Thinking of a career in cybersecurity? Consider this…the predicted annual cost to the global economy from cybercrime is more than $445 billion, including both the gains to criminals and the costs to companies for recovery and defense. The United States, for example, reported 3,000 companies in 2013 that had been hacked. Since 2013, a series of high-loss attacks added to a list that includes TJ Maxx, Sony, Macy’s, Target, Home Depot, and others. Exacerbating the problem is that cleaning up cybercrime is exorbitant. One study of the cost of cybercrime in Italy found that while the actual losses were only $875 million, the recovery costs reached $8.5 billion!
The misfortune of hacked companies creates an opportunity in this growing field of cybersecurity. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects the occupation of Information Security Analyst to grow at 18% or 14,800 jobs through 2024. As of May 2015, the median salary was $90,120 with a Bachelor’s degree according to the BLS. Another excellent source of employment information is indeed.com that has over 12k job postings listed under the title of Information Security Analyst. Postings can be viewed by experience level, salary, location, job type, and company.
There are many online school choices for a Bachelor’s degree in Criminal Justice that have concentrations in Cybersecurity. The following colleges/universities have the preponderance of their curriculum in Cybersecurity. As with any ranking system, there will be variances. Each school in this ranking has been selected based upon its academic merits and accolades, as well as sources such as: Kiplinger magazine, US News & World Report, Forbes, Princeton Review, Military Times Magazine, and other references as stated in the body of each listing.
1. Penn State World Campus
Penn State World Campus is the online campus of Penn State that has had a tradition of quality since 1855. The school boasts the largest (dues-paying) alumni network in the nation with more than 125 of the most in-demand degree and certificate programs in education, business, engineering, technology, health care, and more. Penn State was ranked the No. 1 institution in the nation for producing the best-prepared, most well-rounded graduates who are most able to succeed once hired, according to a survey by The Wall Street Journal. Also, U.S. News & World Report’s “Best Online Programs 2016,” ranked Penn State #1 among online bachelor programs.
Penn State’s Bachelor of Science in Security and Risk Analysis-Information and Cyber Security Option degree focuses on the technologies, education, and policies to protect people, information, and other assets. The degree looks at how to design secure systems, evaluate and measure risk, and ensure that proper levels of privacy are maintained for individual technology users, businesses, government, and other organizations. Courses specific to information and cyber security are embedded within the degree program. These courses can provide you with an understanding of the theories, skills, and technologies associated with network security, cyber threat defense, information warfare, and critical infrastructure protection across multiple industries.
This 120 credit program is also recognized by the National Security Agency Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance and Cyber Defense and a Center of Academic Excellence for the Intelligence Community.
Tuition: $542 per credit hour
2. Colorado Technical University
Since 1965, Colorado Technical University has been proud to educate career focused students to advance their education and help achieve their goals. Over the years, CTU has earned top Military honors and awarded over $4.5 million in scholarships to Wounded Warriors. In 1995, the school introduced their online school and took their commitment to educating career-focused adults into homes nationally and internationally. Their online programs were recognized by the prestigious U.S. News and World Report lists for Best Online Programs and Best for Veterans for 2016. The National Security Agency (NSA) and the Department of Homeland Security recognize CTU as a Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance and Cyber Defense.
Colorado Technical University’s Bachelor of Science in Cyber Security degree program offers students the opportunity to gain the fundamental expertise which can be useful in a career in this field. The core Cyber Security curriculum (186 credits) is built on a broad foundation of industry-relevant concepts related to computer forensics, vulnerability assessment, security compliance, and software assurance. CTU also offers two concentrations for students who wish to focus their study on the areas of computer systems security and information assurance. Additionally, students who complete any of these degree programs will have the opportunity to take either the CompTIA Security+ or Network+ certification exams.
Tuition: $325 per credit hour; $210 Active Military
3. Saint Louis University
Founded in 1818, Saint Louis University is one of the nation’s oldest and most prestigious Catholic universities. Today, it is rated among the nation’s top 100 research universities, SLU boasts more than 20 graduate and undergraduate programs ranked among the top 100 in the country by U.S. News & World Report. Additionally, U.S. News & World Report ranked SLU No. 20 among the “Best Colleges for Veterans” and placed SLU on its “High School Counselor’s Picks” list for 2016. Forbes rates SLU as one of America’s Top Colleges from list of more than 650 undergraduate institutions. This honor is based on the quality of their education programs, as well as student experiences and achievements.
