From shopping to conducting business online, the internet can be a scary, unsafe place. However, the following online cyber security degree programs will teach you how to make the internet, databases, and information systems more secure.
The need for employees with this degree is growing rapidly, yet there aren’t nearly enough people with the right skills. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the need for information security analysts is expected to grow by 31%, making this a rapidly thriving industry.
Careers an Online Cyber Security Degree Will Qualify You for
Due to the overwhelming demand for skilled individuals with cyber security education, jobs in this field are compensated well, with $82,000 being the salary for entry-level positions. Some of the roles you would qualify for are:
- Information Security Analyst
- Security Architect
- Software Security Engineer
- Penetration Tester
- Chief Information Security Officer
- Information Security Crime Investigator
An online cyber security degree will open numerous doors for you to advance the career you have always wanted. To help determine which college is right for you, we did the hard work for you and listed our top choices for schools that offer an online cyber security degree.
15 Best Online Cyber Security Degrees
1. University of the Potomac (31 Points)
With a campus in both Washington, D.C. and Falls Church, Virginia, the University of the Potomac is one of the most diverse institutions on the east coast with small class sizes. A Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity and Policy is available, preparing students to obtain careers that will protect companies from cybercrime, hacking, fraud, and other cyber-related problems.
Four areas of concentration are available: government contract management, healthcare management, information management, and international business management.
- Annual in-state tuition: $9,990
- Graduation rate: 100%
- Student-to-faculty ratio: 10 to 1
2. University of North Dakota (30 Points)
Founded in 1883 in Grand Forks, ND, the University of North Dakota offers an array of in-demand online and on-campus programs for students to choose from, including the 100% online Master of Science in Cyber Security.
This flexible program is open to all undergraduate majors and can be completed in less than two years. Students choose one of four tracks: Autonomous Systems Cyber Security, Cyber Security and Behavior, Data Security, and General Cyber Security.
- Annual tuition: $15,275.52
- Graduation rate: 61%
- Student-to-faculty ratio: 17 to 1
3. Penn State World Campus (28 Points)
The Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity Analytics and Operations online program, offered by the College of Information Sciences and Technology (IST) in partnership with Penn State World Campus, equips students with the tools needed to become skilled cybersecurity professionals who can recognize, analyze, manage, and eliminate risks related to a wide range of threats. As a student in the program, you can learn to anticipate and identify threats, clearly articulate potential impacts to stakeholders, and ensure the safety of digital information.
Cybersecurity is a broad and growing discipline that intersects with almost every industry. As digital information exchange increasingly becomes the norm, it is critically important to protect systems, networks, programs, and data from attacks and unauthorized access.
As a graduate of Penn State’s interdisciplinary online Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity Analytics and Operations program, you can enter the workforce prepared to join the rapidly growing cybersecurity industry, which spans organizations of almost every size and mission.
- Tuition: $590/$632 per credit
- Graduation rate: 73%
- Student-to-faculty ratio: 15 to 1
4. Kennesaw State University (27 Points)
The large campus of Kennesaw State University has much to offer undergraduate and graduate students, including two campuses in the Atlanta area, more than 150 degree options, and 11 colleges. In partnership with the University of Georgia’s ecampus, the Bachelor of Science degree in Cybersecurity is offered entirely online.
This program has been ranked as one of the Best Online Cyber Security Bachelor’s Degrees by cyberdegrees.org and one of the Top 25 Most Affordable Online Cybersecurity Bachelor’s by Value Colleges. A Master of Science in Cybersecurity is also available.
- Annual in-state tuition: $6,456
- Graduation rate: 46%
- Student-to-faculty ratio: 21 to 1
5. Fort Hays State University (26 Points)
Fort Hays State University prides itself in offering online degree programs that are flexible, affordable, and of the utmost quality to provide students with a well-rounded education no matter where they are.
Accredited by the National Center of Academic Excellence (NCAE), and rated as a Military Friendly institution, this online program will allow students to participate in applied, “real world” learning opportunities to develop skills that are in demand.
Graduates work around the world in a variety of security settings, including Amazon, VMware, Cisco, Blockchain, and Cerner.
