Master of Science in Cyber Security


Program Description

The program strengths include a unique blend of faculty expertise, well-equipped computer science and engineering laboratory facilities, and a balance of theory, practice, hardware, and software. The M.S. degree in Cyber Security is designed for individuals who want to develop skills to identify and resolve cybersecurity threats. The degree is focused on developing knowledge and skill applicable to protecting computer systems and computer networks. Students with backgrounds in computer science, computer engineering, information systems or electrical engineering may apply to the program.

Professionals working in the industry who have a strong technical background and related work experience are also encouraged to apply.

Why Choose Cyber Security?

Develop skills to identify and resolve cybersecurity threats.

Complete this degree online or on campus.

We give you the flexibility to work this degree into your schedule. You will develop the knowledge and skills applicable to protecting computer systems and networks.

A unique blend of faculty who balance theory, practice, hardware, and software in their courses is available to you. The on-campus courses take place in well-equipped computer engineering laboratory facilities. Our state-of-the-art Virtual Cyber Security Lab (VCSL) allows you to work in a safe environment while practicing what you learn.

A solid background in these core computer science skills will help you with your graduate degree:

  • Computer programming
  • Computer organization
  • Data structures and algorithms
  • Programming languages
  • Operating systems
  • Problem-solving and implementation using computer programming


Program Prerequisites

At least one year of formal coursework in computer programming. Formal coursework in data structures, computer organization, and operating systems is also required.

The materials covered in these courses should be equal to Wright State University courses:

  • CS 1180 Computer Science I
  • CS 1181 Computer Science II
  • CS 3100/5100 Data Structures and Algorithms
  • CEG 4350/6350 Operating Systems Internals and Design
  • CEG 3310/5310 Computer Organization

If you do not have a year of formal coursework in computer programming, you may show programming proficiency by:

  • Taking an exam upon enrollment; or
  • Taking the six credit-hour preparatory course CS 5160 - Fundamentals of Computer Science.

Students lacking other prerequisite coursework may be assigned additional prerequisite courses upon admission.

Math Prerequisites

Knowledge of calculus linear or matrix algebra, probability, and statistics is preferred.

Requirements for Completing a Successful Cyber Security Project (CS7960)

Show a graduate-level mastery over a large body of concepts in cybersecurity. Projects may include (but are not limited to):

  • Implementation and/or robust testing of software artifacts relevant to the field.
  • Replication of previous research results, collection, curation, and analysis of real-world or simulation-based data of value for cybersecurity research.
  • Conduct a comprehensive literature review in a specific area related to cybersecurity.

Select an advisory committee from the Wright State University Graduate Faculty consisting of a:

  • Project advisor
  • One other full or adjunct member

With your project advisor determine and document the:

  • Scope of the project
  • Specific deliverables such as software, data, or written reports
  • Expected outcomes

Produce a written report that details:

  • The project significance
  • Related work
  • Work completed
  • Project outcomes

If your project is a written work, it may also serve as the written report. Written works include a literature review, position paper, or protocol proposal,

You must present and defend your project with a presentation to your project committee. The project committee will provide a signed form-indicating acceptance of your project after a successful presentation. This is required for graduation from the program.


The admission process is competitive. If you are interested in the Master of Science in Cyber Security program, you must meet the following requirements:

  • A Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science, Computer Engineering, or a related field.
  • A minimum 3.0 GPA in computer science and computer engineering.
  • A minimum of 298 combined GRE score.

The GRE requirement is waived:

  • For applicants with a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science or Computer Engineering from Wright State University with a minimum 3.3 GPA.
  • For applicants with a graduate degree in a science or engineering field from a U.S. institution.
  • For students registered in non-degree graduate status at Wright State University with a minimum 3.3 GPA for nine or more hours of computer science and engineering courses at the 6000 or 7000 level (not including CEG 6350).

Conditional admittance may be granted if you have:

  • A minimum of 2.7 undergraduate GPA.
  • A minimum 3.0 GPA in the course prerequisites.

Admissions Requirements

Students must have a bachelor’s degree in Computer Science, Computer Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Information Systems or a related technical area from a regionally accredited academic institution, with an overall GPA of 3.0 for regular graduate status. Students with an undergraduate GPA of 2.7 or above and at least a 3.0 GPA in technical courses related to cybersecurity are eligible for conditional admission.

The knowledge that is equivalent to CEG 3310 - Computer Organization, CS 3100 - Data Structures and Algorithms and CEG 4350 - Operating System Internals and Design is required. Students with significant work experience will be permitted to take a proficiency exam in each of the prerequisite areas. Alternatively, students with a technical background but limited experience in the prerequisite course areas can take an online course (CS 5300) offered by the Department to demonstrate proficiency. A student successfully passing the online course will be admitted into the program.

A minimum combined GRE score of 298 (1050 under the old scale) is required. The GRE requirement is waived for WSU-ECS applicants with a BS degree and a minimum GPA of 3.3 or applicants from a U.S. institution with a graduate degree in a science/engineering field. The GRE requirement is waived for non-degree CSE graduate students if their GPA for 9 or more hours of CSE graduate courses is 3.3 or higher.

Program Learning Outcomes

  • The ability to integrate and apply graduate cybersecurity knowledge to solve complex cybersecurity issues and challenges.
  • The ability to understand and integrate new knowledge within the field of cybersecurity into their professional activities.
  • The ability to recognize the need for, and engage in, life-long learning.
  • A deeper understanding of the breadth and depth of cyberspace and the inefficiencies and shortcomings of our existing evaluation systems to deal with cybersecurity threats.
  • An understanding of the unique characteristics of cyberspace and how these unique characteristics affect/influence cybersecurity threats.
  • The ability to identify social, political, and economic factors/impacts of cyber threats and be able to identify and discuss ethical issues related to cybersecurity and privacy.
  • Recognition of the basic concepts of cybersecurity defense and be able to use software tools for malware identification and elimination, data encryption and transmission, and key-based authentication.


University and college systems include a variety of servers and workstations running current operating systems including Linux, Mac OS, and Windows. Department facilities provide specialized systems and support equipment tailored to specific curriculum and research areas including Linux-based Operating Systems and Internet Security lab, an Immersive Visualization and Animation Theater lab, and a variety of workstations and personal computers providing software tools for project design and development. The program also has access to one of the most advanced visualization and presentation environments in the nation, the Appenzeller Visualization Laboratory, located in the Joshi Research Center. The Department has laboratories dedicated to research in assistive technologies, RFID, computer vision, medical image analysis, parallel and distributed computing, evolvable hardware, database systems, data mining, mobile information, and communications, software engineering, artificial intelligence, advanced computer networking, semantic web services-oriented computing, scientific workflows, business process management, bioinformatics, and cybersecurity.

Last updated Feb 2020

About the School

Wright State University is a nationally ranked public university in Dayton, Ohio with more than 15,000 students Offering 295 degree programs, the university is made up of eight colleges, three schools ... Read More

Wright State University is a nationally ranked public university in Dayton, Ohio with more than 15,000 students Offering 295 degree programs, the university is made up of eight colleges, three schools, and a branch campus in Celina, Ohio. Named for the Wright brothers, Wright State University offers an exceptional, affordable education in the American heartland. Read less