Earn Your Cyber Security Degree Online
- $320/credit (120 total credits)
- Get hands-on experience with online cyber labs
- Earn transfer credits for certifications like CompTIA Network+
- Transfer up to 90 credits
- Participate in National Cyber League competitions
- Open-source software and course materials save students money
Earn Your Online Cyber Security Degree
In a data-driven world, security professionals are essential defenders to protect sensitive data from theft against cyber threats.
Southern New Hampshire University’s Bachelor of Science (BS) in Cyber Security online program provides hands-on experiences to help you develop a “security mindset,” empowering you to begin a career building secure systems, protecting information assets and managing organizational risks.
By focusing on systems thinking – a holistic view of how parts of complex systems relate, influence and interact with each other – and adversarial thinking – a deep understanding of hacker tradecraft and adaptive incident response tactics – you'll learn how to make decisions under conditions of uncertainty and apply proven security principles to solve problems at the critical intersection of people, process and technology.
Learn how to:
- Identify and define the computing requirements to solve problems
- Communicate effectively with a range of audiences
- Make informed judgments in computing practice based on legal and ethical principles
- Help establish goals, plan tasks, meet deadlines, manage risk and produce deliverables
- Apply security principles and practices to various components of a system
- Analyze and evaluate systems in the presence of risks and threats
Choose to study the general track of the cyber security bachelor's degree, or add one of 2 career-focused concentrations to your program: data analytics or project management.
SNHU's cyber security programs are aligned with recognized standards such as NIST's NICE Cybersecurity Workforce Framework, NSA Centers of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense and CSEC Cyber Security Education Consortium.
The Bachelor of Science in Cyber Security with a concentration in Data Analytics gives you an introduction to the role data analysis have within an organization.
Throughout the program, you'll gain experience through real-world problems using critical data technologies, methods and tools – including data visualization – to share your work in ways that make your findings and results actionable.
You'll be exposed to the various functions and processes of data analytics, from creating database environments to effectively gathering and collecting the right data to use for diagnosing problems, determining solutions and ensuring the data is clean and of high quality.
By incorporating data analysis courses into your cyber security bachelor's degree program, you'll develop a better understanding of:
- Database creation
- Gathering data for analysis
- Using data to solve organizational challenges
Projections look excellent for information security analysts: Through 2028, employment is expected to grow 32% – more than 6 times the rate of the growth for all occupations.1
In May 2019, the median annual wages were also desirable at $99,730.1
According to CyberSeek, entry-level roles in the field2 include:
- Cyber crime analyst/investigator
- Cybersecurity specialist/technician
- Incident analyst/responder
- IT auditor
Courses may include:
- Data Analysis Techniques
- Data Validation: Quality and Cleaning
- Gathering Requirements and Collecting Data
If you're interested in a career in data science, check out our full online data analytics degree.
Learn about the methodologies and tools needed to manage projects effectively in terms of time, cost, quality, risk and resources when you earn a Bachelor of Science in Cyber Security with a concentration in Project Management.
This program gives you the opportunity to develop the skills that can help you create detailed project plans for authentic scenarios, focusing on project risk, project integration, quality and procurement.
Your concentration courses teach you:
- Basic project management framework
- How to manage operations in manufacturing and service organizations
- Methods to adapt to changes in business
- Ways to keep projects on time, on budget and within scope
The need for information security analysts continues to rise: Through 2028, employment is expected to increase by 32% – more than 6 times the rate of the growth for all occupations.1
By taking project management courses alongside your cyber security classes, you can open yourself up to more opportunities in the field. For example, cyber security analysts, incident responders and IT auditors need to be quick to adapt to change and detail oriented during every step of the process.
In May 2019, the median annual wages were also desirable at $99,730.1
Courses may include:
- Operations Management
- Project Contracting and Procurement
- Resource Estimating and Scheduling
If you're seeking a more business-focused education, you may be interested in the project management degree concentration in business administration.
SNHU cyber security graduates are well prepared to launch careers in a wide variety of roles, including:
- Information security manager
- Information systems security administrator
- Information technology security analyst
- Security analyst or security engineer
- Security manager or security policy analyst
As data threats expand and evolve – and small and medium-sized businesses increasingly adopt cloud services – the cyber security field is key in protecting the integrity of computer networks.
"There's a huge demand for (security analysts) because they help organizations that weren't built to handle these types of threats continuously adapt and continue to operate in spite of them," said Jonathan Kamyck, associate dean of cyber security at Southern New Hampshire University.
