Cyber Security

MSc, PGDip, PGCert

This master’s degree is designed for aspiring professionals who are looking to gain valuable insight into the methods, approaches and concepts in cyber security. You’ll build essential foundation skills over the long term, while gaining hands-on experience with the latest industry case studies. You’ll learn a broad range of timely and relevant topics to prepare you for real-world career success and ensure that you can make an immediate impact at any organisation.

Video: MSc Cyper Security
The future secured with our MSc Cyber Security.

By studying this programme, you will gain:

  • Practical applied skills relevant to current and emerging demands in the cyber security field.
  • The ability to master the latest and most relevant tools, techniques, strategies and technologies.
  • The ability to think critically about how organisations manage security.
  • Direct access to industry professionals with specific expertise in key areas of cyber security.
  • Experience of working with real-world case studies that reflect new and timely challenges.
  • Independent critical and evaluative skills, and intellectual curiosity for life-long learning.
  • A globally recognised qualification from one of the top 25 universities in the UK with a long history of leadership and innovation in information security and cyber security.

Programme details

Programme structure, modules and specification

The MSc Cyber Security consists of:

  • ten core modules (15 credits each)
  • one Project module (30 credits)

The PGDip Cyber Security consists of:

  • one core module (15 credits); and
  • seven optional modules (15 credits each)

The PGCert Cyber Security consists of:

  • one core module (15 credits); and
  • three optional modules (15 credits each)

Study a selection of our modules individually to update your knowledge or sample the programme. You may take three modules (45 credits total) on a stand-alone basis without being registered for the PGCert, PGDip or MSc.

Individual modules will be available from the April 2023 intake, subject to programme module availability.

View MSc modules

View PGDip and PGCert modules

Key dates

This programme has two intake dates per year: April and October.

October 2022 intake
Applications open 27 June 2022
Application deadline 12 September 2022
Registration deadline 26 September 2022
Programme starts 10 October 2022

How you study

The programme offers a variety of highly engaging learning materials and activities.

Online support

The programme is delivered online and there is no requirement to come to the UK as part of your studies.

Creative interactive learning is delivered through Coursera - the world’s largest online learning platform, to provide you with an immersive learning experience.

Our flexible online programme allows you to work around your own schedule and leads to a globally-recognised qualification.

Your learning experience will be enhanced with an accessible and attractive virtual learning platform. And there are opportunities for self-assessment so you can understand your own progress.

When you register, we will give you access to the Student Portal. With this you can access your University of London email account and other key resources including:

  • The Student Guide with useful information about your relationship with the University of London through to your graduation.
  • The Virtual Learning Environment (VLE) provides you with access to the online Reach Out Forum and discussion areas which allow students to communicate with each other.
  • Sample examination questions and formative quizzes aid your revision and tutors hold live tutorial webinars plus provide online support throughout each study session.
  • As a registered student, you will have free access to the University of London’s Online Library with over 100 million electronic items, and further items can be requested via the library's Inter-Library loans service with the British Library.
  • Senate House Library provides free reference access for all registered distance and flexible learning students.

Are you affected by US-imposed restrictions?

United States export control regulations prevent Coursera from offering services and content to users in certain countries or regions. More information about which countries or regions are affected can be found on Coursera's website.

Coursera must enforce this restriction in order to remain in compliance with US law and, for that reason, we advise that all learners check this information before applying to the programme.

It is your responsibility to ensure that you have appropriate internet access for this programme and that you meet any related technical requirements for your programme.

Time commitment

Each 15-credit module comprises weekly topics, corresponding to the key content items detailed in the module descriptors.

Your study equates to approximately 10-12 hours of directed learning per week for each 15 credit module you register for.

    Entry requirements

    What qualifications do you need?

    Entry route 1: Direct entry route

    To qualify to register for the MSc, PGDip or PGCert you will need a bachelor’s degree which is considered at least comparable to a UK second-class honours degree from an institution acceptable to the University.

    Entry route 2: Performance-based admissions route

    If applicants do not meet the requirements for direct entry, they can apply for the MSc via the performance-based admissions (PBA) route. To qualify for entrance via the PBA route you will need a third-class bachelor’s degree or Aegrotat.

    Applicants with an appropriate professional experience qualification from a recognised professional body will be considered on an individual basis. Students on the PBA route may transfer to the MSc on successful completion of two modules (30 credits).

    Entrance requirements for stand-alone individual modules

    To qualify to register for a stand-alone individual module you will need a third-class bachelor’s degree or Aegrotat.