- Annual in-state tuition: $5,430
- Program graduation rate: 43%
- Student-to-faculty ratio: 18 to 1
6. American Public University System (25 Points)
American Public University System is an online college that most commonly caters to the educational needs of working adults. The flexibility of the degrees offered allows students to continue earning a living in their career, while also furthering their education.
Designated as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defence Education, American Public University System provides a thorough cybersecurity education that includes space policy, engineering, science, and national and global security.
The Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity gives students the option of two areas of concentration: Cybersecurity and Wireless and Mobile Security.
- Annual in-state tuition: $7,324
- Graduation rate: 40%
- Student-to-faculty ratio: 21 to 1
7. Old Dominion University (24 Points)
Ranked number one for Top Online College in Virginia, Old Dominion University has been successfully providing online education for more than 30 years. The Bachelor’s degree in Cybersecurity offered at this institution has been ranked number six in Best Online Cybersecurity Bachelor’s Degrees in 2019 by OnlineColleges.net.
This degree requires a total of 120 credits with 30 of those credits being from Old Dominion University. Some of the courses students can expect to take include physics, calculus, computer science, and computer engineering classes. Although all courses will be conducted online, there will be some live, regular online meetings that students are expected to participate in.
- Annual in-state tuition: $10,680
- Graduation rate: 53%
- Student-to-faculty ratio: 17 to 1
8. Middle Georgia State University (23 Points)
Accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges, Middle Georgia State University has been offering associate, bachelor, and master level degrees since 1884. The online campus at Middle Georgia State University offers a Bachelor of Science in Information Technology with a concentration in Cybersecurity.
This program is accredited by the Computing Accreditation Commission of ABET and requires 120 credits with each course will last seven weeks. Students will learn about communication, decision-making, problem-solving, and critical thinking skills.
- Annual in-state tuition: $4,042
- Graduation rate: 23%
- Student-to-faculty ratio: 19 to 1
9. Regent University (22 Points)
Regent University is a private college that offers over 135 majors to choose from, including the popular cybersecurity major. Regent has been hnranked by U.S. News and World Report for being one of the Top National Universities and ranked number one by Study.com for being the Best Accredited Schools for Online Degree Programs.
The 120-credit Bachelor of Science in Cyber Security can be taught entirely online or students have the option of attending classes on its campus in Virginia Beach, Virginia. This program received the National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education by the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security.
- Annual in-state tuition: $18,620
- Graduation rate: 57%
- Student-to-faculty ratio: 29 to 1
10. William Woods University (21 Points)
More than 770 undergraduate students come from 35 U.S. states and 24 countries to complete their degree on the 225-acre campus of William Woods University in Fulton, Missouri. While students can attend classes in-person, this Christian college also has the option of obtaining a degree completely online.
The online Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity requires 124 credits to graduate with 57 of those credits being core major credits. While the program can be completed anywhere in the world, students will have the opportunity to get hands-on experience by working in their lab and through internships.
- Annual in-state tuition: $24,830
- Graduation rate: 58%
- Student-to-faculty ratio: 9 to 1
11. Champlain College Online (20 Points)
Cyber threats are growing rapidly within businesses and organizations across all sectors and the need for highly trained cyber security professionals is more critical than ever before. Designed to meet the needs of today’s businesses, and with a focus on hands-on experience and problem solving, Champlain’s nationally recognized online bachelor’s in cybersecurity degree is the ideal program for those looking to advance their careers in this critical field.
Delivering cutting-edge education and virtual hands-on learning application, an online cybersecurity degree from Champlain will make you stand out in the field and advance your career.
- Tuition: $318/credit
- Graduation rate: 66%
- Student-to-faculty ratio: 15 to 1
12. Norwich University (19 Points)
Norwich University is a private military college and has been for over 200 years. This college has been ranked as one of the top tier institutions among 4,500 other colleges for its long-term value. Over 1,400 students have decided to pursue an online degree at Norwich, while class sizes are small to give students the individualized attention needed.
The Bachelor of Science in Cyber Security takes approximately 18 months to complete the 120 credits required. Along with the online courses, students will need to complete a capstone project that exemplifies leadership, problem-solving, ethics, and strategic planning.
