Networked computers run our world. From homes to hospitals, airports to banks and all stops in between, everything is connected – but these systems are susceptible to infiltration and attack. Study our MSc Cyber Security and you’ll gain the expertise to become part of the defence.
By learning to design, implement and manage computer-based systems security, you’ll develop the skills and confidence to succeed in a wide range of cyber-security roles, including security designer, ethical hacker, and digital forensics officer.
Starting with the fundamentals, you’ll gain a broad understanding of the different levels of computer and network security. As you progress, you’ll explore both the technical aspects and the logistics of planning and implementing network security management. You’ll also learn how to investigate systems after a breach.
Throughout, you’ll be supported by highly professional staff with practical experience at the forefront of this dynamic landscape. And working in our specialist labs with the latest hardware and software will give you hands-on project experience in real-world network security scenarios.
The result? You’ll become a specialist in a field with opportunities in virtually every sector – with everything that means for your future career prospects.
Excellent facilities – The School has an extensive range of equipment in our own specialist laboratories, together with the support of our dedicated technical staff.
Cutting-edge research – Our research is rated 'internationally excellent', with some rated 'world-leading' in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework (REF).
Excellent standards – Recognised for our expertise, the school is a member of the Oracle Academy and an academic partner of the Institute of Information Security Professionals (IISP).
Professional focus – As an Academy of the Computer Technology Industry Association (CompTIA), we deliver their partner programme which provides a pathway for students towards a rewarding, high-growth IT career.
Thriving technology sector – Being in Manchester puts the largest creative and digital technology sector outside the capital on our doorstep.
Digital city – Manchester is aiming to be one of the world’s top 20 digital cities by 2020 and has invested £350bn in its digital and technology infrastructure to support growth.
Athena SWAN award – Manchester Metropolitan University’s commitment to promote and advance gender equality in STEM subjects has been recognised with a Bronze Athena SWAN award.
Accreditations, Awards and Endorsements
Endorsement The School is an educational affiliate of the British Computing Society, the Chartered Institute for IT
Endorsement The School is is a member of the Oracle Academy.
Accreditation The School is an academic partner of the Institute of Information Security Professionals. This partner status recognises our expertise in the field of information and cyber security.
Endorsement The School is an Academy of the Computer Technology Industry Association (CompTIA) and deliver their partner program which provides a pathway for students toward a rewarding, high-growth IT career.
The advanced skills and understanding you’ll develop on our MSc course can take you into cyber security roles across a range of industries, in both the public and private sectors. You could apply for jobs like information security specialist, software engineer for information security, ethical hacker, security designer or security tester, to name a few.
Your masters could also provide a foundation for further studies – going on to do a PhD –whether staying on at Manchester Met or going elsewhere.
You’ll have the specialist support of our careers service from day one, and for three years after you leave us. Between the services available through the School of Computing, Mathematics and Digital Technology and the University’s Career Service, you’ll have access to everything from employer events and careers fair to employability skills workshops and dedicated advisors.
You’ll need a good UK honours degree – at least a 2:2 – or the international equivalent, in a computing-related subject with knowledge of programming and networks. We might also consider your application if you a have a different kind of computing qualification, together with substantial experience in a computing-focused role.
Overseas applicants will require IELTS with an overall score of 6.5 with no less than 5.5 in any category, or an equivalent accepted English qualification. Accepted English qualifications can be viewed here.
You’ll study five core units, covering areas like Advanced Network Security, Cryptography and Encryption, and Computer Forensics and Security. You’ll then move on to tackle an in-depth masters project.
Manchester Metropolitan University's School of Computing, Mathematics and Digital Technology is home to the Informatics Research Centre (IRC), an interdisciplinary hub that conducts leading work on fundamental and applied computer science. Areas of research include intelligent systems, image and sensory computation, logic, peer-to-peer computing, computation, novel and natural computing, informatics and computational fluid dynamics. Research in the School was rated internationally excellent with some rated world-leading in the 2014 Research Excellence Framework.
The Centre is characterised by its distinctive mix of expertise, research strengths and cross-discipline working. Its over-arching aim is to use computer science to address societal challenges and ensure research has significant impact in areas such as healthcare, future cities and security.
