The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

by TBS Staff

Updated September 27, 2022

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With cyber attacks and security breaches on the rise, the fields of cybersecurity and computer science offer ample opportunities for graduates with online network security degrees.

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics projects (BLS) projects information security analyst positions to grow by 28% from 2016 through 2026, while computer and information research scientists are projected to grow by 19%, with a median annual salary of $118,370. Graduates with online network security degrees can also land jobs as cybersecurity analysts, systems administrators,and cybersecurity consultants. Many of the highest–paying jobs in cybersecurity, networking, and computer science require master’s degrees in a computer–related field.

Earning an online master's degree in network security suits working professionals who want to advance their skills in computer science and network security. In this program, students learn to protect an organization’s computer information system and data, digital forensics, and local network architecture design. At the end of the program, students often take a capstone course to integrate their skills and knowledge into a final project, or they complete an internship to gain on–the–job experience. Some questions you may have about an online master’s in network security are answered below.

Featured Network Security Programs

The Best Online Master’s in Network Security Degree Programs

#1 The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

The University of Southern California

  • Los Angeles, CA
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Graduate students interested in a master's in information assurance can earn their degree from the University of Southern California, located in Los Angeles. The master of science in cyber security engineering program helps graduates increase their salary potential and take on more professional responsibilities. Earning a master's degree can also help candidates pursue new career opportunities.

The master's curriculum examines advanced theories and practices in network security. Learners choose electives or a specialization to gain focused career training. Applicants who majored in cyber security or a related field typically meet the admission requirements.

Online enrollees work with the program to arrange professional internships at approved locations in their local area. The program hosts networking events and other professional development activities to help graduate students expand their professional connections.

The University of Southern California at a Glance:

Type of School: Private 

Admission Rate: 11%

Total Online Master's Programs: 55

Program Name: Master of Science in Cyber Security Engineering

Graduate Tuition In State: $46,272

Graduate Tuition Out of State: $46,272

Average Tuition
In-state
$57,256
Out-of-state
$57,256
Retention Rate
96%
Admission Rate
11%
Students Enrolled
48,321
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
17% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Western Association of Schools and Colleges Senior Colleges and University Commission

#2 The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

Johns Hopkins University

  • Baltimore, MD
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Johns Hopkins University, located in Baltimore, enrolls master's students in its online information assurance program. The master of science in cybersecurity program emphasizes advanced practice skills, training graduates for leadership roles and an increased earning potential. A master's degree can also train candidates for roles in new industries.

The master's curriculum emphasizes research methods and analytical skills. Learners specialize their course of study to prepare for the job market. The master's program builds on undergraduate training or professional experience in cybersecurity.

Online enrollees add to their resume by pursuing internship opportunities at approved locations in their local area. Internships and other practicum activities build both hands-on experience and professional connections.

Johns Hopkins University at a Glance:

Type of School: Private 

Admission Rate: 11%

Total Online Master's Programs: 30

Program Name: Master of Science in Cybersecurity

Graduate Tuition In State: $55,350

Graduate Tuition Out of State: $55,350

Average Tuition
In-state
$55,350
Out-of-state
$55,350
Retention Rate
97%
Admission Rate
11%
Students Enrolled
27,079
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
46% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#3 The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

New York University

  • New York, NY
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

From its New York City campus,  New York University offers an online master's in information assurance. The master of science in cybersecurity program draws on a rigorous curriculum that prepares graduates for leadership responsibilities. With a master's degree, candidates also pursue new career opportunities.

The master's curriculum emphasizes both practical and theoretical approaches to Information Assurance. Learners take specialized courses to stand out in a competitive job market. Applicants without an information assurance background may need to complete prerequisite courses to enroll in the program.

Online enrollees meet any in-person requirements, such as internships, at approved sites in their local area. Graduate students expand their professional connections by attending virtual networking events.

New York University at a Glance:

Type of School: Private 

Admission Rate: 16%

Total Online Master's Programs: 28

Program Name: Master of Science in Cybersecurity

Graduate Tuition In State: $33,408

Graduate Tuition Out of State: $33,408

Average Tuition
In-state
$50,684
Out-of-state
$50,684
Retention Rate
94%
Admission Rate
16%
Students Enrolled
52,885
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
10% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#4 The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

Drexel University

  • Philadelphia, PA
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Drexel University, located in Philadelphia, offers a flexible online master's in network security. Graduates prepare for advanced roles in the field during the rigorous master of science in cybersecurity program. A master's degree allows candidates to move up the career ladder or pursue a new career path.