New in 2015, the Bachelor of Science in Security and Strategic Intelligence (SSI) program is an innovative major designed to provide working adults with the fundamental knowledge and skills of security, intelligence and computer information systems necessary to pursue a career in this growing market. accelerated program that allows you to specialize in one of four tracks:
- Business Community- the focus of this area of concentration is on issues related to the business continuity cycle within for-profit, non-profit and governmental organizations.
- Strategic Intelligence- courses examine issues related to the collection and use of intelligence with an emphasis on both national and corporate security. Students will gain an in-depth understanding of policy and asset issues that can affect intelligence effectiveness and how various threats to security can be mitigated through the effective use of intelligence.
- Global Corporate Security- classes will focus on issues related to security within the for-profit sector. Students will gain an in-depth understanding of the issues involved in securing human, tangible, and data assets, including a focus on the financial considerations required in that security.
- Law Enforcement Administration- courses examine issues related to security within law enforcement. Building on the premise that the student has previous law enforcement experience (local, state, or federal), this program will sharpen the student’s law enforcement competencies in areas related to policing, human resources, administration, and investigation and prosecution.
Tuition: $630 per credit hour; $400 Active Duty Military
4. Utica College
Located in the heart of Central New York, Utica College is a comprehensive, independent, private institution founded in 1946 by Syracuse University. The school has been honored to be named one of America’s Military Friendly Schools 2014 by G.I. Jobs magazine for the fourth consecutive year. Utica College has also been named a Top Military-Friendly College by Military Advanced Education for the 3rd straight year. It is accredited by The Commission on Higher Education of the Middle States Association of Colleges and Schools.
Utica College‘s online Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity degree was developed in connection with the college’s respected Center for Identity Management and Information Protection, a research collaborative dedicated to the advancement of data security, identify management, and information sharing. You’ll learn innovative approaches and best practices culled from federal agencies and well known multi-national corporations and organizations, such as the FBI, US Secret Service, US Marshals, TransUnion, and Northrop Grumman. This program offers students a unique opportunity to take the most extensive coursework offered in digital forensics and intrusion investigations, cyber operations, fraud investigations, homeland security and emergency management, and information assurance offered in academia built into a convenient and flexible online format. Students can earn their bachelor’s degree part time in approximately three years, though the program can be completed in a shorter time frame by taking more than six credits per semester.
Plus, their cyber security program has been designated a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education (CAE- CD) by the National Security Agency (NSA) and Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Also the courses are taught by respected instructors who are industry-leading experts in the fields of Cybersecurity, Counter-Terrorism/Counter-Espionage, Cyber Forensics and Information Assurance.
Tuition: $450 per credit hour
5. American Public University
In 1991, retired Marine Corps officer James P. Etter founded American Military University and broke new ground by offering career-relevant, distance education for a mobile population of military learners with unique needs. In 2002, AMU was reorganized into the American Public University System (APUS), and American Public University (APU) was founded. Today, American Public University offers 37 online bachelor degree programs and U.S. News & World Report’s ranks the school in the “Best Online Bachelor Programs 2016,” putting it in the top 12% of all online bachelor’s degree programs.
This online Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity prepares students with the necessary skills and competencies for job titles such as: cyber security forensic specialists, security analyst, security auditor, security consultant, security risk assessor, security manager, information security officer, security trainer, and security systems designer. These skills include the investigation of various cyber security resources, tools, laws, and methods, to strategically assess, evaluate, plan, design, develop, and implement countermeasures for effective cyber security defense mechanisms.
Coursework in this 122 credit hour bachelor’s degree aligns to the general objectives of the International Association of Computer Investigative Specialists (IACIS) certification and meets the topical requirements for the Department of Defense Directive 8570.1M Information Assurance Management (IAM) Technical I, Technical II, Technical III, Management I, Management II, and Management III categories.
Tuition: $270 per credit
6. Western Governors University
Western Governors University (WGU) was founded in 1995 by 19 U.S. governors whose driving goal was to break the mold of traditional higher education and come out on the other side with something new, something innovative: something that harnesses technology to teach in new ways, focuses on measuring learning rather than time, and provides more Americans the opportunity to build their careers. Today, 98% of employers surveyed state that WGU graduates meet or exceed expectations.