This course can be taught full-time over 1 year, or part-time 2 years. If taught full-time all units will be taken within 1 year.
Introduction to Computer Forensics and Security
Advanced Network Security
Cryptography and Encryption
Advanced Computer Networks and Operating Systems
Click below for detailed unit information.
Read more about this year of study
Introduction to Computer Forensics and Security
This unit will introduce both computer security and digital forensics concepts.
Advanced Network Security
The aim of this unit is to provide student with the necessary skills to design and implement advanced security mechanism in a network environment. It will look in depth in relation to wired and wireless network security and the best practice in the field.
Cryptography and Encryption
The unit covers theoretical discussion of the key encryption algorithms: Diffie-Hellman, RSA, Digital Signatures, modern symmetric cryptosystems DES and AES. Additionally we will code the algorithms and their variants in a modern programming language and implement cryptosystems over a computer network.
Classical Cryptography; Shannons Theory; Block Ciphers; Hash Functions; RSA Algorithm and variants; Discrete and Public-Key Algorithms; Signatures; Pseudo-random number generators; Identification Schemes and Entity Authentication; Key Distribution; Key Agreement Schemes.
Advanced Computer Networks and Operating Systems
The unit covers advanced topics in computer networks and operating systems. It focuses on principles, architectures, and protocols used in modern large scale networked systems. Topics include:
Wide area networks - Compare the characteristics of WAN technologies, including their switching type, throughput, media, security, and reliability; Describe several WAN transmission and connection methods.
Virtual networking and remote access - Explain virtualization and identify characteristics of virtual components; Understand VPNs (virtual private networks) and the protocols they rely on; Identify the features and benefits of cloud computing and NaaS (network as a service).
Wireless and mobile networking - Wireless links and network characteristics; WiFi: 802.11 Wireless LANs; Cellular internet access; IoT, Sensor networks.
Network Management - The Infrastructure for Network Management; The Internet-Standard Management Framework; Quality of Service; Performance and Planning.
Classic Operating Systems - Comparing the features and trade-offs of classic operating systems;
Virtual Machines - Exploring the need for virtual machines and the means of their implementation;
File Systems - Looking at strengths and weaknesses of different approaches to persistent storage;
Distributed and Scalable Systems - Focusing on issues related to cloud computing and grid computing;
Concurrency, Scheduling & Sharing - Timing and scheduling, particularly in distributed systems;
Fault Tolerance - Looking at managing failure in distributed systems.
This unit will involve practical system creation or experimentation work in an area of computing other than digital media. The curriculum is specific to the project you choose but it will include seminars on skills and techniques required for successful design and implementation of research resources, time management, research presentation (oral, written, posters) and professional, legal and ethical issues in computing. Examination of a case study or project in an area appropriate to your intended dissertation work. Where appropriate, the implementation or experimentation may be work-based.
Assessment weightings and contact hours
10 credits equates to 100 hours of study, which is a combination of lectures, seminars and practical sessions, and independent study. A Masters qualification typically comprises of 180 credits, a PGDip 120 credits, a PGCert 60 credits and an MFA 300 credits. The exact composition of your study time and assessments for the course will vary according to your option choices and style of learning, but it could be:
Full-time 50% lectures, seminars or similar; 0% placement; 50% independent study
Students are expected to behave in a professional and business like manner when on placement or conducting projects with external partners.
This MSc course is a short, intensive programme, which doesn’t leave much room for a placement. But there are employers who might offer short-term internship opportunities. With our regular ‘meet the employer’ events, together with the support of our careers team, we’ll be there to help you make the most of any available opportunities.
School of Computing, Mathematics and Digital Technology
Our School of Computing, Mathematics and Digital Technology is a vibrant community of staff and students, which prides itself on internal and external collaboration.
The department is committed to teaching and research that addresses societal challenges through disciplines like artificial intelligence, big data, computational fluid dynamics, cyber security, dynamical systems, the internet of things, smart cities, robotics and virtual reality.
Your studies are supported by a team of committed and enthusiastic teachers and researchers, experts in their chosen field. We also work with external professionals, many of whom are Manchester Met alumni, to enhance your learning and appreciation of the wider subject.
