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Graduate Certificate Programs: Cybersecurity Engineering (Core)

Designed for working IT and information security professionals who want to develop a technical base in cybersecurity skills, the Cybersecurity Engineering (Core) graduate certificate program features the 3 foundational courses — or the “Core” — of the master's degree curriculum and an elective course where you can begin developing advanced skills in a specific area of information security.

You’ll emerge with the foundational skills and knowledge needed to pursue our master's degree program or our more technical, job-specific graduate certificate programs.

Format Option: A 100% online option is available
Courses: 4
Capstone:
1
GIAC Certifications: 4
Credits:
13
Duration: 18-24 months
Total Program Cost: $23,375 USD


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Strengthen Your Technical Knowledge and Skills

Gain practical skills you can immediately apply at your job or in a new infosec role.

  • Learn the latest cybersecurity tactics to protect your organization
  • Keep your skills current for career growth and advancement
  • Earn professional GIAC certifications as you complete the program
  • Train on your schedule, to balance work and school
  • Get personalized support from a student advisor 

APPLICATIONS ACCEPTED MONTHLY

The SANS.edu Advantage

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GIAC Certifications

Earn 4 industry-recognized GIAC cybersecurity certifications.

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100% Online Option Available

You have the option of completing the program through live or rewindable online courses.

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World-class Faculty

Learn the latest skills and techniques from the world's top cybersecurity practitioners.

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Pathway to a Master’s Degree

All credits earned in this program can transfer into our master’s degree program.

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SANS.edu Academic Pricing

Get SANS.edu academic pricing on SANS courses and GIAC certifications.

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Powerful Network

Make connections with some of the most talented students and teachers in the industry.

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Join Us for an Online Info Session

  • Learn more about the SANS.edu cyber security master's degree and graduate certificate programs. Have questions? We’ll answer them. Sat, Oct 8 at 1 pm (ET). Register here.
  • Join a special info session focused on our eight job-specific graduate certificate programs for working professionals. Tue, Oct 25 at 3 pm (ET). Register here.


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      Special Info Session: Penetration Testing & Ethical Hacking Graduate Certificate

      Discover the Graduate Certificate Program in Penetration Testing and Ethical Hacking at a special info session featuring current student Eric Pursley, a Cyber Security Analyst at Axient and Cyber Warfare Operator for the Air National Guard. Learn how the certificate program helped Eric make the transition from blue team to red team. Sat, Nov 19 at 2 pm (ET)

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      “Beginning with the ‘Core’ graduate certificate program was the perfect on-ramp for me to study seriously with SANS.” - Tim Ashford, Security Governance Lead, Bridgewater Associates

      Learn How To:

      • Use a broad range of current tools and technologies in the design and implementation of security solutions deployed across organizations.
      • Analyze network traffic to extract the observable characteristics of networks and network devices, thus providing a basis for defensive strategies.
      • Assemble tools and configure systems and networks to permit systems to foster resiliency and continuity of operations through attacks.
      • Understand important attacker techniques, engage in penetration testing within your organization, and respond to incidents associated with these activities within your organization.

      Curriculum | 13 Credit Hours

      In this hands-on program, you’ll complete 3 foundational courses — or the “Core” — of the master’s degree curriculum and choose an elective course to begin developing advanced skills in a specific area of information security.

      Survey Courses | 3 credit hours

      Students select one of the following:

      • SANS Course: SEC401: Security Essentials - Network, Endpoint, and Cloud
        Certification: GIAC Security Essentials (GSEC)

        3 Credit Hours

        ISE 5101 is the introductory, technically-oriented survey course in the information security engineering master's program. It establishes the foundations for designing, building, maintaining and assessing security functions at the end-user, network and enterprise levels of an organization. The faculty instruction, readings, lab exercises, and exam are coordinated to introduce and develop the core technical, management, and enterprise-level capabilities that will be developed throughout the information security engineering master's program.

      • SANS Course: SEC501: Advanced Security Essentials - Enterprise Defender
        Certification: GIAC Certified Enterprise Defender (GCED)

        3 Credit Hours

        ISE 6215 reinforces the theme that prevention is ideal, but detection is a must. Students will learn how to ensure that their organizations constantly improve their security posture to prevent as many attacks as possible. A key focus is on data protection, securing critical information no matter whether it resides on a server, in robust network architectures, or on a portable device.

        Despite an organization's best effort at preventing attacks and protecting its critical data, some attacks will still be successful. Therefore students will also learn how to detect attacks in a timely fashion through an in-depth understanding the traffic that flows on networks, scanning for indications of an attack. The course also includes instruction on performing penetration testing, vulnerability analysis, and forensics.