The master's curriculum emphasizes current research in network security. Learners focus the program with electives or a concentration. Applicants with a background in cybersecurity typically meet the admission requirements.

Online enrollees work with the program to find internship opportunities in their local area. The program encourages professional development activities, including networking events, so graduate students can expand their professional connections.

Drexel University at a Glance:

Type of School: Private 

Admission Rate: 75%

Total Online Master's Programs: 39

Program Name: Master of Science in Cybersecurity

Graduate Tuition In State: $35,181

Graduate Tuition Out of State: $35,181

Average Tuition
In-state
$52,146
Out-of-state
$52,146
Retention Rate
89%
Admission Rate
75%
Students Enrolled
24,205
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
38% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#5 The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

Robert Morris University

  • Moon Township, PA
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

From its campus in Moon Township, Pennsylvania, Robert Morris University hosts a top-ranked master's in computer forensics program. Graduates prepare for advanced roles in the field during the rigorous master of science in cybersecurity program. With a master's degree, candidates advance their current career or more into new career paths.

The master's curriculum emphasizes research methods and analytical skills. Learners prepare for focused career paths by choosing electives and concentrations. The program encourages applicants to gain experience in computer forensics before applying to the program.

Online enrollees complement the classroom experience with internship opportunities in their local area. Internships and other practicum activities also provide professional networking opportunities.

Robert Morris University at a Glance:

Type of School: Private 

Admission Rate: 84%

Total Online Master's Programs: 10

Program Name: Master of Science in Cybersecurity

Average Tuition
In-state
$29,930
Out-of-state
$29,930
Retention Rate
83%
Admission Rate
84%
Students Enrolled
4,608
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
35% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#6 The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

Saint Leo University

  • Saint Leo, FL
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

From its campus in Saint Leo, Florida, Saint Leo University hosts a top-ranked master's in information assurance program. The master of science in cybersecurity program helps graduates increase their salary potential and take on more professional responsibilities. Earning a master's degree can also help candidates pursue new career opportunities.

The master's curriculum examines advanced theories and practices in information assurance and cybersecurity. Learners individualize the program to prepare for focused careers. The master's program recommends a background in cybersecurity before applying to the program.

Online enrollees work with the program to identify internship opportunities at approved sites in their local communities. Graduate students also build professional connections through virtual networking events and other activities.

Saint Leo University at a Glance:

Type of School: Private 

Admission Rate: 72%

Total Online Master's Programs: 27

Program Name: Master of Science in Cybersecurity

Graduate Tuition In State: $7,296

Graduate Tuition Out of State: $7,296

Average Tuition
In-state
$23,100
Out-of-state
$23,100
Retention Rate
69%
Admission Rate
72%
Students Enrolled
10,912
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
72% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#7 The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

Western Governors University

  • Salt Lake City, UT
  • 4 years
  • Online

Based in Salt Lake City, Utah, Western Governors University hosts a top-rated online master's in information assurance. The master of science in cybersecurity and information assurance program emphasizes specialized skills, preparing graduates for increased responsibilities and a higher earning potential. Earning a master's degree can help candidates advance in their current career or pursue a new career path entirely.

The master's curriculum emphasizes research methods and analytical skills. Learners focus the program with electives or a concentration. Applicants without a background in information assurance may need to complete prerequisite courses before enrolling in the master's program.

Online enrollees gain hands-on experience during professional internships in their local area. The program encourages professional development activities, including networking events, so graduate students can expand their professional connections.

Western Governors University at a Glance:

Type of School: Private 

Total Online Master's Programs: 29

Program Name: Master of Science in Cybersecurity and Information Assurance

Graduate Tuition In State: $7,500

Graduate Tuition Out of State: $7,500

Average Tuition
In-state
$6,380
Out-of-state
$6,380
Retention Rate
73%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
136,139
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
Not provided
Accreditation
Yes Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities

#8 The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

University of Detroit Mercy

  • Detroit, MI
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Located in Detroit, Michigan, University of Detroit Mercy offers an online master's in information assurance. Graduates train for leadership roles in the field while earning their degree from the master of science in information assurance in cybersecurity program. With a master's degree, candidates also pursue new career opportunities.

