Our program provides a comprehensive cybersecurity education, preparing graduates for advanced technical and management positions in cybersecurity. It addresses the core subject areas and skill sets identified in the Cybersecurity Workforce Framework by the National Initiative for Cybersecurity Careers and Studies (NICCS).
The Master of Science in Cybersecurity is a 30-credit program designed for both technical and non-technical students with a bachelor’s degree. Prior background in computing is desirable, but not required to enter this program. Individuals without such background can enter the degree program by enrolling in two prerequisite foundation courses. The structure of the program allows students to enter from different disciplines, provides a common foundation and robust subject matter training necessary in today’s Cybersecurity job market.
The Master’s in Cybersecurity is designed to allow partnerships with local technology companies and government organizations. Students will be required and supported to pursue experiential learning and research opportunities during their studies. The program culminates with a team-based capstone project, linked to local industry and government partners. Students will work with faculty and partners to develop suitable research and project questions; collect data, design systems, develop software, protocols, methods, and techniques; synthesize their findings or work artifacts into a final product; and present their findings to the partners and scholarly venues.
Program Outcomes and Student Learning Objectives
The Master of Science in Cybersecurity is designed with specific Program Learning Outcomes (PDF). The program is also aligned with the Hood College Graduate School Outcomes.
Explore current IT issues
The curriculum deepens knowledge of the procedures, tools, and standards used in Cybersecurity. Students learn systems and network security, computer forensics, cryptography, ethical hacking, and contemporary technologies and techniques in web, wireless and mobile security. They also explore current trends and issues and in the process gain valuable insights into Cybersecurity’s role and impact in day-to-day business operations.
Boost professional marketability
Grounded in a thorough understanding of the technical and managerial aspects of Cybersecurity, graduates leave Hood ready to tackle the complex cyber challenges in business, industry, government, education, health, and other fields. For students who want cyber training, but not the full master’s degree, there is a stand-alone certificate in Cybersecurity.
Part-time or full-time
By taking one or two courses a semester, students can complete the 30-credit program in three years, or as full-time students, they can take on-campus classes and graduate in 15 months. Both formats provide instruction from highly qualified faculty and adjunct instructors with proven Cybersecurity experience.
The Cybersecurity Capstone
The Cybersecurity Capstone is the culmination of the master's program. The Capstone invites students to further develop and demonstrate their ability to engage both broadly and in-depth with a specific topic in the discipline. It draws diverse modes of learning into one focused area that can enhance the student’s informed practice of cybersecurity. This learning and engagement with a specific topic are expected to be of high scholarly standard. Students are encouraged to begin discussing with faculty potential areas of interest and topics for their Capstone after completing 21 credits in the program.
The Cybersecurity Capstone Guidelines are posted under the Graduate School's site (Sec. Final Thesis, Projects, Capstones and Research, Departmental Guidelines).
The following are the titles of past Cybersecurity Capstone Projects.
Note: Because the work may have been conducted in industry or a government setting, or it is based on private or internal, company-sponsored research, copies of the capstone projects are not made available. It is the prerogative of the author to decide if they will share their project and you must contact them directly to request a copy. Neither the Program, the Department, or the College are allowed to provide contact information of former students.
- S. J. Alhajry, "Comparison of Malware Detection Techniques"
- A.M. Almatthmi, "Evaluation of User Interfaces in Security Information and Event Management Systems"
- P. Burnett, "Cybersecurity Maturity Assessment for Identification and Remediation of Insider Threats"
- M. Calafos, "The Dark Side of Cryptocurrency: Laundering Money and Financing Criminality"
- J. M. Downing, "The Implications of Huawei 5G on the Five Eyes Intelligence Sharing Alliance"
- S. Lange, "Development of Automated Penetration Testing Tool with Push Notifications"
- M. D. Sabeeh, "A Survey on the State of Bots, Associated Threats, and Detection Techniques"
- G. Mbouna, "Internet-based Voting Security: The Case of the African Continent Transitioning to E-voting"
- F. F. Qazzazee, "Comparison and Performance Evaluation of VPN Technologies"
- F.Y. Aljammaz, "A Comparative Analysis of Threat and Risk Modeling of Consumer IoT Devices"
- A. Alzahrani, "Detection and Prediction of Insider Threats"
- C. Carrington, "Evaluation and Comparison of Cyber vs. Non-Crime and Punishment in the Criminal Justice System"
- J. Flagg, "Impact and Risk Evaluation of Medical Equipment on The Security Posture of Healthcare Organizations"
- H. Rivas, "Security and Risk Evaluation of Cloud Storage and Cloud Infrastructure"
- S. Wilson, "Evaluation of the Cybersecurity Posture in Emergency Services Organizations"
- A. J. Woodring, "E-Voting Platforms: Are They Secure?"
