According to Verizon’s Data Breach Investigations Report, the cost of cybercrimes will rise threefold from $500 billion in 2015 to $2 trillion in 2019. It’s estimated that 159.8 million records are compromised by system intrusion each year. Unsurprisingly, cyber security is becoming one of the hottest millennial career tracks focused on protecting personal and business computers from these attacks. The BLS shows demand for information security analysts to spike by 36 percent in computer systems services through 2024. Forbes reported that 209,000 U.S. cyber security jobs are unfilled, so studying this IT specialty online is very marketable. Online cyber security degree programs that train you to combat the world’s increasingly savvy hackers lead to a mean annual salary of $96,040 for high ROI.
To rank the 20 best online colleges for cyber security we consulted with the NCES College Navigator database to search for bachelor’s and advanced degrees in computer or information systems security and assurance. We checked the box for distance education to obtain five pages of just online colleges. Next, we compared our results to the NSA list of Centers of Academic Excellence in Cybersecurity. Each online university had to be regionally accredited by CHEA-recognized agencies and hold published rankings on the U.S. News and World Report for prestige. We also weighed student-faculty ratio, program speed, technology access, fieldwork opportunity, technical support, and affordability into our ordering.
1. Pennsylvania State University
College of Information Sciences and Technology
Placed among the “Public Ivies,” Pennsylvania State University holds land-grant, sea-grant, space-grant, and sun-grant status for generating $836 million in research expenditures and teaching 99,133 Nittany Lions at 24 locations statewide and online. Led by President Eric J. Barron, the Big Ten powerhouse has had its World Campus since 1998 to deliver MSCHE-accredited programs with an 87 percent graduation rate. The U.S. News ranked PSU World for America’s fifth best online computer IT degrees and eighth top online bachelor’s degrees. Given the Sloan Excellence in Institution-Wide Online Education Award, Penn State also has the #1 best recruiting outcomes according to The Wall Street Journal.
Through Blackboard Collaborate and Skype, online undergrads can pursue the PSU World Campus’ B.S. in Security and Risk Analysis – Information and Cyber Security Option. Currently billing $584 per credit, the 120-credit bachelor’s follows former NSA Director Mike McConnell’s advice on preparing IT specialists who are equipped to identify and prevent catastrophic attacks via the Internet. The online major involves courses like network security, C++ programming, cyber forensics, data organization, and terrorism. Online students could still join the World Campus Technology Club, access the Red Cell Analytics Lab, intern with DHS, and study abroad with 300+ global programs.
Post-bachelor’s students at Pennsylvania State University with 5+ years of experience may complete the Master of Professional Studies in Information Sciences instead. Consisting of 33 credits for $854 per credit, the online MPS has a built-in Cybersecurity and Information Assurance Option for strengthening IT skills specifically for stopping internal or external hacker threats. Collaborative learning courses take two years part-time with courses like multisensor data fusion, enterprise architecture, risk management, visual analytics, and Web privacy. Open for application until June 1st and October 1st yearly, the PSU master’s program expects a minimum “B” average from orientation through the applied capstone project.
2. Johns Hopkins University
Whiting School of Engineering
Established in 1876 on a $7 million bequest from a 19th-century Maryland entrepreneur, Johns Hopkins University has become a private, nonsectarian RU/VH hub led by President Ronald J. Daniels to serve 5,326 undergrad and 14,848 post-grad Blue Jays in the Big Ten. Affiliated with 36 Nobel laureates, JHU has campuses from Baltimore and Columbia to Bologna and Nanjing. Along with 45+ free online classes on Coursera, Johns Hopkins grants America’s sixth best computer IT and 21st top online engineering programs according to the U.S. News. Ranked Kiplinger’s 19th best private value, JHU was also placed 16th globally by ARWU.
The Johns Hopkins Engineering for Professionals Program lets post-grads pursue the Master of Science in Cybersecurity fully online to defend computer systems from penetration attacks for data security. Requiring Java and C++ mastery, the 10-course degree offers three specialized tracks for Networks, Analysis, and Systems before an independent study project. For $4,055 per course, the online curriculum delves into intrusion detection, cryptology, protocol design, software security, and information assurance. Noted for several 2017 Faculty Award-winning instructors, the online degree lends one-on-one support via the Cybersecurity Advising Corner. Students could obtain the Cybercorps Scholarship for Service or Information Security Institute Fellowship for Veterans.
Another online cyber security degree program with an 8:1 student-faculty ratio at Johns Hopkins is the ABET-accredited B.S. in Computer Science, which charges $1,100 per course. The 126-credit program’s Information Security Track immerses online students in introductory courses like algorithms, calculus, data structures, Java programming, cryptology, and ethical hacking. Around 60 undergrads complete the eight-semester plan annually to successfully apply computing knowledge for addressing security and legal concerns. Some head to the Homewood Campus during the summer for the 10-week Summer Research Expedition (SRE). Online alums from Johns Hopkins University are vigorously recruited by tech giants, including Oracle, Google, and Microsoft.