- Annual in-state tuition: $41,496
- Graduation rate: 61%
- Student-to-faculty ratio: 15 to 1
13. American National University (18 Points)
Accredited by the Distance Education Accrediting Commission, American National University offers both online degree programs and hybrid learning models at associate, bachelor, and master levels. The Cybersecurity Bachelor’s Degree teaches students how to investigate cybersecurity threats, use cryptographic methods, and skills needed for dynamic and practical network defense.
The program will also prepare students to sit for exams from vendors, such as Microsoft. Classes are taught by cybersecurity experts who have experience in this industry.
- Annual in-state tuition: $8,208
- Graduation rate: 26%
- Student-to-faculty ratio: 28 to 1
14. Bellevue University (17 Points)
Since 1966, Bellevue University has educated more than 50,000 graduates worldwide. This private, nonprofit, regionally accredited institution has over 80 degree programs for students to choose from both on-campus and online. The online Cybersecurity Bachelor’s Degree was ranked number two by Security Degree Hub in 2019 and is accredited by the Higher Learning Commission.
At least 127 credits are required to complete the program but students are given the flexibility to enroll in as many courses per semester as they can complete. A cohort Cybersecurity Bachelor’s Degree is also available.
- Annual in-state tuition: $7,851
- Graduation rate: 24%
- Student-to-faculty ratio: 27 to 1
15. Davenport University (16 Points)
Located in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Davenport University was selected for a 2020 Michigan Performance Excellence Award and is a leader in online learning among Michigan institutions. Accredited by the Higher Learning Commission, the College of Technology was named a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education by the National Security Agency and Department of Homeland Security.
The Bachelor’s Degree in Cyber Security provides real-world, hands-on experience for students through internships, computer labs, and simulated environments.
- Annual in-state tuition: $19,338
- Graduation rate: 49%
- Student-to-faculty ratio: 13 to 1
How the Institutions Were Ranked
As you may have noticed, points were listed behind the title of each college. The points were determined based on how much the tuition cost and graduation rate are. All of the schools were listed on a spreadsheet with the annual in-state tuition and graduation rate. Points were then awarded to each college; 20 points given to the school with the lowest tuition cost and one point given to the college with the highest cost. Points were then given to each university based on the graduation rate; 20 points given to the highest graduation rate and one point given to the lowest graduation rate. These two columns were then added together, giving us the points that are currently listed behind each college’s name.
If you are interested in having your institution listed or find that some of this information is incorrect, please let us know.
Benefits of an Online Cybersecurity Degree
With surging concerns over cyber threats, governments, individuals, and organizations are finding ways to protect their valuable as well as confidential data. This gives a reason to a wide range of universities and colleges to launch their online cybersecurity degree programs. Talking about the benefits of this particular degree program, these are numerous. However, here are a few of the most notable ones.
1. An Online Cybersecurity Degree Program Ensures Job Security
No doubt, it’s the best time to enter the cybersecurity field. The reason being is the overwhelming demand of cybersecurity jobs. At present, this industry is least saturated. So, job security is guaranteed for cybersecurity specialists.
2. Enjoy High Salaries
Cybersecurity experts are among a few of the most highly paid jobs in the IT sector. On average, a Cybersecurity Analyst (entry level) gets $82,565 salary. Therefore, cybersecurity degree programs promise a well-paying and steady employment.
3. Cybersecurity Education is an Investment Worth Making
The investment made in terms of cybersecurity education does pay off in the end. Since most of the online cybersecurity degree programs cost anywhere from $15,000 to $65,000, it tends to be a significant investment for cybersecurity students. However, the massive pay off renders it an investment worth making.
4. Cybersecurity Industry is Growing at a Faster Pace
According to reports published by the “U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics”, the job market for cybersecurity professionals is growing at an amazing rate of 31%. To fill most of these jobs, the industry is looking for graduates with cybersecurity degree.
5. Availability of Flexible Online Cybersecurity Bachelor’s degree Programs
The flexibility of being a part of an online cybersecurity degree program is the most lucrative aspect of this degree program. While studying a particular cybersecurity degree course, you can still continue a full-time job and meet family obligations. Studying a cybersecurity degree program can be a game changer for the graduate students.
What Courses Will I Take in a Cybersecurity Degree Program?
