The online MICS program is nine courses (27 units) and can be completed in 20 months. Students complete foundation courses, electives, and a capstone project. They also attend one in-person immersion on the UC Berkeley campus or in another location relevant to cybersecurity.
The Master of Information and Cybersecurity Delivered Online from UC BerkeleyThe Master of Information and Cybersecurity Delivered Online from UC BerkeleyThe Master of Information and Cybersecurity Delivered Online from UC Berkeley
Earn Your Master’s Degree in Cybersecurity Online
The UC Berkeley School of Information’s (I School) Master of Information and Cybersecurity (MICS) is an accredited online program that prepares students with the cybersecurity skills needed to assume leadership positions in private-sector technology companies as well as government and military organizations.
Our holistic approach to cybersecurity develops students’ understanding of information security technologies as well as the economic, legal, behavioral, and ethical impacts of cybersecurity. Students graduate as competitive candidates in the job market with connections to UC Berkeley alumni and professionals in the San Francisco Bay Area technology hub.
A Leadership-Focused Curriculum
The interdisciplinary MICS curriculum provides students hands-on practical experience with secure systems and applications, an understanding of the legal requirements associated with cybersecurity, and the ability to lead, manage, and contribute to building cybersecurity solutions.
Students master core technical skills and become fluent in the business, political, and legal context of cybersecurity. They can expect to graduate with a comprehensive understanding of the following:
- Secure coding
- Government and national security
- Network and web security
- Usable privacy and security
- Operating system security
- Security in context: legal, behavioral, and ethical issues
- Privacy engineering
- Cyber risk
The curriculum includes the following courses:
Beyond the Code:
Cybersecurity in Context
Cryptography for Cyber
and Network Security
Operating System Security
Managing Cyber Risk
Government, National Security,
and the Fifth Domain
Usable Privacy and Security
Cryptography for Cyber and Network Security
Students learn about the mathematical and practical foundations of cryptography and the many different cryptosystems.
Students compare approaches to security taken among several modern operating systems and learn techniques for establishing trust across a set of interoperating systems.
Students survey privacy mechanisms applicable to systems engineering, with a particular focus on the inference threat arising due to advancements in artificial intelligence and machine learning.
View the full curriculum and course descriptions.
Become Certified in Applied Data Science
Students earning their Master of Information and Cybersecurity online have the option to apply to our Certificate in Applied Data Science. The program introduces the tools, methods, and conceptual approaches used to support modern data analysis and decision making in professional and applied research settings.
Become an Expert in Cybersecurity
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Why a Master’s in Cybersecurity from UC Berkeley?
Cybersecurity permeates almost all aspects of the human experience. Individuals, organizations, and societies are protected from cyber threats constantly without even realizing they occur. This is thanks to professionals who understand the complex relationship between human behaviors and advanced technology in securing information.
UC Berkeley is where the brightest minds from across the globe come together to explore, ask questions, and improve the world. Our MICS program does more than create experts in information security; it shapes leaders who understand the implications of cybersecurity across all industries and want to drive the future of innovation in cybersecurity.
Developed by faculty from the School of Information and the College of Engineering, the interdisciplinary MICS curriculum focuses on the intersection of technical, social, political, economic, legal, military, and ethical components of cybersecurity. Students graduate with versatile knowledge needed to lead cybersecurity in private, public, or philanthropic sectors and with connections to nearby technology hub Silicon Valley.
Interactive Online Learning
Students in the online master’s in cybersecurity program attend classes and complete course work online. The program features:
- Live online classes taught by I School and College of Engineering faculty
- Self-paced course content accessible 24/7
- In-person immersions with classmates and faculty
- Personalized support from admission to graduation
- Career resources, including personalized coaching, job-search tools, industry connections, and company visits
- MICS for Life, which grants students access to updated course content, research, and other UC Berkeley resources in the I School Virtual Campus long after graduation
I School Community
The I School is a graduate research and education community committed to expanding access to information and improving its usability, reliability, and credibility while preserving security and privacy. We are dedicated to preparing our students with the skills needed to design and understand the systems that will shape the way humans live and interact in the future.
This requires the insights of scholars from varied fields — information and computer science, design, social sciences, management, law, and policy. We bring together this diverse group of faculty to teach the online MICS curriculum and to prepare students from around the world to become leaders in the field of cybersecurity.
Center for Long-Term Cybersecurity
The Center for Long-Term Cybersecurity (CLTC) is a research hub housed at the I School. Founded with a grant from the Hewlett Foundation in 2015, the center seeks to create dialogue among industry, academia, policy makers, and practitioners around a future-oriented conceptualization of cybersecurity. The CLTC serves as a resource for students and faculty interested in cybersecurity and is committed to bringing practitioners and scholars to campus for an ongoing dialogue about cybersecurity.
Global Alumni Network
As of 2017, I School alumni are working in 35 states and 39 countries around the world. They can be found in all industries, from traditional to emerging, as well as in public service and academia. Alumni are engaged and involved in the I School community, both on campus and worldwide.
Gain the Skills Needed to Shape the
Future of Cybersecurity
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Requirements for the Master’s in Cybersecurity Online Program
When evaluating applicants, we consider both qualitative and quantitative factors to determine if they can meet the demand of the rigorous MICS program. This includes:
- Academic course work and performance
- Work experience
- Statement of Purpose
- Letters of recommendation
- Graduate Record Examination (GRE) or Graduate Management Admission Test (GMAT) score — optional
What Can You Do with a Master’s in Cybersecurity?
Cybersecurity’s growth is turning it into a massive market with an increased demand for skilled cybersecurity labor. Due to constant evolution and escalation of threats, cybersecurity has become one of the most important and exciting career fields of the 21st century.
The United States Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects employment of information security analysts to grow 33% from 2020 to 2030, equating to an average of 16,300 new positions each year.1
The cybersecurity industry is met with the challenge of not only filling the growing demand and talent shortage but with finding highly skilled professionals who can be trusted to effectively protect information systems. This creates an opportunity for graduates of the MICS program to enter the in-demand market as competitive cybersecurity experts.
Career Opportunities in Cybersecurity
No organization that operates online can ignore cybersecurity. With cyber threats growing and constantly changing, businesses, governments, and not-for-profit organizations are making significant investments in cyber defenses and hiring increasingly large numbers of cybersecurity professionals. As a result, the employment of information security analysts is projected to grow 33 percent in computer systems design and related services from 2020 to 2030, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.1
MICS graduates are poised to enter this market in leadership roles with the requisite multifunctional skill sets and strong network provided by the MICS program.
As cyber and information professionals gain more education and experience, the compensation numbers become even more attractive, as shown by the CareerOneStop median salaries for the following positions:2
Computer information systems manager
Learn more about the program and meet MICS faculty during online or in-person events.
Applications are accepted on a rolling basis. The final deadline for the September 2023 cohort is May 24, 2023.
Applicants should have a strong computational background and a desire to become a specialized professional in the field of cybersecurity.
Fill the Skilled Cybersecurity Professional Shortage
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Return to footnote reference1Information Security Analysts. Accessed October 2021.arrow_upwardReturn to footnote reference Return to footnote reference
2https://www.careeronestop.org. Accessed October 2021.arrow_upwardReturn to footnote reference