Top Online MBA Programs in Information Security

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Graduates from top MBA programs in information security can use their skills in business and technology to take advantage of a rapidly growing job market. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), information security analysts earned a median annual wage of $98,350 nationwide. Individuals in management positions can earn even more.

Prospective students can use rankings, such as this list of top online MBA in information security programs, to find quality programs that best fit their career goals. On this page, readers can learn more about what to expect from an MBA in information security, including possible curricula, careers in information security, scholarship possibilities, and professional organizations.

Top 10 Online MBA Programs in Information Security

Rank School Location
1 Salve Regina University Newport, RI
2 Maryville University of Saint Louis Saint Louis, MO
3 American University Washington, DC
4 James Madison University Harrisonburg, VA
5 Lewis University Romeoville, IL
6 John Brown University Siloam Springs, AR
7 Champlain College Burlington, VT
8 University of Dallas Irving, TX
9 Lawrence Technological University Southfield, MI
10 Capitol Technology University Laurel, MD

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Top Online MBA Programs in Information Security for 2020

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  1. Salve Regina University
    Location

    Newport, RI

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Salve Regina University, a private Catholic university in Newport, Rhode Island, offers an online MBA concentration on cybersecurity issues in business, which prepares students for various careers protecting organizational data.

    This 100% online, 36-credit program entails 10 required courses and two electives. Core courses cover essential business management topics such as operations management, law, and marketing. Elective course options include cyberthreat management, analytic methods, and cyber opportunity and threat management. Most students finish this top online MBA program within two years.

    Applicants need accredited bachelor's degrees and prerequisite coursework in economics, accounting, and quantitative analysis, or demonstration of proficiency through CLEP examinations. Applicants submit official transcripts, resumes, personal statements, and recommendation letters. Salve does not require GMAT scores.

    Other Concentrations

  2. Maryville University of Saint Louis
    Location

    Saint Louis, MO

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Maryville University, a private university located in Town and Country, Missouri, features a student-centered online MBA in cybersecurity, which emphasizes real-world skills and prepares students for advanced cybersecurity certifications such as EnCE, CEH, Security+, and CISSP.

    This 39-credit, fully online MBA requires 24 business core credits, 12 concentration credits, and three capstone credits. Cybersecurity students take courses in penetration testing, forensic examination and analysis, cybersecurity law, and cyber defense controls.

    Students can choose from six start dates each year and may complete this accelerated program in just 14 months. Applicants need accredited bachelor's degrees, official transcripts, and personal statements, but Maryville does not require GMAT/GRE scores, prior business experience, or application fees.

    Other Concentrations

  3. American University
    Location

    Washington, DC

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    The Kogod School of Business at Washington, D.C.'s American University offers an online MBA in cybersecurity for midcareer professionals seeking career advancement. Ranked number 12 by QS World University Rankings, AU's online MBA programs emphasize global perspectives as they examine the intersections of business and politics. AU's MBA also includes in-person immersions and an optional analytics certificate at no additional cost.

    The MBA program curriculum comprises 12 core courses, three electives, and two immersion experiences. Core courses cover general management topics such as marketing management, information systems management, and global management. Through courses coordinated with the Kogod Cybersecurity Governance Center, cybersecurity learners study cybersecurity risk management, cybersecurity governance, databases, and big data.

    Online students must complete two on-site immersion experiences, at least one of which takes place in Washington, D.C. Other possible sites include Brussels, Beijing, and Madrid.

    Online MBA students can complete this accelerated, 48-credit program on a flexible schedule from 12-24 months. Applicants submit personal statements, resumes, recommendation letters, and transcripts. AU does not require GMAT/GRE scores.

    Other Concentrations

  4. James Madison University
    Location

    Harrisonburg, VA

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Harrisonburg, Virginia's James Madison University features an online MBA ranked number 15 in the nation by U.S. News & World Report. JMU's online MBA in information security examines this field in relation to other areas of business and offers ideal preparation for aspiring executives. All graduates receive certification as information systems security professionals.

    Designed for busy working adults, this 14-course, 42-credit part-time MBA program takes 28 months to complete, with students completing one eight-week course at a time. JMU's MBA in information security curriculum includes 10 core courses in business management fundamentals, which also touch on cybersecurity, and four courses entirely focused on information system integrity, ethics, and forensics.

    Students move through this blended program in a 25-student cohort, which meets in person once every eight Saturdays at the beginning and end of each course. Remaining coursework takes place online using asynchronous and synchronous formats.

