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Masters in Cyber Security: A Guide for International Students Seeking to Study in the USA

Updated: Apr 20, 2023

If you are interested in pursuing a career in the rapidly evolving field of Cybersecurity, a Master of Science (M.S.) in Cyber Security from a reputable institution in the USA can be an excellent choice. This degree program can equip you with the knowledge, skills, and hands-on experience to tackle the complex challenges of securing digital systems, networks, and data in various industries. In addition, obtaining an M.S. in Cyber Security from a US-based institution can be advantageous regarding networking opportunities, cutting-edge research, and exposure to diverse perspectives and approaches. However, given the competitiveness of the job market in this field, it is essential to choose a program that is not only reputable but also offers a comprehensive curriculum that aligns with your career goals and interests.

What are the Advantages of Pursuing an MS in Cyber Security in the USA?

The United States remains the top destination for international students seeking to pursue a Master of Science (MSc) in Cyber Security, and for a good reason. With some of the world's most highly-ranked universities and a wide range of exciting locations to study, the US offers an unparalleled academic experience. State university systems, which receive partial funding from state governments, offer numerous campuses and a diverse student population, providing an ideal academic and personal growth environment. In addition, graduates of US-based MS in Cyber Security programs have access to some of the highest-paying jobs in the industry, with an average annual salary of $99,730 for information security analysts. Financial and insurance firms are among the top recruiters of Cybersecurity graduates in the USA. To further sweeten the deal, US universities offer ample scholarship and grant opportunities, making this an excellent choice for international students seeking to advance their education and career in Cyber Security.

Exploring Different Types of Cyber Security Masters Programs in the USA

For international students pursuing a Master of Science (M.S.) in Cyber Security in the USA, several programs cater to different skill sets and interests. One option is an M.S. in Cybersecurity, which focuses on designing and analyzing algorithms, computer systems, and advanced software paradigms related to Cybersecurity. Another option is an M.S. in Information Technology, which trains students in information technology and information systems, focusing on Cybersecurity. An MS in Computer Science specialization in Cybersecurity is also available for those interested in computer engineering, with elective courses tailored to Cybersecurity topics. Pursuing any of these programs can provide students with the necessary knowledge and skills to succeed in the rapidly-evolving field of Cybersecurity while also offering ample networking and career opportunities.

Top-Ranked Universities Offering Masters in Cyber Security Programs in the USA

When pursuing a Master of Science (MS) in Cyber Security in the USA, many top-ranked universities offer excellent programs. These universities are renowned for their leading faculty, cutting-edge research, and practical learning experiences. Among the best universities for MS in Cybersecurity in the USA are

  • the University of California Berkeley (UC Berkeley),

  • Tufts University,

  • George Washington University,

  • California State Polytechnic University, and

  • the New Jersey Institute of Technology.

  • University School of California Berkley

Having been the first university to offer a Master of Information and Cybersecurity degree.

The UC Berkeley School of Information's program prepares students for senior roles in government and military organizations, as well as private-sector technology enterprises, with a comprehensive curriculum that covers key Cybersecurity topics and hands-on experience solving real-world problems.



QS Ranking 2023


QS Subject Ranking 2022


Programme Offered

Master of Information and Cybersecurity

Programme Fees (Annually)

USD 114231.84 (INR 91,00,000) Approx

  • Tufts University

Founded in 1852, Tufts University is a well-known for-profit institution that strongly emphasises research. At Tufts, the faculty and Master of Science (M.S.) in Cybersecurity and Public Policy program take an interdisciplinary approach, offering students a clear understanding of their respective fields. This program provides multiple specialisations in Cybersecurity policy, allowing students to tailor their studies to their interests and career goals. Students can explore various topics through this program, including algorithms, secure system technologies, digital approaches, etc. With a focus on practical learning and research, Tufts University is an excellent choice for students seeking to advance their careers in Cybersecurity.



QS Ranking 2023


QS Subject Ranking 2022


Programme Offered

M.S. in Cybersecurity and Public Policy

Programme Fees (Annually)

USD 48,956.50 (INR 39,00,000) Approx

  • George Washington University

The American Department of Homeland Security and National Security Agency have recognised this university as a "Center of Academic Excellence for Information Assurance." The Master of Science in Cybersecurity in Computer Science program is designed to meet the rapidly growing demand for technical cybersecurity expertise in both public and private sectors, domestically and abroad. Throughout the course, students will learn how to defend against cyber-attacks using a variety of tactics and gain knowledge of the policies and implementations of these techniques. With a focus on practical learning, this program prepares students to become experts in Cybersecurity and succeed in the industry.



