Computer Science (Cybersecurity), PhD

Computer Science (Cybersecurity), PhD

Academic Programs / Graduate Degrees / Computer Science (Cybersecurity), PhD

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Computer, Cybersecurity, Information, Information Assurance, Security, assurance, enggradcs, foundation, network, systems

Program Description
Degree Awarded: PHD  Computer Science (Cybersecurity)

The PhD program in computer science with a concentration in cybersecurity is designed for graduate students who want to pursue a thorough education in the area of cybersecurity and information assurance.

The goal of this concentration is to provide students the knowledge and skills in science and engineering for cybersecurity, including applied cryptography, computer and network security, computer forensics, data and information security, and software security. Graduates will have a competitive advantage to secure employment.

According to the National Security Agency, information assurance is defined as the set of measures intended to protect and defend information and information systems by ensuring their availability, integrity, authentication, confidentiality and nonrepudiation. This includes providing restoration of information systems by incorporating protection, detection and reaction capabilities.

ASU has been certified as a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance Education and a National Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance - Research by the National Security Agency and the Department of Homeland Security. Information assurance courseware at ASU has been certified by the Information Assurance Courseware Evaluation Program to satisfy the standards for Information Systems Security Professionals (NSTISSI 4011) and Senior Systems Managers (CNSSI 4012). For more information on the scholarship programs, students should see

At a Glance
Degree Requirements

84 credit hours, a written comprehensive exam, a prospectus and a dissertation

Required Core Areas (15 credit hours)
architecture and networked systems (3)
data and information systems (3)
foundations of computation and algorithms (3)
intelligent and interactive systems (3)
software and information assurance (3)

Depth (6 credit hours)
six additional credit hours in one core area (6)

Concentration (9 credit hours)
CSE 543 Information Assurance and Security (3)
Choose two:
CSE 539 Applied Cryptography (3)
CSE 545 Software Security (3)
CSE 548 Advanced Computer Network Security (3)

Electives (30 credit hours)

Research (12 credit hours)

Culminating Experience (12 credit hours)
CSE 799 Dissertation (12)

Additional Curriculum Information
Students should see the academic unit for the list of courses approved for each core area. Courses that are used to satisfy the core area requirement cannot be used to satisfy the concentration requirement or other requirements.

Students choose courses for the cybersecurity concentration in consultation with their graduate advisor. Students should refer to for more information on information assurance course options.

Up to 18 hours of CSE 590 and CSE 790 are allowed on the plan of study. Additional restrictions may apply to electives course selection.

When approved by the academic unit and the Graduate College, 30 credit hours from a previously awarded master's degree are allowed to be used for this degree.

A maximum of six credit hours of 400-level coursework may be applied on the plan of study.

Admission Requirements

Applicants must fulfill the requirements of both the Graduate College and the Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering.

Applicants are eligible to apply to the program if they have earned a bachelor's degree in computer science, computer engineering or a closely related area. Most applicants should have earned a master's degree, but exceptional undergraduate applicants may be admitted directly into the doctoral program.

Applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.50 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in the last 60 hours of their first bachelor's degree program, or applicants must have a minimum cumulative GPA of 3.50 (scale is 4.00 = "A") in an applicable master's degree program.

All applicants must submit:

  1. graduate admission application and application fee
  2. official transcripts from every university attended
  3. scores for the GRE
  4. three letters of recommendation
  5. a statement of purpose
  6. curriculum vitae or resume
  7. proof of English proficiency

Additional Application Information
An applicant whose native language is not English must provide proof of English proficiency regardless of current residency:

GRE scores are not required if the student has graduated with an undergraduate degree in computer science or computer systems engineering from ASU.

If the student is assigned any deficiency coursework upon admission, those classes must be completed with a grade of "B" (scale is 4.00 = "A") or higher within two semesters of admission to the program. Deficiency courses include:

CSE 230 Computer Organization and Assembly Language Programming
CSE 310 Data Structures and Algorithms
CSE 330 Operating Systems
CSE 340 Principles of Programming Languages or CSE 355 Introduction to Theoretical Computer Science

The applicant's undergraduate GPA and depth of preparation in computer science and engineering are the primary factors affecting admission.

Application Deadlines
Session A/CIn Person 12/01Final
Session A/CIn Person 08/01Final
Contact Information

What are Accelerated Programs?
ASU students may accelerate their studies by earning a bachelor’s and a master’s degree in as little as five years (for some programs) or by earning a bachelor’s degree in 2.5 or 3 years.

Accelerated bachelor's and master's degree programs are designed for high-achieving undergraduate students who want the opportunity to combine undergraduate coursework with graduate coursework to accelerate completion of their master’s degree. These programs, featuring the same high-quality curriculum taught by ASU's world-renowned faculty, allow students to obtain both a bachelor's and a master's degree in as little as five years.

Accelerated bachelor’s degree programs allow students to choose either a 2.5- or a 3-year path while participating in the same high-quality educational experience of a 4-year option. Students can opt to fast-track their studies after acceptance into a participating program by connecting with their academic advisor.
What are Concurrent Programs?
Students pursuing concurrent degrees earn two distinct degrees and receive two diplomas. ASU offers students two ways to earn concurrent degrees: by choosing a predetermined combination or creating their own combination. Predetermined combinations have a single admissions application and one easy to follow major map. To add a concurrent degree to your existing degree, work with your academic advisor. Either way, concurrent degrees allow students to pursue their own personal or professional interests.
What are Joint Programs?
Joint programs, or jointly conferred degrees, are offered by more than one college and provide opportunities for students to take advantage of the academic strengths of two academic units. Upon graduation, students are awarded one degree and one diploma conferred by two colleges.

What constitutes a New Program?
ASU adds new programs to Degree Search frequently. Come back often and look for the “New Programs” option.
What are Online Programs?
ASU Online offers programs in an entirely online format with multiple enrollment sessions throughout the year. See for more information.
What is WRGP (Western Regional Graduate Program)?
The Western Regional Graduate Program (WRGP) provides a reduced tuition rate to non-resident graduate students who qualify. Visit the WRGP/WICHE webpage for more information:

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