    Prospective students need accredited bachelor's degrees, and students lacking prerequisites in statistics, economics, and financial accounting must complete additional coursework to earn their MBAs. Applicants submit recommendation letters, resumes, and GMAT scores. JMU prefers candidates with two or more years' professional experience, a minimum 3.0 GPA, and a minimum 500 GMAT score.

    Other Concentrations

  5. Lewis University
    Location

    Romeoville, IL

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Lewis University offers a 100% online MBA in information security for professionals seeking to expand their expertise. The program's curriculum highlights the diverse real-world factors that affect the business sector and builds analytical and communication skills to help students succeed with customers and with their coworkers and supervisors. With a 13-to-1 student-to-faculty ratio and a diverse student body, the online MBA at Lewis is among the top programs available in the field.

    The curriculum requires a total of 36-54 credits, including 21 credit hours of foundational coursework, many of which can be waived if students received at least a B- in a similar course during their undergraduate degree. Those who don't meet grade requirements, however, are eligible to take proficiency examinations to opt out of the courses.

    The program also requires students to take 24 credits of core classes and 9 credit hours of information security concentration courses, which cover topics like database management, disaster recovery, and computer forensics in business contexts. Students must also take one additional three-credit elective course.

    Classes are offered in five eight-week sessions across the academic year, allowing for flexibility with students' work schedules. Admissions are taken on a rolling basis, and applicants are not required to send GRE or GMAT scores with their applications.

    Other Concentrations

  6. John Brown University
    Location

    Siloam Springs, AR

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    John Brown University in Siloam Springs, Arkansas, offers an online MBA in cybersecurity, aligned with Christian values. This program prepares aspiring managers and cybersecurity professionals to anticipate, prevent, and address cyber-attacks.

    Students with prerequisite coursework in economic theory, quantitative methods, accounting, and finance may earn the 36-credit version of this MBA curriculum through 21 core course credits and 15 concentration credits. JBU's cybersecurity concentration courses cover legal issues and ethics, information technology risk management, and security policies and privacy. Students lacking prerequisites must take nine additional foundational course credits.

    MBA students can complete online or hybrid versions of this JBU's cybersecurity MBA in about two years. JBU's application package includes an essay, three recommendation letters, official transcripts, and for some applicants, an interview. Eligible applicants hold regionally accredited bachelor's degrees demonstrating a minimum 3.0 GPA, but JBU grants provisional admission to students with GPAs from 2.75-3.0.

    Other Concentrations

  7. Champlain College
    Location

    Burlington, VT

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Located near Lake Champlain and Burlington, Vermont, Champlain opened its doors in 1878. With more than 150 areas of study, Champlain offers an online MBA in healthcare administration to prepare mid-level healthcare professionals to advance in the field.

    Champlain’s healthcare administration MBA includes 36 credit hours. Learners complete 24 credit hours of core coursework in managing risk in organizations, business analysis and performance, and the impact of globalization on business.

    Healthcare administration classes emphasize healthcare system design and innovation, information systems, law, and project management. During a field-based capstone project, students apply degree knowledge to a healthcare-related project with their current employer or sponsoring workplace, or as part of an internship.

    Online students pay $795 per credit hour, while active-duty military pay $398 per credit hour. To apply, learners must submit transcripts from a regionally accredited bachelor’s degree and any graduate coursework with a minimum 2.5 GPA.

    Other Concentrations

  8. University of Dallas
    Location

    Irving, TX

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    University of Dallas' Satish and Yasmin Gupta College of Business in Irving, Texas, offers an online MBA in cybersecurity for working adults seeking specialization in network security, threat analysis, and cyber defense.

    This 14-course, 42-credit MBA entails 10 core business administration courses, including global strategy, operations management, and data analysis for decision-making. Cybersecurity MBA students complete four additional, concentration-focused courses in network security, data protection, compliance and legal issues, and operational cybersecurity management.

    Students can complete UD's flexible MBA program through online, on-campus, or blended formats. The online cybersecurity MBA program usually takes 2-3 years. MBA applicants submit resumes, transcripts, and optional GMAT/GRE scores.

    Other Concentrations

  9. Lawrence Technological University
    Location

    Southfield, MI

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    Lawrence Technological University offers an online MBA in cybersecurity, which best suits working professionals in technical fields seeking career advancement or specialization in network security and business continuity.

    Voted one of 2019's best online MBA programs by U.S. News & World Report, LTU's MBA program fosters foundational management skills in communication, leadership, and strategy through its 27-credit business core requirements. Cybersecurity MBA students take an additional nine credits in courses like enterprise IT infrastructure and advanced network security.

