Search the site

MSc Advanced Computing Course Work | UWS Scholarships | University of the West of Scotland


Our specialist MSc in Cyber Security provides you the theoretical knowledge and practical skills to ensure that you have the necessary expertise to prepare for a career in combatting 21st century cyber threats.

The MSc reflects existing theories, methods, principles and knowledge but keeps an eye on emerging theories, methods, principles, knowledge and technologies to ensure that you are full-equipped to meet the threat of cyber attacks. The course also exposes you to the legal, social, ethical issues associated with cyber security and to the professional responsibilities of cyber security practitioners.

The course will draw on strong links with industry (in its learning and teaching materials) and incorporate real-world learning in the core modules through industry case studies, guest lecturer involvement and supported industry projects. Your personal and professional development will benefit from reflecting upon this real-world learning within the context of established domain theory.

More Information

Real-world Learning

  • Purpose-built learning environment
  • Course designed and delivered in partnership with industry specialists
  • Practical and 'Hands-on' with real-world problem solving
  • Access to industry standard software and techniques

Career prospects

This course will enable students to work as Cyber Security specialist in areas such as commercial enterprise security (such as healthcare, banking and finance), law enforcement, or within government bodies.

Completion of our MSc will greatly enhance your potential to progress to a PhD in relevant areas of Cyber Security or Digital Forensics.

Entry Requirements

What qualifications do you need?

We welcome Scottish, UK and international students and consider all applicants on an individual basis.

Don’t worry if your qualifications are not listed here, we take a range of factors into account when assessing your application and are happy to consider other alternative combinations of qualifications and experience

If you are applying with an EU or non-EU qualification, please check our Postgraduate Entry Requirements page which gives more information about country-specific entry requirements.

Academic Requirements

You should normally have a Bachelors Degree with Honours awarded at 2:1 in Computing Science, Computer Networking.

Applicants with other academic, vocational or professional qualifications deemed to be equivalent, or have at least 3 years of relevant industrial experience may also be considered.


English Language Requirements

English language requirements for most courses

For applicants whose first language is not English, the University sets a minimum English Language proficiency level. The qualifications below must have been gained within two years of the start of your course.

General English language requirements at UWS: International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic module (not General Training)

  • overall score 6.0
  • no sub-test less than 5.5

Common equivalent English language qualifications

All stated English tests are acceptable for admission for both home/EU and international students for this programme:

  • CAE (Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English): 176 overall; no sub-test less than 169
  • CPE (Cambridge Certificate of Proficiency in English): 176 overall; no sub-test less than 169
  • Trinity College London Integrated Skills in English: ISEII with the minimum of a Pass in all sub-tests
  • PTE Pearson Academic English: An overall score of 54 with no element below 51 (for programmes that require IELTS 6.0 with no element below 5.5). An overall score 61 with no element below 51 (for programmes that require IELTS 6.5 with no element below 6.0)


IELTS Score Exceptions (DBA, Certificate of Higher Education, PhD, etc.)

For our research degrees (MRes, MPhil, PhD, DBA, DProf), applicants are required to have an IELTS score as follows:

  • overall score of 6.5
  • no sub-test less than 6.0

For Health, Nursing & Midwifery courses that lead to professional registration with the Nursing & Midwifery Council, applicants are required to have an IELTS score as follows:

  • overall score of 7.0
  • no sub-test less than 7.0

For our Certificate of Higher Education courses, applicants are required to have an IELTS score as follows:

  • overall score of 5.0
  • no sub-test less than 4.5



TOEFL IBT*: 78; no sub-test less than:

  • Reading: 17;
  • Listening: 17;
  • Speaking: 17;
  • Writing: 17

* Please note that TOEFL is still acceptable for admission to this programme for both home/EU and international students.
For international students, the Home Office has confirmed that the University can choose to use TOEFL to make its own assessment of English language ability for visa applications to degree level courses. We therefore still accept TOEFL tests taken in the last two years for admission to this programme.