3. University of Arizona
Eller College of Management/College of Engineering
Belonging to the elite AAU, the University of Arizona is a public, co-educational RU/VH Pac-12 institution directed by President Robert C. Robbins with a $660.7 million endowment to serve 43,625 Wildcats and run initiatives like CyVerse. From its 380-acre, red-brick campus in sunny Tucson, Arizona uses the D2L learning management system for cinema-quality lectures in 80+ online programs. The U.S. News ranked UA as America’s 124th best university with the 11th best computer IT and 81st top bachelor’s degrees online. Ranked 24th nationally by the Council for Aid to Education, the University of Arizona was granted the USDLA 21st Century Award for Best Practices in Distance Learning.
Taught by PhD-level professors from Worcester Polytechnic, Ohio State, Carnegie Mellon, USC, and others, the Master of Science in Cybersecurity is accessible inclusively online for UA post-grads. Admitting six times annually for $1,332 per credit, the flexible program suits tech professionals with at least three years of work experience. The 33-credit degree offers two tracks for Information Systems or Physical Systems for hands-on practice shielding networked devices from cyber compromise. Core courses include data mining, penetration testing, machine learning, systems engineering, and business intelligence. Eight-week mini semesters lead to a cyber warfare capstone and optional CISSP credentialing.
Featuring a lower student-faculty ratio at 15:1, University of Arizona South also confers the Bachelor of Applied Science (BAS) in Cyber Operations for $490 per unit. This online degree completion program suits associate graduates with a minimum 2.5 GPA who transfer for greater depth of knowledge on rendering IT solutions for security. The 60-credit degree’s connects students virtually by the Network Operations Center to practice hacking more than 15,000 user personas. Online courses like network analysis, cyber ethics, malware threats, and secure software development begin every two months. Students from U.S. territories like Guam and Puerto Rico aren’t authorized though.
4. Drexel University
College of Computing and Informatics
Renowned for graduating 100,000 alumni like Paul Baran, Norman Joseph Woodland, and Violet Oakley, Drexel University is a private, nonprofit RU/VH institution accredited by the MSCHE to educate 26,359 Dragons with a $650.3 million endowment and paid co-ops. Split into 15 schools, Drexel goes beyond its 96-acre campus in Philadelphia, Forbes’ 102nd best place for education, with online programs on Blackboard. The U.S. News applauded Drexel for America’s 11th best computer IT and 110th top bachelor’s degrees online. Named the 78th “Most Diverse College” on Niche, Drexel University also ranked 180th nationally for value-added education by The Economist.
Selectively admitting 75 percent of applicants for $489 per credit, Drexel Online awards the B.S. in Computing and Security Technology with 10-week quarters to build the fundamental tools for implementing networks that meet high security clearances. Accepting applications until August 25th, the 188-credit curriculum lets working adults transfer up to 113 quarter credits for accelerated learning. The self-paced, 100 percent online program is available in 49 states, excluding Minnesota. Within the Computing Security Concentration, students integrate online courses like wireless networking, risk assessment, disaster recovery, mobile applications, and computer architecture. Graduates will qualify for cybersecurity credentials, such as CCNA Cyber Ops and Oracle 9i DBA.
Drawing on 125 years of experience, Drexel University also grants the M.S. in Cybersecurity either online or on-campus from Bossone Hall. Directed by Dr. Kapil R. Dandekar, the 45-credit degree trains ECE Department enrollees for adapting IT techniques to confront emerging cyber warfare tactics in managerial positions. Presently billing $1,228 per credit, the program begins every September, January, April, and June for students with combined GRE scores above 300. Expect online courses like information policy, computer networking, data algorithms, national security intelligence, and risk analysis with Internet labs. Master’s students could substitute the thesis research for graduate co-ops at Qualcomm, Alcatel-Lucent, and other companies.
5. Syracuse University
College of Engineering & Computer Science
Under the Morrill Land Grant Act of 1862, Syracuse University was founded on land donated by Bishop Jesse Truesdell Peck to create today’s private, nonsectarian IAMSCU research center led by Chancellor Kent Syverud to educate 21,267 Orange and employ 1,563 staff. Endowed for $1.157 billion, Syracuse extends beyond its 683-acre campus on Central New York’s University Hill with online learning. According to the U.S. News, SU has America’s 17th best computer IT and 35th top engineering programs online. As a “College with a Conscience,” Syracuse was also ranked the 103rd best U.S. college and 251st best global university by Times Higher Education.
Since 2009, the ABET-accredited Engineering@Syracuse program has delivered a Master of Science in Cybersecurity completely online for working IT gurus to increase their capacity for identifying, thwarting, and counteracting security breaches. Spanning 15 months full-time, the 30-credit curriculum requires high-level programming expertise with a minimum GRE Analytical score of 650. Post-B.S. majors pay $1,500 per credit for coursework in Internet security, information assurance, cryptography, distributed access control, cyber law, and operating systems. Classes take a synchronous, live format weekly for webcam chats organized by PhD-level faculty. Online learners are only required to attend one on-campus immersion in July for peer collaboration.
