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I wanted high quality education

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With 20 years’ experience already under his belt, cyber security consultant Muhammad Naveed Khan decided to pursue a master’s degree. Here, he explains why he went with the University of London’s MSc Cyber Security programme delivered through Coursera.

Naveed Khan

Naveed has worked as a cyber security consultant in a variety of industries, from banking to telecommunications to oil and refinery. Despite having the practical experience, he always had the intention of pursuing higher education.

One day, while surfing the web, he came across a remote course offered by Coursera, and decided to look into it. He noticed that the academic direction for the MSc Cyber Security was delivered by Royal Holloway and checked the University’s ranking in the UK and internationally.

“I wanted high quality education,” explained Naveed. “Once I complete my master’s, I will be able to look for a job in the European market or pursue a PhD if I want to. This degree is an opportunity.”

Naveed wasn’t sure if his previous qualifications would be enough to be admitted but attached letters of employment and certificates to his application. In a few days, he received news that he’d been accepted on the course thanks to his previous work experience.  

“It was my first time studying remotely,” said Naveed. “There was so much work to do, so much reading. I did struggle with it.”

Naveed said that it was challenging, studying for a master’s while working full-time and balancing other responsibilities. He has a family with two children, a son and a daughter, and he said he was very lucky feeling supported by all of them throughout his online learning journey.

However, he persevered with the studies and was rewarded for his work, achieving 96% and 88% results in some of his exams. When asked about his approach and what advice he could give to current students, he said the key to success was planning and time management.

At the very beginning, I prepared an Excel spreadsheet. I went through everything on my reading list and figured out what I needed to do every day. I assigned tasks for every day and checked them off once done.

He explained that if he’d missed a task during the work week, he would catch up with the studies over the weekend. With this method, Naveed was able to finish all the reading and associated work at least a week before the examination.  

[Coursera] is an excellent platform, and very easy to use. The way the material is delivered – you watch a video, you have some reading to do, some quizzes as well. It’s good for people like myself who’ve never studied remotely.

While he is focused on finishing his master’s, Naveed has browsed other courses on the platform that he might be interested in tacking in the future. “I’ve already recommended [Coursera] to many people, because I like it.”

Naveed’s advice for anyone thinking of pursuing a master’s in Cyber Security is to carefully plan their time and understand that this is a complex subject that requires a lot of time and full dedication.

Find out more about the University of London’s MSc in Cyber Security.