May 20, 2024  
2021-2022 Graduate Bulletin 
2021-2022 Graduate Bulletin [ARCHIVED BULLETIN]

Cyber Security, Thesis Option, M.S.

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Learning Objectives

Graduates from the Master of Science program in cyber security will:

  • Possess a comprehensive understanding of the foundational concepts of cyber security.
  • Obtain and refine the skills necessary to improve an organization’s cyber security posture.
  • Apply theoretical concepts to the practice of cyber security.
  • Demonstrate professional skills and behavior.


Requirements for admission to the Graduate School, including English language proficiency, may be found in the Admission section of this Bulletin. In addition, the following requirements must be met:

  • An undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or higher;
  • At least nine hours of mathematics and statistics at the level of calculus and above, and
  • An acceptable score on the Graduate Record Exam (GRE).

Upon the recommendation of the Graduate Dean, students who fail to meet the above requirements may be admitted conditionally pending removal of deficiencies.

GRE Waiver

Admission to the Master of Science program in cyber security requires a satisfactory score on the Graduate Record Exam (GRE) obtained within the five years preceding initial enrollment. A satisfactory score on the Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) or Law School Admission Test (LSAT) may be substituted, but the GRE is preferred.

The GRE requirement may be waived under certain conditions, as indicated below:

  • The requirement is automatically waived for all applicants that have already completed a master, doctoral, or law degree at an approved university.
  • Applicants who have taken the GMAT, GRE, or LSAT within five years of the date of initial enrollment may submit their score(s) for consideration as evidence of having met the requirement.
  • Applicants with three or more years’ work experience in cyber security or information technology roles.
  • Applicants with five or more years work experience in other fields who can document achievement through other means such as patents, professional licensures and certifications, refereed publications in industry-specific journals, expert testimony, company technical reports/analyses, or other documented evidence of career advancement and developing expertise.
  • Applicants holding any of these certifications .

The following additional conditions apply:

  • It is the responsibility of the applicant to request the waiver.
  • Petitions must be accompanied by all required documentation.
  • The waiver petition form must be submitted no later than four weeks prior to the start of the semester in which the applicant intends to first enroll in the program.
  • The waiver petition, along with all required documentation, must be submitted in electronic form to

The waiver petition will be evaluated as soon as possible but generally within ten business days of receipt of all required documentation.

If the waiver petition is denied, the applicant must take the GRE prior to enrolling. It is the applicant’s responsibility to schedule the test and pay the required fee. Applicants are advised that it will be difficult to achieve a satisfactory score without preparing in advance. Study guides and other preparation materials are available from a variety of commercial sources.

Whether the GRE waiver is granted or not, the applicant may still be required to complete one or more leveling courses prior to enrolling in courses.

Curriculum (30 hours)

Students must complete at least 21 hours in cyber security courses at the graduate level including the cyber security core and electives.

Cyber Security Core (12 hours)

Introductory Cyber Security (3 hours)

One of the following courses:

Applied Cryptography and System Security (3 hours)

One of the following courses:

Electives (9 hours)

Courses selected to fulfill this requirement may include up to six credit hours of CS 7981-6 Research and Thesis .

Electives may include up to six hours of non-computer science graduate courses subject to the approval of the graduate advisor.

Oral Examination

Each student producing a master’s thesis must pass an oral examination, including presentation of the research results, upon completion of all other degree requirements.


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