      Core Courses | 7 credit hours


      • SANS Course: SEC504: Hacker Tools, Techniques, and Incident Handling
        Certification: GIAC Certified Incident Handler (GCIH)

        3 Credit Hours

        By adopting the viewpoint of a hacker, ISE 5201 provides an in-depth focus into the critical activity of incident handling. Students are taught how to manage intrusions by first looking at the techniques used by attackers to exploit a system. Students learn responses to those techniques, which can be adopted within the framework of the incident handling process to handle attacks in an organized way. The faculty instruction, lab exercises, and exam are coordinated to develop and test a student's ability to utilize the core capabilities required for incident handling.

      • SANS Course: SEC503: Intrusion Detection In-Depth
        Certification: GIAC Certified Intrusion Analyst (GCIA)

        3 Credit Hours

        ISE 5401 delivers the technical knowledge, insight, and hands-on training you need to defend your network with confidence. You will learn about the underlying theory of TCP/IP and the most used application protocols, such as DNS and HTTP, so that you can intelligently examine network traffic for signs of an intrusion. You will get plenty of practice learning to master different open source tools like tcpdump, Wireshark, Snort, Bro, tshark, and SiLK. Daily hands-on exercises suitable for all experience levels reinforce the course book material so that you can transfer knowledge to execution.

      • 1 Credit Hour

        The Core Comprehensive Exam tests your mastery of the core technical skills required by top security consultants and individual practitioners. Through a series of exercises, you’ll demonstrate your ability to integrate the knowledge, skills, and techniques acquired in ISE 5101, ISE 5201, and ISE 5401 to address common challenges faced by technical leaders in the cybersecurity field.

      Elective Course | 3 credit hours

      • 3 Credit Hours

        You can choose any 3-credit hour technical course from an approved list of elective courses.

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      Study with the best faculty in cyber security

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      Take Your Next Step

      Need more information? We’re happy to answer your questions. Join us for an info session, email info@sans.edu or call 301.241.7665.

      Ready to apply? We look forward to learning about you and your career goals.

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      “Earning a graduate certificate from SANS is what really accelerated my career. The technical skills I learned in the program have given me the confidence to successfully lead my team and prepare them for new challenges.” - David Cox, Manager, Cyber Threat Management, EY

      Success Stories

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      “After I passed my GCIH certification exam, I got a job offer for twice my current salary. I’m happy where I am, but it’s great to see recruiters going after GIAC certified professionals.” - Agnel D’Silva, IT Administrator, City of Danville, IL

      Christopher Haller

      SANS.edu Graduate Certificate Student Wins National Cyber League Championship

      Christopher Haller beat out more than 6,000 competitors to earn the #1 individual player ranking in the Spring 2022 National Cyber League competition. See why he chose to pursue a graduate certificate at SANS.edu — and learn about his career path from the US Navy to his current role as Director of Professional Services at Centripetal Networks.

      Course Delivery Options

      Complete any of our cybersecurity degree or certificate programs by taking courses that are 100% online or that start with weeklong in-person events held across the country and around the world. Or you can do a mix of both.
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      “You get a lot of personal attention to get through the program because of the student advisors. They are the foundation of the SANS.edu experience.” - Christopher Hurless, Systems Engineer, Northwestern University in Qatar

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      Join us for a free online info session to learn more.

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      Tuition

      Total program cost: $22,000 USD

      Tuition includes the cost of the course, textbooks, and certification tests that serve as mid-term or final exams for courses.

      Get the Credit You Deserve
      Students who have taken SANS training classes and have active GIAC certifications may be able to waive one course and GIAC certification into the program. See our waiver policy.



      Funding Options

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      Questions?

      We're happy to help. Email info@sans.edu or call 301.241.7665.

      About the SANS Technology Institute

      Founded in 2005, the SANS Technology Institute (SANS.edu) is the independent, regionally-accredited, VA-approved subsidiary of SANS, the world's largest and most trusted provider of cybersecurity training, certification, and research. Offering graduate and undergraduate programs at the cutting edge of cybersecurity, SANS.edu is strengthening the cyber workforce through a career-focused curriculum built on proven SANS courses and industry-recognized GIAC certifications.

      The SANS Technology Institute is accredited by The Middle States Commission on Higher Education (1007 North Orange Street, 4th Floor, MB #166, Wilmington, DE 19801 - 267.284.5000), an institutional accrediting agency recognized by the U.S. Secretary of Education and the Council for Higher Education Accreditation.