Computer Forensics

Cyber Security MSc

Course fees (2018/19 entry)

Option / fee Value
Home/EU full-time annual tuition fee: £6,300
Home/EU part-time tuition fee: £35 per credit
International full time annual tuition fee: £14,450

More about course fees »

Course type



Computer Science

Study mode

Full Time (1 year)

About your course

This Masters in Cyber Security at LJMU enables students with computing and related subject experience to further their study in this exciting, challenging, and much in-demand area of computer science.

  • Study a course based on the latest research and informed by industry liaison
  • Course is aligned with the Government's professional practitioner benchmark for Cyber Security Masters-level study
  • Enhance your scientific, engineering and technical skills
  • Gain the knowledge and practical skills required for a career in Cyber Security
  • Benefit from the support of a personal tutor throughout your studies

Independent study accounts for around 70% of your weekly study time.

You will be based in the Byrom Street campus which has benefited from a £6 million investment in state-of-the-art laboratories and teaching facilities.

Introduction to the School

In an increasingly technological world, there are great challenges and opportunities for professionals with advanced qualifications in computing.

The Department of Computer Science will help you prepare for the career of your choice by providing you with a wide range of programmes at postgraduate level, including taught masters and research programmes (MPhil/PhD).

You will be taught and supervised by subject specialists, in a vibrant and supportive environment. Classroom and lab-based activities, including lectures, seminars, tutorials and practical work, offer a varied and diverse range of experiences as you prepare for the career of your choice. You will also be encouraged to attend Departmental seminars and locally held conferences, participating in the research culture of our area.

Internationally-recognised expertise

94% of research submitted to the REF 2014 is considered as being of international importance or recognised internationally.

To further advance our world leading research, we recently established a Research Centre for Critical Infrastructure Computer Technology and Protection – PROTECT – to bring together researchers across a number of areas, including computer networks, network security, computer games technology and software engineering, to address emerging research challenges to the protection of critical infrastructure systems.

We aim to promote and advance internationally leading research in a number of important areas including Critical Infrastructure Protection, Computer Security, Networked Appliances, Computer Games, Software Engineering, Neural Computing and Statistics.

These areas are of great economic and social impacts, and involve many emerging research challenges requiring significant and long-term research efforts.

Our research is conducted via centres, labs and groups led by experts with international reputation, including Professor Madjid Merabti in networking, Professor Paolo Lisboa in neural computing, Professor Abdennour El Rhalibi in computer games, and Professor Qi Shi in cyber security.

We are proud of our growing research reputation and have a long-standing history of working with local, regional and national industries through student placement, research, consultancy, short course activity and Teaching Company Schemes. We also have a number of collaborative partnerships both locally and internationally.

Why study this course at LJMU?

Computer Security focuses on protecting computers, computer networks - such as public and private networks, critical infrastructure, smartphones, smart objects, software and digital information from unauthorised access, change or destruction.

This MSc degree in Cyber Security is based on the latest research in the field. Indeed, our School is highly rated for its research in this area. 

The programme and its modules are the result of extensive communications with industry and government, and the School maintains a regular industrial liaison panel. This course is designed to equip you with advanced skills in the theory, practice, tools and applications necessary for a career in Cyber Security.

We are proud of our academic staff’s high quality teaching standards and approachability. Informal staff-student relationships are excellent. If you decide to study with us, you will be joining a relaxed and friendly department in which staff are committed not only to student welfare but also to ensuring that our courses are continually developed to meet the needs of employers.

Programme outline and structure

Our academic team have designed the programme to enhance your scientific, engineering and technical skills as as promoting a wider understanding of the business and social context of security.

The curriculum aligns with the UK Government’s professional practitioner benchmark for Masters-level study in Cyber Security. This will substantially enhance your CV and raise your profile in the job market.

From the moment you enrol at LJMU, you will be allocated a personal tutor who will work with you on developing the ability to learn independently in readiness for your research project. Your tutor will be on hand to offer academic, administrative and general pastoral guidance.

What you will study on this degree

Please see guidance below on core and option modules for further information on what you will study.

    Level 7
    • Computer Security
    • Network Security
    • Practical Sysadmin Security
    • Secure Software Engineering
    • Information Security Management
    • Research Methods
    • Project Dissertation

    Further guidance on modules

    The information listed in the section entitled ‘What you will study’ is an overview of the academic content of the programme that will take the form of either core or option modules. Modules are designated as core or option in accordance with professional body requirements and internal Academic Framework review, so may be subject to change. Students will be required to undertake modules that the University designates as core and will have a choice of designated option modules. Additionally, option modules may be offered subject to meeting minimum student numbers.

