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What should I major if I want to work in cyber security?

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Rani’s Answer

I do like both Ana and Jackson's suggestions. If the school you choose doesn't have a cyber security major, computer science or math are both good options, IMHO. In addition to the core classes for your major, I suggest taking a couple of psychology classes (human behavior), and perhaps a class in logic (via either the math or philosophy departments). A better understanding of how people's minds work will help you in all sorts of ways, whether by helping defend against spear phishing attacks, script kiddies, even nation state attacks. Logic helps with troubleshooting, and helps you avoid logical fallacies.

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Jackson’s Answer

There are multiple colleges and universities have cybersecurity as an major.

For example, I am starting my online cybersecurity certificate program with the Champlain College at Burlington Vermont. Champlain College has a Bachelor of Science in Cyberscurity and Master's Degree in Information Security Operations.

UC Berkeley also has an Online Master's in Cybersecurity as well.

Jackson recommends the following next steps:

Online search for BS in Cybersecurity. Determine if online program is the right option for you.
Take as much programming course as you can as an under graduate.
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Ana’s Answer

You can major in Cybersecurity. Getting a Bachelor's in Cybersecurity or IT (Computer Science or Information System) related field will get you the job. In addition, you can get a Master's degree in a more specialized area if you so desire later on.


Many Universities offer on Campus and/or Online programs.

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Cami’s Answer

There are many options: information assurance, information security, cyber security, cyber security management, etc. Look for degree programs with these terms.

I majored in information systems and systems engineering and was still able to pursue a career in cyber security by earning the appropriate certifications. I recommend the CISSP for starters.
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Anita’s Answer

Data Loss Prevention is a good field,

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Miguel’s Answer

Hi Mariam,

Generally speaking you would like to major in information assurance, cyber security or engineering. However, there are many career paths in cyber security so its really dependent on what majors are offered by the university and want area of cyber security you want to work in. I found in hiring security professionals, having an engineering background allows them to move into different functional areas of cyber security and can partner with Engineering teams.
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Bernard’s Answer

Hello Mariam,

There are some great answers here. I'll add some advice and insight. I have a friend that works in the field who is extremely talented and intelligent and his favorite phrase is, "Study Math".

Cyber Security/Info Security is heavily dependent on math. A lot of professionals in the field were Math majors. Moreover, Math is a great general degree to have in your pocket; it is translatable to so many other fields. However, Math is hard...very hard (at least for me it was).

You can do a Computer Science major with a Math minor; this is usually a winning combination in terms of setting yourself up for success. You'll start to notice you can tackle really difficult problems. Not because you learned how to solve that exact problem, but because you got used to solving difficult problems. You will learn how to grit-it-out and persevere.

What is the most interesting with the CS/Math combo is that not only is it great for Info/Cyber Security, but it is great for just the general tech world.
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Harlie’s Answer

Hi Mariam! Depends on what you want to specifically get into! Like the others mentioned above, any field in IT can help. One of the most helpful things you can do is find out what classes are available that relate to security, whether that be classes in the Computer Science path, or the Management and Information Systems path. You can even look into the Criminology/Justice Studies career path at your school to see if any classes relate to Cyber. This way, you can dive into each area and see what really interests you! So once you have a feel for what you want to dive into, find out what major corresponds. Hope this helps!
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