WGU has been lauded and honored by: Fast Company magazine, Time magazine, Michael Leavitt (former U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services), Bill Gates, President Obama, and Arne Duncan (former U.S. Secretary of Education-2009-2016).
WGU’s Bachelor of Science in Information Technology-Security is designed for established IT security managers who need a bachelor’s degree and additional certifications for advancement. Also, it is aimed at IT professionals with experience who wish to transition into IT security. The curriculum was developed with the assistance of significant input from experts and business leaders who serve on our Information Technology Program Council. The IT component of the Bachelor of Science program consists of four domains of study: IT fundamentals, software, networks and IT project management. There are eight areas of study (sub-domains) that students master including IT fundamentals, operating systems, software, networks, database, web systems, security, and project management. At the end of the program, students develop a comprehensive portfolio and complete a capstone project.
Tuition: $2,890 per 6 month term
7. Walden University
For more than 45 years, Walden University, an accredited institution, has been serving the higher education needs of adult learners. Today, more than 52,600 students from all 50 U.S. states and more than 155 countries are pursuing bachelor’s, master’s, and doctoral degrees and certificates online in a broad range of disciplines including health sciences, counseling, criminal justice, human services, management, psychology, education, public health, nursing, social work, public administration, and information technology.
Walden’s Bachelor of Science in Information Technology will help equip you with the technical skills you need to succeed in the field, while providing a strong understanding of key managerial and organizational concepts. Integral to their IT degree is the option of 7 concentrations, the most applicable is Cyber Security and Forensics. In this concentration, you will:
- Analyze security and privacy issues in real-world cases.
- Recognize appropriate techniques both to minimize risks and to react to security breaches.
- Investigate techniques and tools specific to network, system software, and application software security.
- Study ways to structure computer-security practices in alignment with organizational needs.
Walden University is a member of the National CyberWatch Center, the Information Assurance/Information Security Advanced Technology Education Center of the National Science Foundation. As a further mark of quality, Walden has been designated by the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Education through the year 2019. This latter designation means that you can participate in the NSA Day of Cyber, which is an interactive, self-guided and fully automated cybersecurity career experience and is free for all students for one year.
Tuition: $325 per quarter hour
8. University of Maryland-University College
For more than 65 years, University of Maryland-University College (UMUC) has provided educational opportunities to students around the world, earning the university a global reputation for excellence. Today, UMUC educates more than 80,000 students. With divisions in Asia and Europe and a presence on military installations in more than 20 countries and territories, UMUC is also a leading provider of education services to the U.S military. From 20114 to 2016 the school has received top award for Military-Friendly Schools, as deemed by U.S. Veterans Magazine, Military Times and Military Advanced Education.
According to Burning Glass Technologies job postings for cybersecurity openings have grown three times as fast as openings for IT jobs overall. Also, it takes companies longer to fill cybersecurity positions than other IT jobs. That’s bad for employers but good news for cybersecurity workers, who can command an average salary premium of nearly $6,500 per year, or 9% more than other IT workers. UMUC’s online Bachelor’s degree can help you the demand for highly educated, highly experienced cyber professionals. The school offers 3 distinctive Bachelor of Science programs in this field:
Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity Management and Policy: The curriculum focuses on the techniques, policies, operational procedures and technologies that secure and defend information systems in local and more broadly based domains.
Bachelor of Science in Computer Networks and Cybersecurity: The curriculum focuses on the operational procedures and technologies needed to design, implement, administer, secure and troubleshoot corporate networks. Courses include network security, digital forensics analysis, ethical hacking and computer troubleshooting.
Bachelor of Science in Software Development and Security: The curriculum focuses on developing skills in using multiple programming languages and relational databases and maintaining the security of all software-related components through the use of leading industry and government practices and recommendations.
Tuition: $284 per credit (Maryland residents); $499 (non-residents)
9. Kennesaw State University
The Michael J. Coles College of Business at Kennesaw State University is the second-largest business school in Georgia, with more than 6,000 students, 160 faculty members and a powerful alumni network. At Coles, we’re dedicated to the success of our students, our university and the business community. It has been consistently recognized as a top business school by The Princeton Review, and is among the top 1% of business schools world-wide that maintains accreditation in both business and accounting by AACSB International, the world’s largest accreditation association for business schools.