The master's curriculum covers methodological and research perspectives. Learners prepare for the job market by choosing a specialty through electives. The master's program builds on prior experience during a bachelor's program.

Online enrollees complete internships in their local community to gain real-world experience. The program encourages graduate students to attend networking events to expand their professional connections.

University of Detroit Mercy at a Glance:

Type of School: Private

Admission Rate: 77%

Total Online Master's Programs: 5

Program Name: Master of Science in Information Assurance in Cybersecurity

Graduate Tuition In State: $29,268

Graduate Tuition Out of State: $29,268

Average Tuition
In-state
$28,840
Out-of-state
$28,840
Retention Rate
82%
Admission Rate
77%
Students Enrolled
5,080
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
20% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#9 The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

Sam Houston State University

  • Huntsville, TX
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Graduate students seeking an online information assurance degree can enroll in the master's program at Sam Houston State University, located in Huntsville, Texas. The master of science in information assurance and cybersecurity program emphasizes advanced practice skills, training graduates for leadership roles and an increased earning potential. With a master's degree, candidates also pursue new career opportunities.

The master's curriculum covers methodological and research perspectives. Learners choose electives and concentrations to prepare for focused career paths. The master's program recommends that applicants bring a background in information assurance or a related field.

Online enrollees complete internship requirements at approved sites in their own community. The program encourages graduate students to attend networking events to expand their professional connections.

Sam Houston State University at a Glance:

Type of School: Public

Admission Rate: 83%

Total Online Master's Programs: 27

Program Name: Master of Science in Information Assurance and Cybersecurity

Graduate Tuition In State: $5,765

Graduate Tuition Out of State: $13,361

Average Tuition
In-state
$5,856
Out-of-state
$15,984
Retention Rate
75%
Admission Rate
83%
Students Enrolled
21,558
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
53% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#10 The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

DePaul University

  • Chicago, IL
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

The master's in information assurance program at DePaul University, located in Chicago, offers a flexible online format. Graduates prepare for advanced roles in the field during the rigorous master of science in cybersecurity program. A master's degree can also train candidates for roles in new industries.

The master's curriculum emphasizes research methods and analytical skills. Learners specialize the program by choosing from a variety of electives. The master's program recommends a background in information assurance or a related field when applying.

Online enrollees work with the program to arrange professional internships at approved locations in their local area. Graduate students also build professional connections through virtual networking events and other activities.

DePaul University at a Glance:

Type of School: Private 

Admission Rate: 68%

Total Online Master's Programs: 14

Program Name: Master of Science in Cybersecurity

Graduate Tuition In State: $19,584

Graduate Tuition Out of State: $19,584

Average Tuition
In-state
$40,551
Out-of-state
$40,551
Retention Rate
85%
Admission Rate
68%
Students Enrolled
22,064
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
30% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#11 The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

Lewis University

  • Romeoville, IL
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Graduate students seeking an online network security degree can enroll in the master's program at Lewis University, located in Romeoville, Illinois. The master of science in cybersecurity program encourages career training throughout its curriculum, preparing graduates for leadership positions. A master's degree can also lead candidates to new career paths.

The master's curriculum explores theoretical and practical perspectives in the field. Learners focus their training by choosing electives based on their interests and career goals. Applicants with prior experience in network security or a related field often meet the admission requirements.

Online enrollees work with the program to identify internship opportunities at approved sites in their local communities. Graduate students expand their professional network through internships and online events.

Lewis University at a Glance:

Type of School: Private 

Admission Rate: 64%

Total Online Master's Programs: 10

Program Name: Master of Science in Cybersecurity

Graduate Tuition In State: $14,400

Graduate Tuition Out of State: $14,400

Average Tuition
In-state
$33,270
Out-of-state
$33,270
Retention Rate
84%
Admission Rate
64%
Students Enrolled
6,359
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
43% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#12 The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

Florida Institute of Technology

  • Melbourne, FL
  • 4 years
  • Online

Florida Institute of Technology, located in Melbourne, offers a flexible online master's in information assurance. The master of business administration in cybersecurity builds specialized skills for advanced practice, preparing graduates for leadership positions with increased salary potential. After earning a master's degree, candidates also pursue careers in new industries.

