US Navy aircraft carrier docked in Norfolk Virginia.

Norfolk State University Online Master of Science in Cybersecurity

Why Norfolk State University?

Norfolk State University is a large private historically Black university in Norfolk, Virginia, offering an online Master of Science in Cybersecurity degree program. A background in Computer Science, work experience, or self-training in basic computer programming and networking skills are recommended for applicants. 

Standardized test scores are not required, and a minimum undergraduate GPA of 3.0 is expected.

Program Snapshot

University Name Norfolk State University
Location Norfolk
State Virginia
Niche.com Grade C+
Name of Degree Master of Science in Cybersecurity
School or Department Administering Program College of Science, Engineering and Technology
Credits 36
Cost per credit $746.00
Tuition for Entire Program $26,856.00
Test Requirements No
Minimum GPA 3.0
Campus Visit Required? No
Typical Time to Complete 2-3 years
When Can Students Start the Program? Fall, Spring
Program Concentrations None
Synchronous Classes No
Required Courses ·   Computer Security 1

·   Management of Information Security

·   Secure Operating Systems

·   Network Fundamentals

·   Computer and Network Forensics

·   Human Aspects of Cybersecurity

·   Ethical Hacking and Penetration Testing

·   Database Security

·   Healthcare Information Security

·   Advanced Topics in Cybersecurity

·   Cybersecurity I and Ii

Does the Program Include a Capstone? Yes
Does the Program Include a Practicum or Internship? No
Other Features that Make the Program Unique Cybercorps Scholarship for Service, Intelligence Community Center for Academic Excellence, National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Research, Graduate Assistantships available, required course in Healthcare Information Security, Faculty have active research programs
Program Objectives (quoted directly from the program) Students engage in theoretical studies and practical training like digital forensics, while developing the critical thinking and communication skills required by professionals in the cybersecurity field. Students are prepared to defend US citizens and public, private and government organizations against cyber attacks
Program Description Consisting of 36 credits, this degree emphasizes engineering approaches and skills This is a generalist program with no concentrations offered. A capstone is required. The program follows a traditional course schedule

 What will I Learn?

The curriculum at Norfolk State University balances theoretical education with training in practical skills such as digital forensics, ethical hacking, and penetration testing. The aim is to prepare graduates who can defend against cyber attacks against individuals, businesses, government and military targets. The program emphasizes critical thinking, communication, and collaboration in teams. 

All students must take the following required courses: Computer Security 1, Management of Information Security, Secure Operating Systems, Network Fundamentals, Computer and Network Forensics, Human Aspects of Cybersecurity, Ethical Hacking and Penetration Testing, Database Security, Healthcare Information Security, Advanced Topics in Cybersecurity, Cybersecurity I and II.

Norfolk State University has been designated an Intelligence Community Center for Academic Excellence and National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense Research. The university benefits from proximity to the national capital region, an epicenter of cyberdefense funding and opportunities. Faculty have active research programs in many areas of the field. The curriculum is also distinguished by its required course in Healthcare Information Security.

How much will the program cost?

Students finish their degree within 2-3 years and pay $746.00 per credit for a total of 36 credits, or $26,856.00 in total. 

To defray costs, students may apply for the Cybercorp  Scholarship for Service. Graduate assistantships offering tuition waivers are also available, providing students with valuable research experience in addition to financial benefits.

How does the program fit into my life?

All courses are asynchronous, meaning that students complete coursework on their own schedule each week, including watching pre-recorded lectures and participating in online discussion. No campus visit is required.

Most students complete the program within 2-3 years. Fall or Spring entrance is available.

Summary

This respected historically black university offers a cybersecurity master’s program emphasizing engineering approaches and skills, at a cost comparable to other similar programs. The program follows a traditional course schedule. A capstone is required. No concentrations are offered. 

Because of its required course in Healthcare Information Security, the program would be a good choice for applicants interested in cybersecurity for electronic medical records, medical research or related areas. Applicants interested in government service, and/or those interested in studying at a historically Black institution, should also give this program a look.