Information Security PhD Program Information

Doctorate programs in information security focus on advanced research in data and system securities. Ph.D. candidates learn to combat attacks on information systems while creating new safety methods.

Essential Information

Ph.D. candidates learn to prevent security breaches by studying topics like risk management, compliance and information confidentiality, integrity and governance. Doctorate programs in information security usually take 3-5 years to complete. There are a number of schools that also offer these programs online.

Most programs require that students complete a comprehensive exam at the end of the second or third year of study, and the degree program culminates in a dissertation. Graduates might go on to careers in consulting or university teaching.

Prerequisites for these programs may include a bachelor's or master's degree, transcripts, letters of recommendation, an entrance exam, resume, and personal statement.

Doctoral Degree in Information Security

Applicants must hold at least a bachelor's degree to be considered for admission to a Ph.D. program in information security, and many programs require a master's degree. Applicants also may need professional information technology (IT) experience. College transcripts, letters of recommendation, standardized test scores, a resume and a personal statement generally must be submitted.

Much of the work in doctoral information security programs emphasizes research techniques, which are essential to staying up to date with the most recent types of electronic attacks. Students also learn to develop new technology to combat these attacks, integrating programming, systems analysis, networking and engineering. Coursework features mostly didactic learning, with a heavy emphasis on research. There may also be some laboratory requirements. Classes might include the following:

  • Database systems
  • Software testing
  • Software modeling and construction
  • Applied statistics
  • Network security

Popular Career Options

Those who pursue this degree are often IT professionals who wish to move into leadership positions. Graduates of doctorate programs in information security might pursue the following careers:

  • Security consultant
  • Senior security professional
  • Consultant
  • Professor
  • Senior government security professional

Graduate students can pursue research-intensive doctoral programs that cover various facets of security in database systems, networks and software. These programs can prepare students for leadership roles in the IT sector or college teaching positions.

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