Partnered with the Maxwell School of Citizenship and Public Affairs, the SU iSchool also allows a faster promotion track for online students to finish the Certificate of Advanced Study (CAS) in Information Security Management. Available year-round, the 15-credit option suits ISM officials seeking in-depth insights into the complex risks to organizational computers. Live classes explore digital forensics, database security, information policy, electronic commerce technologies, and information systems protocols. Up to six credits could be devoted to internship experience with Lockheed Martin, Mimecast, and others. Covering the $1,500 per credit could be easier with Syracuse’s Information Assurance Scholarship Program funded by the DoD.
6. Florida Institute of Technology
College of Engineering & Computing
Sitting atop a 130-acre campus in Melbourne just 50 miles from the Kennedy Space Center, the Florida Institute of Technology is a private, space-grant SACS-accredited institution emphasizing STEM education across its seven online colleges. Since 1958, Florida Tech’s $66.2 million endowment has grown to serve 6,631 Panthers, 34 percent of whom hail from global countries. The U.S. News ranked FIT as America’s 171st best university with the 21st best online computer tech and 68th top online bachelor’s programs. Ranked 36th among research universities for ROI on PayScale, Florida Tech was crowned the third fastest-growing campus nationwide by The Chronicle of Higher Education.
Broadcasted asynchronously online via the video-based eLearning platform, the M.S. in Information Assurance and Cybersecurity is a two-year, part-time Florida Tech degree with eight-week courses to help make organizations immune from security breaches. Partnered with Harris Corp., the 11-course major has six yearly start dates to attract IT professionals who want expert-level knowledge on attack models through cybersecurity case studies. Estimated to cost $25,641 total, the curriculum directs courses in biometric authentication, application security, cryptography, data mining, and secure Web services until the culminating IA project. Applicants can be considered with just a bachelor’s degree and minimum 3.0 GPA instead of GRE scores.
Post-grads have another 100 percent online option at the Florida Institute of Technology, the Master of Business Administration with a Cybersecurity Specialization. Priced at $896 per credit, the 12-course, IACBE-accredited degree offers a unique management perspective for information systems professionals who seek to secure enterprise networks. Unlike the M.S., the MBA includes core courses like managerial economics, corporate finance, organizational behavior, and business development first. Florida Tech’s eight-week, no-GMAT courses begin with the SmarterMeasure readiness assessment and end with a strategic management capstone. Joining the alumni network of 60,000 Panthers helps graduates reach a 93 percent job placement rate.
7. Kennesaw State University
College of Computing and Software Engineering
Endowed for $36.523 million under President Sam Olens, Kennesaw State University is a public, co-educational doctoral institution created in 1963 in the University System of Georgia to enroll 36,428 Owls full-time within the Big South Conference. Although it’s located on 581 acres in the Atlanta suburbs of Cobb County, KSU has 500+ SACS-accredited online courses delivered through Brightspace by D2L. The U.S. News recognized Kennesaw for America’s 38th best computer tech and 186th top online bachelor’s degrees online. Crowned the 292nd “Hardest College to Get Into” on Niche, Kennesaw State University was also the Southeast’s 192nd best bang for the buck in Washington Monthly.
Directed by Dr. Herb Mattford, the Bachelor of Science eMajor in Cybersecurity is the first of Kennesaw State’s online cyber security degrees preparing undergrads from a technically-focused approach. Available with optional Criminal Justice or Crisis Preparedness minors, the 120-credit program builds awareness of cyber criminals’ tactics to develop secure IT solutions. Online undergrads develop skills with cutting-edge technologies like CheckPoint Software and Palo Alto Firewalls. For only $199 per credit, courses cover Unix administration, perimeter defense, server systems security, contingency planning, and more. Ambitious eMajors could also intern with Georgia Technology Authority, participate in the Southeast Collegiate Cyber Defense Competition, and join the CCERP Conference.
Online graduate students at Kennesaw State University could pursue the Master of Science in Information Technology with a Certificate in Information Technology Security too. The SREB Electronic Campus lets post-grads “Move Ahead” their IT skills anytime 24/7 for enhanced planning, implementation, and supervision of secure network systems. Logging into Desire2Learn makes courses like software design, Web technologies, computer forensics, electronic commerce, and EHR systems fly off the screen. The 48-credit degree currently costs $383 per credit and accepts applications until July 1st, November 1st, and April 1st yearly. Thesis research with the state-of-the-art Security Analysis Lab is wholly optional.