The master's curriculum emphasizes both practical and theoretical approaches to information assurance and cybersecurity. Learners choose electives and concentrations to prepare for focused career paths. The master's program builds on prior information assurance experience during a bachelor's program.

Online enrollees complete internship requirements at approved sites in their own community. Internships and other networking events help graduate students expand their professional network.

Florida Institute of Technology at a Glance:

Type of School: Private

Admission Rate: 99%

Total Online Master's Programs: 15

Program Name: Master of Business Administration in Cybersecurity

Graduate Tuition In State: $16,128

Graduate Tuition Out of State: $16,128

Average Tuition
In-state
$12,240
Out-of-state
$12,240
Retention Rate
Not provided
Admission Rate
99%
Students Enrolled
1,841
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
Not provided
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#13 The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

National University

  • La Jolla, CA
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Based in La Jolla, California, National University hosts a top-rated online master's in information assurance. The master of science in cybersecurity program strengthens industry-specific skills, preparing graduates for leadership responsibilities. A master's degree also helps candidates pursue new career paths.

The master's curriculum examines advanced theories and practices in information assurance. Learners focus their training by choosing electives based on their interests and career goals. Applicants without an information assurance background may need to complete prerequisite courses to enroll in the program.

Online enrollees gain hands-on experience during professional internships in their local area. Graduate students expand their professional connections by attending virtual networking events.

National University at a Glance:

Type of School: Private 

Admission Rate: 89%

Total Online Master's Programs: 41

Program Name: Master of Science in Cybersecurity

Graduate Tuition In State: $15,480

Graduate Tuition Out of State: $15,480

Average Tuition
In-state
$13,320
Out-of-state
$13,320
Retention Rate
50%
Admission Rate
89%
Students Enrolled
16,670
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
53% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Western Association of Schools and Colleges Senior Colleges and University Commission

#14 The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

The University of Dallas

  • Irving, TX
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

The University of Dallas, located in Irving, Texas, enrolls master's students in its online information assurance program. The master of science in cybersecurity program strengthens industry-specific skills, preparing graduates for leadership responsibilities. With a master's degree, candidates also pursue new career opportunities.

The master's curriculum examines theoretical and practical perspectives on information assurance and cybersecurity. Learners prepare for the job market by choosing a specialty through electives. The master's program recommends that applicants bring a background in information assurance or a related field.

Online enrollees can often complete professional internships at approved locations in their own community. Graduate students expand their professional network through internships and online events.

The University of Dallas at a Glance:

Type of School: Private 

Admission Rate: 45%

Total Online Master's Programs: 1

Program Name: Master of Science in Cybersecurity

Graduate Tuition In State: $33,750

Graduate Tuition Out of State: $33,750

Average Tuition
In-state
$39,680
Out-of-state
$39,680
Retention Rate
85%
Admission Rate
45%
Students Enrolled
2,481
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
24% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

#15 The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

University of Maryland Global Campus

  • Adelphi, MD
  • 4 years
  • Online

From its campus in Adelphi, University of Maryland Global Campus offers an online master's in computer forensics. The master of science in cybersecurity technology program uses a rigorous curriculum to prepare graduates for advanced roles in the field. After earning a master's degree, candidates also pursue careers in new industries.

The master's curriculum covers theoretical and practical approaches to cybersecurity topics, including computer forensics. Learners specialize the program by choosing from a variety of electives. The program encourages applicants to gain experience in cybersecurity before applying to the program.

Online enrollees participate in internship programs at approved locations in their local area. Graduate students also build professional connections through virtual networking events and other activities.

University of Maryland Global Campus at a Glance:

Type of School: Public

Total Online Master's Programs: 17

Program Name: Master of Science in Cybersecurity Technology

Graduate Tuition In State: $8,640

Graduate Tuition Out of State: $11,862

Average Tuition
In-state
$7,200
Out-of-state
$11,976
Retention Rate
52%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
58,281
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
90% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#16 The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

City University of Seattle

  • Seattle, WA
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

From its campus in Washington, City University of Seattle hosts a top-ranked master's in information assurance program. The master of science in cybersecurity program builds specialized skills for leadership roles in the information assurance field and related industries. A master's degree can also lead candidates to new career paths.