Kennesaw State University’s Coles College of Business provides an online Bachelor of Business Administration in Information Security and Assurance (BBA-ISA) degree program. This program is designed to create technologically proficient, business-savvy information security professionals capable of applying policy, education & training, and technology solutions to protect information assets from all aspects of threats, and to manage the risks associated with modern information usage. Information security is the protection of the confidentiality, integrity, and availability of information while in transmission, storage or processing, through the application of policy, technology, and education and awareness. Information assurance concerns information operations that protect and defend information and information systems by ensuring availability, integrity, authentication, confidentiality, and nonrepudiation. This program spans both areas in its approach to the protection of information in the organization.
Tuition: $482.33 (includes fees of $205) per credit
10. Bellevue University
Founded in 1966, Bellevue University is a private, non-profit, regionally accredited institution with a beautiful 46-acre main campus in Bellevue, Nebraska. Bellevue University has graduated over 48,000 students (2014) and serves nearly 10,000 students annually (2014) at a total of 15 campus locations in four states — and everywhere online. Designated a Top Military-Friendly University by Military Advanced Education & Transition (MAE&T) magazine in its 2016 Guide to Military-Friendly Colleges & Universities. Bellevue University has been awarded top recognition by MAE&T for the last 5 consecutive years.
Their Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity offers an inclusive education in the theory and application of technical and non-technical security skills. The degree covers the relevant knowledge and skills to apply protection, detection, response technologies, and procedures. You will learn to apply them in various cyber security environments where you need to identify threats, vulnerabilities, exploits, and controls. Integrating hands-on, applied learning with theory. The program covers an array of abilities required by the quickly evolving cybersecurity industry. These skills include applying protection, detection, and response technologies and procedures to identify threats, vulnerabilities, exploits, and controls in various cyber environments. Emphasis is placed on identifying, analyzing, mitigating and communicating risks to cyber systems using various tools, techniques, and technologies.
The National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security have designated Bellevue University as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance/Cybersecurity. This designation covers academic years 2014 through 2021.
Tuition: $410 per credit hour; $250 Active Duty Military (includes Coast Guard & Reserves)
11. Southern New Hampshire University
Southern New Hampshire University was founded in 1932 by H.A.B. Shapiro as the New Hampshire School of Accounting and Secretarial Science. Today the university has three schools – the School of Business, the School of Education, and the School of Arts and Sciences- and continues to seek new ways to provide quality educational programs for all of our constituents, both in the U.S. and abroad. In spring 2015, U.S. News & World Report ranked the school #1 for the Most Innovative Schools based on a survey of top college officials. SNHU had made the most innovative improvements in terms of curriculum, faculty, students, campus life, technology or facilities.
SNHU offers a Bachelor of Science in Information Technologies with a cyber security specialization. During the program you’ll participate in practical, interactive coursework that covers the analytical and technical skills necessary to educate workers about security, install critical software, monitor networks and respond to cyber attacks. This concentration in cyber security focuses on the human factors involved in protecting sensitive data, UNIX/LINUX operating systems, network security and fundamental principles underlying cyber security. In this specialized cyber security degree online program, you’ll delve into the ethics, practices, policies and procedures of cyber security and tackle network security defense techniques and countermeasures. Graduates of this online degree will have the knowledge to apply for a career as a cyber security software engineer, information security analyst, information systems security administrator or security policy analyst.
Tuition: $320 per credit hour; $243 Maine residents
12. Capella University
Capella University was born 20 years ago with the purpose of providing quality higher education to working adults. In this endeavor, the school has received the Eduventures 2015 Innovation Award for On Demand Reporting for Student Learning Outcomes. The award highlights creative individuals, projects, and future stewards of higher education who demonstrate originality and excellence. Since inception, Capella has been recognized by G.I. Jobs Magazine, Military Advanced Education magazine, St. Paul Business Journal, as well as being awarded the Exemplary Course Award (2006).
This university offers a Bachelor of Science in Information Assurance and Security Specialization online in a 180 credit program. The information security degree delves into subjects such as database systems, software architecture, programming, human-computer interaction, and more. The program also covers the areas of ethics and project management. Students will learn what an important role in the infrastructure that information systems plays in the support of commerce, banking, telecommunications, health care, and national security. A degree in information security provides you with the knowledge you need to protect the most important asset of any business: their information.
