Washington State-based individuals who are seeking training in cyber security may consider attending schools that offer associate's and bachelor's degree programs related to computer science, information security, networking or programming. Professionals can also earn certificates to gain specialized training, and there are several information system security certificate programs in Washington State. Areas of concentration are sometimes included in the curricula of degree programs, and students may be required to complete internships. Credits from some programs might transfer to higher degree programs.
As of 2016, there were nearly 20 accredited 2- and 4-year colleges and universities in Washington offering related undergraduate and graduate programs, and seven of the largest not-for-profit programs are reviewed below. The titles of some of these programs are:
- Computer Science
- Information Security
- Computer Forensics/Network Security Certificate
- Information Systems Project Coordinator (concentration in Networking)
- Computer Information Technology (specializations in Web Programming or .Net Programming)
- Network Administration and Security Certificate
- Computer Information Systems
City University of Seattle
Students can choose a bachelor's degree program in computer science with multiple concentration options, or they can pursue master's degree programs in computer systems or information security at this school in Seattle. The bachelor's degree program in computer science allows students to choose emphasis areas in such fields as programming, information security or networking. Graduate students interested in the information security master's degree program at City University of Seattle will have the opportunity to take courses that discuss cyber warfare and cyber crimes. In the computer science master's degree program, students are required to take emphasis courses, referred to as a 'depth-of-study sequence', in such areas as technology management, development management and programming.
Clover Park Technical College
There are quite a few undergraduate certificate and degree programs related to cyber security training available at Clover Park Technical College in Lakewood. The three certificate program titles associated with this career field are Computer Networking & Information System Security Professional; Cisco Network Design & Security; and Computer and Communications Security. Students can also choose from several associate degree programs, including computer networking and information systems security.
Both associate degree programs have specialization areas, some of which are similar to the certificate focus areas. For example, the computer networking and information systems security degree's specialty options include Cisco network design and security or computer and communication Security. Students in the associate degree programs may have to complete internships within their specialization areas.
Edmonds Community College
Located in Lynnwood, Edmonds Community College offers a certificate program for becoming a cyber security specialist, and there are also several associate degree programs in computer information systems available. To complete the certificate program, students must take 40 credit hours in such classes as digital forensics, security implementation, network security design and host system security. The associate degree programs in computer information systems allow students to specialize in such areas as information security and digital forensics, network technology or general computer information systems. Individuals in the information security and digital forensics specialty area degree program will take the same classes as students in the network security specialist certificate program, but students in the degree program must take additional courses in server administration and network administration, plus related electives.
Students who complete the network technology specialization will gain the knowledge necessary to take several industry certification exams, such as the Certified Wireless Network Administrator (CWNA) exam or the Cisco Certified Network Associate (CCNA) exam.
Green River Community College (Green River College)
At the campus in Auburn, there are two degree programs related to this career field, including an AS information technology systems, and a BAS information technology - networking systems and security. Credit requirements for the degrees range from 90 credits up to 120. Each program requires students to complete work experience hours; students are also required to pass typing tests with scores of at least 30 words per minute. Potential course topics in the information technology systems program include introductory network security, implementing firewalls, programming and PC support. Classes in the networking degree program discuss switches and routers, database design, operating systems management and network security. Courses in the security degree program cover such areas as patch management, implementing firewalls, shell scripting, information assurance and secure wireless networks.
Highline Community College
Students at this school in Des Moines can choose between a certificate and associate degree programs related to cyber security. There is one certificate programs available in networking and data recovery and forensics. The required courses for the certificate program discuss data network design and management, wide area networks, advanced networking applications and advanced networking security. Highline's two vocational associate degree programs train students to become either information systems project coordinators or network specialists. Project coordinators can specialize in such areas as networking or computer forensics. There is also a bachelor and an associate degree program in computer science and data recovery that include courses related directly to cyber security, such as a course in network intrusion detection.
Located in Bremerton, this school offers three programs related to cyber security. At the certificate level, students can choose between a network support technician Certificate of Proficiency program or an information systems security Certificate of Recognition program. The 58-credit network support technician program takes a year to complete and discusses such topics as information system security, networking concepts, Cisco, operating systems and LAN administration protocols. The information systems security certificate program only has four required classes that cover such areas as legal issues, virus protection, web security, password management, risk assessment and operating system patches. The third available program at this college is an associate degree program that trains students to become information systems specialists; students in this program can choose networking and security as their area of concentration. This AAS degree is structured to enable graduates to transfer into a bachelor's degree program at a 4-year school.
Spokane Falls Community College
There are two certificate programs and two associate degree programs related to cyber security at this college in Spokane. Certificate program options include one program in computer forensics/network security and one program in computer and network support. Both certificate programs require students to complete 44 unit hours, and common courses include data communications and networks, network security, Internet programming, network management and UNIX/Linux. The associate degree in information technology covers such topics as data communication and networks, computer network support, programming fundamentals, applications, Internet programming, database theory, computer forensics, Internet servers and network security.
School Comparison: At a Glance
|School Name||School Type & Setting||Cyber Security Programs Offered||Undergraduate Tuition & Fees 2018-2019*|
|City University of Seattle||4-year private, not-for-profit school; large city|| BS in Computer Science - Concentration in Systems Engineering,
BS in Computer Science - Concentration in Programming,
BS in Computer Science - Concentration in Information Security,
MS in Computer Science,
MS in Information Security
| $16,973 (undergraduate);
|Clover Park Technical College||2-year public college; small city|| Certificates:
-Computer and Communications Security,
-Cisco Network Design & Security,
-Computer Networking & Information Systems Security Professional,
Associate of Applied Technology (AAT) in:
-Computer Networking and Information Systems Security (specializations in Cisco Network Design and Security, or Computer and Communication Security),
AAS in Computer Networking and Information Systems Security (specializations in Cisco Network Design and Security, or Computer and Communication Security)
|Edmonds Community College||2-year public school; large suburb|| Computer Information Systems - Cyber Security Specialist Certificate,
Associate of Technical Arts (ATA) in Computer Information Systems,
ATA in Computer Information Systems - Information Security and Digital Forensics,
ATA in Computer Information Systems - Network Technology
| In-State: $4,136;
Out-of-State: $9,506 (undergraduate)
|Green River College||2-year public college; small city|| AAS in Information Technology Systems,
BAS in Information Technology - Network Administration and Security
| In-State: $4,053;
Out-of-State: $4,482 (undergraduate)
|Highline Community College||2-year public school; large suburb|| Networking and Data Recovery/Forensics Certificate,
BAS in Computer Science,
AAS - Information Systems Project Coordinator (concentration in Networking),
AAS - Information Systems Project Coordinator (concentration in Computer Forensics),
AAS - Data Recovery and Forensics,
AAS - Networking
| In-State: $4,026;
Out-of-State: $4,462 (undergraduate)
|Olympic College||4-year public college; small city|| Network Support Technician Certificate of Proficiency,
Information System Security Certificate of Recognition,
AAS - Information Systems Specialist (emphasis in Networking)
| In-State: $3,771;
Out-of-State: $4,241 (undergraduate)
|Spokane Falls Community College||2-year public school; midsize city|| Computer Network Support Certificate,
Computer Forensics/Network Security Certificate
AAS in Information Technology
| In-State: $3,547;
Out-of-State: $8,914 (undergraduate)
Sources: *NCES College Navigator.