8. New Jersey Institute of Technology
Ying Wu College of Computing
Enrolling 11,317 Highlanders in the Atlantic Sun Conference, the New Jersey Institute of Technology is a public, sea-grant polytechnic APLU member budgeting for $451 million annually that was founded in 1881 by prolific inventor Edward Weston. Based on 48 acres in Newark just 13 miles from Midtown Manhattan, NJIT offers 13 master’s degrees completely online under American Council of Graduate Schools guidelines. The U.S. News congratulated NJIT for the 87th best engineering school and 38th top online IT degrees. Placed among MONEY Magazine’s “Top 10 Colleges with Great Career Services,” New Jersey Tech also ranked 16th for a mid-career median salary of $117,000 on PayScale.
Backed by the ABET Computing Accreditation Commission, the M.S. in IT Administration and Security at the New Jersey Institute of Technology can be garnered 100 percent online by network administrators who seek to erect electronic infrastructures safe from attack. Along with four electives, students study Internet protocols, network management, database administration, and wireless networks security for $1,199 per credit. Within the virtual CIP Lab, online post-grads practice using Oracle, UNIX, Symantec, and other real-world software. Students could also join the ACM Student Chapter, research in the Center for Information Protection, and take paid, three-credit co-ops found via CDSlink.
Another Moodle option costing New Jerseyans $1,199 per credit at NJIT is the Online M.S. in Information Systems with a Specialization in Security and Network Management. Taking a managerial approach, this 30-credit curriculum develops business analysts with the technical skills to secure user interface systems for corporate confidentiality. Online courses begin every September for 15-week sessions that are primarily asynchronous with Information Systems Club opportunities. Admission will require a cumulative GPA above “B” and minimum GRE scores of 143 (verbal) and 151 (quantitative). Some sample courses include forensic auditing, transaction mining, counter hacking, data communications, and higher-layer protocols.
9. University of Illinois-Springfield
College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
Chartered by Governor Richard Ogilvie in 1969, the University of Illinois-Springfield is a public, land-grant COPLAC liberal arts institution in the Great Lakes Valley Conference that’s currently endowed for $12.1 million to teach 5,431 Prairie Stars full- or part-time. Occupying 740 acres along Lake Springfield on Thomas Strawbridge’s homestead, UIS offers HLC-accredited online education giving the Sloan Consortium Most Outstanding Achievement Award since 2001. The U.S. News ranked Illinois-Springfield for the 54th best online bachelor’s and 123rd top online graduate education. Graded B+ as America’s eighth “Best Online College” on Niche, UIS boasts the largest computer science department in Illinois.
Designated a Cisco Regional Networking Academy, the University of Illinois-Springfield offers the B.S. in Information Systems Security online for future cyber forensics specialists to gain IT problem-solving skills. Through Blackboard, the degree is delivered in a 2+2 format with transfer agreements from Rock Valley College, Joliet Junior College, Kaskaskia College, and more. For 120 total credits, the online program integrates courses from discrete mathematics and Java programming to network administration and information assurance. Costing $352 per credit, the bachelor’s includes 10 hours of engaged citizenship experience and an exit assessment. Undergrads may also join Computer Science Club and/or take internships for networking.
Within the AACSB-accredited College of Business, UIS post-grads will find an Online Master of Science in Management Information Systems that offers an Information Security Elective Track. Cybersecurity professionals enrolling in this 36-credit program will sharpen the skills to analyze, design, and oversee organizational data systems safely. Master’s courses charging $402 per credit will explore IT governance, wireless networking, managerial decision support systems, data warehousing, and IT project management. MIS majors elect a research thesis, capstone project, or advanced seminar for their closure. Students could benefit from joining the AIS Chapter, securing the Graduate Public Service Internship, and adding the Business Intelligence Certificate.
10. Towson University
Jess & Mildred Fisher College of Science & Mathematics
Attracting 22,285 Tigers from 100+ countries, Towson University is a public, four-year research institution founded by the General Assembly of Maryland in 1865 that’s developed a $450 million annual budget for on-site and online teaching under President Kim Schatzel. Based upon 328 acres in Baltimore County just off Interstate 83 on York Road, the Towson Learning Network (TLN) makes education accessible with the same MSCHE-accredited rigor. The U.S. News distinguished Towson for the 66th best online graduation education nationally. Placed 254th in MONEY Magazine’s ranking, Towson University is named America’s 117th best public university and 181st best value school by Forbes.
Featuring an average retention rate of 86 percent, Towson awards the Applied Information Technology (M.S.) either online or off-campus at the University Center of Northeastern Maryland. Starting in the Fall, Spring, or Summer, the 33-unit curriculum offers six concentration areas, including Information Security and Assurance for cybersecurity expertise. Online post-grads advance their technical acumen for fast-paced IT solutions that protect the integrity of digital data. Expect logging into interactive courses like systems development process, network security, vulnerability analysis, and database management via Direct Access. Maryland residents pay $9,054, but out-of-state residents are billed $16,362 yearly. For application, majors select the independent study project or 140-hour internship.