This institution has been designated by the National Security Agency (NSA) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance/Cyber Defense (CAE IA/CD) for academic years 2014-2021. Plus, the courses in this specialization reflect the Systems Security Certified Practitioner (SSCP) and Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) body-of-knowledge frameworks developed by the International Information Systems Security Certification Consortium (ISC).
Tuition: $336 per credit
13. Bay Path University
Founded in 1897 as the Bay Path Institute, Bay Path’s first location was at the corner of State and Dwight Streets in downtown Springfield, Massachusetts. Thomas Carr, a leading Springfield businessman, purchased Bay Path Institute in 1945. He made tremendous changes including: shifting Bay Path to all-women, changing the name to Bay Path Secretarial School for Women. As of July 1, 2014 the name was changed to Bay Path University. It has been accredited by the Commission on Institutions of Higher Education of the New England Association of Schools and Colleges since 1965.
The total enrollment is around 3100 with 1850 undergraduate and 1250 graduate students taught by a faculty of 390. Bay Path has approximately 15,000 alumni worldwide, and 8 teams compete in at the NCAA Division III level.
The school has the first, fully-online degree program in the nation designed for women; this is available through The American Women’s College Online. Their online program offers more than 20 degrees, in accelerated 6-week sessions that let you earn a degree in 1-3.5 years. There are 6 different start dates and the option of transferring up to 90 credits.
One of the degrees is a Bachelor of Science in Digital Forensics/Cybersecurity. The coursework prepares you with the skills you need to determine behaviors of cybercriminals. You will discover how to use technology as to tool when investigating cybercrimes such as: identity theft, cyberbullying, data breaches, fraudulent credit card readers, and child abuse. Also the program prepares you to obtain the AccessData Certified Examiner certification and become a Digital Forensic Examiner in a wide variety of government agencies and businesses.
Tuition: $400 per credit
15. Norwich University
Pioneered by founder Captain Alden Partridge in 1819, Norwich was the nation’s first private military college. It was the brithplace of the Reserve Officre’s Training Corps (ROTC). It was one of the first institutions named an NSA Center of Excellence in Information Security Education. For almost two centuries, the university helped pave the way for an innovative model of higher education that has since been adopted by hundreds of colleges and universities. In 1997, Norwich University Online began which today has approximately 1,200 students – working adults and lifelong learners from around the world.
For 2016, U.S. News & World Report honored Norwich’s online bachelor’s programs with “best” distinctions. The rankings place their online bachelor’s program in Strategic Studies and Defense Analysis and our online bachelor’s program in Criminal Justice in the top 35 percent of all programs. The school’s cyber security program has been designated as a Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education by the National Security Agency and Department of Homeland Security.
Norwich University’s Bachelor of Science in Cyber Security program is an online degree completion program for working adults in the information technology field who want to further their careers by developing specialized skills in the high-need area of network security. Students can customize their degree by choosing a concentration in computer forensics and vulnerability management or information warfare and security management. The cyber security curriculum balances general education and core cyber security courses (many of which can be fulfilled through transfer credits) with elective and project-based courses that allow students to delve into sub-areas such as national security policy, offensive and defensive information warfare, penetration testing, and malware forensics.
Tuition: $375 per credit; $250 Active Military
16. East Coast Polytechnic Institute (ECPI)
Founded in Norfolk, Virginia in 1966, ECPI University demonstrated early on its commitment to market-based curriculum in an accelerated format and being among the first to offer classes in the growing field of computer programming. ECPI University’s strategic partnerships provide the benefit of providing its graduates with the qualifications to meet employer needs. To date, the University has provided employment services to more than 3,800 different employers, some of which are among America’s largest, including AT & T Government Solutions, BMW Manufacturing Co., Lockheed Martin, Cox Communications, General Dynamics, Rolls-Royce, Hewlett-Packard, Boeing, Verizon, STIHL, Northrop Grumman, and more.
ECPI has been as Best for Vets 2016 by Military Times; 2016 STEM Jobs SM Approved College; ranked #7 for Computer and Information Sciences & Support Services; 2016 Top Colleges and Universities category by Military Advanced Education; and 2016 Most Affordable Online Colleges-Cyber Security.
