Thinking about entering into a online cyber security degree program? Here’s a few things you should know: Most working professionals in Cyber Security have a four year bachelor’s degree. In fact, about 53% of those employed in this field hold a BA. Thing is, it doesn’t matter how they go about getting that degree. There are a few possible routes to a BA or BS degree. Both a bachelor of the arts or Bachelor of Sciences have equal value. It makes no difference which one gets a student to graduation.
The same even goes for the degree along the way. For instance, community college is a way to save money while in school. These schools tend to cost a lot less than traditional campus universities. In fact, tuition for 2016 averaged less than 4K a year. They’re generally geared toward AS degrees. An associate degree usually takes about two years. After those first couple years taking courses, students can transfer into a bachelor’s. That could be online or on campus. Both works well these days.
Many BA and BS degree holders continue forth and get a master’s degree as well. Others get postgraduate certification. Both of these choices can boost an applicant’s resume. That’s because InfoSec employers appreciate post graduate work on an applicant’s resume. Any Cyber Security degree path they choose can create their perfect future, though. One reason is all the potential in the field. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports this job market is grows at a rate of 28%. They characterize this as “much faster than average” for all occupations.
Cyber Security Majors
There are many possible Cyber Security majors to study in college. Each as distinction. But they also have lots in common. The first year or so of college will likely have lots of overlap classes among them. That’s because the core curriculum requirements take time to fulfill first. But when it’s time to specialize, there are differences among these majors.
Information Technology Security protects all the info at an organization. So, a degree in IT Security is sometimes also called Information Security or InfoSec. These degrees often originate in Comp Sci departments, Criminal Justice, or Business. They differ only in origin, though. The curriculum won’t vary much among them. That’s because they all lead to the same goal, an understanding and ability to enforce IT Security at work.
The curriculum will vary by school, but some classes are across the board at all schools. They cover the fundamentals to prep students for the day to day work of Info Security. Here are examples of standard courses in IT Security programs:
- IT Security Planning & Risk Management
- Systems Analysis
- Database Design
- History of IT
- Computer Programming in Java
- Electronic Commerce
- Cloud Computing: Infrastructure & Services
- Introduction to Ethical Hacking & Pen Testing
- IT Control and Audit
- Consulting and Design of Online Systems
- Cyber Law
- Managing Business Processes
There’s not a lot of difference between IT Security and Cyber Security. But the small distinctions between them are real and impactful. Cyber Security only covers information security that pertains to cyberspace. So, it’s a crucial subset of InfoSec. This segment covers all the networks, applications, and data that cross the Internet.
Hence, the degree programs will be a lot like those for Information Security. In later years Cyber Security degree programs may dig deeper into Internet challenges. For instance, a Cyber Security student might delve malware and virus challenges more. They also will likely focus more on issues like phishing.
Phishing involves malicious email attacks under the guise of an organization. These can harm the brand and reputation when clients associate them such emails. Cyber Security workers protect against this with email list protocols and procedures. Such work is specific to cyberspace and thus specialized to their purview.
Information reigns king in companies these days. So, security matters more than ever. Thus, Information Security (InfoSec), Cyber, and Network Security are crucial.
These security categories have a lot in common because they share the same goals. All three protect and secure information to keep an organization running. However they each have their own nuances.
Information Security protects information. That means physical data such as what you find in a filing cabinet. It also means digital and encrypted data.
A subset of Cyber Security, Network Security hones in on the communication byways. These behind-the-scenes passages are where it’s all happening. So, a lot can go wrong with the info passing through. Network Security Degree programs start out with the InfoSec fundamentals. A Cyber Security curriculum serves these students. Of course, they may also specialize with a Network concentration.
That means courses designed with Networks in mind. So, classes tailored to these goals
- Building reliable and secure code in a network’s system
- Prevention of network security gaps and vulnerabilities
- Creating protective measures for data passage on a network
These are the core capabilities for Network Security. The bottom line is to keep a Network safe while always functional. One of the paradigms of Information Security is Accessibility. It’s not only about keeping info safe. But also making sure it’s available to those who need it. After all, information’s a key factor in every organization.
