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Course content

Designed to develop professionals who can lead in a cyber environment, to effectively exploit the threats and opportunities of cyberspace at the organisational level. The course focuses on understanding and articulating the executive-level responses to serious present and emerging threats in the information domain.

Who is it for?

Students will be government, corporate and critical information infrastructure staff who are one or more of the following:

  • Managers or leaders in a cyber environment who need to understand information risk and respond to cyber threats.
  • Procurement staff commissioning critical or sensitive projects.
  • Policy and planning staff interested in computer network and security operations.
  • Those charged with accreditation and assessment of security measures.
  • Those holding the positions of, or aspiring to be, Chief Information Officers (CIO) or Chief Information Security Officers (CISO).

Why this course?

The course will specifically focus on responses to serious, present and emerging threats in the information domain. The course enables the student to gain an organisational view of cyber, the domain, the drivers and constraints. Whilst a technical understanding is of value, the course is designed to ensure that the bigger, contextual, aspects of cyber is understood thereby enabling decision making in relation to cyber to be undertaken within an organisation.

Informed by Industry

The course has an External Advisory Panel, chaired by Sir Edmund Burton, with expert representation from government and industry, including Fujitsu, GSK and the MOD.


The MSc course holds provisional accreditation from the National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC), a part of the UK Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ).

This course is supported by the UK Government’s Cabinet Office and Office of Cyber Security and Information Security.

Course details

The course is taught through a flexible blend of compulsory residential courses, online Virtual Learning Environment activities and interaction and project-based learning.

It has three components: a taught component comprising of ten, 10 credit modules (PGCert/PGDip/MSc); a 20 credit module; and (MSc only) an 80 credit research project assessed by dissertation.


Students taking the MSc must develop and demonstrate their expertise, independent learning abilities and critical appraisal skills by producing a clear and coherent research-based dissertation.


The course is delivered via blended learning, with a mixture of residential and online teaching, and assessment is through coursework, group practicals, presentations and (MSc only) an individual dissertation.

Your career

This qualification will take you on to become one of the next generation of managers who can understand and effectively manage and exploit the threats and opportunities of cyberspace at the organisational level. Crucially, it will also enable graduates to communicate cyber issues to senior management or executive board level.

The course is directly relevant to those wishing to improve their knowledge and skills as, or those aspiring to become, a CIO or CISO.

Visit the Cyber Defence and Information Assurance - MSc page on the Cranfield University at Shrivenham website for more details!





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