    LTU's MBA does not impose time frame restrictions, but students usually complete this fully online, 36-credit MBA program in about two years. LTU offers three start points each year. Qualified applicants hold bachelor's degrees with a minimum 3.0 GPA from regionally accredited colleges or universities; however, LTU grants provisional admission to some students who do not meet these criteria. Applicants submit official transcripts, resumes, and GMAT scores (or waivers).

    Other Concentrations

  10. Capitol Technology University
    Location

    Laurel, MD

    Tuition

    $$$$$

    A private, nonprofit university located in Laurel, Maryland, Capitol University provides an online technical MBA in cybersecurity. It serves working professionals aspiring to information management careers in industry, government, or the nonprofit sector. Capitol's technology-focused MBA program gives students the leadership skills and technological tools they need to address complex business problems and to innovate.

    This 36- to 39-credit program includes 24-27 credit hours of core business management coursework, including technical personnel management, organizational behavior in technical environments, and technology-enabled operations. Students with undergraduate business degrees qualify for waivers on Capitol's core course on management fundamentals.

    Cybersecurity MBAs complete 12 additional concentration credits in security risk management, cybersecurity law, complementary security, and principles of cybersecurity. With guidance from a faculty member, Capitol's MBA students complete a project-based research paper.

    Capitol runs six eight-week terms each year. Applicants should demonstrate minimum 3.0 GPAs and bachelor's degrees from regionally accredited schools. Capitol does grant provision admission to some students.

    Other Concentrations

What Is an MBA in Information Security?

Across industries, information security professionals protect their organizations’ data from hacking breaches, which can cost millions of dollars and damage a company’s reputation. These professionals need a college education, and many employers prefer candidates with graduate-level credentials. MBA programs prepare learners for supervisory and management roles in this field.

Salary potential varies depending on education, experience, location, and industry. According to the BLS, pharmaceutical and medicine manufacturing ranks as the highest-paying industry for information security analysts, paying an annual mean wage of $131,150 as of 2018. Other top industries include wholesale electronic markets, agents, and brokers; legal services; and utility system construction. The top-paying regions include New York, New Jersey, and the District of Columbia, which pay annual mean wages reaching $122,000.

What Can You Do With an MBA in Information Security?

  • Computer and Information Systems Manager

    Computer and information systems managers, or IT managers, oversee their organizations’ technological plans. They work with top executives to plan computer-related strategies for their companies and implement those strategies by coordinating with their IT colleagues. IT managers include chief information officers, chief technology officers, IT directors, and IT security managers. The BLS reports an annual mean wage of $142,530 for computer and information systems managers across the country, with a projected job growth of 11% from 2018-2028.

  • Information Security Engineer

    Information security engineers ensure safe transmission of cloud-based data for their companies. They develop systems, analyze the data that passes through them, and increase protections as necessary. These professionals also set up firewalls and intrusion detection systems, run tests, and implement security upgrades. Crucial skills include vulnerability assessment, web security and encryption, and security risk management. PayScale reports that information security engineers earn a median annual salary of $95,000.

  • Information Security Analyst

    Information security analysts look for weaknesses in their organizations’ cybersecurity systems. They perform tasks such as penetration testing, in which they attempt to hack their own systems, and report their findings to management. These professionals plan for emergencies, implement upgrades, and communicate about security-based protocols. The BLS reports that information security analysts earned a median salary of $98,350 as of 2018, and employment in the field is projected to increase 32% from 2018-2028.

  • Computer and Information Research Scientist

    Computer and information research scientists study computer-based problems across a variety of fields, working to create new technology to solve those problems. Their innovations improve software functionality and network speed and help tighten security measures. Computer and information research scientists may specialize in areas such as data science, robotics, or programming. According to the BLS, they earned a median salary of $118,370 as of 2018, with demand projected to increase by 16% from 2018-2028.

  • Computer Network Architect

    Computer network architects, also known as network engineers, build data communication networks for their organizations. This task necessitates a strong understanding of the company’s strategic goals and data-based needs. These professionals also analyze how their company’s systems work and fix any problems that arise. According to the BLS, computer network architects earned a median salary of $109,020 as of 2018, with job prospects projected to grow by 5% from 2018-2028 — on pace with the national average.


  • Organizational Behavior and Leadership

    A foundational course for business-minded information security professionals, organizational behavior and leadership covers conflict management, change strategies, and group behavior as it relates to business.

  • Information Security Management

    Courses in information security management cover a broad swath of topics, including accepted security management models, network security, software security, control systems, and business planning.

