The Best Online Cybersecurity Degrees


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Cybersecurity pertains to the protection of information and technology in electronic systems, computers, networks, and servers from unwanted invasions.

These attacks can affect organizations of all sizes in any industry. Therefore, many employers value the expertise of professionals with cybersecurity degrees.

Graduates with a bachelor's in cybersecurity enjoy a steadily growing career path. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects a 5% increase in jobs for network and computer systems administrators between 2018 and 2028.

This guide ranks the 20 best online cybersecurity bachelor's degrees. We also cover important information for prospective students, such as common careers and potential salaries for graduates.

Top 10 Online Bachelor's in Cybersecurity Programs
#1 Drexel University Philadelphia, PA
#2 Champlain College Burlington, VT
#3 Central Washington University Ellensburg, WA
#4 Davenport University Grand Rapids, MI
#5 Dakota State University Madison, SD
#6 California Baptist University Riverside, CA
#7 Lewis University Romeoville, IL
#8 The University of Texas at San Antonio San Antonio, TX
#9 Mercy College Dobbs Ferry, NY
#10 Wilmington University New Castle, DE

Featured Online Schools

The Best Online Cybersecurity Degree Programs

  1. Drexel University

    Philadelphia, PA



    Drexel is one of the top 15 largest private universities in the United States. While students can earn their degrees on campus, Drexel also accommodates nontraditional learners through online coursework. In fact, Drexel Online is one of the oldest online postsecondary providers in the country.

    The online cybersecurity bachelor's degree at Drexel examines computer system administration and electronic safety. The degree requires 188 quarter credits and includes courses like introduction to computing and security technology, team process and product, computing and informatics design, and introduction to business statistics. The program also offers concentrations in computing technology and computing security.

    Distance learners access coursework through the Blackboard learning management system. Online courses use an asynchronous format. Students engage with peers and professors through discussion boards, group chats, and email. Assignments include online readings, projects, essays, and exams.

    Students can transfer up to 113 quarter credits from accredited institutions toward the degree. Drexel offers transfer credit for prior academic work and IT certifications, such as A+, Oracle 9i DBA, and CCNA. Applicants must submit transcripts, letters of recommendation, a personal essay, and a resume.

    Drexel University is regionally accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE).

  2. Champlain College

    Burlington, VT



    Established in 1878, Champlain hosts students from 44 states and 18 countries. The school offers over 150 areas of a study and a 12-to-1 student-to-faculty ratio. Champlain's online bachelor's degree in cybersecurity prepares graduates for careers in computer and information systems.

    The 120-credit degree includes courses like usability in website and software design, project management standards and behaviors, Linux systems administration, and server-side scripting PHP. Champlain also offers computer and information systems certificates.

    Students should plan to commit 10-17 hours each week to assignments, though online courses follow an asynchronous format. Students communicate with professors and peers through discussion forums, group chats, and email. Assignments include group projects, online readings, recorded lectures, and exams.

    Champlain provides online tutoring through Smarthinking. Champlain also provides a support team for distance learners, including academic counselors, career advisors, librarian research support, and technical assistance. Admission requires a minimum 2.5 GPA, official transcripts, a resume, and multiple short essays. Champlain accepts up to 90 transfer credits from accredited institutions.

    Champlain College is regionally accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE).

  3. Central Washington University

    Ellensburg, WA



    Founded in 1891, CWU emphasizes practical learning and accessible coursework, offering over 135 degrees, including multiple regionally and nationally ranked programs. Nontraditional learners can access hundreds of online courses and a variety of fully online degrees at CWU.

    The College of Education and Professional Studies at CWU offers an online cybersecurity bachelor's degree that examines information technology and administrative management. Courses include sustainable decision-making, integrated computer applications, leadership and supervision, cyberattack and defense, and cybercrime.

    The program uses a cohort model, which allows students to build relationships with peers as they move through the program. Online courses typically follow an asynchronous format. Assignments include lecture videos, discussion board posts, essays, and exams.

    CWU provides an academic success center, which offers online peer-to-peer collaboration, tutoring, and development assistance. Distance learners can also access online databases, a math center, a writing center, and technical support. Admission requires a minimum 2.0 GPA, ACT or SAT scores, a personal essay, and official transcripts.

    Central Washington University is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU).

  4. Davenport University

    Grand Rapids, MI



    DU hosts 6,500 students each year, including over 5,100 undergraduate students. Over 78% of DU students complete at least one online class. The school values affordability, offering the lowest tuition rates of all postsecondary institutions in Michigan.