Cyber Security is more necessary than ever in healthcare. After all, our medical information passes through cyberspace. What’s more private than that? This segment of Cyber Security may seem niche. But it gets to the heart of matters. We all go to the doctor and want that information kept secure. A degree in Healthcare Security can help make this a safer world for this crucial, personal info.
Healthcare Security sometimes originates in a business or master’s degree program. A student with a BA or BS in Cyber Security can then specialize in Healthcare for grad school. It could be by combining it with a Healthcare Administration Master’s degree. Other potential partner programs are Business and Auditing. Because Healthcare info remains critical and vulnerable, applications for it are expanding.
Computer Forensics solves cases that involve computer data. So, these degrees are ideal for students who love computers and solving cases. They’re like detectives of the digital world. Degree programs have several routes. Students could start out in either Comp Sci or Criminal Justice. Both paths may lead to Computer Forensics. Once a student decides to take this particular route the curriculum gets concentrated.
The coursework will survey both computers and investigations. Here are examples of some typical classes:
- Law of Searching & Seizing Digital Evidence
- Criminal Investigation
- Digital Forensic Investigation Techniques
- Foundations of Cybersecurity
- Malware Forensics
- Digital Forensic Analysis
- Anti-Forensics & Network Forensics
These degrees may prepare students to work with either law enforcement or organizations. In fact, law enforcement entities now hold Cyber Security departments for this purpose. These are much like an organization’s IT department. Both are places that may hire Computer Forensics Analysts to help their team.
20 BEST SCHOOLS WITH Online CYBER SECURITY DEGREE PROGRAMS
Colorado Technical University
Online Bachelor of Science in Cyber Security – Information Assurance
CTU’s 186-credit Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity with a concentration in Information Assurance is designed to help students prepare and work to develop the knowledge and skills to apply the methods, techniques and tools necessary for securing the public and private sectors’ critical assets and information. Course examples include:
- Ability to examine and take measures against hacking, spam, worms, malware and computer viruses through cyber sleuthing and evidence gathering
- Ability to work with both technical experts and management to evaluate business systems and procedures and make recommendations on how to secure essential business information.
University of Maryland – University College
Online Bachelor’s Degree: Computer Networks and Cybersecurity
Bachelor of Science in computer networks and cybersecurity program, you’ll learn the operational procedures and technologies to design, implement, administer, secure, and troubleshoot corporate networks. This program requires 120 credits for completion.
- Design, implement, and administer local-area and wide-area networks to satisfy organizational goals
- Resolve IT system problems and meet the needs of end users by applying troubleshooting methodologies
- Apply relevant policies and procedures to effectively secure and monitor IT systems
Capitol Technology Unviersity
Master of Science (MS) in Cybersecurity Online
This Online MS degree in cybersecurity provides the advanced, up-to-date knowledge needed to protect corporations and government agencies from today’s threats. In addition, this online cyber security degree program prepares you for the Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) exam, a globally recognized certification in the field of IT security. 36-39 credits required for completion.
- Ability to evaluate diverse points of view and integrate their specialized knowledge in Cybersecurity across various technology applications.
- Ability to consider ethical principles in evaluating solutions, policies and practices relevant to Cybersecurity.
- Ability to apply security principles and practices to maintain operations in the presence of risks and threats.
Strayer University – Global Region
Online Bachelor of Science in Information Technology – Cybersecurity
The online Bachelor of Science in Information Technology cybersecurity technology concentration will teach you to think like a hacker, understanding how these black-hat programmers breach network systems; and will train you on how to implement defense systems that protect data.
- Learn how to maintain the security of networks and data in a range of environments
- Understand the different types of hacking (both ethical and unethical)
- Ability to perform penetration tests on communication and wireless networks
- Master the functions and impacts of malicious programs – and their countermeasures.