When it comes to the courses in cybersecurity program, the choices are numerous. Depending on your educational background, you can either choose an online cybersecurity degree program or graduate course.
1. Undergraduate Program Courses
The undergraduate programs have their unique curriculum requirements. If eligible, you can choose any of the following undergraduate courses.
· Network Security
· Operating Systems
· Project Management
· Information Assurance
· Computer science, Computer Ethics and Privacy
· Digital Forensics
· Object-Oriented Programming
2. Graduate Courses
You can choose between on-campus or online cybersecurity degree programs. Here, are some cybersecurity degree program courses you might be interested in:
· Introduction to Data Mining
· Cyber Law
· Risk Analysis
· Secure Software Design
· Computer /digital Forensics
· Telecommunication Systems
What Can I Do With an Cybersecurity Degree
Cybersecurity professionals can find a job in almost any sector. However, there are certain areas where these experts are more in demand, as these industries rely heavily on IT for their operations. Here are the key industries where a cybersecurity bachelor’s degree holder can pursue his/her career.
- Law Enforcement
Healthcare serves as a promising and lucrative sector for those with online cybersecurity degrees. Cybersecurity professionals can help this sector by preventing and fixing encryption errors. Also, these experts can train staff to identify malware and prevent security breaches.
Financial sector is referred to as the most vulnerable industry, as it amounts to 35% of the overall data breaches. There is a massive interconnecting system, which is closely monitored by cyber attackers. Upon finding a weakness, they exploit the system and seek access via DDoS and phishing attacks. Cybersecurity professionals can help financial institutions to train employees and develop more secure procedures.
This sector also relies on consumer data for its operation. Besides, the safety of a company’s data is also imperative. For this purpose, professionals with cybersecurity degrees can prevent cyber-attacks. Through cybersecurity management and digital forensic, these experts can address the key security issues that are particularly linked to transportation sector.
4. Law Enforcement
Cybersecurity bachelor’s degree holders can choose law enforcement agencies to give their careers a nice start. This sector also faces almost similar types of threats where the system and confidential data are at risk of being stolen. Cybersecurity experts can help law enforcement agencies how to identify and prevent a cyber-attack.
Manufacturing industry has been reporting constant cyber threats and data breaches. At present, companies rely on machines and computers for their routine operations. The malfunctioning of this system due to malware or security breaches can create havoc. If you are holding a cybersecurity bachelor’s degree, this particular industry would be more than pleased to hire you.
What is the Average Salary for Cybersecurity Graduates?
Businesses are offering some serious salaries to individuals with a cybersecurity degree. These professionals are high in-demand. So, employers are willing to pay more than ever for protecting their valuable and sensitive data.
Listed below is the average annual salary for cyber security graduates.
· Penetration Tester “Ethical Hacker”: $80,000 to $130,000
· Cyber Security Analyst: $95,000 to $160,000
· Network Security Engineer: $125,000 to $185,000
· Application Security Engineer: $130,000 to $200,000
· Cyber Security Engineer: $120,000 to $210,000
· Information Security Manager: $150,000 to $225,000
How Long Does it Take to Earn a Cybersecurity Degree?
Cybersecurity degree usually requires four years to complete, as the student must obtain 120-125 credits. On the other hand, advanced degrees i.e. master’s degree in cybersecurity takes two years to complete and requires 30-36 credit.
The time taken by a student depends on various factors. A couple of these include:
Full or Part-time Schedules
Some cybersecurity degree programs are part-time, which offer reasonable time for the student to create a balance between life, work, and school. However, these programs can increase the overall time taken to obtain a degree.
Credits Obtained from Previous College Programs
When a student carries credits from a previous program, it takes less time for him/her to earn a degree.
Online Cybersecurity Degree Programs
These degree programs are more flexible, making it possible for the students to attend classes remotely. But, online cybersecurity degree programs take more time than normal to complete.
How Much Does a Cybersecurity Degree Cost?
A cybersecurity degree can cost around $4,000 to $50,000 per year. The overall cost really depends on the type of college and where it is located. Online cybersecurity degree can cost less as you don’t have to incur transportation or residential expenses. However, students can lower the cost of this degree by taking advantage of the grant programs and financial aid.