Angelo State University confers a cheap homeland security master's degree that addresses the needs of the field and provides professionals with a degree that can help them advance in their chosen career path. This is a 100 percent online program that is open to all students from all educational backgrounds; preference is given to students who already hold a degree in criminal justice or a related field. Courses are delivered asynchronously and on a 16-week schedule. This degree can be completed in as little as 18 months with full-time study and three years of part-time study. Students can expect to complete 36 credit hours of coursework, a capstone course, and a comprehensive exam; internships are optional but highly encouraged, especially for students with no work experience in the field. Sample courses include Advanced Studies in Human Trafficking, Studies in Disaster Preparedness, and Introduction to Geographic Information Systems.
10 Most Affordable Master’s in Homeland Security Online
An online Master’s in Homeland Security sets professionals in the field apart from their contemporaries for one special reason: it shows their dedication to completing their education in order to be effective in their position. So many professionals realize that the amount of threats that America faces every day is growing and coming from different avenues, so the need for advanced study in the field is necessary. There is no better way to do that than with a graduate degree.
Online programs are the best fit for homeland security professionals who are already working in the field. Flexible and affordable, the degree can advance a career without getting in the way of current employment. And with so many professionals turning to online programs, it should come as no surprise that this ranking was created.
Research for this ranking was conducted by using the National Center for Education Statistics’ College Navigator database. Looking at only online programs, an initial pool of 40 schools were chosen. From there, the final 10 were decided upon based on in-state graduate tuition rates.
Most Affordable Master’s in Homeland Security Online
|1||Angelo State University||San Angelo, TX|
|2||East Carolina University||Greenville, NC|
|3||Arkansas Tech University||Russellville, AR|
|4||Sam Houston State University||Huntsville, TX|
|5||Northwestern State University of Louisiana||Natchitoches, LA|
|6||Trident University International||Cyprus, CA|
|7||American Public University||Charles Town, WV|
|8||Towson University||Towson, MD|
|9||Aspen University||Denver, CO|
|10||Liberty University||Lynchburg, VA|
Accredited Online College Programs
Ranking Low-cost Homeland Security Master’s
Frequently Asked Questions
What are the Career Options for an Online Master’s in Homeland Security Degree?
Professionals in homeland security often work for the United States government. They can work at the federal, state, and local levels in a variety of different careers, including:
- Homeland Security Officer
- FBI Agent
- Counter-Terrorism Analyst
- CIA Foreign Intelligence Officer
- NSA Special Agent
- Emergency Management Director
- Transportation Security Officer
- Cybercrime Analyst
- Disaster Relief Officer
- Department of Defense Contractor
The list of possible career options in the government sector are endless and is only helped by earning an online Master’s in Homeland Security. Professionals will find a range of specializations and job positions that will fit their goals and needs. Additionally, the government pays well and provides an incredible benefits package.
Recently it has become possible to join the private sector as a homeland security professional. Many banks, security firms, and contract companies are searching for these professionals to help them provide security and analyze threats. Many of these organizations also work with the government, so a professional may find themselves working for the government indirectly.
How Much Can You Earn in this Field?
Homeland security is a large and diverse field and the salary range reflects that. Currently, the range is $24,000 to $105,000 a year, with small discrepancies based on a professional’s job title and what part of the United States government they work in or if they work for private companies.
It’s important to note that most of the career options in this field come from the United States government. This means that the salaries provided for any position is subjected to the government’s pay grade. For example, a Customs and Border Patrol agent may be hired at GL-5, which has an annual base pay of $33,829. They may also be hired at GL-9, which has a base rate of $55,413.
These salaries are base pay rates, and while working in the private field can be more lucrative, the government does pay well, careers tend to be steady, there are comprehensive benefits packages, and pay increases are normal after a professional gathers experience. Career advancement is also possible within the government and generally professionals retire with the same agency or department they began with.
Private salaries can be higher from the beginning, ranging from $65,000 to $125,000, but these companies are generally security firms, security contractors, and companies that work with the government on short or long-term contracts. It is also more competitive in the private sector because employers are looking for specialists in homeland security, so the job hunt might be a little more difficult.
What are the Various Disciplines of Homeland Security?
Homeland security is a field that is made up of terrorism, security, government, law, and politics. These main disciplines are in play for every professional in the field, no matter their position or status. In fact, students who take on an undergraduate degree in this field find that they are constantly going back and forth between these disciplines.
There are other disciplines, however. Professionals who work in terrorism and counterterrorism utilize psychology, sociology, and anthropology in their everyday work. If these professionals are analysts or agents, they may even learn a few languages and immerse themselves in another country as part of their job responsibilities.
Homeland security professionals who focus on cybercrime are involved in cybersecurity, computer science, engineering, and programming. They often know several different programming languages and utilize their skills to investigate a cybercrime or create security measures to keep the government’s networks safe from attacks.
Every specialty has its own disciplines that are professionals use on an everyday basis, but these are the ones most often discussed. Once a professional enters the field, they will find that these disciplines will become second nature to them.
How Hard is it to Get a Job in Homeland Security?
Depending on what career position a professional is aiming for, getting a job in homeland security can be difficult. It is also time consuming, stressful, and involves a lot of steps with no knowledge of whether or not a job offer will come. In fact, looking for a job in homeland security often is the reason people leave the field.
Homeland security is run nearly entirely by the United States government. To become a government employee, you must pass a background check, credit check, undergo a psychological assessment, and an interview. To become a homeland security agent at the FBI, CIA, NSA, or the Department of Homeland Security, you must do the above plus submit yourself for drug screenings, interview multiple times in front of multiple committees, get a physical examination and in some cases, even partake in gun range assessments. Some agencies even require your family to undergo a background check.
While all of this is exhaustive, there are still other things to consider that may benefit professionals. One could be the type of concentration they hold; cyberterrorism and cybercrime are in high demand right now. If a professional speaks more than one language fluently and it’s a language that the agency or department needs, that can be a plus on any resume. Additionally, professionals with previous law enforcement backgrounds are often asked to apply for an interview because homeland security needs that experience.
Why are Internships Required for This Degree?
Not all programs require an internship for graduation. Some schools do because they believe it is the best way forward for their students, enabling them to gain work experience while in school, network within the field, and figure out if the field is really something they want to be a part of for the rest of their career.
Internships are about giving people work experience prior to joining any field. In homeland security, it’s critical that a student has work experience because they hit the ground running as soon as they become employed. It’s also a way for students to get accustomed to how the field works and what their responsibilities will be when they move into the workforce.
Work experience while in school is great for networking too. Many students enter the field without any educational or work experience, so an internship can be a great way for them to meet people and work in the field. In America, most of the homeland security internships are offered by the government, meaning that students will be networking within the government. They may even be offered a job once they are out of school.
For students with no previous work experience, internships give them a chance to decide if the field, or their specialization, is the right choice for them. It’s a way for them to work for a few months in the field with other professionals so they can make a decision before committing to a career.
Homeland security is in need of dedicated and educated professionals. From protecting the homeland on foot to stopping cybercrime, this is a challenging and rewarding career that needs professionals from all backgrounds. With an online Master’s in Homeland Security, professionals are working to keep all Americans safe from every type of threat.
This concludes our ranking of the Top 10 Most Affordable Master’s in Homeland Security Online.
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