Colleges and Schools for a Master's in Computer Forensics

Learn about the variety of programs in computer forensics available at the master's degree level. Keep reading to learn about the technical and scientific knowledge and hands-on training you'll get through classes and experience requirements. See how to choose a school, and find out what you'll need to apply. Schools offering Computer Forensics degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Cyber crime is a growing threat in today's world, and learning how to protect the information assets of individuals and corporations has become a valuable skill in the marketplace. Gaining advanced training in the field of computer forensics through a master's program can help prepare you for this field.

What Will I Learn in a Computer Forensics Master's Program?

These programs explore topics from a variety of fields, including information technology, network engineering, telecommunications, law and computer science. You'll develop the skills necessary to conduct forensic investigations that involve digital devices and electronic crime. You'll also learn how software applications are used to protect computer systems.

Electronic crime can include theft of intellectual property, hacking, fraud and unauthorized use of network devices. You'll be fully qualified to recover, examine and analyze computer data which could be presented as evidence in a criminal or civil court case.

What Classes Will I Take?

A master's program typically consists of 30-39 credit hours. Introductory courses in forensic science examine current issues in the digital evidence field as well as basic forensic principles. Core computing courses might explore the nature of network security and the construction of secure operating systems.

You may also receive instruction in various aspects of criminal justice as it applies to computer-based crime. You'll study cybercriminology and data collection methods. You'll also study the role of the forensic expert as a trial participant and learn how to correctly present evidence. Completion of an internship under the supervision of a computer forensic technician may be required. Depending on the school's policy, you could have the option of completing a thesis or capstone project.

Are There Any Prerequisites?

In order to qualify for admission, you'll need a bachelor's degree in computer science, engineering, math, economics or a comparable analytical discipline. Some programs may require prerequisite coursework in data structure, algorithms, statistics or programming. If you lack an educational background in these subjects, you might qualify for admission by way of professional experience in a field like network engineering.

Which Schools Offer Master's Degrees in Computer Forensics?

Many colleges offer master's level programs related to computer forensics, in campus-based and online formats. Here are just a few available options:

  • The University of Alabama at Birmingham provides an interdisciplinary Master of Science in Computer Forensics and Security Management.
  • The University of Central Florida offers a Master of Science in Digital Forensics program online.
  • The University of Maryland University College has a Digital Forensics and Cyber Investigation Master's Degree.

How Do I Choose a School?

You'll want to verify a school's accreditation by accessing the Database of Accredited Postsecondary Institutions and Programs compiled by the U.S. Department of Education. If you're interested in gaining some hands-on experience in the field, you might consider whether a program offers internship opportunities. If you're a working professional, you might want to attend a school that offers computer forensics classes at night or on weekends. Online and campus-based master's programs are available; consider which type of learning environment meets your needs.

With an understanding of the available programs in computer forensics and the coursework involved, you'll be equipped to choose the best path for you in order to pursue a career in investigating and preventing cyber crimes.

To continue researching, browse degree options below for course curriculum, prerequisites and financial aid information. Or, learn more about the subject by reading the related articles below:

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The schools in the listing below are not free and may include sponsored content but are popular choices among our users. Tuition and costs will vary across programs and locations. Be sure to always request tuition information before starting a program.

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