QS Ranking 2023


QS Subject Ranking 2022


Programme Offered

Master of Science in Cybersecurity in Computer Science

Programme Fees (Annually)

USD 76, 276 (INR 60,72, 339.99) Approx

  • California State Polytechnic University

California State Polytechnic University is a top-rated university in the USA for pursuing a master's degree in Cybersecurity. The Master of Science in Information Security (MSIS) degree program is classified as a STEM degree and designed for individuals aspiring to work in computer forensics, I.T. auditing, and information security. This two-year cohort program, comprising ten courses for 30 units and one comprehensive exam, equips students with the skills required to meet the growing demand for cybersecurity professionals in the public and private sectors.



QS Ranking 2023


QS Subject Ranking 2022


Programme Offered

Master of Science in Information Security

Programme Fees (Annually)

USD 48956.50 (INR 39,00,000) Approx

  • New Jersey Institute of Technology

New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT), formerly known as Newark Technical School, is a renowned institution in the USA offering a Master of Science in Cybersecurity and Privacy program. This program aims to equip students with the skills to assist enterprises with data protection, cyber risk identification and management, and cyber-attack recovery. After completing the course, students can work as policy advocates, staff members in government organisations and legislatures concerned with cybersecurity or privacy issues, threat detection analysts in the private sector, and more. Throughout the master's course, students gain practical and theoretical knowledge, preparing them for the industry's challenges.



QS Ranking 2023


QS Subject Ranking 2022


Programme Offered

MS in Cybersecurity and Privacy

Programme Fees (Annually)

USD 51467.09 (INR 41,00,000) Approx

Masters in Cyber Security Curriculum in the USA - Topics and Areas Covered

Masters in Cyber Security programs in the USA offer comprehensive coursework covering communication networks and technologies. These programs are available to international students as full-time or part-time study options.

The curriculum of Masters in Cyber Security programs in the USA covers various aspects of cyber security and system management. Students will gain expertise in researching current and future security threats, understanding security interaction with other computer fields, conducting security audits of infrastructure and applications, and more. The curriculum includes topics such as

  • Information Security in Public and Private Sectors

  • Business Data Communications and Networking

  • Engineering of Trustworthy Secure Systems

  • Data Mining for Business Intelligence.

By providing in-depth knowledge of these topics, Masters in Cyber Security programs equip students with the necessary skills to tackle the cybersecurity challenges of today and tomorrow.

Admission Requirements for Masters in Cyber Security in the USA: Eligibility Criteria and More

If you're pursuing a Master's degree in Cyber Security in the USA, knowing the eligibility criteria and admission requirements set by universities is essential. While each institution may have its specific criteria, there are some common ones that most follow. Here's what you need to know:

Bachelor's Degree

To be eligible for admission, students must hold a Bachelor's degree in computer science, cyber security, or a related subject. Additionally, the last two years of undergraduate study should have a GPA of 3.0 or better (4-point scale), 8.75 (10-point scale), or 83 per cent, as per the requirements of several universities.

Core Subject Prerequisites

Some universities require students to have completed specific coursework in calculus, mathematics, and computer science as part of their Bachelor's degree program.

English Language Proficiency Test Scores

International students applying for M.S. in cyber security in the USA must submit English Language Proficiency test scores. However, the score requirement may vary from university to university. Commonly accepted tests and scores include

TOEFL- 79,

IELTS- 6.5- 7.0

GRE- 320.

Work Experience

While some universities may require work experience as part of the eligibility criteria, others do not. It is essential to check with the respective institution to know if work experience is required.

Entrance Exam Scores

A GRE score of 310-320 is generally considered suitable, but some universities offer admission for M.S. in Cybersecurity in the USA without GRE. However, a higher score is always beneficial.

USA Student Visa

International students pursuing a Master's degree in Cyber Security in the USA must obtain a student visa. To do so, they must first receive an acceptance letter from their applied university.

Required Documents for Masters in Cyber Security in the USA

For admission to a Masters in Cyber Security in the USA, certain documents are required. The following is a list of required documents:

  • Statement of Purpose

  • Letter of Recommendation

  • Official Transcripts

  • Resume/CV

  • Academic Transcripts

  • A valid passport is compulsory

  • Financial Support Proof

  • GRE/GMAT score

Admission Process for Masters in Cyber Security Programs in USA Universities

If you're interested in pursuing a Master in Cyber Security in the USA, you must follow a structured admission process. Here are the steps to guide you through the process:

Step 1: Check the Eligibility Criteria Visit the official website of the university you're interested in and review the eligibility criteria for the Master's course. Ensure that you meet the requirements before proceeding.