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment of information security analysts is set to soar 32% through 2028, much faster than the national average for all occupations, and the median annual salary for information security analyst occupations was $99,730 in May 2019.1
Should you choose to study cyber security beyond the undergraduate level, SNHU offers a master's degree in cyber security – both as a general track and with a concentration in IT management.
Start Your Journey Toward an Online Cyber Security Degree
Why SNHU for Your Cyber Security Degree
With no set class meeting times, you can learn on your schedule and access online course materials 24/7.
Take advantage of some of the lowest online tuition rates in the nation, plus financial aid for those who qualify. We also make it easy to transfer to SNHU by accepting up to 90 credits from your previous institution.
Founded in 1932, Southern New Hampshire University is a private, nonprofit institution with over 100,000 graduates across the country. SNHU is accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE), which advocates for institutional improvement and public assurance of quality.
Recently, Southern New Hampshire University has been nationally recognized for leading the way toward more innovative, affordable and achievable education:
- “Most Innovative” regional university honors from U.S. News & World Report each year since 2015
- A $1 million grant from Google.org to explore soft skills assessments for high-need youth
- Recognition as a 2017 Digital Learning Innovator by the Online Learning Consortium
As an SNHU student, you can tap into a powerful network of peers, alumni and staff that can help support you long after graduation. Our instructors offer relevant, real-world expertise to help you understand and navigate your industry.
Opportunities to prepare you for your career:
- Technology competitions: Outside the classroom, participate in National Cyber League (NCL) competitions to demonstrate cyber expertise valued by employers. SNHU students and teams have multiple Top 10 finishes and fielded the first all-female team.
- Technology conferences: SNHU also sends leading female technology students to the annual Grace Hopper Celebration of Women of Computing, the world's largest conference and hiring fair for women technologists, as well as the Women in Cyber Security Symposium (WiCyS).
- Cyber Security Center of Excellence: Through our Cyber Security Center of Excellence, SNHU proudly supports cyber security students across the globe. To learn more about our contributions to the field, and connect with our academic leaders, visit our Cyber Security Center of Excellence page.
96.5% of students would recommend SNHU.3 Discover why SNHU may be right for you.
Part of our mission to expand access to quality higher education means removing the barriers that may stand between you and your degree. That’s why you can apply at any time and get a decision within days of submitting all required materials.
Acceptance decisions are made on a rolling basis throughout the year for our 6 (8-week) undergraduate terms.
How to Apply
Simply contact an admission counselor, who can help you explore financial options, answer all your questions and walk you through the application process. Start by:
- Completing a free undergraduate application
- Providing previous institutions attended – so we can retrieve transcripts for you at no cost
Test scores are not required as part of your application.
Cyber Security Center of Excellence
Through our Cyber Security Center of Excellence, SNHU proudly supports cyber security students across the globe. To learn more about our contributions to the field, and connect with our academic leaders, visit our Cyber Security Center of Excellence page.
Courses & Curriculum
The bachelor’s in cyber security program provides hands-on learning with the most current industry tools – accessible via virtual labs that will save you from downloading, installing, updating and trouble-shooting software on your personal computer.
"We want students to be able to be effectively operating day one after graduation," said Jonathan Kamyck, associate dean of cyber security at Southern New Hampshire University. "We want to give them all the tools, techniques, methods and tradecraft necessary to succeed out of the gate."
SNHU's cyber security degree program prepares you to solve complex problems, respond to cyber threats, assess risk, and apply cutting-edge security techniques with courses that may include Network Security, Application Security, and Incident Response and Investigation.
Also throughout the program, you'll engage with industry-standard operating systems (Windows and Linux), computer networking devices and simulation tools (Cisco Packet Tracer, GNS3, pfSense), programming and scripting languages (Python, Java, Linux shells, and Microsoft PowerShell) and security software (OpenVAS, Snort, Kali Linux, Metasploit, etc.)
The curriculum works well in the online environment because of the strong focus on skill development and can effectively leverage online labs and simulation environments. Like the CyberSim Virtual Workstation – a flexible, reconfigurable, virtualized “network in a box” that simulates real-world, enterprise-grade operating environments.
In addition, experienced faculty in this program are experts in their fields and will impart their years of earned knowledge to you while providing opportunities to collaborate with other students who share your interests and career goals.
"Today, computers and digital media are everywhere," said SNHU adjunct instructor Rodney Royster, a senior cyber security manager. "Almost every business or industry you can think of operates within this space. So, in short, a cyber security degree holder can work everywhere. The question here should be, where can they not work?"