West African Senior School Certificate of Education (WASSCE)

West African Senior School Certificate of Education (WASSCE) including acceptance of WAEC Scratchcard*

  • C6 or above in English

*UWS will accept a WAEC scratchcard confirming that an applicant has achieved C6 or above as evidence of meeting English language requirement from Nigeria if the student graduated within the last 5 years. After 5 years applicants would be required to provide the WAEC Certificate.


Pre-sessional courses

Applicants who do not meet the minimum English language requirements have the option to study one of our preparatory and pre-sessional English courses. The UWS courses available are:

  • 10 week pre-sessional - entry criteria UKVI IELTS 5.0 with no element below 4.5.
  • 5 week pre-sessional - entry criteria UKVI IELTS 5.5 with no element below 5.5.
  • English Language for University Study - entry criteria UKVI IELTS with score of 4.0 in all elements (10 month course), or 4.5 with no score below 4.0 (7 month course).

Course details

The MSc in Cyber Security comprises:

  • 10 core taught, 10-credit modules providing a technical understanding of the cyber security
  • 2 optional taught, 10-credit modules
  • 60-credit, Individual Research Project/Dissertation

There are 3 exit stages to this MSc: Stage 1- Postgraduate Certificate (PgCert); Stage 2 - Postgraduate Diploma (PgDip); Stage 3 - MSc. The three exit stages can accomodate for your own specific career ambitions and preferences, although most students will complete the MSc.

Stage 1 - PgCert

The PgCert comprises of the following core modules:

  • Digital Forensic Foundations (core, 10 credits)
  • Foundations of Cyber Security (core, 10 credits)
  • Governance, Risk and Compliance Management (core, 10 credits)
  • Legal, Regulatory & Ethical Issues in Cyber Security (core, 10 credits)
  • Network Penetration Testing (core, 10 credits)

plus a further one optional module:

  • Programming for Penetration Testing (optional, 10 credits)
  • Web Application Penetration Testing (optional, 10 credits)

Stage 2 - PgDip

Successful completion of the PgCert allows you to proceed to the PgDip which comprises the following core modules:

  • Advanced Network Security (core, 10 credits)
  • Applied Cryptography (core, 10 credits)
  • Malware Analysis (core, 10 credits)
  • Advanced Network Forensic Analysis (core, 10 credits)
  • Research Design and Methods (core, 10 credits)

plus a further one optional module:

  • Incident Response (optional, 10 credits)
  • Intrusion Analysis (optional, 10 credits)
  • Mobile Application Security Testing (optional, 10 credits)
  • Threat Intelligence (optional, 10 credits)
  • Wireless Security Testing (optional, 10 credits)

Stage 3 - MSc

Successful completion of the PgDip allows you to proceed to the master's module:

  • Research Project (60 credits)

Successful completion of the Research Project results in you being awarded the MSc Cyber Security.

Teaching & Assessment

Learning & Teaching

You will be taught by Professors, Senior Lecturers and PhD students. Many of whom undertake ground-breaking research and are regarded as international and world-leading experts in their field. Guest lecturers from industry will also be a part of your learning.

  • Lectures
  • Laboratory
  • Workshops
  • Presentations
  • Independent Learning
  • Seminars
  • Tutorials


Your knowledge and understanding is assessed through a combination of:

  • Case Studies
  • Coursework
  • Dissertation
  • Essays
  • Reports
  • Individual research
  • Laboratory write-ups
  • Written examinations
  • Presentations

Postgraduate Tuition Fees

Lab-based (Scottish campuses) 2019/20

Scottish & EU

£5,500 per year of study

English, Northern Irish & Welsh

£7,300 per year of study

Channel Island & Isle of Man

£7,300 per year of study

International (Non-EU)

£14,600 per year of study

More on current & future tuition fees

Module Fee: Lab-based (Scottish campuses) 2019/20

Scottish & EU

£790 per module (20 credits)

English, Northern Irish & Welsh

£1,045 per module (20 credits)

Channel Islands & Isle of Man

£1,045 per module (20 credits)

International (Non-EU)

£2,350 per module (20 credits)

More on current & future tuition fees

Student Awards Agency Scotland (SAAS) postgraduate tuition fee and living cost loans may be available for eligible (Scottish/EU) students. Check SAAS website for more information.