    Distance learners can earn a bachelor's in cybersecurity that provides graduates with technological and management skills. The 120-credit program includes 27-28 foundations of excellence credits, 21 foundations of computer information systems credits, 15 specialty area credits, nine foundations of business credits, 17-18 elective credits, and 45 major credits.

    Notable courses include systems analysis and design, data structures and algorithms, achieving career and education success, and discrete structures. Specialization options include web and mobile development, programming, database and analytics, and secure software development. DU Global Campus also offers a minor in mathematics.

    Distance learners access coursework through the Blackboard learning management system, following an asynchronous format. Assignments include group projects, online readings, recorded lectures, and exams.

    Admission requires official transcripts, SAT or ACT scores, and a statement of purpose. Students with professional experience should also submit a resume.

    Davenport University is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

  5. Dakota State University

    Madison, SD



    DSU values continuous improvement, community, and innovation and strives to accommodate diverse learning needs. Students can access a variety of fully online degrees and programs at DSU, and over half of DSU students earn their degrees completely online.

    DSU's College of Business and Information Systems offers an online bachelor's in cybersecurity that prepares graduates to use technology to lead the operations of an organization. This program requires 120 credits, including 30 general education credits, 66 major credits, 18 specialization credits, and six elective credits. DSU offers multiple specializations, including application development, business analytics, and project management.

    Courses include decision support systems, business intelligence and big data, software development with agile methodologies, and object-oriented design. DSU requires a three-credit internship, allowing students to gain applied experience and network with potential employers. DSU uses the Desire2Learn learning management system to administer distance coursework.

    DSU offers e-tutoring in multiple subjects. Students can also connect with peer tutors through web conferencing software. Admission requires a minimum 2.0 GPA.

    Dakota State University is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

  6. California Baptist University

    Riverside, CA



    CBU is a religious university that offers theologically rooted coursework taught by Christian faculty. The school hosts around 11,000 students annually and offers over 100 degrees, including 80 bachelor's programs. The fully online bachelor's in cybersecurity prepares graduates for careers in computer information technology.

    This degree requires a minimum of 88 units, including 40-43 general education units, six lower-division units, 36 upper-division units, and six required units. Courses include foundations in Christian thought, legal and ethical practices in information technology, computer programming in C++, and enterprise architecture.

    Distance learners access coursework through the Blackboard learning management system. Coursework includes discussion forum posts, online readings, essays, and exams. CBU provides online tutoring through Smarthinking. Online students also have access to an academic counselor, 24/7 technical assistance, online databases, and librarian research support.

    Admission requires an essay, official transcripts, a minimum 2.0 GPA, and SAT or ACT scores. CBU offers merit-based scholarships for students with a 2.5 GPA or higher.

    California Baptist University is regionally accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission (WSCUC).

  7. Lewis University

    Romeoville, IL



    Lewis offers rigorous, immersive education through a Christian lens. Students can access over 117 programs, including 80 undergraduate majors. Learners interested in cybersecurity jobs can earn an online bachelor of science in information security management at Lewis.

    The fully online degree requires 128 credits, including 64 major credits, 37 core credits, and three elective credits. Courses include computer forensics for business applications, survey of operating systems, mobile device forensics, and cybercrime prevention tools.

    This degree prepares graduates to sit for professional certification exams like certified information systems security professional, certified ethical hacker, and access data certified forensics examiner. Lewis also offers an accelerated bachelor's-to-master's track that only requires an additional 26 credits.

    Distance learners access coursework through the Blackboard learning management system, and online courses follow an asynchronous format. Students engage with professors and peers through discussion forums and email. Weekly modules include readings, essays, group projects, and exams. Certain courses may require proctored exams at approved locations.

    Lewis offers 24/7 technical support, a personal student services coordinator, digital library databases, and online tutoring.

    Lewis University is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

  8. The University of Texas at San Antonio

    San Antonio, TX



    Founded in 1969, UTSA now offers over 155 degrees across five campuses. UTSA promotes diversity and inclusion, with 64% of the student body belonging to marginalized groups. The school's College of Business offers an online bachelor's in cybersecurity that ranks among the top programs in the nation. The Department of Homeland Security and the National Security Agency recognize this program as a Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance and Cyber Defense Education.

    The 120-credit program includes courses like digital business communication, introduction to telecommunications for business, management science and operations technology, and Excel for business information systems. Online courses use an asynchronous format, allowing students to balance their studies with personal and professional obligations. Online learners receive access to enrollment counselors, academic counselors, and technical support.

    Admission requires applicants to have graduated in the top quartile of their high school classes. They also need a minimum of 1100 on the old SAT, 1170 on the new SAT, or 24 on the ACT.