Online Doctor of Information Technology – Cybersecurity Concentration (Track 1)
In Walden’s online Doctor of Information Technology (DIT) program, you will gain advanced knowledge in the field of information technology and acquire the strategic leadership skills needed to guide organizations through critical IT-related challenges. This online cyber security degree program requires 52 credit hours for completion.
- Recommend IT strategies that support enterprise mission and objectives following tenets of professional, social, and ethical responsibility.
- Demonstrate the ability to formulate project management, compliance, and sourcing of IT within an organization.
- Conduct original research that contributes to professional and actionable knowledge in an applied environment.
Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity
Aligned with the academic requirements for cybersecurity set by the National Security Agency (NSA) and Department of Homeland Security (DHS), this 120-credit fully online Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity program provides you with the ability to enhance your technical knowledge and skills in cybersecurity.
- Describe defensive network architecture that use multiple layers of protection.
- Analyze technologies and processes that monitor, maintain, and protect the data of an institution.
- Conduct risk and vulnerability assessments of existing and proposed security systems.
American Public University System
Online Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity
The Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity provides you with both theory and know-how required to strategically assess, plan, design, and implement effective cybersecurity defenses in the public and private sectors. Requires 120 credits with a maximum of 90 transfer credits. The program is fully-online.
- Demonstrate an understanding of the processes and goals of cyber forensics investigations.
- Compare and contrast the various aspects of cybersecurity including the relationship between cyber defense, cyber operations, cyber exploitations, cyber intelligence, cybercrime, and cyber law within federal and state laws.
Arizona State University
Online MCS Computer Science (Cybersecurity)
The MCS program with a concentration in cybersecurity is designed to provide students the knowledge and skills in science and engineering for cybersecurity, including computer and network security, software security, data and information security, applied cryptography and computer forensics. The program is fully-online. This program requires 30 credit hours and a portfolio.
- Demonstrate an understanding of the processes and skills in science and engineering for cybersecurity, including computer and network security, software security, data and information security, applied cryptography and computer forensics.
- Ability to provide restoration of information systems by incorporating protection, detection and reaction capabilities.
Indiana University – Bloomington
Online M.S. in Cybersecurity Risk Management
This innovative, 30-credit hour, Master of Science in Cybersecurity Risk Management program is the first in the nation to bring together three top-ranked schools to offer technology, business, and law viewpoints on cybersecurity. And you can earn your degree entirely online or choose to take some classes at the IU Bloomington campus—it’s up to you.
- Ability to protect privacy and intellectual property
- Promote information and systems security
- Address cyber threats to national and international security
Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University
Master of Science in Cybersecurity & Policy Online
The Master of Science in Cybersecurity Management & Policy (MSCMP) is a 30-credit online cyber security degree degree tailored to IT and non-IT professionals who want to transition into a leadership role. Graduates will emerge from the program with an understanding of cybersecurity and its ramifications across the organization, along with improved critical thinking, leadership and management skills.
- Ability to recognize the relationship between cybersecurity and your organization’s strategic goals
- Realize the long-term impact of a security breach on successful completion of your mission
George Mason University
Online Bachelor of Applied Science, Cybersecurity Concentration
Mason’s Bachelor of Applied Science Degree (BAS) is a unique program created specifically for students who have earned an Associate of Applied Science (AAS) degree. BAS students develop tangible skills that are recognized by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) National Initiative for Cybersecurity Education (NICE) as vital to the cybersecurity field. This program requires 120-126 credit hours for completion.
- Conceptual understanding of the role of information technology as a tool of warfare and civil defense
- Ability to effectively analyze and organize and evaluate information systems
Fairleigh Dickinson University
Online M.S. Cyber & Homeland Security Administration
The online master’s in Cyber and Homeland Security Administration is designed to help students become leaders in the security profession. As you work your way through the 36-credit curriculum, you’ll have the opportunity to choose from one of three distinct tracks: terrorism and security studies, emergency management, and leadership.
- Ability to work strategically, research well, and apply critical-thinking skills to positions of leadership in security.