The master's curriculum emphasizes both practical and theoretical approaches to information assurance and cybersecurity. Learners prepare for the job market by choosing a specialty through electives. The program recommends that applicants bring a background in information assurance or a related field.

Online enrollees coordinate with the program to complete internships at approved sites in their local area. The program encourages graduate students to attend networking events to expand their professional connections.

City University of Seattle at a Glance:

Type of School: Private

Total Online Master's Programs: 16

Program Name: Master of Science in Cybersecurity

Graduate Tuition In State: $11,430

Graduate Tuition Out of State: $11,430

Average Tuition
In-state
$13,120
Out-of-state
$13,120
Retention Rate
Not provided
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
1,960
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
80% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities

#17 The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

Bellevue University

  • Bellevue, NE
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Graduate students interested in a master's in information assurance can earn their degree from Bellevue University, located in Bellevue, Nebraska. Graduates train for leadership roles in the field while earning their degree from the master of science in cybersecurity program. After earning a master's degree, candidates also pursue careers in new industries.

The master's curriculum examines advanced theories and practices in information assurance and cybersecurity. Learners take specialized courses to stand out in a competitive job market. The program encourages applicants to gain experience in information assurance before applying to the program.

Online enrollees complement the classroom experience with internship opportunities in their local area. Internships and other practicum activities also provide professional networking opportunities.

Bellevue University at a Glance:

Type of School: Private 

Total Online Master's Programs: 24

Program Name: Master of Science in Cybersecurity

Graduate Tuition In State: $10,530

Graduate Tuition Out of State: $10,530

Average Tuition
In-state
$7,176
Out-of-state
$7,176
Retention Rate
78%
Admission Rate
Not provided
Students Enrolled
11,637
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
95% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#18 The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

Mercy College

  • Dobbs Ferry, NY
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Graduate students seeking an online information assurance degree can enroll in the master's program at Mercy College, located in Dobbs Ferry, New York. The master of science in cybersecurity program emphasizes industry-relevant knowledge and skills, preparing graduates for decision-making responsibilities. Earning a master's degree can also help candidates pursue new career opportunities.

The master's curriculum explores theoretical and practical perspectives in the field. Learners choose electives or a specialization to stand out in a competitive job market. Applicants who majored in information assurance or a related field typically meet the admission requirements.

Online enrollees work with the program to arrange professional internships at approved locations in their local area. Internships and other practicum activities also provide professional networking opportunities.

Mercy College at a Glance:

Type of School: Private 

Admission Rate: 82%

Total Online Master's Programs: 25

Program Name: Master of Science in Cybersecurity

Graduate Tuition In State: $16,146

Graduate Tuition Out of State: $16,146

Average Tuition
In-state
$18,934
Out-of-state
$18,934
Retention Rate
77%
Admission Rate
82%
Students Enrolled
10,557
Institution Type
Private
Percent Online Enrollment
36% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Middle States Commission on Higher Education

#19 The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

Dakota State University

  • Madison, SD
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

Based in Madison, South Dakota, Dakota State University hosts a top-rated online master's in information assurance. The master of science in cyber defense program draws on a rigorous curriculum that prepares graduates for leadership responsibilities. Earning a master's degree can also help candidates pursue new career opportunities.

The master's curriculum explores advanced methodologies and research in information assurance and cyber defense. Learners take electives and other specialized courses to gain career-specific training. The program recommends that applicants bring a background in information assurance or a related field.

Online enrollees meet any in-person requirements, such as internships, at approved sites in their local area. The program encourages graduate students to participate in hands-on experiences and networking events to grow their professional connections.

