Revised overview of cybersecurity degree programmes

July 10, 2018

This year, about 300 to 375 students will obtain a bachelor's or master's degree from a cybersecurity degree programme (university or university of applied sciences). With what knowledge and which skills will these students enter a further course of study or the labour market? Will it be technology, organisation, behavioural sciences or a combination  of these? Cybersecurity degree programmes from a technical perspective are an obvious option, but cybersecurity degree programmes from the perspective of human sciences also occupy an important place. And the importance of the non-technical aspects is continuously increasing. The Dutch Cybersecurity Platform Higher Education and Research, dcypher, has made an inventory of 16 of these programmes at universities and universities of applied sciences, including part-time programmes for professionals. 

This inventory of cybersecurity programmes in higher education provides future students, educational institutions, employers and professionals with an overview of the similarities and differences between the programmes offered. This is the first time that the structure of the programmes at universities and universities of applied sciences has been described in a clear and detailed manner. The overview reveals the relative amount of attention paid to subjects such as technology, organisation, and people and behaviour in relation to cybersecurity. This information can be seen at a glance for each programme at www.dcypher.nl/en/education.

The demand for people with expertise in the area of cybersecurity has exceeded the supply for many years. No other profession has such an acute shortage of people. Furthermore, this demand for expertise is expected to increase in the coming years. This is closely related to the size of cyber threats as well as the speed of technological developments. 

With respect to its educational task, dcypher has set itself the ambition of positioning the Netherlands as a country that provides superb highly educated professionals in the field of cybersecurity for both the public and private sectors. Making an inventory of the supply side, in other words the current provision of cybersecurity higher education in the Netherlands, is the first step in this direction. The next step is to determine which profile these highly qualified professional must satisfy on the labour market (the demand-side). The professional profiles already developed by the professional association PvIB will be considered in this.