ECPI offers an online Bachelor of Science in Computer and Information Science with a with a concentration in Cyber and Network Security. This degree can be earned in just 2.5 years through their year-round degree program. The program is designed to teach you to be a cyber and network security specialist. You could be on the front lines of cyber warfare, protecting vital computer systems against inside and outside threats alike, including hackers, spyware, and viruses. Specifically, ECPI’s cyber and network security degree will impart the knowledge to:
- Maintain network hardware and software
- Evaluate problems and monitor network to ensure its availability to system users
- Identify customer needs and use that information to design, interpret, and assess network requirements
- Plan, coordinate, and implement network security measures
- Install security software
- Monitor networks for security breaches
Tuition: $444 per credit hour
17. Maryville University
Founded in 1872, Maryville University is a private university in St. Louis County, Missouri. It is a comprehensive and nationally ranked private institution with an enrollment of more than 6,400 students. The school offers more than 90 degrees at the undergraduate, master’s and doctoral levels to students from 50 states and 47 countries. It has received recognition as a Top Military Friendly School for 1016, Kiplinger’s Best Value Colleges for 2015, and Forbes Top Colleges List for 2015.
The school’s Bachelor of Science online degree is designed to give you all the tools you need to be workforce ready, regardless of prior experience. It’s a comprehensive approach equally beneficial to newcomers, tech junkies, and career changers. The Maryville faculty, which is predominantly composed of professionals who work in cyber security, built this curriculum based on their experiences in the field. Their Virtual Lab enables you to learn from anywhere on any device, but it’s also a virtual training ground. You can develop technical, hacking, and analytical cyber security skills in a safe and protected environment. Test software. Run investigations. Complete labs. Use their platform to sharpen your skills before you go out in the field.
The B.S. in Cyber Security is part of the John E. Simon School of Business for this reason: to help you develop the business knowledge to excel in the private and public sector in the field of cyber security. The program, also, can be completed in a few as 2.5 years after general education courses. Another feature of the curriculum is that you have the choice of 3 tracks: General Cyber Security, Offensive Cyber Security and Defensive Cyber Security.
Tuition: $800 per semester
18. Champlain College
Founded in 1878, Champlain College is a small, not-for-profit, private college overlooking Lake Champlain and Burlington, Vermont. Champlain was named #1 “Most Innovative School” by U.S. News & World Report’s “America’s Best Colleges” 2016 ranking of regional colleges in the North and ranked among the Princeton Review’s 380 Best Colleges: 2016 Edition. This institution offers 30 undergraduate degrees, 16 online undergraduate degrees and 14 online graduate degrees.
Champlain College is a nationally recognized leader in cyber security education and earned the distinction of “best cyber security higher education program” from Secure Computing Magazine in 2013 and again in 2015. Their 100% online Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity is the hands-on preparation you need for a successful career in protecting organizations’ digital assets and intelligence from security breaches, and will arm current cybersecurity professionals with the credentials they need to progress in the field. You will learn to apply security measures to ensure confidentiality, integrity and availability of data, as well as how to respond in the event of a security hack in any organization.
This 120 credits bachelor’s program is comprised of online cyber security courses, professional courses and general education courses that provide practical knowledge that can be applied on the job. These courses are focused, relevant and delivered in an accelerated 7-week format. Their program has been endorsed by the NSA, US Department of Homeland Security and National Centers for Digital Forensics.
Tuition: $641 per credit (less than 12 per semester)
19. Lewis University
Founded in 1932 under the direction of the Chicago Archdiocese and Bishop Bernard J. Sheil, Lewis University began as the Holy Name Technical School, a school for boys which opened with 15 students. The school was established on a campus of 170 acres of farmland that was donated to the archdiocese by Michael and Frances Fitzpatrick. From the beginning, Frank J. Lewis, the noted Chicago philanthropist and industrialist, took an active interest in the school. The University has been continually cited as one of the best colleges in the region by The Princeton Review and U.S. News & World Report. Numerous national recognitions continue to be awarded each year from sources, such as: the Colleges of Distinction, Great Value Colleges and GI Jobs Military Friendly.
Lewis’ Bachelor of Science degree in Information Security and Risk Management curriculum combines technical knowledge with managerial theory – providing students with a deep understanding of information security, risk management, security management, IT operations and data communications. This 128 credit program is a Department of Homeland Security and NSA nationally recognized programs that is designed to give students expertise in:
- Management of Network Security
- Security Management Practices
- Security Architecture and Models
- IT Operations Security
- Business Continuity & Disaster Recovery Planning
- IT Law, Investigations and Ethics
- Physical Security
- Computer Forensics
Plus, for those students looking to earn their master’s in Information Security (MSIS), you can fast-track your MSIS degree and earn your master’s in 18 months or less with only 26 additional credit hours (rather than the standard 35-41).
