Cyber Security Degrees in Georgia
In the state of Georgia, there are nine universities and colleges that have accredited programs in cyber security. Augusta has both a specialized two-year degree at a technical college and a full Master's degree in Information Security Management at Augusta University.
In the state's capitol, Atlanta is home to the Georgia Institute of Technology's cyber research program and certification process. Another major school, the University of Georgia, also has a full program.
Here is a list of Georgia cyber security degrees that are from NSA CAE Designated Institutions:
- Augusta Technical College 2 Year Cyber Security Program
- Augusta University
- Columbus State University
- Georgia Institute of Technology
- Georgia Southern University - Armstrong Campus
- Kennesaw State University
- Middle Georgia State University MSIT
NSA CAE Designated Institutions for Cyber Security in Georgia
When looking at educational programs in cyber security, it is important to look for colleges and universities that have been accredited by the National Centers of Academic Excellence (CAE). This is a combined effort from the National Security Agency (NSA) and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to designate specific programs that will best prepare those that are looking for a career in cyber security.
Online Cyber Security Programs in Georgia
Being able to take classes online provides flexibility for the working professional to gain their footing in the cyber security field or advance in their career. Because the industry requires expert knowledge in information technology and software development, those interested in a cyber security career will need to be prepared with the knowledge and hands-on experience to succeed. Many programs that are online-based will feature virtual classrooms and labs that will provide education in the latest developments in the field and how to stabilize networks and prevent further attacks with the newest software.
Georgia Tech Online Master of Science in Cybersecurity
Georgia Tech has an online Master of Science in Cybersecurity that is identical to their on-campus program. There are 10 courses that fulfill the curriculum and an option for students to take three different tracks. The entire program can be completed online and within two to three years - the flexibility of coursework makes it ideal for those that are looking to continue as a working professional. The three areas of emphasis are in Information Security, Energy Systems, and Public Policy, and it is recommended that prospective students have related coursework and experience within the category.
Middle Georgia State University Cyber Security Degrees
The School of Computing at Middle Georgia State University also provides hybrid Bachelor's degrees within cyber security and digital forensics, and a Master's degree that can be completed online. For the BS in Cybersecurity, the first 60 credit hours are taken at the Dublin campus with a blend of online courses, then the rest of the program can be transferred to a different campus or online.
Master’s in Cyber Security Degrees in Georgia
For those that have some work experience in cyber security or a related field and are looking to advance their career, obtaining a Master’s degree could be an ideal option. In order to get into these programs, students should be able to demonstrate competence in computer science with other work experience or a Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution. Holding at least a 3.0 cumulative GPA is recommended, but students can also submit GMAT or GRE scores to improve their chances (in some cases, these are also required for admittance). Prior coursework should consist of various levels of calculus, computer programming, and data structuring.
There are a handful of institutions throughout Georgia that offer a Master’s degree in cyber security. Augusta University has a Master of Science in Information Security Management that has a curriculum of 10 courses. Students must have some flexibility in completing courses on-campus, on weekends, and online. All courses are predetermined without any electives, and some example courses in the program include Principles of Information Security Management, Legal Issues in Information Security, and Organizational Behavior.
Getting Started Working in Cyber Security in Georgia
- Undergraduate Degrees:
Kennesaw State University’s Institute for Cybersecurity Workforce Development offers a Bachelor of Science in Cybersecurity. The Michael J. Coles College of Business also offers a BBA in Information Security and Assurance that was recognized back in 2004 by the CAE in an effort to satisfy the growing demand of network security opportunities in the public and private sectors in the state of Georgia. Both degrees are available 100% online, with the BBA-ISA also offered on campus. General education courses can be completed through affiliated eCore institutions through the University System of Georgia. Both programs includes several security courses on Principles of Security, Management of Security, Network Security, Client and Server Security and Incident Response and Contingency Planning.
Georgia Tech also offers a Cybersecurity Certificate, which contains a truncated curriculum that is completed on-campus. There is one required course for all students, giving them hands-on experience with the latest innovations and helps them identify vulnerabilities in a network and risk assessment. Four more courses are electives to customize the certification, with options in malware analysis, digital forensics, cyber defense, and artificial intelligence.
- Masters and Continuing Education:
Kennesaw State University: Effective Fall 2020, KSU is offering a 100% online Master’s of Cybersecurity degree, which includes 30 credit hours of courses that may be completed by the well prepared student in a single calendar year. This interdisciplinary program combines the best of business, computer science, information technology, information systems and criminal justice security content. The program is designed to both advance the careers of current cybersecurity professionals and allow individuals not currently seeking careers in cybersecurity to change their career focus.
Middle Georgia State University offers the Master of Science in Information Technology with an emphasis in Cyber Security and Forensics can be completed within one year for those with prior experience, but those without a background will need to complete the Foundations of Cybersecurity and Information Assurance courses. They also have a Cybersecurity certification that is geared toward those that are looking to advance in their career or move into a cyber security position in information technology. Six total courses need to be completed in order to gain certification, with the required courses being Introduction to Information Technology and Network Essentials. Elective options include digital forensics, network security, and virtual computing.
The University of Georgia has numerous continuing education opportunities in Cyber Security, including an online program to earn the Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP) certification. These online sessions teach students the many Common Body of Knowledge sections and will prepare students for the certification exam. Nearly 80 hours of classroom hours will be required, and students will meet twice a week in three-hour segments for three months. There are other online and instructor-led courses to become a Certified Information Systems Auditor, Certified Information Security Manager, and various CompTIA certifications.
- Cyber Security Employment Options:
When it comes to finding entry-level positions in Georgia, the Atlanta metropolitan area will have the most opportunities. A professional service company that is part of the Fortune 500 is Accenture, and they have an entry-level security analyst position that will send the employee through a training program to know the latest innovations and tools the company uses to aid their clients. Any Bachelor’s or Master’s degree with satisfy the education requirement, but the employee should be ready to jump into multiple projects and work with clients after training is complete.
Georgia Cyber Security Careers
According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, information security analysts are well represented in the Atlanta, Sandy Springs, and Roswell metropolitan area. There are around 2,500 people employed at this job position, and the annual salary average for these tech analysts are $96,220. This is slightly lower than other major cities, but still one of the top locations overall. Atlanta holds the most job opportunities in this sector with Deloitte and KPMG being the two biggest professional services. Professionals in Cyber Data Protection will help clients protect their private information through various encryption processes and they will work closely with them to improve their security efforts.
Top Cyber Security and Tech Employers and Organizations in Georgia
Augusta University is helping boost the cyber security workforce by creating the Georgia Cyber Innovation and Training Center to satisfy demand for more workers in the industry. The $50 million facility has specialized training to enhance network security for public and private organizations, and protect government services. The Cyber Institute at Augusta University has been established since 2015 and offers two different levels of their Cyber Defender certification.
- Cyber Defense CAE-CD
- Cyber Defense CAE-CD
- MSIT Cyber Defense CAE-CD
- Cyber Defense CAE-CD
- Cyber Defense CAE-R
- Cyber Defense CAE-CD