    English language requirements

    You need a high standard of English to study this programme. You will meet our language requirements if you have achieved one of the following within the past three years:

    • IELTS: at least 6.5 overall with 6.0 in the written test
    • Pearson Test (Academic): at least 59 overall, with 59+ in reading and writing and 54+ in speaking and listening
    • Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English
    • Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (grade C or above)
    • TOEFL iBT: at least 92 overall, with 22+ in reading and writing and 20+ in speaking and listening
    • Duolingo: must achieve an overall score of at least 120.

    If you do not meet the English language proficiency requirements but believe that you can demonstrate the requisite proficiency, the University may, at its discretion, consider your application.

    Computer requirements

    The University of London sets minimum basic computer requirements because your study resources are accessed via the Student Portal and it is vital that you can access this regularly.

    For this programme, you will need regular access to a computer with an internet connection. You will also need to be able to view video material and a media player (such as VLC) to play video files.

    More information about computer requirements.

    Recognition of Prior Learning

    If you have studied material as part of a previous qualification that is comparable in content, level and standard to our Cyber Security modules, you might be exempted from the equivalent course of our degree. This is known as Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL) or Exemption. You will not need to study or be assessed in the module(s) to complete your award.

    To be considered for RPL you should make a formal request within your application when applying online. Alternatively, this can be done through an online enquiry, once you have submitted your application.

    We will not consider any application for Recognition of Prior Learning if you have already entered the assessment for the module concerned.


    Some qualifications are automatically recognised as meeting the learning outcomes of our programmes. If you satisfy the conditions, make a formal request and supply the necessary evidence, we will accredit your prior learning. No fees are charged for this service.


    Other qualifications will need to be assessed by specialist academics on a case by case basis, before we can potentially approve RPL. A formal application is required and an RPL application fee is payable. The RPL application fee is non-refundable, even if your prior learning is not recognised.

    Note: that all discretionary RPL requests must be submitted by the dates specified for the April or October intake, in the year that you apply. Once submitted, we must receive all required supporting evidence by the deadline stated.

    October 2022 intake
    Submit RPL request by 14 September 2022
    Submit RPL supporting evidence by 16 September 2022

    Please note: if you submit your application but are too late to be considered for RPL then we will still process your application to study the programme. If you receive an offer, you can still register. You will be asked to contact us at a later date to be considered for RPL in the appropriate study session. So don't register on the modules you wish to be considered for RPL in the current study session.

    Further information on rules regarding RPL is covered in the Recognition of Prior Learning section of the appropriate Programme Regulations and Section 3 of the General Regulations.

    RPL and Performance based admission 

    If you wish to enter the programme via the Performance Based Admissions route (Entry Route 2), you may apply for recognition of prior learning at the point of application.  Any approved RPL will be formally applied to your record once you have been successfully admitted onto the full MSc programme. 

    To enter the MSc via the Performance based admission (PBA) route, you must first register for and pass two of the 15-credit modules.   

    You may not register for a module which we have recognised and accredited as prior learning unless you withdraw your request for recognition of prior learning. 

    If you do not successfully pass two of the 15 credit modules and therefore are not admitted onto the full MSc programme, any application fees paid for discretionary RPL are non-refundable.


    On average, fees incur a 5% year-on-year increase. 2022–2023 Programme fees are effective from 1 June 2022 and refer to the October 2022, January 2023, April 2023 and July 2023 sessions.

    The fees depend on whether you live in a developing (Band A) or developed (Band B) nation. See the list of Band A and B countries [PDF].

    MSc full programme fee* 2022-23
    Band A countries 9000
    Band B countries 12000
    MSc indicative totals** 2022-23
    Band A countries 9225
    Band B countries 12300
    Pay per module (MSc / PGDip / PGCert/ Individual Modules) 2022-23
    Band A countries:
    15 credit module fee 750
    30 credit project module fee 1500
    Band B countries:
    15 credit module fee 1000
    30 credit project module fee 2000
    Other fees 2022-2023
    Assessment re-sit fee 375
    Application fee for recognition of prior learning (per 15 credit module) non-refundable 61

    Disclaimer: Currency conversion tool.

    More about programme fees

    *The full MSc programme fee is payable when you first register on the programme and includes access to study materials and your first entry into the assessments. It does not include resit fees, the module fee when repeating a module, applications for Recognition of Prior Learning and fees payable to a University of London Recognised Teaching Centres, if applicable. By paying in full at the beginning of your programme, you avoid any annual fee increases to module fees. With pay per module, you pay for each module as you register for it.

