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Master of Science in Cybersecurity and Privacy

The School of Computing at UGA has several faculty whose research areas are in cybersecurity and privacy. To foster collaboration among these faculty and coordinate related academic courses, the School of Computing at UGA has established an Institute for Cybersecurity and Privacy (ICSP), which has been named a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cybersecurity Research by the National Security Agency and Department of Homeland Security.

Master of Science in Cybersecurity and Privacy:

Program Description and Objectives

This MS program will be useful for all students, particularly in the fields of computer science, mathematics, and engineering. The program aims to develop expertise in various aspects of computer security and privacy, such as networking, operating systems, network and systems security, and data and communications privacy.

Admission Criteria: 

Admissions requirements will align with the current admissions standards set by the Graduate School and the Franklin College of Arts and Sciences. Completed applications will include the UGA graduate application, bachelor’s degree from a regionally accredited institution in Computer Science or a related discipline, three letters of recommendation, statement of purpose, a minimum 3.0 GPA, and GRE test score. Applicants will need to meet all Graduate School requirements.

Students with insufficient background in Computer Science must first take undergraduate Computer Science courses to remedy any deficiencies, in addition to their graduate program requirements. A sufficient background in Computer Science must include at least the following courses (or equivalents):

  • CSCI 1301-1301L, Introduction to Computing and Programming (alternative option CSCI 7010, Computer Programming)
  • CSCI 1302, Software Development
  • CSCI 1730, Systems Programming
  • CSCI 2610, Discrete Mathematics for Computer Science
  • CSCI 2670, Introduction to Theory of Computing
  • CSCI 2720, Data Structures
  • CSCI 4720, Computer Systems Architecture (4 hours)
  • MATH 2200, Analytic Geometry and Calculus
  • MATH 2250, Calculus I for Science and Engineering
 Curriculum (This program requires a minimum of 30 credit hours.)

    Required Courses (19-20 hours):

  • CSCI 6250, Cyber Security (4 hours)
  • CSCI 6260, Data Security and Privacy (4 hours)
  • CSCI 6730, Operating Systems (4 hours)
  • CSCI 6760, Computer Networks (4 hours)
  • CSCI 7200, Master’s Project (3-4 hours)

     Elective Courses (10-12 hours):
     Choose two courses from:

  • CSCI 8240, Software Security and Cyber Forensics (4 hours)
  • CSCI 8245, Secure Programming (4 hours)
  • CSCI 8250, Advanced Cyber Security (4 hours)
  • CSCI 8260, Computer Network Attacks and Defenses (4 hours)
  • CSCI 8265, Trustworthy Machine Learning (4 hours)
  • CSCI 8960, Privacy-Preserving Data Analysis (4 hours)
  • CSCI 8965, Internet of Things Security (4 hours)
  • MATH 6450, Cryptology and Computational Number Theory (3 hours)
  • CSCI 6270, Introduction to Computer Forensics (4 hours)
  • CSEE 8310, Security in Cyber-Physical Systems (3 hours)
  • MIST 7775, Cyber Threat Intelligence (3 hours)

To complete the program in Cybersecurity and Privacy (M.S.), students must complete 19-20 hours of mainstream cybersecurity courses in Computer Science, including CSCI 7200, Master’s Project. Students must also complete 10-12 hours of elective coursework related to Cybersecurity and Privacy, and CSCI 3030 or equivalent if they have not already taken a suitable ethics course. Overall, students must complete at least 12 hours of graduate-only coursework.

Core Competency

The required core courses are: CSCI: 6760,6730,6250,6260. 

Students who take the 4 required core courses, must achieve a grade average of at least 3.15 (e.g., B+, B+, B, B) on the MS Cybersecurity and Privacy Core Competency Form.

Core competency is certified by the unanimous approval of the student's Advisory Committee, Major professor, as well as the approval by the Graduate Coordinator. The student’s advisory committee manages the core competency in cooperation with the student. Students are required to meet the core competency requirement within their first three enrolled academic semesters (excluding summer semester). Core Competency Certification must be completed before approval of the Program of Study.

Student Learning Outcomes

Students in this program should be able to defend against common cybersecurity and privacy attacks by having knowledge of information security, including secure programming and known practices.

Students will be able to use their enhanced and improved hands-on experiences and skills to address various security and privacy issues.

Students should be able to make risk assessment to IT design decisions.

Sample Program of Study

Course Number

Course Title


First Year



CSCI 6760
CSCI 6260
CSCI 6730


Computer Networks
Data Security and Privacy
Operating Systems

Total Credit Hours



First Year



CSCI 6250
CSCI 8260
CSCI 8960
CSCI 8265



Cyber Security
Computer Network Attacks and Defenses
Privacy-Preserving Data Analysis
Trustworthy Machine Learning


Total Credit Hours





CSCI 7200



Master’s Project


Total Credit Hours









Graduation Requirements

Before the end of the second semester in residence, a student must begin submitting forms to the Graduate School, through the Graduate Coordinator, including a Program of Study Form. The Major Professor/Project Advisor must come from the Computer Science Faculty (Professors/Lecturers). The Program of Study Form indicates how and when degree requirements will be met and must be formulated in consultation with the student's Major Professor/Project Advisor. An Application for Graduation Form must also be submitted directly to the Graduate School.

Forms and Timing must be submitted as follows:

  1. Core Competency Form (Departmental) - beginning of third semester 
  2. Program of Study Form (G138) - semester before the student’s last semester
  3. Application for Graduation Form ( in Athena) - beginning of last semester

See “Important Dates and Deadlines” on the Graduate School’s website


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