MSc in Systems and Software Security


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Program Description

Is this Course for You?

The MSc is a three-semester taught programme in computing which focuses on topics applicable to Systems and Software Security. These are followed by a dissertation which will offer the student the opportunity to apply a range of topics covered in the taught part of the programme to demonstrate an extended knowledge and ability in that area. The dissertation will normally be completed over one to two additional semesters.

From an industry point of view, this programme was developed in partnership with the IT industry in the north-west and with Pramerica in particular. The objective of developing the course is to ensure a supply of highly-skilled and experienced graduates for key employers locally and throughout Ireland. The existence of the course and the placement reflects the commitment of employers to this field of expertise. Graduates from this course can expect to find attractive employment opportunities locally and nationally.

Note: Students may choose to leave the course after the first 60 credits (taught modules) and will obtain an exit-award of a Post-graduate Diploma in Computing in Systems and Software Security. Students who continue on to complete the dissertation will obtain an MSc in Computing in Systems and Software Security.

Learning Outcomes

On completion of the course the graduate will be able to:

  • Appraise discipline expertise in computing principles and concepts and of secure coding and infrastructure in particular.
  • Critically analyse and evaluate a wide range of computing-related technologies and their application with emphasis on security technologies.
  • Evaluate, synthesize, defend and discuss research, development and application of computing technologies in a structured, reasoned and coherent way
  • Evaluate the application of computing technologies in its economic, legal, social and ethical context.
  • Work effectively as an autonomous individual or as part of a team.

Follow-on Courses

  • Progression to programmes leading to a Doctoral Degree (by research) is available internally at LYIT or through a range of other Institutes of Technology and Universities in Ireland and abroad.
  • Progression internationally to some second cycle (e.g. 'Bologna Masters') degree programmes.


Worldwide there are about 1.5 million people working as computer security professionals and employment in this area is growing at approximately 9% per year and industry projections are that this rate of growth will continue or improve in the future.

Typical employers in the computer security field include:

  • Companies running enterprise computer networks;
  • The payment card industry;
  • Companies involved in e-commerce;
  • Financial services companies;
  • Academic institutions;
  • Government departments;
  • Internet service providers.

Each of these service providers have distinct security needs which require different solutions to meet their needs.

Thus graduates in this field require specialist knowledge of the differing security needs of different types of businesses, the primary technical solutions available to meet these needs, the primary methods of attack on computer systems, how to plan for such attacks both in terms of defense and damage control, how to detect intruders and how to gather evidence to identify the intruders, track their actions and present evidence detailing their activities.

Cost & Fees

The Programme commences in September each year and the fee for the Master of Science in Computing in Systems & Software Security is currently €5,000. The fee for Non-Eu students is €9,000. Full-time students who are not in receipt of a grant to assist with their fees may apply for one of a limited number of bursaries to reduce their fees to €3000. Bursaries are awarded on a competitive basis. Financial Support for Students Applying for this Courses.

There is no universal system of State-funded tuition fees or maintenance grants for postgraduate courses in Ireland however you may also find the guide on student useful. Click on the “maintenance grants” link to find the guide which will help you work out whether you may be eligible for financial support. Some graduates may also be eligible to get a grant to cover their fees or may be able to get help with their fees through LYIT’s bursary program. If you are unsure if you qualify for financial support feel free to contact LYIT or SUSI for further information.

Entry Requirements

The course will be available to applicants who meet the following entry criteria:

  • An Honours Degree in Computing with first or second-class honours or an equivalent qualification.
  • A level-8 conversion style Higher Diploma in Computing with Merit 2 or higher. The course should have included a significant programming component, preferably an OO language such as Java.
  • Non-computing graduates with first or second-class honours who have completed a significant element of computing as part of their studies, including a significant element of IT including operating systems, data communications and programming will also be considered.
Last updated Jan 2018

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About the School

LYIT is a lively and inspirational place that attracts a creative mix of 3,000 students both from the local area and from 31 different countries. This gives us a vibrant array of cultures and activiti ... Read More

LYIT is a lively and inspirational place that attracts a creative mix of 3,000 students both from the local area and from 31 different countries. This gives us a vibrant array of cultures and activities on campus and a friendly, supportive and relaxed atmosphere where students and staff work closely together. The Institute has partnership agreements with over 60 universities all over the world and offers programs of study in various areas and levels, ranging from undergraduate to masters and doctoral degrees. Read less
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