement in order to graduate. An online program will probably ask for the same number of credits and technical aspects.
Cyber Security Degree Requirements
- Maintain a GPA above 2.0
- Complete 30+ credits
- Complete your thesis or capstone project
- Fulfill any internship or work experience requirements
Best Cyber Security Master’s Degree Programs and Schools: Overview
|Boston College||Master of Science in Cybersecurity Policy Governance||New England Commission of Higher Education|
|Boston University Metropolitan College||Master of Science in Criminal Justice, Cybercrime Investigation and Cybersecurity Concentration||New England Commission of Higher Education|
|Carnegie Mellon University||Master of Science in Information Security||Middle States Commission on Higher Education|
|George Mason University||Master of Science in Cyber Security||Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges|
|George Washington University||Master of Science in Cybersecurity in Computer Science||Middle States Commission on Higher Education|
|Northeastern University||Master of Science in Cybersecurity||New England Commission of Higher Education|
|Stratford University||Master of Science in Cyber Security||Accrediting Council for Independent Colleges and Schools|
|University of Houston||Master of Science in Cybersecurity||Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges|
|University of Missouri – St. Louis||Master of Science in Cybersecurity||Higher Learning Commission|
|Washington University in St. Louis||Master of Science in Cybersecurity Engineering||Higher Learning Commission|
Best Schools for Cyber Security: Top Cyber Security Master’s Degree Programs
If you’re interested in pursuing a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security, check out some of the best cyber security master’s degree programs in the country below. We’ve provided details on tuition, courses, and career outcomes so you can choose a cyber security master’s degree program that meets your curriculum, location, and financial preferences.
What Is a Cyber Security Master’s Degree?
A cyber security master’s degree is a one-year to three-year graduate program that covers computer networks, information systems, and cyberspace security topics. Depending on your specialization, you might learn system security, penetration testing, cloud security, systems analysis, and cyber crime prevention.
How Important Is a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security?
A Master’s Degree in Cyber Security is important for those who want to pursue senior-level positions in the field or wish to attend relevant PhD programs. With a cyber security master’s degree, you have access to management positions with higher salaries. You may also want to pursue this degree if you want to be involved in research in the field.
What Types of Master’s Degree Can You Get in Cyber Security?
A Master of Engineering and Master of Science are the types of master’s degrees you can get in cyber security. Master of Science programs are the most common type of cyber security master’s degree. You can get hands-on experience and meet other graduate students in the field to help you start your career path.
Is It Better to Get a Master of Science or Master of Engineering in Cyber Security?
It is better to get a Master of Science in Cyber Security if you want to focus on technical skills in computer science and research. A Master of Engineering usually focuses on information security engineering or a similar subject, so the topics you cover will differ slightly. Both degrees will open you up to high-paying job opportunities, although your specialization might be different.
What Is the Difference Between a Cyber Security Master’s Degree and a Cyber Security Certificate?
The difference between a cyber security master’s degree and a cyber security certificate is that a master’s degree program will teach a broad range of advanced skills in cyber security, while a cyber security certificate will focus on one specific area. If you want to upskill quickly, consider a certificate program. If you want to gain or improve an entire skillset, opt for a cyber security master’s degree.
How Much Does It Cost to Get a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security?
It costs $19,314 per year to get a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security. This is based on the average cost of a master’s degree between 2018 to 2019, according to the National Center for Education Statistics. This tuition cost will vary depending on the institution and the program as well as the financial aid options you make use of.
There are several ways to finance your cyber security master’s degree, including employer sponsorships, private loans, scholarships, and teaching assistantships. You can contact the admissions department of your chosen school to learn more about your options. Most people in this field earn a high median salary, which means you can pay off loans faster.
How Long Does It Take to Get a Cyber Security Master’s Degree?
It takes between one and three years to get a cyber security master’s degree. The length of your Master’s Degree in Cyber Security program will depend on if you attend as a full-time or part-time student, choose a thesis or non-thesis program, and or access internship opportunities for credit. You can reduce the length of your program by choosing an accelerated master’s degree.