    The University of Texas at San Antonio is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

  9. Mercy College

    Dobbs Ferry, NY



    Mercy is a private college that offers over 90 programs, including 40 fully online degrees. The school hosts over 6,200 learners annually from 40 states and 49 countries. The Department of Mathematics and Computer Information Science offers an online bachelor's in cybersecurity that prepares graduates for a competitive job market.

    This degree requires 120 credits, including 60 general education credits, 45 computer information systems credits, and 15 open elective credits. Students typically earn their degrees in four years of full-time attendance.

    Courses may include healthcare analytics and apps, disaster recovery and business continuation, and artificial intelligence. Distance learners access coursework through the Blackboard learning management system. Students engage with professors and peers through email and discussion posts. Online students gain access to mental health counseling, career development services, and technical support.

    Admission requires high school transcripts, letters of recommendation, a personal statement, and a resume. Applicants can optionally submit SAT or ACT scores to bolster their applications. Mercy accepts up to 75 transfer credits from accredited two-year institutions and up to 90 credits from accredited four-year institutions.

    Mercy College is regionally accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE).

  10. Wilmington University

    New Castle, DE



    WilmU offers over 200 undergraduate and graduate degrees, including 130 fully online programs. The school values community responsiveness, innovation, and integrity. The online bachelor of science in information systems management prepares graduates for cybersecurity jobs.

    The 120-credit program includes 36 general education credits, 18 business and management core credits, 45 information systems management credits, and 21 free elective credits. Courses may include introduction to e-commerce, applied concepts in accounting and finance, principles and practice of information security, and data management. WilmU also offers an accelerated option with a technology project management graduate certificate, which requires an additional 15 credits.

    Distance learners access coursework through the Blackboard learning management system. Students follow weekly modules to complete essays, exams, and group work. Discussion forums allow students to engage with peers and professors.

    Online learners gain access to academic counselors, technical support, and online databases. Admission requires official transcripts and a placement test. WilmU offers a test-optional policy for the ACT and SAT. Students can transfer up to 90 credits toward the degree.

    Wilmington University is regionally accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education (MSCHE).

Online Bachelor's in Cybersecurity Degree Program Ranking Guidelines

We selected the following degree programs based on quality, curricula, school awards, rankings, and reputation.

Our Methodology

Here at, we take the trust and welfare of our readers very seriously. When making our school and program rankings, our top priority is ensuring that our readers get accurate, unbiased information that can help them make informed decisions about online education. That's why we've developed a rigorous ranking methodology that keeps the needs of our readers front and center.

Our proprietary, multi-criteria ranking algorithm analyzes key data indicators — as collected by the federal government — for each school or program. What data we use depends on the focus of each specific ranking, but in all cases, our ranking methodology is impartial: Schools cannot buy better rankings at TBS.

While specific criteria under consideration can vary by ranking, there are a few data points that we value most highly. They are affordability, academic quality, and online enrollment. Below, we break down our algorithm to help you understand what you're getting when you use one of our rankings.

  • Academics
  • Affordability
  • Online Enrollment

Data Sources

The data used in TBS rankings comes primarily from the federal government, and much of it is provided by the schools themselves. We aggregate and analyze this data to build our rankings.

The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) is our primary source. Its data comes from annual surveys conducted by the U.S. Department of Education's National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). Every college, university, or technical school with access to federal financial aid must participate in these surveys, which include questions about enrollment, graduation rates, finances, and faculty qualifications. This is publicly available data, which you can access yourself through the College Navigator.

Additionally, because we value a personal touch and the professional experience of our staff and Academic Advisory Board, we vet all results and adjust rankings as necessary based on our collected knowledge of schools and degree programs. Depending on the ranking, we may obtain additional input from, subject matter experts, prior TBS ranking lists, or other sources we deem relevant to a particular ranking.

Breakdown of Our Rankings Methodology

About Our Ranking Factors

Here at TBS, we value what you value: quality education, affordability, and the accessibility of online education. These factors guide all of our program rankings.

Each of these factors are further broken down into weighted subfactors. For example, retention rates are weighted more heavily than availability of program options because they are a better indicator of student success.

We chose the following factors for our rankings because of their influence on learning experiences and graduate outcomes. However, students should always balance our rankings against their personal priorities. For instance, a learner who needs a fully online program may prioritize online flexibility more than our rankings do. Our rankings are designed to help you make a decision — not to make a decision for you.