Tuition: $880 per credit hour
20. Franklin University
Franklin University has a history of serving adult students that spans more than a hundred years. It was founded in 1902 at the Columbus YMCA, under its sponsorship as the YMCA School of Commerce. It would change its name to Franklin University in 1933, and would amicably discontinue its formal affiliation with the YMCA in 1964. Currently, its enrollment includes more than 300 international students from more than 72 countries. Also, more than 265 community colleges across the U.S. have partnered with Franklin University to ease the way for community college students to transfer the maximum number of community college credits toward completing a bachelor’s degree at Franklin.
The school’s Bachelor of Science Degree with a Cyber Security major prepares you for a career in business, industry or government, protecting valuable from security threats and hackers. At Franklin, you’ll get a far-reaching, 360-degree education with classes in technology, policy, management, and architecture, along with a solid foundation in information technology principles, including programming, database, systems, and networks. You’ll not only learn the “what” of enterprise security, but also the “how” and “why.” Courses in this 120 hours’ curriculum include risk management and compliance; security architecture and controls; business continuity and operations; and network and application security. At Franklin, you’ll learn about the typical development mistakes that lead to application-level security issues, including CSRF, XSS, cryptography, configuration errors, authentication, and authorization, as well as how to defend against them.
Tuition: $511 per credit hour; $250 Active Duty Military
21. Robert Morris University
Robert Morris University (RMU) was founded in 1921 in downtown Pittsburgh as the Pittsburgh School of Accountancy. The school’s founder, educator and accountant Andrew Blass, rented classroom space in the Blackstone Building. The school continued to grow and expand, joining the NCAA Division I for interscholastic athletics in 1977 and adding graduate degree programs and more bachelor’s programs as well. In 2002, following approval by the Pennsylvania Department of Education, this private non-profit institution of learning became Robert Morris University.
RMU’s Bachelor of Science in Cyber Forensics and Information Security online degree program is taught by faculty who bring real-world experience and knowledge into the classroom by combining the disciplines of technology, business, organizational behavior, and law. This program teaches students the most up-to-date techniques to detect, respond to, and prevent network intrusions and to master broader concepts such as the responsible use of resources, the appropriate management of risks, and the alignment of information technology with the organization. Graduates will be prepared to seek employment in government and law enforcement agencies that need skilled professionals to fight against cyber crime, cyber terrorism, identity theft, and the exploitation of minors. Companies and other private sector organizations need skilled professionals with both business acumen and technology skills for recognizing and mitigating vulnerabilities.
RMU was named the 2014 Academic Seminar University of the Year by the prestigious Washington Center for Internships and Academic Seminars. This came after thirty-two Robert Morris University students majoring in cyber forensics and information security participated in the center’s National Security Academic Seminar in Washington, D.C.
Tuition: $715 per credit hour
22. American National University
American National University (ANU), formerly National Business College, is a post-secondary education institution that has multiple campuses: Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia. Founded in 1886 as a business school in Roanoke, Virginia, the school now offers master’s degrees, bachelor’s degrees, associate’s degrees, diploma programs, certificate programs, and professional training and certifications. Today, American National University and National College have developed into a master’s-level institution offering more than 45 academic programs through 30 community-based locations in six states. A burgeoning eUniversity serves a growing number of students in both 100% online and blended formats.
This school offers a Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity online for students who are interested in being a network security specialist, digital forensics and incident response specialist or vulnerability analyst. You will learn practices for the design of secure modern networks as well as how to secure existing computers and networks – both wired and wireless; and cover topics about evolving threats and the proper use of specific security tools. Whether you are interested in starting or advancing your career in this specialized field, this program will prepare you to sit for certifications exams from vendors such as Microsoft and industry recognized certifications exams administered through CompTIA and EC Council. For example, the CompTIA Cybersecurity Analyst (CSA+) certification is a vendor-neutral IT professional certification. This additional degree of proficiency validates knowledge and skills required to configure and use threat detection tools, perform data analysis, interpreting the results to identify vulnerabilities, threats and risk to an organization.
