Cyber security is a topic of critical importance to commercial and academic organisations, as well as to governments and their citizens. Our Cyber Security programme, primarily aimed as a broadening qualification for computer science graduates, offers a multi-disciplinary perspective to the subject, giving students an excellent basis for a future career in the cyber security field.
There is currently a worldwide shortage of skilled practitioners in cyber security. In the UK, the National Audit Office recently named "addressing the UK's current and future ICT and cyber security skills gap" as a "key challenge", whilst at a time when cybercrime “as-a-service” is on a steep rise, the Department for Business, Innovation & Skill calls for companies to make of cybersecurity a Board level responsibility. Our MSc is specifically designed to give students a well-rounded, multi-disciplinary view of the subject area, embracing not only the technical subjects, but also aspects of criminology, risk management, law and social sciences. We believe a broad grounding in cyber security will give our students a key advantage in the marketplace.
This is 1 of only 12 cyber security MSc programmes in the UK to be awarded Provisional Certification against the GCHQ Certified Master's degree in General Cyber Security standard, subject to a specific set of modules: see the programme spec for details.
We are 1 of only 13 universities recognised as an Academic Centre of Excellence in Cyber Security Research by the UK Government.
Twelve months, full-time.
The programme is primarily a broadening qualification for computer science graduates, but is also one that may appeal to suitable graduates from other disciplines. The programme features two semesters of taught modules, with a variety of optional modules available to allow students to selectively gain knowledge in some specific subject areas, followed by the MSc dissertation/project, which where possible is conducted in conjunction with an industrial partner.
Our normal entry requirement is an upper second-class honours degree or higher (or equivalent) in computer science or a closely related discipline (certain modules assume a level of programming and mathematics knowledge)
If English is not your first language, you will be required to pass an approved English test. We normally ask for IELTS 6.5 overall with at least 6.0 in each competency. For information on other accepted English language tests, please visit www.southampton.ac.uk/admissions_language.
We welcome applications from international students. For information on applying, visit the International Office website. Please note we are part of the Faculty of Physical Sciences and Engineering (FPSE).
All individuals are selected and treated on their relative merits and abilities in line with the University's Equal Opportunities Policy. Disabled applicants will be treated according to the same procedures as any other applicant with the added involvement of the Disability Office to assess their needs. The programme may require adaptation for students with disabilities (eg hearing impairment, visual impairment, mobility difficulties, dyslexia), particularly the practical laboratory sessions, and we will attempt to accommodate students wherever possible.
This programme provides an excellent platform for either immediate employment in the cyber security field or further research in industry or academia. Our graduates should not only understand technical aspects of cyber security, but also the broader context in which these sit.
Our students should be able to seek careers in:
Academic possibilities include further study towards a Ph.D. qualification, or research assistant positions undertaking cyber security related research.
Pre-course reading list
We expect students to have a background in Computer Science or a related discipline, and thus you should have experience with topics including computer networks and computer programming.
The recommended texts for our cyber security modules include:
Students may also wish to research commercial white papers, for example:
There is a variety of cyber security blogs that should be of interest to students, and highlight topical subjects, including:
We also recommend that students review a range of annual cyber security reports, including: