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Computing Security MS

Program overview

Developers and practitioners need an understanding of the critical importance of building security and survivability into computing systems, rather than trying to add it on once systems have been installed.

The MS in computing security gives students an understanding of the technological and ethical roles of computer security in today's society. Students can develop a specialization in one of several security-related areas by selecting technical electives under the guidance of a faculty adviser. The program enables students to develop a strong theoretical and practical foundation in secure computing, preparing them for leadership positions in both the private and public sectors of the computer security industry, for academic or research careers in computing security, or for an advanced degree.

Curriculum

The program is designed for students who have an undergraduate degree in computer science, information technology, or software engineering, as well as those who have a strong background in a field in which computers are applied, such as computer or electrical engineering.

The curriculum consists of core courses, technical electives, and concludes with a capstone experience (thesis, project, or course) for a total of 30 semester credit hours. 

Electives

Technical electives provide breadth and depth of experience in security-related areas within the IT domain, with an emphasis on the issues surrounding information assurance and secure communications. This focus is supplemented with related topics from computer science. Students who wish to take courses outside of the pre-approved electives need permission from the graduate program director. Students also may choose elective courses from departments in other RIT colleges; however, this may necessitate additional prerequisites.

Computing security (thesis option), MS degree, typical course sequence

CourseSem. Cr. Hrs.
First Year
CSEC-601 Research Methods and Proposal Development 3
CSEC-603 Enterprise Security and Forensics 3
CSEC-604 Cryptography and Authentication 3
  Technical Electives 12
CSEC-790 MS Thesis 3
Second Year
  Technical Elective 3
CSEC-790 MS Thesis 3
Total Semester Credit Hours 30

Computing security (project option), MS degree, typical course sequence

CourseSem. Cr. Hrs.
First Year
CSEC-601 Research Methods and Proposal Development 3
CSEC-603 Enterprise Security and Forensics 3
CSEC-604 Cryptography and Authentication 3
  Technical Electives 15
Second Year
  Technical Elective 3
 CSEC-791 MS Project 3
Total Semester Credit Hours 30

Computing security (capstone course option), MS degree, typical course sequence

CourseSem. Cr. Hrs.
First Year
CSEC-601 Research Methods and Proposal Development 3
CSEC-603 Enterprise Security and Forensics 3
CSEC-604 Cryptography and Authentication 3
  Technical Electives 12
Second Year
  Technical Elective 3
CSEC-793 Capstone in Computing Security 3
Total Semester Credit Hours 30

Admission requirements

To be considered for admission to the MS in computing security, candidates must fulfill the following requirements:

Prerequisites

Applicants must satisfy prerequisite requirements in mathematics (integral calculus, discrete mathematics), in a natural science (physics, chemistry, etc.), and in computing (computer programming [C or C++], computer networking theory, and systems administration practices).

Bridge program

Students whose undergraduate preparation or employment experience does not satisfy the prerequisites required for the program may make up deficiencies through additional study. Bridge course work, designed to close gaps in a student's preparation, can be completed either before or after enrolling in the program as advised by the graduate program director. Generally, formal acceptance into the program is deferred until the applicant has made significant progress through this additional preparation.

If completed through academic study, bridge courses must be completed with a grade of B (3.0) or better. Courses with lower grades must be repeated. Bridge courses are not counted toward the 30 credit hours required for the master's degree. However, grades earned from bridge courses taken at RIT are included in a student's graduate grade point average.

A bridge program can be designed in different ways. Courses may be substituted based upon availability, and courses at other colleges may be applied. All bridge course work must be approved in advance by the graduate program director.

Additional information

Study options

Students may pursue the degree on a full- or part-time basis, on-campus only.

Faculty

The program faculty are actively engaged in consulting and research in various areas of secure computing and information assurance, including cryptography, databases, networking, and software engineering. There are opportunities for students to participate in research activities towards capstone completion or as independent study work.

Maximum time limit

University policy requires that graduate programs be completed within seven years of the student's initial registration for courses in the program. Bridge courses are excluded.


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