    **The indicative totals given represent the amount you would expect to pay if you commence study in October 2022 and then complete the MSc degree in the minimum period of time (as per when modules become available), without resits, and paying per module with a year-on-year increase of 5%. These totals do not reflect the cost of any additional tuition support you may choose to take, resit fees or the fee when repeating a module, or applications for Recognition of Prior Learning.

    Please note: student fees shown on our website are net of any local VAT, Goods and Services Tax (GST) or any other sales tax payable by the student in their country of residence. Where the University is required to add VAT, GST or any other sales tax at the local statutory rate, this will be added to the fees shown during the payment process. For students resident in the UK, our fees are exempt from VAT.

    Further information on Sales Tax.

    How to pay your fees - Further information about fee payment options.

    Your payment provider may apply additional transaction fees (if in doubt, please check with them before making a payment).

    Career opportunities

    This programme is targeted at career-minded individuals who wish to develop their professional skills with academic and practical insights into the subject of cyber security.

    You can stand out from your peers by enhancing your multidisciplinary problem-solving skills and intercultural understanding, participating in collaborative groupwork activities run by the University of London Careers Group.

    In some countries, qualifications earned by distance and flexible learning may not be recognised by certain authorities or regulators for the purposes of public sector employment or further study. We advise you to explore the local recognition status before you register.

    Academic leadership

    The programme has been developed with Royal Holloway, University of London (RHUL). Royal Holloway is ranked among the top 25 universities in the UK by the 2022 Guardian University Guide, and is highly regarded for its strong industry ties, dynamic and engaged community of professional alumni, and its foundational commitment to diversity and inclusion.

    Royal Holloway is recognised as a UK Academic Centre of Excellence in Cyber Security Research (ACE-CSR) and has received an ACE-CSE Gold Award in recognition of the institution’s excellence in cyber security education by the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC). The Information Security Group at Royal Holloway also recently earned an Athena SWAN award recognising its commitment to, and excellence in, advancing gender equality.

    Royal Holloway is in the top 25 per cent of UK universities for research rated ‘world-leading’ or ‘internationally excellent’ in the latest REF 2021* (Research Excellence Framework).

    Programme Director

    Dr Konstantinos Mersinas is an Associate Professor in Information Security at Royal Holloway, University of London. He has a PhD and an MSc from the Information Security Group at Royal Holloway, and an MSc in Mathematics from Aristotle University of Thessaloniki, Greece. He has worked as a security professional before he moved from the industry to academia. He is a Fellow for Teaching and Learning Support in Higher Education, with the Higher Education Academy, a Lead Auditor in Information Security Management Systems, and a Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP).

    Konstantinos is the Director of the Distance Learning MSc programme in Information Security and the new Online MSc Programme in Cyber Security; he is the Academic Lead for Cyber Security Placements at RHUL, creating and maintaining collaborations with the industry and bringing companies on campus.

    He has conducted research consultancies with KPMG Netherlands (‘Attacker Economics and Threat Modelling’) and has served as an Expert Advisor for the UK Department for Digital, Culture, Media & Sport (DCMS) (‘Framing the Nature and Scale of Cyber Security Vulnerabilities within the Current Consumer Internet of Things (‘IoT’) Landscape’ and for the UK Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) and the Office for Product Safety & Standards (OPSS) (‘Study on the Impact of Artificial Intelligence on Product Safety’).

    He co-founded the research group HIVE (Hub for research into Intergenerational Exploitation to Vulnerability) with colleagues from Law and Psychology. Projects of the group include protecting adolescents and the elderly from cyberbullying/cyberstalking and financial abuse. In 2021, he provided input for the Online Harms Bill to the UK All-Party Parliamentary Group (APPG) on Cybersecurity. In 2022, he served as a member of the Fraud Act 2006 and Digital Fraud Committee with the UK Parliament. His research has been funded by the National Cyber Security Centre in the UK.

    Please note that the Programme Director is unable to respond to individual enquiries relating to the MSc Cyber Security. If you have any questions, please contact us via the enquiry form, or register your interest in the programme via Coursera.

    Funding your study

    Without the cost of moving to London, studying for your University of London degree anywhere in the world represents excellent value for money. However, there are additional sources of support depending on where you live and how you choose to study.

    More on funding your study.

    A man working at a computer on multiple screens.
    Through the programme modules, you’ll gain hands-on experience with the latest industry case studies to help you make an impact at any organisation.

    Apply to Cyber Security