    Academic Framework reviews are conducted by LJMU from time to time to ensure that academic standards continue to be maintained. A review is currently in progress and will be operational for the academic year 2016/2017. Final details of this programme’s designated core and option modules will be made available on LJMU’s website as soon as possible and prior to formal enrolment for the academic year 2016/2017.

    Please email if you require further guidance or clarification.

    How will I be assessed?

    You will begin the course with a one-day induction and then spend approximately 15 hours per week in the classroom.

    Independent study is a fundamental element of the course and accounts for about 70% or 35 hours of your weekly study time.

    Teaching is mostly via lectures. More informal lab sessions and small-group tutorials reinforce ideas discussed in the lectures and give you a chance to develop ideas with staff and other students. 

    You will be based in LJMU’s Byrom Street campus, which has benefited from a £6 million investment in state-of-the-art laboratories and teaching facilities. The School operates 10 dedicated, specialist computer laboratories with over 400 PCs for student use. 

    All of our PCs run a wide variety of specialist software for our courses and, while predominantly a Windows-based environment, you may also access Linux servers, mobile tools and cloud development environments. The School also has a dedicated Security and Forensics Lab where you can do your own experiments for coursework or your dissertation.

    You will be assessed by a combination of coursework and exams, a personal independent project and a Masters-level dissertation.

    The dissertation is an extensive piece of research work in an applications domain relevant to your academic or professional interests. It is intended to provide you with an opportunity to undertake a significant investigation and produce a major piece of work on the outcome. Assessment of your project work will be based on your dissertation and presentations of your findings. 

    Your project is expected to have a strong research component and will, in many cases, form the basis of further academic research, such as a PhD. Your tutors will give prompt and constructive feedback via Canvas (our virtual learning environment), face-to-face or in written comments. This will help you to identify your strengths as well as the areas where you may need to put in more work.

    Staff research interests

    Departmental staff are active in a number of research areas.

    Our PROTECT Research Centre provides access to cutting-edge research and development and our researchers are working with international partners on a number of future technologies.

    Our academic staff ensure that our research is closely integrated into our teaching, wherever appropriate, to ensure our courses are up-to-date and provide relevant knowledge.

    Entry requirements (Home)

    You will need:

    • a minimum upper second class Honours degree in Computing or a related subject 


    • degree equivalent professional qualifications

    If you have non-standard entry qualifications, relevant industry experience or certification, you are also encouraged to apply.

    International Students also need an IELTS score of 6, with a minimum of 5.5 on each component, or equivalent.



    6.0 (Min 5.5 in each component)

    Is RPL accepted on this programme?


    Please Note: All international qualifications are subject to a qualification equivalency check via NARIC.

    Financial support

    Tuition fees

    All full and part-time students enrolled on postgraduate taught programmes at LJMU are liable to pay an annual tuition fee. You can opt to pay your tuition fees in full at the start of each academic year or pay by instalments. If you need advice about how you will pay your tuition fees, please email to LJMU’s Student Funding Team as soon as possible.

    Sources of funding

    Postgraduate loans for students from England, Wales and the EU

    Postgraduate Masters loans are available for those studying in the 2017/18 academic year. The new government loans, of up to £10,280, are available for students attending eligible full and part-time Masters courses. To be eligible part time courses need to be studied at 50% intensity. Personal Eligibility is based on your age, your residency and if you have studied at Masters level previously.

    Loan repayments will begin the April after course completion, with the first cohort of borrowers commencing repayments in April 2019. Repayments will be made at a rate of 6% of income above an earning threshold of £21,000. This threshold will be frozen until 2021. For details of loan terms, conditions and eligibility, go to:-

    Postgraduate Loans for students from Northern Ireland

    The Northern Irish government is also introducing a loan for students commencing postgraduate study from September 2017 onwards. Unlike the loan for students from England and Wales this scheme offers a loan for tuition fees only with no funding available from the NI government for living costs. The loan for tuition fees will be paid direct to LJMU.

    The maximum loan for those starting in 2017 is £5,500 per course. Please note this means in some instances the loan will not cover your tuition fees in full and you will need to make alternative arrangements to pay the balance as well as source funding for your living costs.

    LJMU Alumni Award

    Alumni of the University are eligible to apply for a 20% reduction in their postgraduate tuition fees if they choose to progress onto a higher degree programme at LJMU. Both Home and international LJMU students and alumni can apply for this award (subject to eligibility criteria*).

    Postgraduate International Scholarships

    LJMU offers scholarships for international applicants accepted onto taught masters programmes (excluding distance learning programmes) and research degrees. Current LJMU international students and alumni interested in pursuing postgraduate study and research at the University are eligible to apply for these scholarships along with new applicants. 

    English for Postgraduate Studies Bursary

    A Bursary is also available for international students who need to improve their IELTS score prior to enrolling on their postgraduate course or research programme at the University. This course is run by LJMU’s International Study Centre.

    Earn While You Learn

    Working while you study means you may be able to pay for your course without taking out any further loans or at least reducing the amount you need to borrow. Working while you study also gives you the skills valued by employers, such as managing your workload and prioritising your time.

    LJMU’s Vacancy website can help you find graduate vacancies, sandwich/industrial placements, internships / summer work, part-time jobs, volunteering opportunities and work-based learning placements. Over 1,000 local and regional employers regularly list opportunities on the website.

    Professional and Career Development Loans (PCDL)

    Many students fund their postgraduate studies via Professional and Career Development Loans. This is a bank loan which you will have to pay back once you’ve completed the course. However, while you are studying any interest on the loan will be paid for you by the Skills Funding Agency. PCDLs worth between £300 and £10,000 are available for eligible postgraduates to fund up to two years of study (three if the course includes work experience). The loan is split into course fees and living costs. 

    Employer sponsorship

    Some organisations and companies fund the cost of postgraduate studies for their employees as they recognise the value of having well qualified staff. Check out our courses and see if there are any on offer that could enhance your current career. Remember, employer support doesn’t always have to be financial; it can take other forms too, such as flexible working arrangements, day release and time in lieu of study.

    Support for disabled students

    Disabled Students’ Allowances or DSAs are designed to help meet the extra course costs students can face as a direct result of a disability, on-going health condition, mental health condition or specific learning difficulty. DSAs don’t have to be paid back and the type of support you receive will be determined by your specific needs not your household income. Please contact LJMU’s Disability team for further advice: 0151 231 3164/3165.

    Council tax exemption

    All full-time postgraduate students studying courses lasting one year or more are eligible for a council tax exemption certificate.

    Graduate employment

    We integrate practical, hands-on experience into this programme, to boost your employability, wherever possible.

    We include work-based problems in your learning and assessment. We have been involved in funded research to improve the links between work-based and academic learning and you will benefit from the results of this work with our cloud-based platform for cyber security skills, developed in conjunction with security companies in the north-west of England.

    With an MSc in Cyber Security your skills are highly sought after by companies employing ethical hackers, secure software developers, computer security consultants, network or system administrators and data analysts. You could find yourself working in one of a wide variety of fields including data mining, security applications development, the police, intelligence, security or computer forensics initiatives, network security management or education.

      Our graduates have found employment with many high-profile employers including Barclays, Shop Direct, MBNA, Unilever, Sony, TT-Games, Lucid, Eli Lilly, Merseyside Police, Oracle and Microsoft.

      Other potential destinations include higher study (MPhil or PhD) and the School offers a number of attractive prospects for you to continue your studies with us in the future. 

      If you demonstrate a particular flair for running your own business, our dedicated Centre for Entrepreneurship can provide access to all the support and resources needed to become your own boss once you graduate.

      Our graduates have found employment with many high-profile employers including Barclays, Shop Direct, MBNA, Unilever, Sony, TT-Games, Lucid, Eli Lilly, Merseyside Police, Oracle, Microsoft and many more.

      International Study

      International applicants are required to demonstrate equivalent qualifications to the standard requirements for entry when applying for courses at LJMU.

      Students must also demonstrate a proficiency in communicating through English, for example via an IELTS tests or equivalent.

      Please note: UK visa restrictions mean that international students are only permitted to study on a full-time basis.

      Please contact LJMU’s International Team by visiting for more information and advice.


      LJMU has launched a range of generous international scholarships for students enrolling at the University.

      These prestigious scholarships take the form of tuition fee waivers and are available for outstanding international students applying for taught postgraduate programmes and research degrees.

      You will need to complete an additional application form in order to be considered for these scholarships. Full eligibility criteria and the online application form are available here:

      Applications for these scholarships are welcomed from:

      • new international applicants
      • current LJMU international students hoping to progress onto postgraduate study at the University
      • LJMU international alumni

      The University may make changes to a programme of study or module where such changes are deemed to be beneficial to students, are minor in nature and unlikely to impact negatively upon students or become necessary due to circumstances beyond the control of the University.
      Further guidance on programme changes

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