Academics - 75%

Affordability - 15%

Online Enrollment - 10%

In all our school rankings and recommendations, we work for objectivity and balance. We carefully research and compile each ranking list, and as stated in our advertising disclosure, we do NOT permit financial incentives to influence rankings. Our articles never promote or disregard a school for financial gain.

If you have questions about our ranking methodology, please feel free to connect with our staff through contact page.

We thank you for your readership and trust.

What Is Cybersecurity?

Cybersecurity degrees prepare graduates to protect organizations from illegal hackers and viruses that target sensitive information. The term "cybersecurity" applies to a broad field, including network security, information security, operational security, and application security.

Concentrations vary by program, but cybersecurity students can potentially specialize in areas like web and mobile development, business analytics, database and analytics, and computing technology. Today's digital society allows cybersecurity professionals to find employment in nearly any field, but the most common fields include computer systems design and educational services.

Constant advances in technology pose ongoing challenges and changes; cybersecurity professionals must stay abreast of any changes to maintain relevance and a competitive edge in the job market. Cybersecurity professionals also need integrity and strong analytical and problem-solving skills.

What Is the Difference Between Information Assurance and Cybersecurity?

Information assurance and cybersecurity both refer to the protection of information. However, information assurance refers to the protection of both non-digital and digital information, while cybersecurity emphasizes digital information.

Information security professionals analyze how organizations use and communicate information, identifying possible areas of exposure in order to advise companies. Cybersecurity professionals develop methods of protecting digital hardware, software, and information systems from data breaches or other damage.

What Is a Bachelor's in Cybersecurity Degree?

During a bachelor's in cybersecurity program, students explore computer system administration and electronic safety concepts, learning how to protect digital data, computer systems, and networks from infiltration. Courses may include usability in data structures and algorithms, project management standards and behaviors, Linux systems administration, and server-side scripting PHP.

Some programs offer cybersecurity specializations. Concentrations that focus on the business aspect of the field include project management and business analytics, while field-specific concentrations may include secure software development and mobile development programming.

Students typically earn this degree in four years of full-time attendance. However, online programs may offer accelerated options or modified academic calendars that require shorter time commitments. Admission requirements vary, but applicants usually must submit a resume, letters of recommendation, and SAT or ACT scores. Universities may also require an interview and a minimum GPA.

During a cybersecurity bachelor's degree, students gain soft skills in research, writing, adaptability, and networking. They also gain hard skills, like how to design and assess network architecture, compose custom scripts, and understand anti-malware.

What Can I Do With a Bachelor's in Cybersecurity Degree?

While most employers seek cybersecurity professionals with a bachelor's degree, an associate degree can satisfy requirements for some entry-level roles, including network security analyst, cybersecurity penetration tester, or cyberthreat analyst. Earning an associate degree also provides students with a strong foundation to pursue a cybersecurity bachelor's degree. In fact, some schools require applicants to hold an associate degree or professional experience before enrolling in a bachelor's program.

Professionals with a bachelor's degree have more opportunities. Potential roles for graduates include information security manager, IT security consultant, information assurance engineer, and ethical hacker.

A master's in cybersecurity provides further advancement opportunities, typically allowing students to specialize in an area like IT auditing or risk management and compliance. Cybersecurity professionals can also earn a doctorate, which prepares them for leadership roles like computer security researcher and developer, computer security system architect, director of information security, or senior security consultant.

Cybersecurity Jobs

The need for highly qualified cybersecurity professionals continues to grow. There are roles that only require an associate degree, allowing graduates to enter the field within two years and begin building professional experience. However, employers more often look for candidates with at least a bachelor's degree in cybersecurity. Several common careers for graduates with a bachelor's degree in cybersecurity are listed below.

Computer Systems Administrators

Computer systems administrators manage network-related tasks within an organization. These professionals must maintain network transfer performance, review protocols, and develop scripts that enhance networking devices. Other responsibilities include updating computer systems, reviewing software installations, and developing run-times for multiple programming languages.

This position requires analytical, IT, and business skills. Computer systems administrators need to perform well in teams while operating with minimal supervision. Most employers require applicants to hold a cybersecurity bachelor's degree from an accredited institution. Employers may also require prior related experience or industry certifications.

Source: BLS

Median Salary: $82,050 Projected Job Growth (2019-2029): 5%

Information Security Analysts

Information security analysts improve data safety within an organization. Primary responsibilities include research, data collection, strategy development, and efficiency improvement. These analysts also implement and uphold privacy policies and security guidelines. This role requires constant assessment of enterprise environments, log monitoring, and computer traffic management.

The best candidates can multitask and pay attention to detail. Information security analysts also need problem-solving skills. Employers typically require applicants to hold a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution and experience in the field.

