Best Online Master’s in Security Programs

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Rank School Name Ranking Score Relative Cost % Enrolled Online Location Description
1 Northeastern University 67.86 10% Boston, MA

Northeastern University’s master of science in security and resilience studies program explores the ways in which secure infrastructures promote resilient social systems. Focusing on topics such as counterterrorism, urban resilience, cyberspace policy, risk management, and infrastructure protection, this 30-hour master’s degree in security studies may be competed in around one year. Along with required courses such as security policy, international security, and critical infrastructure, students may choose a concentration in cyberspace policy, resilient cities, counterterrorism, or administration, management, and policy. In addition to core coursework, students must complete an experimental capstone course, which serves as the culmination of the program.

Northeastern University holds regional accreditation from the New England Association of Schools and Colleges, Inc., the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business, the Commission on Accreditation in Physical Therapy Education, and the National Association of Schools of Public Affairs and Administration.

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2 Nova Southeastern University 63.78 51% Fort Lauderdale, FL

This Fort Lauderdale university offers 48 fully online master’s programs, including a master’s of science in national security affairs and international relations. Instilling the research, applied, and theoretical skills needed to excel in security affairs, the 36-credit curriculum emphasizes the critical analysis of contemporary national security issues. Students learn to interpret current and historical trends in security and intelligence collection and analysis, as well as related theories, ethical issues, and US foreign policy and national security. Prior to earning a master’s degree in intelligence and security studies online, students must pass a comprehensive examination in their final semester.

Along with a completed application, prospective students should provide a current resume, a brief personal essay, an academic writing sample, and two academic or professional recommendations.

Nova Southeastern University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.

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3 University of Denver 62.94 26% Denver, CO

The University of Denver’s security management master’s program trains students to assess risks, examine security threats, and create security solutions through research, case studies, and discussion. The 48-hour program imparts the skills needed to protect individuals, organizations, intellectual property, and physical assets through an in-depth study of foundational security concepts, as well as specialized coursework in emergency response and hazardous material preparedness. Available concentrations include organizational security, information security, and emergency planning. All 12 courses are 10 weeks long, and the program culminates in a capstone experience.

While GMAT or GRE scores are not required for admission, applicants must hold an undergraduate degree from a regionally accredited college or university, with a minimum cumulative GPA of 2.5 over the final 60 semester credits. In addition to an application, all must provide official transcripts, two references, a resume, and a personal statement. Students may transfer up to 12 credit hours toward their degree.

The University of Denver is accredited by The Higher Learning Commission.

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4 East Carolina University 59.99 66% Greenville, NC

East Carolina University’s master of science in security studies features a multidisciplinary format that exposes learners to a variety of perspectives on safety and security. The 36-credit curriculum focuses on four major areas: homeland security policy, environmental health and occupational safety, science and technology security, and international security. In addition to required coursework in foundational security, security policy, and research methods, students complete both an internship and a four-course emphasis in their chosen focus area. While the program includes thesis and non-thesis tracks, all students must pass a final comprehensive exam. Most full-time learners earn their MSSS in around two years.

Prospective graduate students must hold a bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution, and should include a resume, statement of purpose, and letters of reference with their completed application.

East Carolina University is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools.

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5 University of Massachusetts-Lowell 56.84 46% Lowell, MA

Students enrolled in UMass Lowell’s security studies graduate program can earn either a master of arts or a master of sciences degree through the same 30-credit curriculum. Addressing the scientific and technological dimensions of national security, intelligence analysis, and contemporary security studies literature, the program features concentrations in homeland defense, industrial and economic security, and international security. Students pursuing an MA must complete a capstone paper, while the MS capstone requirement consists of a hands-on security project.

Applicants must have completed an undergraduate degree at an accredited institution, achieving a final undergraduate GPA of 3.0 or above. Prospective students should also submit GRE or MAT scores, and, if applicable, acceptable TOEFL scores.

The University of Massachusetts Lowell is accredited through the New England Association of Schools and Colleges.

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