Towson University also offers two alternatives to the online cyber security degree program that costs $288 in-state and $806 out-of-state per unit. The Online Information Security & Assurance Post-Baccalaureate Certificate is a stand-alone, five-course option that could fulfill IACRB certification. Organized by Lisa Loewe, the curriculum includes courses for IT infrastructure, network security, risk analysis, systems development process, and security case studies. The Online Security Assessment & Management Post-Baccalaureate Certificate is another one-year, five-course offering for personnel interested in physical or cyber risk protection. Topics span from emergency communication to team building and tactical planning. Both require holding a bachelor’s with a minimum 2.75 GPA.
11. DePaul University
College of Computing and Digital Media
Organized by President Dennis H. Holtschneider, C.M., DePaul University is endowed for $420.1 million as the United States’ largest private, Catholic liberal arts and sciences institution upholding Vincentian values to educate 15,407 undergrad and 7,703 post-grad Blue Demons. From 36 main acres with Gold LEED-certification in Chicago’s Lincoln Park, DePaul operates locations in Naperville, O’Hare, and online. The U.S. News ranked DePaul as America’s 124th best university and 70th top value. Declared the 99th “Best College for Computer Science” on Niche, DePaul University won the Insight into Diversity Higher Education Excellence Award and placed on the Phi Theta Kappa Transfer Honor Roll.
Recognized for a median early-career salary of $71,400, DePaul manages digital learning tools to provide playback courses online for its Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity. Integrating the Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) credential, the 192-unit curriculum builds on liberal studies to cover the fundamentals of computer infrastructure design for secured access. For $615 per hour, the curriculum includes classes like host-based security, incident response, security engineering, database systems, and Python for programmers. Online undergrads need to finish 45+ quarter credits and one semester of C++ before entry. Students then benefit from practicum in the CDM Information Assurance and Security Lab, which consists of 80 routers and 40 firewalls.
Presently billing $830 per unit, the Master of Science in Cybersecurity is another online DePaul option for graduates with 2+ years of IT experience to expand their skills for managing secured computer infrastructure to thwart increasing cyber risks. Led by Dr. Jean-Philippe Labruyere, the 52-credit curriculum offers three concentrations for Computer Security, Risk Management and Compliance, or Networking and Infrastructure. Requiring a 2.5 GPA or higher, the coursework ranges from digital forensic techniques and cryptology to object-oriented software development. Cutting-edge Cisco equipment allows for hands-on virtual learning, including a 10-week CINS Capstone and National Cyber League competition.
12. University of Rhode Island
Digital Forensics and Cyber Security Center
Endowed for $124.6 million, the University of Rhode Island is a public, land-grant and sea-grant RU/VH institution founded in 1892 that’s now led by President David M. Dooley to employ 676 full-time staff who encourage 16,613 Rams to “Think Big.” Headquartered on 1,254 acres in the Kingston Historic District, URI delivers 130 NEASC-accredited academic programs from Providence, Narragansett, West Greenwich, and online through Sakai. According to the U.S. News, Rhode Island is America’s 159th best university and 83rd top public college. Ranked America’s 204th best economic value by The Economist, URI was deemed the 171st top research university nationally on Forbes.
Starting each September with a July 1st application deadline, the Professional Science Master’s Degree in Cyber Security is available wholly online for University of Rhode Island post-grads who are working in IT. After the self-paced Fundamentals for Cyber Security workshop, the 36-credit curriculum seeks to protect public, corporate, and federal welfare by setting up strict security protocols on information systems. For $655 per credit or $2,620 per course, the DFCSC online degree integrates courses in digital forensics, incident response, intrusion detection, network security, and ethical hacking. Instead of a master’s thesis, students complete Cloud-based labs and internships with partners like Wetstone Technologies or ForensicSoft.
Launched in 2004 under a U.S. National Science Foundation Grant, the DFCSC at Rhode Island also delivers the Cyber Security Graduate Certificate online for tech-focused, post-grad credentials without a full master’s. Available over nine, 12, 16, or 20 months, the four-course certificate suits working professionals with Net+ certification and comprehension of computer networks. Besides the core courses in systems security and information assurance, students choose a concentration in Advanced Incident Response, Advanced Intrusion Detection and Defense, or Penetration Testing for video lectures accessed 24/7. Certificate credits could transfer into URI’s Master’s in Computer Science or Ph.D. in Computer Science with a Cyber Security Concentration.
13. Nova Southeastern University
College of Engineering and Computing
Classified for “Higher Research Activity” with $87 million in external funding, Nova Southeastern University is a private, nonprofit ICUF institution of the Sunshine State Conference that’s led by President George L. Hanbury II to inspire 24,148 Sharks in 18 colleges. Based upon 480 acres in Florida’s Greater Miami Metro in Davie near Dania Beach, Nova also excels with Web-based instruction that ranked 55th on OnlineDegreeReviews.org. The U.S. News named Nova Southeastern the 214th best national university with the 84th best online graduate education. Placed ninth for diversity, NSU was given a Forbes financial grade of “C” for America’s 395th most grateful graduates.
