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Online Cyber Security Degrees and Programs

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An online degree in cyber security primarily focuses on educating individuals about internet threats and teaches them how to safeguard data. This field of study is also referred to as information security (InfoSec), which equips graduates with crucial technical skills required to detect, deter, and tackle various cyber threats and security concerns.

Given the increasing prevalence of cyber attacks, pursuing an online degree in cyber security can be a valuable investment. Reports indicate that by 2021, there will be 3.5 million vacant positions in the field of cyber security, highlighting the demand for individuals with InfoSec expertise. With the right training and computer skills, graduates in this field will be highly sought-after by potential employers.


Associate of Science in Cyber Security

As a student in this program, you will have the opportunity to explore fundamental concepts, products, and practices related to cyber security. The curriculum will provide training in computer networks, including courses focused on security defense tactics and strategy. Through this training, you will gain a deeper understanding of how to safeguard computer systems and networks from a wide range of cyber threats.

Course Examples:

BS in Cyber Security

In this program, you will not only learn about fundamental concepts and practices but also gain practical knowledge on the application of current tools. Additionally, you will have the opportunity to test various methods and learn how to design secure systems. To further enhance your learning experience, an optional internship will provide you with valuable hands-on experience in the field of cyber security.

Course Examples:

MS in Cyber Security

In this program, you will have access to the latest tools, practices, methods, and procedures used to manage and safeguard critical information infrastructures and other sensitive assets. As a student, you will have the opportunity to investigate current industry trends and emerging cyber threats. Through this comprehensive curriculum, you will be equipped with the skills and knowledge necessary to protect and defend sensitive information and assets against cyber attacks.

Course Examples:

Online Cyber Security Degree Levels

Enrolling in an online cyber security program as an undergraduate student will provide you with a foundational understanding of cyber crime. Initially, you will learn about your role as the first line of defense against cyber attacks. As you progress through the program, you will have the opportunity to focus on specific areas of cyber security that interest you.

Some programs offer specialized courses on trending issues in network safety, as well as topics such as identity theft, computer viruses, and hacking. Additionally, you may study advanced concepts such as cyber terrorism and homeland security (HS). By gaining expertise in these areas, you will be better equipped to handle the ever-evolving landscape of cyber threats and keep critical information and systems safe from potential attacks.

By taking courses in a cyber security program, you will develop the skills necessary to identify potential intruders and protect against cyber threats. Understanding the tactics and protocols used by cyber criminals will be vital in safeguarding your organization’s digital assets.
In addition to this, the program will offer technical and computer-focused courses, similar to those in software development programs. You will have the opportunity to learn how to use various software tools to enhance the security of information systems and prevent unauthorized access. These valuable skills will not only benefit your organization, but also make you a valuable asset to any company operating in the digital space.

Enrolling in courses related to digital forensics can also aid in the development of your investigative skills. These skills are essential in effectively resolving security-related issues and identifying potential threats. By acquiring knowledge in digital forensics, you will be better equipped to investigate and analyze digital evidence in order to identify and mitigate security breaches.

What Courses Will You Take In An Online Cyber Security Degree?

In your cyber security program, you will have the opportunity to study various hacking techniques and learn how to trace the steps of cyber criminals. By understanding these methods, you will gain insight into identifying and addressing vulnerabilities in information systems.

Additionally, the program will cover countermeasures and teach you how to effectively use industry tools to enhance security. To supplement your technical coursework, you may be required to take general education courses and a capstone project. These courses may include mathematics, computing, and information technology.

Some common courses include:

Ethical Hacking: In the Ethical Hacking course, you will gain knowledge about advanced hacking tools and techniques used to legally and ethically penetrate an organization's security systems. This will enable you to identify weaknesses and vulnerabilities in the system and take necessary measures to strengthen it against potential threats..

Network Defense:The Network Defense course will cover essential concepts and techniques used in defending computer networks against cyber threats. By completing this course, you will learn how to implement effective security measures to protect networks from potential attacks.

Cyber Security Policy: In the Cyber Security Policy course, you will study strategies and best practices used to assist organizations in protecting their sensitive data and managing cyber risks. Additionally, you will learn how to effectively respond to and recover from cyber attacks to minimize potential damage.

Database Basics: The Database Basics course is designed to teach you fundamental skills in creating tables and manipulating data using various techniques. Additionally, you will gain proficiency in Structured Query Language (SQL), which is a crucial skill in managing and organizing data in modern information systems.