Step 2: Upload Required Documents Scan and upload all required documents, including official transcripts, Bachelor's certificate, CV, GRE Scores IELTS/TOEFL scores, and any other relevant scorecards. Check with the university for specific document requirements.

Step 3: Submit the Application Form and Pay the Fee. Fill out the application form and pay the fee through the university's website or application portal.

Step 4: Attend an Interview Some universities may require an interview to assess your soft skills and suitability for the program. Prepare for the discussion and demonstrate your interest and passion for the program.

Step 5: Accept the Offer Letter and Make a Deposit. If you receive a conditional offer letter, read and accept the university's terms and conditions. You will then be required to deposit to secure your spot, which is usually non-refundable.

The Cost of Studying Cyber Security in the USA as an International Student

As an international student, pursuing a master's degree in cyber security in the USA can be a significant financial commitment. Considering the tuition fees and living costs before embarking on this journey is essential.

Tuition Fee

The tuition fee for a cyber security master's program in the USA varies depending on your chosen institution. On average, the annual fee is around USD 69,984 (INR 55,75,103). It is important to note that this is an estimate and can vary widely based on the specific program and university you choose.

Cost of Living

In addition to tuition fees, international students must consider the cost of living in the USA. The cost of living varies according to the region where you will be living. The average monthly cost of living in the U.S. is around USD 627.65 (INR 50,000). It includes accommodation, food, transportation, and other miscellaneous expenses.


Cost Per month


USD 200 (INR 15888)


USD 200M (INR 15888)


USD 100 (INR 7951)

Study Materials

USD 1000 (INR 79443) yearly

Scholarships for Cyber Security Masters in the USA for International Students

Pursuing a Master's degree in Cyber Security in the USA can be expensive for international students. Scholarships can provide financial assistance and help alleviate this burden. Universities and states offer various scholarships for MSC Cyber Security students in the USA. Consider applying for these scholarships to support your education and living expenses in the USA.


Amount Granted

Hubert H. Humphrey Fellowship


Women Techmaker’s Scholarship

USD 8792.85 (INR 8792.85)

Stokes Educational Scholarship

USD 28890.81 (INR 23,00,000)

NSF CyberCorps Scholarship for Service

USD 48988.76 (39,00,000)

Job Opportunities After Completing a Master in Cyber Security in the USA

Pursuing a master's degree in Cybersecurity opens up several job opportunities in the IT sector. Cyber security experts with technical expertise, problem-solving mindset, risk analysis skills, and attention to detail are in high demand and are compensated well. The average annual salary for cyber security professionals in the USA is around USD 12 18 43.84 (INR 97 00,000). Some of the job roles available to cybersecurity graduates include

Job Roles

Annual Average Salary

Chief Information Security Officer

USD 121843.84 (INR 97,00,000)

Network Security Systems Manager

USD 91696.91 (INR 73,00,000)

Information Security Officer

USD 89184.66 (INR 71,00,000)

Security Administrator

USD 6276.47 (INR 50,00,000)

In conclusion, pursuing a master's degree in cyber security in the USA can be an excellent career move for those interested. With various universities offering comprehensive programs, including scholarships and financial aid opportunities, students can gain valuable knowledge and skills to become cybersecurity experts. Upon graduation, many job opportunities and competitive salaries are available, making it a promising choice for a long-term career.

Frequently Asked Questions

Ques: What is the average cost of pursuing a master's degree in Cybersecurity in the USA?

Ans: The average cost of pursuing a master's degree in Cybersecurity in the USA is around USD 30,000 (INR 2389876.50) annually.

Ques: Is pursuing an MS in Cybersecurity worth it?

Ques: Does pursuing an MS in Cybersecurity involve coding?

Ques: Is learning Python for an MS in Cybersecurity in the USA necessary?

Ques: Is a career in Cybersecurity highly stressful?

Did You Know?

  1. According to a report by CyberSeek, there are over 500,000 job openings in Cybersecurity in the United States, making it one of the fastest-growing job markets.

  2. Besides technical skills, cybersecurity professionals must have a strong understanding of psychology and human behaviour to identify and prevent social engineering attacks.

  3. Most cybersecurity breaches are caused by human error, such as weak passwords, falling for phishing scams, or not applying software patches. It highlights the importance of cybersecurity education and training.

  4. Many universities in the USA offer unique and specialised Master's programs in Cybersecurity, such as Cybersecurity Policy and Governance, Digital Forensics, Cybersecurity Engineering, and more. These programs prepare students for various cybersecurity roles and can help them stand out in the job market.

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