  • Information Security Ethics

    Courses in information security ethics consider philosophical and societal expectations for technology and business professionals. The class explores ethical quandaries that may arise in professional situations, including case studies and implications.

See More Top MBA Programs

How to Choose the Right Online MBA in Information Security Program

Students considering an MBA in information security should consider their personal career goals in their program search. Other important factors include accreditation, program structure, affordability, school location, and extracurricular graduation requirements.

With an MBA in information security, students can graduate with strong skills in business administration and cybersecurity. Some students may pursue a master’s degree in cybersecurity or computer science, instead, focusing more on the technological aspects of the field.

Prospective online MBA students should consider program structure. Students who want to complete their degree more quickly can pursue full-time programs with accelerated options, while professionals already working in the field might elect to study part time. Hybrid courses and in-person requirements may also factor into a student’s decision.

Some schools allow out-of-state distance learners to pay in-state or otherwise reduced tuition, while others charge more per credit for online courses.

Local business partnerships often indicate strong, well-connected programs. Likewise, extracurricular requirements like internships and thesis papers can provide important resume-boosting experience, but they may not be necessary for those already working in the field.

Finally, students should always check for accreditation when considering online MBA programs. Regional accreditation holds schools to rigorous standards. MBA students may also look for programmatic accreditation from organizations like the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business.

Scholarships for Information Security MBA Programs

Prospective MBA students can fund their education with the help of scholarships. Honor societies, local associations, and professional organizations often offer scholarships to help students to pay for tuition, materials, and other costs associated with graduate studies. The list below offers a few examples of available scholarships for information security MBA students.

  • Morphisec's Women in Cybersecurity Scholarships

    Who Can Apply: Women pursuing degrees in information security, cybersecurity, or related areas of computer science — and who hold U.S. or Israeli citizenship — qualify to apply for this award.

    Amount: $1,000-5,000

    Apply for Scholarship

  • AfterCollege Engineering and Technology Student Scholarship

    Who Can Apply: Students with a minimum 3.0 GPA who are enrolled in a technology or engineering-related program, including cybersecurity, can apply for this award. Application requirements include a personal statement and work experience.

    Amount: $500

    Apply for Scholarship

  • Mary Elizabeth Lockwood Beneventi MBA Scholarship

    Who Can Apply: Students who hold a minimum 3.25 GPA and are enrolled full time in an accredited MBA program can apply for this award, which carries the potential for second-year renewal.

    Amount: $2,000

    Apply for Scholarship

  • Ralph W. Shrader Graduate Diversity Scholarship

    Who Can Apply: Women and minority students who hold a minimum 3.5 GPA in a graduate-level STEM degree program (such as one in information security management) may apply for this award.

    Amount: $3,000 annually

    Apply for Scholarship

  • Exabeam Cyber Security Scholarship

    Who Can Apply: U.S. citizens who are enrolled in a graduate program and hold a minimum 3.0 GPA are eligible to apply. The application requires students to submit an essay or five-minute video answering cybersecurity-related questions.

    Amount: $1,000

    Apply for Scholarship

Professional Organizations for Information Security

Information security students and graduates can benefit from participation in professional organizations, which offer both online and in-person networking opportunities, continuing education, leadership, mentorship, career services, and professional credentials. The list below offers a few examples of organizations for information security students and professionals.

The SANS Institute

Dedicated to information security research and education, the SANS Institute oversees critical industry credentialing, including the GIAC certification program. The institute offers live training, online training, and a wealth of free resources, including a reading room, blog, and affiliate directory.

The Information Security Forum

The ISF is a global nonprofit organization dedicated to networking between cybersecurity professionals for the purpose of sharing expertise. Member benefits include risk analysis tools and methodologies, research, regional chapters, an online portal, and workshops for continuing education.

ISACA

Founded as the Information Systems Audit and Control Association, ISACA now uses only its acronym to encompass the wide range of information security professions it represents. Offering important industry certifications, including CISA and CISM, ISACA provides members with networking via local chapters.

Information Systems Security Association

An international organization dedicated to advancing global cybersecurity, ISSA provides student and professional members with continuing education opportunities, networking through events and local chapters, and an online job board.

Association of Information Security Professionals

Dedicated to creating better cybersecurity systems, AiSP hosts regular conferences and serves members through an online community, job board, certifications, and training opportunities.

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Advertisement OnlineMBA.com is an advertising-supported site. Featured or trusted partner programs and all school search, finder, or match results are for schools that compensate us. This compensation does not influence our school rankings, resource guides, or other editorially-independent information published on this site.

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