MSc in Network Security


Read more about this program on the school's website

Program Description


This unique programme provides international students with the opportunity to study, in one full time or two years part-time, fundamental and advanced security topics such as cryptography, penetration testing, digital forensics, IT security management, and ISO 27001. Heriot-Watt University is proud to be the first university in the UAE to make available to international students an MSc in Network Security with such advanced topics.

Course content

The aim of both the MSc and the Postgraduate Diploma in Network Security is to provide our graduates with the fundamental knowledge and practical skills required for a Network Security-related professional position in an organisation.

The programme covers topics such as securing enterprise Infrastructures, building and securing wireless networks, penetration testing (ethical hacking) and security audit, as well as network and security administration.

Students undertake four courses in semester 1 and a further four courses in semester 2.

On this programme, the following taught courses are mandatory:

  • Computer Network Security
  • Industrial Programming
  • Advanced Network Security
  • Research Methods and Project Planning

Students can then choose four courses from the following:

  • Network Applications
  • Mobile Communications and Programming
  • Database and Information Systems
  • Software Engineering Foundations
  • Advanced Software Engineering
  • Big Data Management
  • Rigorous Methods for Software Engineering
  • Data Mining and Machine Learning
  • Data Communications and Networking

In addition to these taught courses, students pursuing the MSc qualification undertake a Master’s project, which culminates in a dissertation.


New career opportunities and prospects for career enhancement are both excellent. Security vulnerabilities, and hence countermeasures, appear on a daily basis. The new security threats target industry, commerce and the public sector resulting in an increasing demand for experts who can design, implement and maintain secure infrastructures.

English language requirements

Where English was not the medium of instruction at secondary school, applicants must demonstrate English language proficiency equivalent to IELTS 6.5 (with all elements passed at 6.0 or above). Applicants who have completed secondary and tertiary education will need to provide documentary evidence. A minimum of one-year full-time study in English will be required.

Application deadline

Our Dubai Campus operates a rolling year-round admissions process: as soon as one intake has closed we begin accepting applications for the next one. It is also possible for you to defer your start date for up to a year.

Most students apply 6–10 months in advance of their chosen intake. We can accept applications up until 3 weeks before the start of each intake but you should note that a late application will almost certainly mean a delay in the provision of essential administrative services, such as your student matriculation card (without which you won't be able to access the library or online services).

Last updated Sep 2019

About the School

Pioneering British education in Dubai, with highly acclaimed degree programmes that meet the specific demands of local business and industry.

Pioneering British education in Dubai, with highly acclaimed degree programmes that meet the specific demands of local business and industry. Read less
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