Curriculum Requirements & Resources
- General education courses: All bachelor's students are required to take general education classes, if not obtained in prior coursework. Through these foundation, exploration and integration courses, students learn to think critically, creatively and collaboratively, giving you the edge employers are looking for.
- Technology resources: We provide cloud-based virtual environments in some courses to give you access to the technology you need for your degree – and your career. Learn more about our virtual environments.
- Earn math credits for what you already know: Save time and tuition with our Pathways to Math Success assessments. Depending on your scores, you could earn up to 12 math credits – the equivalent of 4 courses – toward your degree for less than $50 per assessment.
- Transfer credits for tech credentials: Earn transfer credits for popular industry certifications you already have, including CompTIA A+, Network+ and Linux+.
|View Full Curriculum in the Catalog|
|BS in Cybersecurity|
|Courses May Include|
|BS in Cyber Security Online|
|IT 140||Introduction to Scripting||Students will learn the fundamentals of programming concepts including data types, variables, decision statements, loops, functions and file handling. By developing simple scripts, students will understand how to use common scripting language constructs including lists, literals, and regular expressions to build useful applications.|
|IT 212||Introduction to Computer Networks||Students will learn the basics of interconnectivity of computing systems. With fundamental networking knowledge, students will design a basic and secure computing environment that consists of a network, server, client system, and firewall.|
|CYB 200||Cybersecurity Foundations||Gain familiarity with foundational cybersecurity concepts and terms. Learn the difference between adversarial and environmental threats and analyze how security practitioners respond to each. Explore legal and human factors and examine how they influence the development of organizational security strategies.|
|CYB 220||Network Security||Learn about common network-based attacks and how to defeat them. Explore the use of intrusion detection/prevention technologies and information flow controls to protect networked systems. Analyze security concerns related to virtual systems and networks.|
|CYB 250||Cyber Defense||Explore common strategies and tactics employed by security practitioners to protect networks, systems, applications, and data. Learn the principles of cryptography and examine the critical role it plays in protecting information assets. Analyze the impact of emerging technologies and evolving social trends on the field of cybersecurity.|
|CYB 320||Incident Response and Investigation||Explore incident analysis and response techniques within the context of an enterprise. Learn basic digital forensic terminology and how incident response activities inform and augment digital investigations.|
|CYB 410||Security Risk Management||Apply the principles of risk management to solve real-world security problems. Learn how risk management influences organizational security programs. Explore how the concepts of threat, impact, relevance, and likelihood are woven together to develop balanced, effective security controls.|
|CYB 420||Enterprise Security||Create and implement a comprehensive plan to protect an organization's assets from relevant adversarial and environmental threats. Employ basic project management methods to achieve milestones, align resources, and foster collaboration with stakeholders.|
|Total Credits: 120|
Tuition & Fees
Tuition rates for SNHU's online degree programs are among the lowest in the nation. We offer financial aid packages to those who qualify, plus a 30% tuition discount for U.S. service members, both full and part time, and the spouses of those on active duty.
|Online Undergraduate Programs||Per Course||Per Credit Hour||Annual Cost for 30 credits|
(U.S. service members, both full and part time, and the spouses of those on active duty)
Tuition Rates are subject to change and are reviewed annually.
No Application Fee, $150 Graduation Fee, Course Materials ($ varies by course)
Frequently Asked Questions
Is cyber security a good degree?
If you want a career in a fast-growing field with a variety of job opportunities, a cyber security degree could be a good fit.
With a cyber security degree from SNHU, you’ll develop a security mindset and be empowered to begin a career building secure systems, protecting information assets and managing technology risks for businesses and organizations.
As technology continues to become more ingrained in our personal and professional lives, cyber crimes like phishing schemes and data breaches have also grown and evolved.
Cyber crime costs the world about $600 billion annually, according to a 2018 report4 from IT security company McAfee and the Center for Strategic and International Studies.
"An employer told me, 'It is not a matter of if you will be hacked – it is when will you be hacked,’” said Cait Glennen, a former STEM career advisor and current innovation analyst with SNHU. “Because of this, companies cannot hire enough people with cyber skills."
In fact, the demand for cyber security jobs is so high, there is actually a shortage of qualified workers. According to international cybersecurity organization (ISC)&2, at the end of 2019 there was a shortage of nearly 500,000 cyber security workers in the United States and a shortage of 4 million worldwide.5
What kind of degree do you need for cyber security?
The kind of cyber security degree you need depends on the job you want.