Dakota State University at a Glance:

Type of School: Public

Admission Rate: 77%

Total Online Master's Programs: 6

Program Name: Master of Science in Cyber Defense

Graduate Tuition In State: $5,939

Graduate Tuition Out of State: $11,088

Average Tuition
In-state
$7,541
Out-of-state
$10,611
Retention Rate
66%
Admission Rate
77%
Students Enrolled
3,268
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
68% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Higher Learning Commission

#20 The Best Online Master’s in Network Security

Coastal Carolina University

  • Conway, SC
  • 4 years
  • Online + Campus

The online master's in information assurance program, offered by Coastal Carolina University from its Conway campus in South Carolina, ranks as a top program. The master of science in information systems technology program encourages career training throughout its curriculum, preparing graduates for leadership positions. A master's degree allows candidates to move up the career ladder or pursue a new career path.

The master's curriculum emphasizes research methods and analytical skills. Learners specialize the program by choosing from a variety of electives. The master's program builds on undergraduate training or professional experience in information assurance.

Online enrollees complement the classroom experience with internship opportunities in their local area. Graduate students expand their professional connections by attending virtual networking events.

Coastal Carolina University at a Glance:

Type of School: Public

Admission Rate: 69%

Total Online Master's Programs: 4

Program Name: Master of Science in Information Systems Technology

Graduate Tuition In State: $10,674

Graduate Tuition Out of State: $19,746

Average Tuition
In-state
$11,460
Out-of-state
$27,214
Retention Rate
68%
Admission Rate
69%
Students Enrolled
10,484
Institution Type
Public
Percent Online Enrollment
41% Percentage of all students who are enrolled online.
Accreditation
Yes Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges

Methodolgy

We selected the following programs based on their quality and the range of courses they offer, as well as awards, rankings, and reputation.

Our Methodology

Here at TheBestSchools.org, 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 AcademicInfluence.com, 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%

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Why Get a Master's in Network Security?

Employers in computer science and security typically determine candidates’ pay rates based on their education level. The field offers lucrative employment opportunities to bachelor's graduates with online network security degrees; graduates can land jobs as computer programmers and network and computer systems administrators. These professionals earn median salaries of $82,050 and $84,280, respectively, according to the BLS.

Advanced degrees benefit working professionals who want to land higher–paying managerial jobs as computer and information systems managers. Computer and information systems managers must hold master’s degrees, and they earn a median annual salary of $142,530, according to the BLS. A master’s degree gives these graduates the platform to publish their research in journals or speak at conferences.

Individuals who want to work as professors at universities need a Ph.D. To learn more about potential salaries and careers for graduates with online network security degrees, read below.

Network Security Concentrations

Students can hone specific career skills by concentrating in a specific area of study, such as homeland security, emergency management, or information assurance. Read on to learn more about common concentration options for an online network security degree.

Homeland Security
A homeland security concentration teaches students to apply computer systems security practices to a career in homeland security. Students take classes in terrorism response, weapons of mass destruction, and homeland security.
  • Careers this concentration prepares for: This concentration prepares students for careers in computer systems security at the Department of Homeland Security.
Digital Forensics
A digital forensics concentration gives students the knowledge and skills to detect security breaches and prevent cyber attacks. The coursework also teaches students to recover data.
  • Careers this concentration prepares for: The tools students develop in a digital forensics concentration prepare them for jobs as information security analysts and computer and information research scientists.
Information Assurance
The information assurance concentration focuses on how to safely manage computer systems and store data. Students take classes to learn programming in Python, UNIX, and C++.
  • Careers this concentration prepares for: The programming skills students learn in an information assurance concentration help them in positions as computer network architects and software developers.
Secure Programming
The classes offered in a secure programming concentration focus on cybersecurity protocols. Students learn to assess networks and systems and conduct audits and assessments. They also gain an understanding of common security breaches.
  • Careers this concentration prepares for: A secure programming concentration gives students the skills to work as information security analysts.
Analysis
Students enrolled in an analysis concentration take classes in hacking and digital forensics. These classes introduce students to data–driven analysis and computation.
  • Careers this concentration prepares for: After taking this concentration, students can work in government and corporations as intelligence analysts and computer systems analysts.

Courses in an Online Master's in Network Security Program

Online master’s degrees in network security prepare students for integral positions ensuring the safety of an organization’s networks and electronic data. A typical master’s in network security includes advanced training in computer engineering, principles of information security, and disaster recovery. Coursework in computer communication networking familiarizes students with network design, routing, and transmission.

