GCHQ certification
Qualification level
Study type
12-18 months full-time, 2-3 years part-time
£5,040 for UK and EU students and £12,750 for international students enrolling on the programme in academic year 2018/19;

About the course

Course content

Cybercrime threats are growing as the economy increasingly depends on the Internet, such as through cloud computing, electronic communication and e-commerce, with estimates showing that they cost the UK up to £27 billion annually. 

In addition, surveys from PricewaterhouseCoopers and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills show a significant shortage of information security professionals and a lack of security awareness, especially in small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), indicating an urgent need for student education, the provision of up-to-date educational resources, industry training and the embedding of good practice. 

This MSc in Cyber Security addresses these requirements by increasing relevant knowledge and skills in line with the UK Government’s National Cyber Security Strategy, while also addressing the national skills shortage in information security. 

You will develop an understanding of current issues in information security and cyber security, as well as gain in-depth knowledge of a variety of techniques for strategically managing IT, both as a resource and for analysing and controlling security risks.

What will I study?

You will study cyber security from the perspectives of technical aspects of network security, penetration testing and computer forensics, while also adopting a systematic approach to information security management. 

The programme will cover topics including information security management; information risk management; implementing secure systems; information assurance methodologies and testing; operational security management; incident management; audit, assurance and review; and business continuity management.

How will I study?

The course is delivered primarily as taught modules. Each module typically involves a 3-hour face-to-face seminar every week for 12 weeks. You will study three modules each semester on the full-time programme, requiring attendance two days per week. For part-time students, modules are scheduled to enable evening study over two years. 

Learning and teaching involves a variety of techniques, including lectures, case studies, problem-based learning, guest lectures from industry experts, student-led seminars, one-to-one tutorials, and technology-enhanced learning (such as via a virtual learning environment). Classes are highly interactive, with the practical application of concepts being a key factor, as well as case studies drawn from real-life.

How will I be assessed?

We will assess your vocational capability, academic critical thinking and intellectual development throughout the programme. Coursework, case studies, exams and problem-solving exercises may be used. You may be assessed individually or in a group.

Who will be teaching me?

You will be taught by highly qualified, experienced and enthusiastic academic staff who are research-active and fully engaged with the wider business and academic community.

What are my career prospects?

The MSc has been designed to meet the Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) certification criteria for Masters degrees, as well as satisfying the professional body knowledge requirements of the Information Systems Audit and Control Association (ISACA) and the Information Systems Security Certification Consortium (ISC)². 

The programme also aligns with international standards (ISO27001/2) for information security management systems and is informed by the PAS 555:2013 Cyber Security Risk Governance and Management Specification. 

On successful completion of the course, you will be equipped with the necessary skills and expertise to work as a cyber security professional, or information security professional, in roles such as an information security engineer/manager, ISO27001 auditor, computer forensic analyst, cyber security specialist or security engineer. 

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