- Ability to conduct effective risk analysis
- Proficiency in managing responses to emergencies and threats.
Purdue University Global – Davenport
Online Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity
The Cybersecurity major is part of the Computer and Information Technology program. This online cyber security degree program will give you advanced technical knowledge and skills and prepare for industry certifications to propel your career in the fast-moving field of cybersecurity. Program requires 180 quarter credit hours for completion.
- Ability to analyze complex computing problems to apply principles of computing and other relevant disciplines to identify solutions
- Proficiency in Designing, implementing, and evaluating computing-based solutions to meet a given set of computing requirements
Online Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity
Looking for an online cyber security degree that combines your talent for technology with a desire to serve and protect? Regent’s Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity program will prepare you to begin or advance your technology and network security career in government, military, private, public and nonprofit sectors. This program requires 120+ credit hours for completion.
- Analyze cybersecurity threats, trends and strategies.
- Identify cybersecurity principles, methods and tools that aid in the defense of cyberattacks.
- Decrease system vulnerabilities through integrated security technologies.
Western Governors University
Online Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity and Information Assurance
WGU’s online B.S. Cybersecurity and Information Assurance degree program requires 120+credits for completion. It was designed with input from cybersecurity experts and leading IT employers to meet the most recent Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and National Security Agency (NSA) guidelines.
- Identify and implement strategies for classifying, controlling access, setting permission, configuring, optimizing, and upgrading basic system security.
- Identify how confidentiality, integrity, and availability define security requirements for an organization.
- Apply security principles and cyber defense concepts to overcome common security failures.
Online BS in IT, Information Assurance and Cybersecurity
This bachelor’s in information technology, information assurance and cybersecurity degree helps you learn to evaluate security policies, social engineering, access control, authentication, perimeter security, disaster recovery, and more. 180 program credits required for this program.
- Balance risk and benefits associated with information assets.
- Validate accuracy and integrity of information assets through audit, management, and models.
- Learn how to conduct business-impact analyses and disaster-recovery plans.
University of Phoenix – Arizona
Online Bachelor of Science in Information Technology with an Advanced Cybersecurity Certificate
This online cyber security degree is a 120 credit BS in IT with advanced certificate in Cybersecurity will help you gain the technical foundation to pursue opportunities in the fast-growing field of IT security while taking courses that align with the Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP®) and EC-Council Certified Secure Computer User (CSCU) certification exams.
- Ability to implement cybersecurity solutions that comply with global governance best practices.
- Ability to describe and explain fundamentals of security in a Networked environment
- Application of key principles of systems analysis and design to selected business processes within the organization in order to implement effective information systems.
Florida Insititute of Technology – Online
MS in Information Assurance and Cybersecurity Online
With this online Master of Science in Information Assurance and Cybersecurity students will gain expert-level knowledge on protecting and securing information from cyber intruders, and will be able to recognize threats and vulnerabilities by studying complex attack models. 33 credits required for completion.
- How to recognize threats, vulnerabilities and security structures
- How to analyze attack models, forensics, operation processes and biometric technology
- How to explore communications encryption, and apply data mining and machine learning methods to cybersecurity scenarios
Columbia Southern University
Bachelor of Science in Information Systems and Cyber Security
This 120 Credit Bachelor of Science program is designed for students who want to expand their knowledge in systems security analysis and identify the skills necessary for intrusion detection and applying the correct countermeasures.
- Ability to able to apply business and management theory and practices to solve information systems security problems
- Proficiency in evaluating the application of security practices to optimize information systems assurance
Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity
Through this online cyber security degree, you can learn methods to help identify potential risks and thwart breaches by cyber criminals. This online BS degree can also help you learn about software updates, security programs and personal methods for protecting computer information systems from cyberattacks. 120 credit hours for completion.
- Analyze a system, and identify and define the security risks and requirements for secure operation
- Design, implement and evaluate a computer-based system, process, component or program to meet security needs
- Address professional, ethical, legal, security and social issues and responsibilities