Digital Forensics: In Security Risk Management, you'll acquire an in-depth understanding of risk management, including its theories, concepts, and best practices.

Security Risk Management:Digital Forensics is a course that will equip you with the necessary knowledge and skills to investigate computer-related crimes. You will learn how to gather and analyze digital evidence, which can be used in legal proceedings. The course also covers the proper procedures for presenting evidence in a court of law.


Earning a degree in cyber security typically takes four years for full-time students, while a master’s degree may require two years of study. However, some schools provide options for faster graduation. For instance, you could enroll in an accelerated program and transfer credits from an accredited associate’s or bachelor’s degree program to shorten your timeline. Additionally, some schools may offer credit for your military training, allowing you to further expedite your degree.


Earning an online degree in cyber security could cost you an average of $28,890 or more, depending on various factors. Your state residency could be one of these factors, as some schools charge out-of-state students higher tuition fees. However, some schools may offer a set tuition rate for all online students regardless of residency. As per current data, the median in-state tuition fee is $6,826, increasing by 3.89%. The average out-of-state tuition fee is $28,890, which is growing by 5.16%. Additionally, you may also have to pay extra for technology fees.


At last check, you can see that most schools that offer cyber security programs are public. Many are also two year institutions. Out of those schools, you’ll find there were 11,906 degrees awarded to students.

School 2017 Grads total/Degrees awarded 2019/20 Tuition (Out of State unless *)
U of Maryland University College 1339 $36,891
Western Governors U 830 $6,670*
U of Phoenix Arizona 566 $9,552*
American Public U System 352 $7,324*
ECPI U 336 $16,639*
Pennsylvania State U Main Campus 232 $35,514
Anne Arundel Community College 231 $13,160


Opting for an accredited online cyber security program would be advantageous for you. Firstly, schools with regional accreditation may enable you to transfer your credits. This could potentially reduce your workload and expenses. Moreover, you may qualify for federal financial assistance.

Professional accreditation is the next level of achievement you can aim for in your cyber security education. This type of recognition ensures that the program you choose meets industry standards and provides quality education. While voluntary, the accreditation process involves a rigorous evaluation of the program’s curriculum, faculty, and resources. Once approved by peers and meeting specific criteria, the program is granted the status of “accredited.” Notably, the ABET has recently begun to accredit cyber security Bachelor’s degree programs.

The National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense (NCAE CD) designation is not a new concept. It aims to provide you with the necessary cyber defense skills. The program is jointly sponsored by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the National Security Agency (NSA). You can verify if a two-year, four-year, or graduate school is approved for the CAE CD program by checking the NSA website.

Cyber Security Careers

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports a recent rise in the frequency of cyber attacks. This trend is driving job growth in the field of cyber security. As a result, there is a higher demand for cyber security professionals in various sectors, including the federal government and healthcare industry. If you pursue a career as an Information Security (Info Sec) analyst, your potential salary will depend on factors such as your position and level of experience.

Top States for Info Sec Analysts

In the table below, you can see the states with the highest employment levels. For this career path, you will often need a degree in cyber security or computer science.

StateEmploymentAnnual Mean Wage
New York6,930$122,000



As an Information Security Analyst, you could be responsible for developing and managing a company’s information security infrastructure. This may involve the creation and enforcement of policies to govern the use of information, as well as assigning appropriate levels of user permissions.

According to 2020 BLS data:

Avg Salary: $103,590 per year
Job growth through 2029: 31% (Much faster than average)
Entry Level Degree: Bachelor’s degree


A computer and information systems manager is responsible for planning, coordinating, and directing computer-related activities in an organization. They are tasked with ensuring that computer systems are efficient, secure, and up-to-date. They may oversee the installation and maintenance of hardware and software, manage a team of IT professionals, and work with other departments to ensure that computer systems meet the needs of the organization.

According to 2020 BLS data:

Avg Salary: $151,150 per year
Job growth through 2029: 10% (Much faster than average)
Entry Level Degree: Bachelor’s degree


Network and computer systems administrators are responsible for managing an organization’s computer networks and systems. This includes installing, configuring, and maintaining network and computer systems, as well as ensuring network security and resolving any issues that arise. They also oversee network and system upgrades and work closely with other IT professionals to ensure the organization’s technological needs are being met.

According to 2020 BLS data:

Avg Salary: $84,810 per year
Job growth through 2029: 4% (As fast as average)
Entry Level Degree: Degree in computer science is common