- A. Abdulmajeed, "Threat Analysis of E-voting"
- N. Alosaimi, "Vulnerability Analysis of Smart Contracts"
- C. Brown, "The Dilemma, Ethics, and Impact of Responsible Disclosure"
- R. de Cespedes, "Security Operations Center (SOC) Threat Visualization"
- H. Ghasemi, "Reducing Crime Related to Cryptocurrency Transactions"
- N. Kalva, "Framework for the Evaluation of Privacy in IoT Devices"
- L. Lepi, "A Comprehensive Survey of Threat Modeling Techniques and Their Applied Uses"
- J. Whipp, "Enterprise Cybersecurity Plans, Policies, and Procedures"
- A. Olanrewaju, "Establishment of a Security Operations Center (SOC)"
- S. Soni, "Protection by adversaries while using TheOnionRouter(TOR)"
- F. Alamri, "Threat and Risk Modeling for IoT device(s)"
- F. Alatawi, "Best practices in defending against DDoS attacks"
- O. Aloufi, "Measuring Security"
- A. Alsenaidi, "Cyber Security and the 4th Industrial Revolution"
- D. Hill, "Retaliation to cyber attacks. Should the US respond to cyberattacks by national adversaries?"
- J. Brewer, III, "Vehicle/Automotive Hacking"
- M. Giambruno, "Do Smart Houses Make for Safe Homes?"
- E. Hamad, "Development of a Firewall with Randomly Generated Service ports"
- S. Jewett, "Cyberwafare, cyber weapons, and cyber attacks"
- P. Abayomi, "User interface for server firewall management
Cybersecurity students are invited to present their Capstone and compete at the Graduate School's Three Minute Thesis (3MT) competition, held annually at the end of the Spring semester. We are proud of the participation of past participants:
- 2021: Suiltan Alhajry | AhmedAlmatthmi | Patrick Burnett | Michael Calafos | JuliaDowning | HamidGhasemi | Sanket Lange | GastienMbouna | FadiQazzazee | Harold Rivas | Mohammed Sabeeh | Seth Wilson
- 2020: Connor Brown | Rob de Cespedes | NikhilKalva | LuanLepi | JeffWhipp
- 2019: Eddie Hamad
Cybersecurity students are invited to participate in CyberBlazers, the program's ethical hacking student team. Students who join this welcoming group of students and faculty, learn together, practice together, and compete in regional and national cybersecurity and capture the flag (CTF) competitions.
At WiCyS, a global community of women, male allies and advocates, we are dedicated to bringing talented women together to celebrate and foster their passion and drive for cybersecurity. Join us to move the needle in women's underrepresentation in cyber! Explore the Global WiCyS Membership Benefits page and register here to become part of our WiCyS chapter at Hood.
The Cotton Cyber Lecture Series
Janet Hobbs Cotton ’59 and her husband, John Cotton, have given the new cybersecurity master’s program a generous gift by establishing the Cotton Cyber Lecture Series, to bring nationally and internationally recognized leaders in cybersecurity to campus to speak.
- Apr 05, 2018 (INAUGURAL LECTURE): General (Ret) Keith Alexander (bio), Founder and CEO, IronNet Cybersecurity
- Oct 18, 2018: Ronald S. Ross (bio), Fellow, National Institute of Standards and Technology
- Apr 09, 2019: Hector Monsegur (bio), Director of Assessment Services, Rhino Security Labs
- Oct 03, 2019: Melissa Hathaway (bio), President, Hathaway Global Strategies
- Apr 06, 2021: Kevin Stine (bio), Chief, Applied Cybersecurity Division, National Institute of Standards and Technology.
- Oct 14, 2021 : Vinton G. Cerf (bio), Vice president and chief Internet evangelist for Google
Visit our Cotton Lecture Series website for more information.