A 2019 analysis by cyber security research firm Burning Glass Technologies found that up to 88% of cyber security job postings seek at least a bachelor's in cyber security or information technology degree.6 Earning a master's degree in cyber security could help you specialize in a specific area of the field or prepare you for leadership positions.
Cyber security jobs often also look for workers with industry certifications. According to Burning Glass Technologies, nearly 59% of all cybersecurity positions require at least one certification.6
There are many cyber security certifications available from a variety of organizations and institutions that improve and test your knowledge in specific areas of the cyber security field and ensure prospective employers of your skills and expertise.
Is a bachelor's degree in cyber security worth it?
A bachelor’s degree in cyber security is the first step to a rewarding technology career, and can prepare you for jobs with strong salary and career growth potential.
According to the BLS, the median annual wage for information security analysts was $99,730 in May 2019, with the highest-paid workers earning more than $158,860 annually.1
Demand for skilled cyber security workers is also expected to continue. The BLS predicts cyber security jobs will grow 32% by 2028 – much faster than the national average job growth for all occupations.1
How long does a cyber security degree take?
If you’ve earned college credit before or have earned industry certifications like CompTIA A+, Network+ and Linux+, you may be able to transfer credits to your degree program so you can save time and money.
If you can attend school full time, you’ll complete your degree faster. If you work full time or have a family and need to fit your coursework into an already busy schedule, you may need to complete your degree at a slower pace.
What is a major in cyber security?
As a cyber security major, you’ll explore the security risks that organizations and individuals face in today’s technology-driven world.
With courses including Network Security, Application Security and Incident Response and Investigation, you’ll prepare to solve complex problems, respond to cyber threats, assess risk and apply cutting-edge security techniques.
You’ll have access to real-world learning opportunities through SNHU’s virtual labs, like the CyberSim Virtual Workstation, a virtual “network in a box” that simulates real world operating environments so you can test your skills and gain key hands-on experience.
Additional learning opportunities outside of the classroom, including SNHU’s Center for Academic Excellence - Cyber Defense, online student clubs and National Cyber League competitions, will allow you to connect with other students and industry professionals who share your interests and career goals. Another plus? They'll look great on your resume.
Is cyber security a difficult major?
Getting started in cyber security does require some knowledge of basic IT principles and tools, as well as a strong understanding of mathematics.
But if you’re new to the information technology world, a cyber security online bachelor’s degree program can help provide much of this foundational knowledge and experience. You’ll study the fundamentals of programming concepts, learn common scripting language and gain an introduction to computer programs with hands-on activities designed for beginners.
And while coding and mathematics are key to cyber security careers, soft skills like communication, critical thinking and problem-solving can be just as valuable.
"A lot of what you do in IT is building relationships," said SNHU adjunct instructor Gary Asp, a senior security and compliance analyst. "Good communication is 80% listening and 20% talking. That helps build those good relationships because the people that you're communicating with feel heard, which opens the pathways for good collaboration. And you absolutely need collaboration for good IT security."
SNHU has provided additional information for programs that educationally prepare students for professional licensure or certification. Learn more about what that means for your program on our licensure and certification disclosure page.
Southern New Hampshire University is a private, nonprofit institution accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE) as well as several other accrediting bodies.
Sources & Citations (1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6)
1 Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, on the internet, at:
- https://www.bls.gov/ooh/computer-and-information-technology/information-security-analysts.htm (viewed June 10, 2020)
Cited projections may not reflect local and/or short-term economic or job conditions and do not guarantee actual job growth.
2 CyberSeek, Cybersecurity Career Pathway, on the internet, at https://www.cyberseek.org/pathway.html (viewed March 4, 2020)
3 According to more than 9,200 SNHU online students in survey responses from the fall of 2019.
4 McAfee and Center for Strategic and International Studies, Economic Impact of Cyber Crime - No Slowing Down, on the internet, at: https://csis-prod.s3.amazonaws.com/s3fs-public/publication/economic-impact-cybercrime.pdf (viewed March 1, 2020)
5 (ISC)², 2019 (ISC)² Cybersecurity Workforce Study, on the internet at: https://www.isc2.org/News-and-Events/Press-Room/Posts/2019/11/06/ISC2-Finds-the-Cybersecurity-Workforce-Needs-to-Grow--145 (viewed March 1, 2020)
6 Burning Glass Technologies, The State of Cyber Security Hiring, on the internet at: https://www.burning-glass.com/wp-content/uploads/recruiting_watchers_cybersecurity_hiring.pdf (viewed March 1, 2020)