How Hard Is It to Get a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security?
It is fairly hard to get a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security because the subject material is advanced and it is a technical degree. However, if you have already obtained a relevant bachelor’s degree and can commit to a few years of studying, you may not find it too difficult to get a cyber security master’s degree.
A Master’s Degree in Cyber Security will cover advanced topics like cloud architecture and cyber intelligence. People who aren’t familiar with IT security and advanced attacks might find the program difficult. Contact the academic advising department at your school to see if there are resources that can help you.
Why Should You Get a Cyber Security Master’s Degree?
You should get a cyber security master’s degree because it will allow you to apply for high-level positions in a wide variety of industries. A Master’s Degree in Cyber Security will also allow you to make connections and network with your peers and professors, which could benefit you professionally in the future.
What Courses Do You Need to Take in a Master’s Degree Program in Cyber Security?
You need to take courses on digital forensics, privacy law, risk management, and cloud security in a master’s degree program in cyber security. Although the cyber security master’s degree courses you take will differ depending on your program and specialization, there are common subjects across most programs. The Master’s Degree in Cyber Security course list below is based on the Master of Science program offered at Boston University.
International Cyber Security
This course will focus on cyber security outside of the United States. Students will learn about how different countries and foreign agencies deal with cyber crime and cyber terrorism. They will also learn how the Global Security Operating Centers are used to respond to cyber security threats across the globe.
Ethical Issues in Cyber Security
Since cyber security deals with large amounts of sensitive data, it is important to consider the ethical implications involved in the protection of important information. The course compares ethical standards to legal standards and evaluates students’ abilities to make ethical decisions in a business environment.
Security in the Cloud
This course covers topics such as traffic hijacking, data recovery, and data storage. Students will also learn about software as a service (SaaS), Internet as a service (IaaS), and platforms as a service (PaaS) in a cloud environment context. Online students will find this subject particularly important.
Cyber Security Risk Management
Cyber security risk management teaches students how to identify and evaluate cyber security threats being made to organizations, businesses, or intellectual property. In a real-world situation, these evaluations will be used to monitor and prevent cyber security threats in the future.
Cyber Investigations and Digital Forensics
One important aspect of cyber security is investigating cyber crimes. Digital forensics is the process of uncovering Internet data that can be used as evidence in cyber crime investigations. This includes looking for digital signatures and studying incident response methods.
Continuing Education Paths for Cyber Security Master’s Degree Graduates
A PhD in Cyber Security is the most common continuing education path for cyber security master’s degree graduates. However, there are no cyber security jobs that require a PhD. Most people who pursue a PhD are involved in some amount of cyber security research. After getting a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security, you could also decide to pursue cyber security certificates or certifications.
Related Cyber Security Degrees
What to Look for in the Best Cyber Security Master’s Degree Programs
You should look for accreditation, flexibility, availability of student services, curricular content, and graduation rate in the best cyber security master’s degree programs. There are also other factors to consider, including tuition and the availability of financial aid.
All of the schools on the above list of best cyber security master’s degree programs are accredited. Accreditation is provided to schools by a third-party accrediting body that evaluates schools’ teaching and academic standards. When you attend an accredited school or program, you know that it meets a set standard of excellence for education.
Most cyber security master’s degree programs allow students to attend classes full-time or part-time. You can choose to attend full-time if you want to return to your career as soon as possible or take part-time classes if you want to continue working while you study. Many programs also have in-person, online, and hybrid options.
You should make sure that the school you attend offers student services to its graduate students. These services could include career counseling, health services, or childcare services. Make sure that the school you attend can fulfill your needs while you attend classes, especially if you are one of many international students.
Research the program you plan on attending to make sure the skills taught meet your professional and academic needs. If you want to learn about Internet law and ethics, consider a program like the MS in Criminal Justice, Cybercrime Investigation and Cybersecurity Concentration program at Boston University.