Through the SREB Electronic Campus, Nova follows the “Principles of Good Practice” to award an accredited Master of Science in Information Assurance & Cybersecurity fully online. The 12-course, 36-credit curriculum spans 16 to 24 months for working professionals to address global concerns for securing network vulnerabilities to avert criminal hackings. Taught by only PhD-level professors, online courses include information security governance, network forensics, software engineering, operating systems, and applied cryptography with two electives. Each Blackboard course costs $775 per credit for virtual access to CIPhER labs, Electronic Library databases, and internship connections like the Capital Group IT Security Response Center.
Post-master’s students seeking online cyber security degrees will find a unique online option in Nova Southeastern’s Ph.D. in Information Systems program with an Information Security Concentration. Expecting a minimum 3.25 GPA, the 64-credit curriculum opens advanced IT industry positions as well as teaching and research jobs in academia. Fourteen-week online courses like human-computer interaction, knowledge management, multivariate research, and information privacy are supplemented with just one on-campus trip to Fort Lauderdale quarterly. Charging $1,115 per credit after the $50 application fee, the online doctorate also includes two sections of directed research and a dissertation. There’s also a hybrid Ph.D. in Information Assurance available.
14. Bellevue University
Public Service, Safety, Security & Intelligence Division
Reaccredited by the HLC-NCA in 2014, Bellevue University is a private, nonprofit adult-friendly Nebraska institution celebrating its 50th anniversary that’s affiliated with notable alums like Abbie Cornett, Judd H. Lyons, and James R. Young. Endowed for $28.07 million to educate 10,304 Bruins with “Real Learning for Real Life,” Bellevue extends beyond its main Sarpy County campus to the Lozier Professional Center in Omaha and Online University. The U.S. News ranked Bellevue for America’s 92nd best online bachelor’s degrees. Honored for the #1 most generous credit transfers by Online Course Report, Bellevue University has earned CLO Magazine’s Bronze Excellence in Social Learning Award.
Applauded among Government Security News’ Best Higher Education Award winners in 2015, the Online Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity attracts Bellevue cohorts who seek to safeguard sensitive data in impenetrable networks. Charging $410 per online credit, the 127-credit curriculum emphasizes the technical skills for spotting, analyzing, and addressing cyber risks with state-of-the-art technologies. Courses take an accelerated, nine-week format for quickly mastering risk auditing, cyber forensics, cryptography, access control, mobile device security, and more with the Kirkpatrick Signature Series. High school grads and GED recipients are assigned success advisors to personalize their course-by-course schedule. Bellevue alumni report a median mid-career salary of $102,000.
Given 4.5 stars based on 1,743 student reviews, the Master of Science in Cybersecurity is another of Bellevue’s online degrees geared toward entry- and mid-level IT professionals seeking active instruction on the latest security technologies. Cohorts pay $565 per credit before financial aid to prepare for safeguarding organizations against hacking incidents. Logging into BRUIN for this 36-credit program will involve content like business continuity planning, risk management, operations security, cyberdeterrence, and cloud computing security. Analysts with 5+ years of experience could take the six-module, accelerated option for graduation in 12 months. There’s also a 36-credit M.S. in Security Management online for leadership-style training.
15. Lewis University
School for Professional and Continuing Education
Promoting the motto “Signum Fidei,” Lewis University is a private, Catholic liberal arts institution devoted to the Lasallian tradition since its founding by the Archdiocese of Chicago in 1932 to enlighten 4,613 undergrad and 1,960 post-grad Flyers with a $56.32 million endowment. Led by President Dr. David J. Livingston from 410 acres in Romeoville, Illinois, Lewis also operates classrooms in Albuquerque and virtually through Blackboard. With a 62 percent admission rate, Lewis is deemed the Midwest’s 24th best university and 19th best for vets college by the U.S. News. Washington Monthly also crowned Lewis University the region’s 156th top value.
Boasting a 13:1 student-faculty ratio, Lewis’ Online Information Security and Risk Management B.S. uses an accelerated format for undergrads to acquire the technical expertise to outsmart cyber criminals and protect vital personal or organizational information. The 64-credit, two-year program admits full-time students who’ve completed an associate degree at accredited schools like Moraine Valley Community College. Students take adult-only classes like IT law, disaster recovery planning, data discovery, and ethical hacking with 24/7 access. Lewis University offers a cutting-edge VMware CloudLab for simulations with Telemet Orion and Linux software. Some may also intern with CME Group and join the ISACA-Chicago Chapter.
