Prepare for jobs in local, state and federal government agencies, as well as with defense contractors, research firms and advanced technology companies.

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The Master of Arts in Security Studies offers three concentrations, which lead to a wide range of career opportunities.

  • Homeland Defense (available entirely online) — Gain an informed perspective on global and national affairs while positioning yourself for leadership in the field of national security. Coursework covers issues related to the prevention of terrorist attacks and the defense of the United States, including critical infrastructure protection, regional and national security intelligence, land and maritime border protection and the use of new technologies in homeland security practices. 
  • Industrial and Economic Security (available entirely online) — Gain in-depth knowledge of past and current security threats that impact the U.S. economy and privately held companies. Understanding the scientific and technological approaches used to combat advanced security threats will allow you to identify vulnerabilities, address incidents and deter attacks. The program's robust curriculum examines various topics, including global trafficking, economic crime, energy security, computer network and facility security and the defense industry.
  • International Security (available entirely online) — Build your capacity to analyze, understand and resolve complex global security threats. You will develop an understanding of worldwide organized criminal and terrorist networks, along with the various policies, strategies and mechanisms that are used to combat these threats. Studying the theoretical concepts and the context of various aspects of terrorism, counterterrorism and other national and international security topics will provide in-depth knowledge of diplomatic and defense tactics used to resolve global conflicts.
  • Total Number of Courses: 10 (30 Credits)

    Required Core Courses (5 courses/15 credits):

    • Contemporary Security Studies
    • Intelligence Analysis: Policy and Practice
    • Scientific and Technological Dimensions of National Security
    • Research Design
    • Security Studies Capstone Research Paper

    Concentration Elective Courses (Choose 5 courses/15 credits):

    For more information on the curriculum including course listings and degree pathways, visit the Graduate Catalog.

    • Submitted online application
    • Completed undergraduate degree from an accredited institution of higher education, with a final cumulative GPA of at least 3.000
      • M.A. degree: A wide variety of undergraduate bachelor’s degree programs will qualify, particularly those in the behavioral and social sciences (such as political science, sociology, criminal justice, psychology, history, international relations, and many others)
      • M.S. degree: Should have a major in a science, technology or engineering discipline - graduates of bachelor's degree programs in behavioral and social sciences will also be considered on a case-by-case basis
    • Official transcript from previously earned degrees
    • Official score from the Graduate Record Examination (GRE) result is optional.
    • 2 letters of recommendation
    • Statement of purpose
    • $50 application fee

    International Applicants

    • For applicants who earned their degree outside of the US: transcript must be evaluated by a credentialing service such as WES or CED
    • English proficiency testing (can be waived in some cases)
      • TOEFL minimum 79
      • IELTS minimum 6.5
    • International students can also enroll online and complete all requirements to earn a Graduate Certificate without having to meet the admissions requirements for master's or doctoral degree programs

    Admissions Requirements for the Graduate Certificate in Security Studies

    • Graduate certificate programs are designed for students holding a baccalaureate degree in a field related to the certificate program
    • No Graduate Record Exam (GRE) is required
    • Applicants to the Graduate Certificate programs do not need to meet the admissions requirements for master's or doctoral degree programs
    • Application forms and procedures are available online
    • $50 application fee

    See the Graduate Catalog for additional requirements of the program.

    Visit Graduate Admissions for more information.

  • Juniors and Seniors at UMass Lowell who have a 3.000 GPA or better are eligible to apply for the B.S./M.A. (or B.S./M.S.) program. This program allows for completion of both degrees in five years if desired. No specific undergraduate major is required for the M.A. and M.S. options (except for those interested in the Cyber Security concentration where some prior knowledge or experience in computer science or IT is necessary).

Why study security studies at UMass Lowell?

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Best Online Master's

Ranked #3 Best Online Master's in Criminal Justice Programs in the Nation by U.S. News & World Report

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Expert Faculty

Our faculty is comprised of top academics in the area of security studies, those with security clearances within the U.S. military and those who have worked in law enforcement and justice agencies such as Homeland Security, ATF, Department of Defense, intelligence agencies and local and state police forces.

Matthew Chigas at his internship with the Nashua (N.H.) Office of Emergency Management, training other city offices and community organizations in security and emergency response.

Internships & Research

cyber security formatting, codes in the background with words like "protect" and "social security number".

Graduate Certificate

The university offers a 12-credit Graduate Certificate in Security Studies. Students who earn the certificate may transfer into the Master's degree program, transferring in any courses completed with a B+ or better.

Career Outlook

  • Many graduates work in government or private sector jobs that require a minimum of a master's degree.
  • Jobs in cybersecurity are expected to grow 28 percent over the next ten years, according to Bureau of Labor Statistics.
  • Employees who understand the broad range of security challenges local, state and national government’s face can find jobs from specialty policing to state police units to customs and border protection.
  • Our growing alumni network taps into a wide range of organizations.

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