High graduation rates show that a school has high-quality curricula and enough services to support its student body. Graduation rates also inform you of how many students are able to complete their program in a standard amount of time. School rankings can also help you get a good grasp on how many people graduate successfully.
What Is the Most Affordable Cyber Security Master’s Degree?
The most affordable cyber security master’s degree is the Master of Science in Cyber Security from Stratford University. It costs $495 per credit and is a 36-credit program. Tuition will cost $17,820 for the full program. Keep in mind that these tuition numbers will change every year.
Salary and Job Outlook for Cyber Security Master’s Degree Graduates
The salary and job outlook for cyber security jobs are high. Find out more details about possible jobs available to cyber security master’s degree graduates below.
How Hard Is It to Get a Job With a Cyber Security Master’s Degree?
It is not hard to get a job with a cyber security master’s degree. While the cyber security and information technology job markets can be competitive, many cyber security master’s degree jobs have high job outlooks. Most positions in this field also have high annual salaries.
What’s the Average Cyber Security Master’s Degree Salary?
The average cyber security master’s degree salary is $102,117, according to ZipRecruiter. However, know that the median salary changes depending on your cyber security education and professional experience. Below are some of the top cyber security master’s degree jobs and their corresponding salaries.
What Types of Jobs Can You Get With a Cyber Security Master’s Degree?
You can get senior-level and management jobs with a cyber security master’s degree. Cyber security master’s degree programs equip you with the soft and technical skills to fill positions like cyber security engineer and chief information security officer.
Cyber Security Degree Jobs
- Cloud Security Architect
- Chief Information Security Officer
- Cyber Security Architect
- Cyber Security Engineer
- Computer Network Architect
Potential Careers With a Cyber Security Degree
How Much Money Can You Make With a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security?
You can make over $100,000 a year with a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security. Based on the five jobs listed below, you can make between $116,780 and $166,607. However, your salary will depend on your employer, location, and professional experience.
Highest-Paying Cyber Security Master’s Degree Jobs and Salaries: Overview
|Cyber Security Master’s Degree Jobs||Average Salary|
|Cloud Security Architect||$166,607|
|Chief Information Security Officer||$159,877|
|Cyber Security Architect||$146,768|
|Cyber Security Engineer||$120,708|
|Computer Network Architect||$116,780|
Best Jobs for Cyber Security Master’s Degree Grads
The best jobs for cyber security master’s degree graduates require skills in creating, maintaining, and evaluating security systems. Master’s Degree in Cyber Security jobs are not only available in the tech industry. Many businesses, government agencies, and private organizations require cyber security professionals.
Best Jobs According to Your Major
Is a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security Worth It?
Yes, a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security is worth it if jobs like chief security officer or information security analyst sound interesting to you. This graduate degree will make you eligible for several senior and managerial security careers, including leadership roles.
However, know that you can still enter this field with an associate degree or a coding bootcamp diploma. With these qualifications, you can apply for entry-level jobs such as network administrator, security technician, and junior penetration tester.
Additional Reading About Cyber Security
[query_class_embed] https://careerkarma.com/blog/cyber-security-techniques/ https://careerkarma.com/blog/cyber-security-best-practices/ https://careerkarma.com/blog/introduction-to-cyber-security/
Cyber Security Master’s Degree FAQ
Yes, getting a cyber security master’s degree is worth it if you want to land senior jobs such as chief security officer and cyber security analyst. Cyber security experts enjoy job security and above-average annual salaries.
A cyber security master’s degree covers several intermediate and advanced security topics. These might include cloud computing, network security, information assurance, and security solutions.
With a Master’s Degree in Cyber Security, you can get jobs including cyber crime analyst, information security analyst, cyber security engineer, and network architect. The skills you learn from this degree set you up for a wide variety of tech careers.
According to ZipRecruiter, a cyber security professional with a master’s degree earns an average salary of $102,117. This number will vary depending on location, experience, and other common factors.
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.