Additional Costs & Sources of Funding

The cost of attending university is an investment in your future career.

In addition to tuition fees and living expenses, some courses involve extra costs like study materials, field trips, equipment and uniforms.

Fortunately, there is a great deal of financial support available to help students meet the cost of their study. This ranges from:

  • statutory government loans to pay for tuition fees
  • scholarships for Scottish, EU and International (non-EU) students
  • bursaries to help towards living expenses

The sections below provide details of additional costs that your course may involve along with any financial support that may be available.

You can also find additional information in our Postgraduate Money, Fees & Funding section.

Additional Costs

Students on certain degrees will incur some additional costs not covered by their tuition fees. These could be for things like specialist equipment, study materials, work placements, graduation, membership of relevant organisations or costs related to carrying out fieldwork.

For students on course with an element of fieldwork, there may also be extra costs for travel and accommodation.

Please contact the course leader for details of the additional costs associated with this course.

Tuition Fees & Living Cost Support

Tuition Fees & Additional Costs

Tuition fees are calculated based on where you are from and what you are studying. Some courses also involve additional costs, such as mandatory field trips, equipment or studying abroad.

Find out how much it will cost you to study at UWS as a postgraduate student.

Funding for Scottish Students

Scottish students studying at postgraduate level at UWS are entitled to various funds and support towards tuition fees and living costs.

Find out more.

Funding for English, Welsh & Norther Irish Students

English, Welsh and Northern Irish students studying at postgraduate level at UWS are entitled to various funds and support towards tuition fees and living costs.

Find out more.

Funding for EU Students

EU students studying at postgraduate level of UWS may be eligible for SAAS funding, as well as support to meet the costs of childcare and various sources of additional funding.

Find our more.

Funding for International Students

There are several scholarship and incentive schemes available to international students studying at postgraduate level at UWS, as well as support to meet the costs of childcare and various sources of additional funding.

Find out more.

Other Financial Support

Discretionary & Childcare Funds

UWS administer a range of discretionary and childcare funds. These are designed to support students who are experiencing financial difficulty or struggling to meet the costs of childcare.

Find out more.

Benefits & Tax Credits

Becoming a student can have an impact on your entitlement to certain benefits. It may mean you are no longer eligible to claim a benefit you have been receiving, or your new income from student funding may affect the amount you are able to receive.

Find out more.

Additional Financial Support

If there isn’t a statutory source of funding for you or your course, or you are in need of additional financial support, you may wish to consider more alternative sources of funding such as trust funds and scholarships.

Find out more.

Money & Debt Advice

Choosing to become a student can have a big impact on your budget and you may need to reassess your spending to account for a reduced income. We’ve put together some guidance to help you manage your money and make the right financial choices for you and your family.

Find out more.

How to apply

Postgraduate courses (MA, MSc, MEd, MBA, DBA, PG Cert, PG Dip, etc.) & some Post-experience courses (CertHE, BA, Grad Cert, Grad Dip, etc.)

All students should apply directly to the University through our online application system. Before you apply, you should check that you meet our entry requirements and you should have all your supporting documents ready.

The first stage of the process is to create a profile; you don't have to complete the application in one session - you can complete it in stages by saving each section and return to complete it at a later date.

You will need to upload documents with your applications, which may include transcripts and degree certificates.

Most courses don't have a formal closing date, but they will close when they are full; apply early to avoid disappointment. There may also be funding deadlines that apply to you.

Before you begin your application, it is important to read the Postgraduate & Post-Experience application step-by-step guide for a smooth process.


An ATAS certificate is not required for overseas students applying for this course.

UWS Research Students | Researcher Development & Concordat | University of the West of Scotland

Research at UWS

With cutting edge facilities, specialist knowledge and world-leading and internationally excellent expertise, we aim to develop research outputs that have a tangible, early and positive impact on society across the globe.


We will always try to make sure that we publish accurate course information but we do not accept responsibility for any mistakes or omissions. We will also try to make sure that we deliver our courses in line with our published information. However, we may not always be able to do so and you can find further information about this in our enrolment terms and conditions.