UK and EU students: Full-time fee: £8,500 per year. Tuition fees will remain the same for each year of your course providing you complete it in the normal timeframe (no repeat years or breaks in study).
UK and EU students: Part-time fee: £2,834 studied per year. Tuition fees will remain the same for each year of your course providing you complete it in the normal timeframe (no repeat years or breaks in study).
Non-EU and Channel Island students
Non-EU international and Channel Island students: Full-time fee: £15,500 per year. Tuition fees will remain the same for each year of your course providing you complete it in the normal timeframe (no repeat years or breaks in study).
Non-EU international and Channel Island students: Part-time fee: £5,167 studied per year. Tuition fees will remain the same for each year of your course providing you complete it in the normal timeframe (no repeat years or breaks in study).
A Masters qualification typically comprises 180 credits, a PGDip 120 credits, a PGCert 60 credits, and an MFA 300 credits. Tuition fees will remain the same for each year of study provided the course is completed in the normal timeframe (no repeat years or breaks in study).
All of the books required for the course are available from the library. The University also has PC labs and a laptop loan service. However, many students choose to buy some of the core textbooks for the course and/or a laptop. Students may also need to print their assignments and other documents. Campus printing costs start from 5p per page. Estimated costs are £300 for a laptop up to £100 for books and printing. Total optional cost: £400
Students can choose to join the BCS at any point in their study. It is not required but is useful. The annual charge is identified for every year there is also an option to take course membership for £57
Postgraduate Loan Scheme
Up to £10,609 available to students who live in England
University isn’t just about learning. It’s about living. Find out all you need to know about accommodation here.
Being at university isn’t just about learning. It’s about living. Before you arrive, we’ll make sure you know where to go and what to do. And once you’re settled in, our team’s ready to support you during your stay.
From apartments and eco-friendly townhouses, to en-suite and standard rooms, we have all sorts of accommodation on (or near) campus. Whichever option is right for you, you’ll have a room complete with desk, heater, and storage, together with a shared kitchen, laundry facilities and free WiFi.
And in such a handy location, you’ll never be more than a few minutes from the library, Students’ Union, your next lecture or a bite to eat in one of the many nearby eateries.
We’re incredibly proud to be part of such a distinctive global city – and we think you will be too.
Manchester is a city of enterprise and sport, culture and diversity. Here, connections are formed and futures begun. Art, science and business coexist and collaborate. Actors and accountants, lawyers and linguists – they’ve all found a home for their ambitions.
We have sporting excellence, culinary creativity, digital innovation and thriving commerce. Entrepreneurs and entertainers. Theatre and music. A rich and distinctive culture. We have character, spirit and personality.
Here, you’ll find people of every type, making leaps in technology, taking strides in industry and creating art in every form. We have a proud heritage to look back on, and a vibrant and diverse future to look forward to, full of possibility and promise.
From advice and support to a fantastic Union and sports clubs, we’ve got your time here covered..
Whether you’re coming to Manchester from another continent or down the road, we’re here to help. As well as our Student Hubs, where you can get all sorts of information and advice, we offer a range of professional support services and social groups for our students.
Being part of our community, you’ll find societies, teams and groups that will help you make the most of your time here. This means you’ll have the chance to pursue your passions, but also to meet people with the same interests.
The Students’ Union is your voice in the University. Through the officials that you elect, the Union supports its members and stands up for your issues. And, with its building at the heart of the campus, it also provides you with a bar, shop, café, and event venue.
Programme Review Our programmes undergo an annual review and major review (normally at 6 year intervals) to ensure an up-to-date curriculum supported by the latest online learning technology. For further information on when we may make changes to our programmes, please see the changes section of our Terms and Conditions.
Important Notice This online prospectus provides an overview of our programmes of study and the University. We regularly update our online prospectus so that our published course information is accurate. Please check back to the online prospectus before making an application to us to access the most up to date information for your chosen course of study.
Confirmation of Regulator The Manchester Metropolitan University is regulated by the Office for Students (OfS). The OfS is the independent regulator of higher education in England. More information on the role of the OfS and its regulatory framework can be found at officeforstudents.org.uk.
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