Affordable Online Associate in Network Security Degrees

Network security is a dynamic field where professionals strategize, develop processes, and conduct audits to protect an organization’s data assets and network traffic. With an associate degree in network security, you can explore the field with a minimal time and financial commitment, especially when coursework is conducted online. Graduates of these programs are also prepared to transfer into a four-year program, making this a more affordable path to an eventual bachelor’s degree.

Through these cheap network security degree programs, you’ll learn key skills like troubleshooting hardware and software issues, establishing robust cybersecurity systems, and monitoring and protecting networks of various sizes.

Pursuing an online network security degree also prepares you for a broad range of careers. Information security analysts, for example, had a median average salary of about $92,000 in 2016, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. And the industry is poised to experience 18% growth over the next decade — a much higher rate than many other fields.

The rankings below help prospective students locate an affordable network security degree online program that’s right for them. All programs are fully accredited, and the rankings have been formulated to reflect both low tuition rates and the schools that deliver the greatest return on investment. If you’re interested in earning an online associate degree in network security, and you value the flexibility and affordability of an online program, be sure to take a look at these top schools.

Most Affordable Online Associate in Network Security Degrees
Rank School Score Toggle Content

University of Maine at Fort Kent

Value Score 6.29
Average Tuition $6,600
Students Receiving Financial Aid 92%
Net Price $9,444
Graduation Rate 40%
Student to Faculty Ratio 15:1
Retention Rate 70%
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 61
Number of Online Programs 3

UMFK's online associate of science in information security gives students a thorough grounding in both theory and practical applications related to information security and information technology. This institution, located in a small town in northern Maine on the Canadian border, offers a fully online program, delivered through the Blackboard platform, to prepare learners for careers as computer security specialists or information security administrators, or for baccalaureate studies in information security. The 60-credit program usually takes learners approximately two years to complete and is split between general education requirements and information security coursework, including electives in computer forensics and investigations, cryptography, cyber defense, and addressing the ethical implications of security measures. Applicants must meet a minimum 2.0 GPA requirement or GED equivalent, although admissions also takes life and work experience into consideration. Since distance learners qualify for in-state tuition, the school offers a particularly affordable online associate degree in network security.

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Minnesota West Community and Technical College

Value Score 6.27
Average Tuition $5,146
Students Receiving Financial Aid 89%
Net Price $8,693
Graduation Rate 50%
Student to Faculty Ratio 19:1
Retention Rate 67%
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 57
Number of Online Programs 11

Minnesota West's two-year online associate of applied science in information security and assurance program familiarizes students with the diagnostic tools and technical solutions needed to run, analyze, and secure networks and computer information systems. The college administers campuses throughout southwestern Minnesota and offers its network security degree online via the Desire2Learn Brightspace platform. The program's format includes specific meeting times and its Granite Falls campus requires limited in-person requirements. Classes cover topics including ethical hacking to routers and switches and other courses focusing on different operating systems, such as Unix and Windows. In addition, the 60-credit program requires general education and technical education electives. Distance learners benefit from services such as online advisers and full library privileges. Minnesota West features many program-to-program articulation agreements for students continuing on to a bachelor’s degree.

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Georgia Military College

Value Score 5.73
Average Tuition $5,400
Students Receiving Financial Aid 96%
Net Price $7,630
Graduation Rate 25%
Student to Faculty Ratio 25:1
Retention Rate 56%
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 32
Number of Online Programs 21

GMC’s associate of science in cyber security provides fully online instruction via the Moodle platform in desktop programming, networks, data structures, and cyber security to students aspiring to become information security analysts or pursuing a bachelor’s degree in cyber security or computer science. Students generally take one and a half years of full-time study (or seven terms) to complete the 95 to 99 quarter hours needed for the degree, a total divided into 65 to 69 quarter hours in core curriculum and 30 more in cyber security concentration. The program’s computer information systems coursework includes cyber information security and features web-based lab activities for hands-on practice with security tools. Administering campuses throughout Georgia, GMC isn’t just for military personnel -- the school designs its online offerings for broad accessibility. Distance learners enjoy free tutoring and library services. The school is a relatively cheap option for an online network security degree, particularly because GMC charges no out-of-state tuition fees and offers financial aid to most students.

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St Philip's College

Value Score 5.46
Average Tuition $5,470
Students Receiving Financial Aid 76%
Net Price $5,600
Graduation Rate 10%
Student to Faculty Ratio 18:1
Retention Rate 58%
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 45
Number of Online Programs 10

SPC’s online associate of applied science in information assurance and cybersecurity trains students not only to design and maintain computer networks, but also to handle cyber attacks and gather data to prosecute cyber crime. The two-year program, delivered fully online via Instructure Canvas, consists of 60 credit hours that students typically take over five semesters, with 15 credits in core requirements plus specialized coursework that includes security courses approved by the Department of Homeland Security and the National Security Agency. Students may also complete relevant internships for credit. This San Antonio college, one of the five Alamo Colleges serving Bexar County, Texas, is both a historically black college and a Hispanic-servicing institution, and it offers many joint articulation programs and equivalency plans with four-year institutions for students wishing to continue to a bachelor’s degree. Distance learners in this network security degree program benefit from free MS Office 365 software, online tutoring, and library access.

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Central Texas College

Value Score 5.44
Average Tuition $2,940
Students Receiving Financial Aid 71%
Net Price $4,316
Graduation Rate 8%
Student to Faculty Ratio 16:1
Retention Rate 54%
Percentage of Students in Online Programs 53
Number of Online Programs 19

Located in Killeen, Central Texas College's associate of applied science degree in information security program provides distance learners with the programming and security know-how necessary to safeguard individual privacy, business assets, and national security in a security manager role. The two-year program uses the Blackboard platform plus courses in multimedia format not requiring the internet, and consists of 60 credits with 15 core curriculum credits and specialized courses such as IT Security for homeland security specialists and incident response and handling. Students also receive academic credit for completing an internship in computer and information systems security. While courses feature firm start and end dates, students enrolled in this network security online degree have plenty of flexibility in completing their work. Learners also benefit from services such as online tutoring, advising, and library access.

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