ANU has been named a “Military Friendly School” by Victory Media, and Military Advanced Education’s Top Military-Friendly Colleges & Universities, and have been on both lists every year they have been published.
Tuition: $317 per credit hour
23. Dakota State University
Dakota State University was founded as a normal school in 1881 as Madison Normal School with a mission to train teachers. It was the first school dedicated to training teachers in the Dakota Territory. Today, the university has a technology-centric focus with programs in computer and information science, business, education, natural sciences, liberal arts, among other graduate and undergraduate programs. The school is proud of their overall job placement rate at 94% for the latest graduating class—with many of the majors seeing a 100% placement rate.
DSU offers a Bachelor of Science in Cyber Operations designed to teach graduates how to counter data breaches, combat malware infections, and assess software vulnerabilities in today’s technological world. As a cyber operations major student, you will dig deep to understand the mentality, motivations, and techniques of the hackers that execute these types of attacks. This 120 credit program starts with a strong base of programming, math, and networking and then applies that knowledge to the most technical areas of cyber security. At the core of the degree, you learn how reverse engineering works, analyze malware and exploit software.
The curriculum is spread over 8 semesters with the odd number semesters each having 15 credits and the evens are comprised of 30 credits each. Students have use of a one-of-a-kind “hacking lab.” In it, you can learn how hackers think, what tools they use, and how software vulnerabilities are identified and exploited. There are also labs dedicated to tearing apart malware to understand how it works and how it was created. Because of the hands-on nature of the program, class sizes are small—usually 35 students or less.
The National Security Agency has designated our cyber operations degree as a Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Operations, one of 13 such programs in the nation. This designation ensures you that the program is meeting some of the highest cyber security standards in the nation.
Tuition: $333.35 per credit hour
Hallmark University was founded in 1969 as Hallmark Aero-Tech. Co-founder, Richard Fessler, started the institution with the primary purpose of serving students, industry, and the community. The first campus was located at San Antonio’s (Texas) historic Stinson Municipal Airport and the first program approved was Aviation Maintenance Technology, offered as a diploma program. More recently, Hallmark College was promoted to Hallmark University in January 2015. Today, Hallmark works directly with industry-leading businesses and organizations to ensure our curriculum prepares students for professional careers and possess the experience employers require. Another strength of this institution is that their intensive, objective-driven course delivery system allows an undergraduate degree to be completed in little more than half the time of traditional higher education models.
Hallmark’s Bachelor of Science in Information Systems with the cybersecurity concentration immerses students in the field of digital defense in order to become effective protectors of data assets. The curriculum focuses on the techniques, policies, operational procedures and technologies that secure and defend the availability, integrity, authentication, and confidentiality of information and information systems, in local as well as more broadly based domains. The concentration helps prepare students for careers as information systems security professionals, senior system managers, and system administrators responsible for information systems and security of those systems. Throughout the learning experience, students test their understanding of concepts and technology through simulation exercises and scenarios so every graduate is ready to take on everyday tasks and responsibilities experienced by industry specialists.
Tuition: $450 per credit hour or $1,350 per course
25. Wilmington University
Wilmington University is a private, non-sectarian university which offers both undergraduate and graduate degree programs in a wide range of career areas. The University began with a charter class of 194 students in 1968 and now enrolls a diverse student body numbering more than 18,000 annually. The main campus is located near the cities of Wilmington and historic New Castle, Delaware. This institution is accredited by the Middle States Commission on Higher Education,
Wilmington’s Bachelor of Science in Computer and Network Security provides students with credentials specializing in digital information security, information assurance, and computer forensics. This program is designed to deal with the increase of targeted attacks by hackers, random attacks involving computer viruses, the growing presence of spyware/adware/malware, and the use of computers—and their data—in various white collar criminal activities. Graduates will have the skills required to be highly-skilled IT professionals. Plus, you will have the know-how to protect networks from intrusion, prevent computers from viruses, and retrieve data as evidence from computers used in the commission of fraud and other corporate crimes.
Wilmington University has been designated as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance & Cybersecurity through academic year 2021 by the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security.
Tuition: $354 per credit; $250 Active Duty Military
Editor’s Note: As you’ve noticed, the spelling of the word cybersecurity varies from one word to two. The Merriam-Webster dictionary states it as one word. The single word has also become the norm in Washington D.C., mainly in government circles. This article has opted to use the same spelling as the respective source has used. Hence, the difference.