Priced at $795 per credit, the Master of Science in Information Security is another of Lewis University’s online offerings where experienced IT professionals prepare for developing efficient cyber defense operations. Graduates qualify for industry-leading certifications, including Security+, CISSP, and CISM, for protecting valuable assets in managerial positions. Lewis has placed over 40 alumni at Argonne National Laboratory’s IT Department too. Open with rolling admission, the 100 percent online option has eight-week courses with the Technical Concentration or Management Concentration. Virtual courses span from secure operating systems and network security to cybercrime identification and digital forensics before the capstone, 16-week research project.
16. Champlain College
Division of Information Technology & Sciences
Nestled upon a 22-acre, 50-building Victorian campus in Burlington, Vermont, Champlain College is a private, residential NEASC-accredited institution tracing back to 1878 that’s expanded to teach globally in Dublin, Montreal, and on the World Wide Web. Organized into five divisions led by Chief Academic Officer Dr. Laurie Quinn, Champlain educates 2,000 full-time students with an average class size of 17. According to the U.S. News, the North’s third most innovative school has the country’s 148th best online bachelor’s programs. As winner of the Way to Go Commuter Challenge in 2013, Champlain College also ranked #3 overall on the Online Education Database.
Designated a DC National Center of Digital Forensics Academic Excellence by the U.S. Air Force, Champlain offers working adults the ability to transfer up to 90 credits into the Online Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity program. Taught by practitioner faculty, the distance degree is directed by Ric Messier, CISSP, fully online with two, seven-week terms annually for training to defend digital intelligence from unscrupulous hackers. Priced at $641 per credit, courses include security scripting with Python, emerging threats, mobile security, system intrusion analysis, and webpage development with a senior seminar project. There’s also a B.S. in Computer Forensics & Digital Investigations online.
Voted #1 nationally in SC Magazine twice, Champlain post-grads pursue the Online M.S. in Information Security Operations with a standard completion rate of 80 percent. With access to the CNIS Club, students finish the 30-credit curriculum within 24 months to better understand current cyber attack vectors and formalize policy-driven IT precautions. Ideal for systems analysts with 2+ years of experience, accelerated seven-week webinars delve into malware analysis, vulnerability detection, operations management, game theory, and incident response. Theories are applied with virtual teams-based projects and the war games capstone. Admission to the $23,850 program requires an accredited bachelor’s with a 2.5 GPA or greater.
17. Dakota State University
College of Computing
Following the Excellence Through Innovation 2020 Plan, Dakota State University is a public, polytechnic STEM-centric institution directed by President José-Marie Griffiths that’s endowed for $10.1 million to educate 3,047 Trojans and give upper-division majors free tablet PCs. Located on 20 acres in Madison, South Dakota, with the acclaimed Karl E. Mundt Library, DSU also delivers HLC-accredited courses in Sioux Falls and over the Internet. The U.S. News ranked Dakota State the Midwest’s 108th best university with the 185th top online graduate education countrywide. Deemed America’s 220th “Best College for Computer Science” on Niche, DSU was placed 113th by the Educate to Career College Ranking.
Eligible for the full-ride Cyber Corps Scholarship and $20,000 stipend, Dakota State University’s Online B.S. in Cyber Operations suits young programmers who wish to develop the hacker mindset to resolve tech vulnerabilities before breaches occur. The bachelor’s requires completing 30 credits annually for four years to master how reverse engineering works to create secure computer hardware and software. Online courses are capped at 35 for engaging in virtual labs like malware analysis, cellular security, assembly language, and data structures. Charging $335 per credit, the program lets undergrads join DakotaCon, compete in the ACM North Central Region, and intern with Los Alamos National Laboratory.
Currently costing $444 per credit, the DSU College of Computing’s M.S. in Information Assurance & Computer Security is also accessible 24/7 online with the GetEducated.com “Affordability” badge. Applications are accepted until June 15th, November 15th, or April 15th annually for bachelor’s graduates with an overall 3.0 GPA and satisfactory GRE scores. The 30-credit degree prepares IT systems analysts for leading the strategic cybersecurity efforts to reduce risk of digital attack. It could be completed with the accelerated 4+1 Computer Science B.S./MSIA track. Other post-grad online opportunities include the Banking Security Certificate, Ethical Hacking Certificate, and Doctor of Science (DSc) in Cyber Security.
18. Davenport University
College of Technology
Founded by Conrad G. Swensburg in 1866 with just 16 students in office skills training, Davenport University has evolved into a private, nonprofit multi-campus GLIAC institution that’s encouraging 7,767 Panthers to “Get Where the World is Going.” Organized by President Richard Pappas, Ed.D., Davenport uses its 69-acre main campus in Grand Rapids to cover Michigan from Holland to Livonia and deliver online study via Blackboard. The U.S. News recognized Davenport for America’s 186th best online baccalaureate degrees. Named the 98th “Best Online College” and 120th “Most Conservative College” on Niche, Davenport University ranked in the top 5 percent for computer science on College Factual.