A solid foundation in network and computer systems operations allows students to pursue careers in IT security, systems management, and network administration. Many programs feature coursework in digital forensics, which prepares graduates for careers in law enforcement and intelligence operations.

Computer engineering and business programs often offer network security as a concentration, as well. Students who take courses in network security through an MBA program gain skills in business strategies and finance, plus knowledge of corporate IT security management. A network security emphasis as part of an engineering degree often features coursework in operating system design and systems theories.

Most programs offer electives that cater to specific career interests such as electronic commerce or telemarketing. Students usually complete a thesis or final project in addition to core coursework.

Advanced Computer Networking
In an advanced computer networking course, students build on their knowledge of computer networking, algorithms, and statistical probability theory. Through hands–on experiments, students learn to design network and security simulations and conduct network research. This class covers topics such as cryptography, DDoS defense, wireless and cloud security risks, and mobile communications.
Forensics
A course in forensics teaches students the advanced investigative techniques used in computer forensics. Students get hands–on experience setting up a forensics lab. They learn how to use forensics hardware and software. Coursework also covers email investigations, data acquisition, and data recovery. As a prerequisite, students must understand how to install and remove software.
Ethical Hacking and Network Defense
Companies hire ethical hackers to hack into their systems so they can better understand their computer network systems’ vulnerabilities. This class teaches students how to assess network risks and conduct penetration tests to help uncover operating system weaknesses. Students also learn techniques for hacking wireless networks and web servers.
Network Administration
A class in network administration gives students the tools to work as networking administrators, who operate networking connections. Students learn to configure and install network operating systems through hands–on assignments. They learn to back up storage, access files, and conduct server management.
Information Systems Security
An information systems security course teaches students how to implement security solutions to protect networks. Students learn to spot potential security threats and conduct risk analysis. In the course, learners conduct experiments to better understand security architecture.

How Long Does It Take to Get a Degree in Network Security?

Full–time students can expect to graduate from an online master’s degree in network security program within two years. A full–time course load consists of at least nine credits, or three classes each semester. Students who take additional classes each term or semester may graduate more quickly.

Many students can only take classes on a part–time basis, meaning they may take longer than two years to earn their online master’s degree in network security. Enrollment status also impacts the total cost of college. Tuition typically costs more for part–time students because they take longer to complete their degrees, and some schools charge higher per–credit tuition rates to part–time learners. The average online network security degree requires students to complete 30 to 36 credits. Programs with more credits may take longer to complete.

Students may graduate sooner if they transfer graduate–level credits from an accredited college. Accelerated programs also allow students to graduate in less than two years.

Network Security Salary Information

Graduates with online master’s degrees in network security find employment in several different industries. They may provide services for schools, large corporations, or nonprofit agencies. Duties include installing and maintaining local and wide area networks, fortifying network impenetrability, and helping users navigate computer software.

Information Security Analyst
Information security analysts work daily to protect their company’s computer systems and networks. Their duties include implementing security enhancements and documenting security breaches. Employers accept candidates with bachelor’s degrees, but they may prefer applicants with master’s degrees. Salary based on experience:
  • Entry Level: $59,000
  • Mid-Career: $66,000
  • Experienced: $81,000
  • Late Career: $92,000
Senior Systems Administrator
Senior systems administrators oversee the IT department and systems administrators. They manage a company’s computer systems and servers. Their duties include fixing computer system problems and installing hardware. Typically, they begin their careers in system administration, computer engineering, or programming. Salary based on experience:
  • Entry Level: $69,000
  • Mid-Career: $72,000
  • Experienced: $80,000
  • Late Career: $86,000
Computer Network Architect
Computer network architects, sometimes called network engineers, design communication networks. They also recommend hardware and software upgrades. A bachelor’s degree suffices for most employers, but some prefer a master’s degree. Salary based on experience:
  • Entry Level: $88,000
  • Mid-Career: $84,000
  • Experienced: $105,000
  • Late Career: $122,000
Software Developer
Software developers design and create applications and software. They oversee the process from beginning to end and solve problems that arise with the software. Most begin their careers writing code. These professionals work for software companies and finance and engineering companies. Salary based on experience:
  • Entry Level: $61,000
  • Mid-Career: $67,000
  • Experienced: $80,000
  • Late Career: $90,000

Source: PayScale

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