Source: BLS

Median Salary: $98,350 Projected Job Growth (2019-2029): 32%

Network Architects

Network architects create and review network capabilities and needs for their companies. Other responsibilities include providing technical support regarding advanced wireless networks and managing client relationships under the guidance of organizational protocols and standards. These professionals work closely with network administrators.

This role requires advanced organizational skills to prevent detrimental network issues. Network architects must maintain detailed reports of their work to prevent and manage connectivity problems. These professionals also need strong communication skills to stay abreast of changes within the field. Employers typically look for candidates with a bachelor's degree. Some roles may also require prior experience.

Source: BLS

Median Salary: $109,020 Projected Job Growth (2019-2029): 5%

Cybersecurity Membership Associations

Technology evolves rapidly, so cybersecurity professionals need to stay updated on changes within the field. Membership organizations help professionals collaborate and share their knowledge. Professional organizations also offer discounted coursework and certification programs, digital databases, and online resources.

ISSA is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the collaboration and advancement of information security practitioners. Members can access professional development resources and local chapters. ISSA also offers a journal, an annual conference, and webinars. Established in 1989, SANS supports cooperative research and education in computer security. The organization's 165,000 members have access to intensive information security training, a work-study program, certification programs, and research opportunities. SANS also provides over 3,000 research papers, weekly bulletins, and newsletters. WiCyS is dedicated to female cybersecurity professionals, including those working in academia and research. Organizational goals include mentoring and building a strong cybersecurity workforce that offers gender equality. Members can access discounts on conferences, scholarships, volunteer opportunities, and an active network of like-minded professionals. (ISC)² has a global network of over 150,000 members and offers networking opportunities, conferences, and educational tools. Members can also access multiple certification programs, discounted textbooks, free professional development courses, and webinars. ISACA offers multiple membership levels, including a professional membership, a recent graduate membership, and a student membership. Benefits include access to professional development opportunities, discounted conferences, and a professional network that includes over 140,000 members in 180 countries.

Cybersecurity Certifications

Cybersecurity certifications allow professionals to demonstrate specialized knowledge and skills, creating opportunities in a competitive job market. The list below includes highly recognized certifications that cybersecurity professionals should consider pursuing.

CompTIA is a globally renowned cybersecurity association that focuses on education, certification, advocacy, and philanthropy. Professionals can earn vendor-neutral IT certifications that provide specialized knowledge in cybersecurity and networking. CompTIA CertMaster provides access to multiple self-paced training products, including CertMaster Learn and CertMaster Labs. GSEC tests the pragmatics of operations, audit, management, security, and software security tasks. GSEC also offers continuing education credits. Professionals may renew their certifications by taking the most recent version of the exam. CEH is the most comprehensive certification for network security professionals interested in ethical hacking. Coursework teaches professionals how to inspect network infrastructures and uncover vulnerabilities. Professionals who earn CEH certification often go on to complete the ECSA and APT courses. Offered by ISACA, CISM specializes in information governance, management, program development, and risk management. Applicants need five years of experience to take the exam. CISM offers credit for up to two years of experience if applicants hold an advanced degree and CISSP or CISA certification.

Frequently Asked Questions

What Is Cybersecurity?

Digital attacks aim to access, destroy, or change sensitive information in an organization. Cybersecurity protects computer systems from these threats and attacks.

What Is a Bachelor's in Cybersecurity Degree?

A bachelor's in cybersecurity teaches students how to protect various information systems and data, emphasizing technical knowledge and skills.

What Kind of Degree Do You Need for Cybersecurity?

While employers may accept applicants with an associate degree for entry-level cybersecurity positions, most employers require a bachelor's degree at minimum. Certifications can provide an additional advantage in the job market.

How Long Does It Take to Get a Cybersecurity Degree?

Students can earn a cybersecurity bachelor's degree in four years of full-time attendance. However, online programs may offer accelerated options, which allow students to graduate sooner.

How Much Do You Make in Cybersecurity?

According to BLS data, network and computer systems administrators earn a median annual salary of $82,050.

Do You Need a Bachelor's Degree for Cybersecurity?

Professionals may find limited entry-level jobs with an associate degree in cybersecurity, but most employers require a bachelor's degree.

How Much Do Cybersecurity Majors Make?

Cybersecurity salaries vary by location, experience, industry, and title. For instance, professionals who provide educational services earn median annual wages of around $71,990, while information administrators earn median salaries of $88,440.

What Can I Do With a Bachelor's in Cybersecurity?

Cybersecurity professionals typically offer computer systems design services. They may also work in education-related services, finance and insurance, or management.

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