Unlocking a median mid-career salary of $90,120, the DU Global Campus conducts its Cyber Defense Bachelor of Science 100 percent online for learning the myriad of technological tools used to protect digital information. Costing $707 per credit for Michiganders with a 33 percent discount for non-residents, the four-year degree nurtures the performance-based skills for developing internal and external infrastructure checks to curb criminal intrusion. The 45-credit major offers elective tracks for Math Modeling, Information Assurance, or Healthcare Information Assurance. In 2015, undergrads on the Cyber Defense team finished #1 in the Michigan Collegiate Cyber League. Alumni excel with Delphi Corporation, NETech, DHS, and more.
Another online cyber security degree program from Davenport University is the M.S. in Information Assurance, which is estimated to cost $765 per credit before textbooks. Mapped to the Committee on National Security Systems training Standard 4011, the 34-credit degree preps post-graduates for leading cyber operations that minimize risk to organizational assets. Starting six times yearly, the online program’s seven-week courses explore IT business continuity, cryptography, application security, digital forensics, and banking security. During their fourth term, MSIA enrollees purse a master’s thesis research topic with PhD-level faculty advisors. Davenport integrates cyber security courses in the Online M.S. in Technology Management too.
19. Mercy College
Department of Mathematics and Computer Science
Acclaimed for its Cybersecurity Education Center, Mercy College stands atop 66 acres in the Hudson Valley suburb of Dobbs Ferry just 25 miles north of New York City as a private, nonsectarian NAICU research institution directed by President Timothy L. Hall. Endowed for $193.5 million, Mercy has expanded since 1950 to educate 11,295 Mavericks total from Yorktown Heights and the Bronx to the World Wide Web. Included in Barron’s Best Buys in College Education, Mercy College was ranked the 457th best master’s university and 190th top value by Washington Monthly. Niche also distinguished Mercy as America’s 113th “Best Online College” and 88th “Safest College.”
Delivered by PhD-trained faculty from Pittsburgh, Shanghai Jiao Tong, George Mason, Florida, and more, Mercy’s Cybersecurity B.S. is available online over four years full-time. The 120-credit, MSCHE-accredited degree fulfills high demand in today’s information age to adapt sound security policies that prevent digital disasters. Undergrads can transfer a maximum of 75 credits from two-year colleges and 90 credits from universities. Aspiring IT professionals will delve into courses like artificial intelligence, website administration, penetration testing, intelligent programming, and Linux networking for $761 per credit taken. Seniors could also add the cybersecurity workplace experience with big-name NYC companies like Morgan Stanley and BNY Mellon.
Selectively admitting 72 percent of applicants for a 17:1 student-faculty ratio, the M.S. in Cybersecurity is another of Mercy’s online options for post-bachelor’s scholars to safeguard data in our interconnected, tech-savvy world. Graduates build the advanced IT and leadership skills for assuming mid- and upper-level jobs, such as Chief Security Officer, that defend networks from breaches. Satisfying CISSP credentialing, the 30-credit, online curriculum integrates courses like data mining, forensic computing, firewall installation, IT compliance, and distributed database security for $876 per credit with a master’s project. Undergrads with a minimum 3.3 GPA could pursue the Dual B.S./M.S. online too.
20. Wilmington University
College of Online and Experiential Learning
Affiliated with noteworthy alumni like Hugh T. Broomall, Ruth Briggs King, and Francis D. Vavala, Wilmington University is a private, nonsectarian doctoral-granting research hub in the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference that’s endowed for $68.3 million. Although WilmU is headquartered off Route 13 in New Castle, Delaware, over 40 percent of the 20,522 student population studies online for MSCHE-accredited education. Ranked for America’s 202nd best online baccalaureate programs by the U.S. News, Wilmington is crowned the 101st “Best Online College” overall on Niche. Washington Monthly also applauded Wilmington University as the 258th best national college and 95th top Northeastern value.
Touting a Blackboard Exemplary Course Award win, the Online B.S. in Computer and Network Security immerses WilmU Wildcats in the fast-paced tech sector to defend against spyware, adware, malware, and other cybercrimes that compromise networks. Given CAE Certification, the 120-credit curriculum develops security analysts with the best practices to implement information assurance projects ethically. General education courses like public speaking and college math lead to major online classes for electronic discovery, cyberlaw, criminal procedures, perimeter security, and algorithm applications for $363 per credit. Students could embed 400-600 hours of cooperative education at firms like Danisco US and SSD Technology Partners.
Post-grads choosing Wilmington University may earn the M.S. in Homeland Security with the Information Assurance Concentration 100 percent online or in New Castle. Priced at $466 per credit, the master’s program sharpens students’ security preparedness to identify, evaluate, and address threats to our homeland’s most sensitive data. Ideal for future DHS jobs, the 33-credit curriculum blends courses on terrorism, risk assessment, crisis leadership, Web security, radio frequency identification, and operating systems control. Some credits could be transferred from the FBI National Academy if applicable. Prospective online students may also consider the M.S. in Information Systems Technologies and Digital Evidence Discovery Certificate.