University of Minnesota
University of Minnesota

Master of Science in Security Technologies


The Master of Science in Security Technologies (MSST) shapes tomorrow’s analytical and risk management policymakers and innovators through a multi-disciplinary graduate program developed in response to growing demand in many levels of industry and government.

During the fourteen-month program and through a multi-disciplinary, systems approach, the program synthesizes core learning in four areas:

  • Security Methods and Foundations
  • Application Expertise (including cyber, bio, food, infrastructure, global supply chains)
  • Systems Science (interdependency among critical networks, components, human capital, organizational dimensions)
  • Social and Policy Dimensions

Through elective courses, students also choose one of two learning tracks, and can further specialize through a range of elective courses:

  • Security Systems Technologies
  • Security and Risk Management

This program bridges disciplines to address local, regional, national and global areas of need, seeding innovative capabilities while enabling interdisciplinary connections through direct links to industry, business and government partners.

MSST Curriculum

The M.S. Program (32 Credits) draws on the fields of systems risk analysis, engineering (hardware and software), emerging technologies, economics, human factors, law, food and bio safety, and public policy to teach and investigate security technologies and address pertinent issues. We also offer a masters minor (minimum 7 credits) and a Ph.D. minor (minimum 12 credits).

The curriculum comprises a balance of courses (see figure below) from the following core areas:

  • Foundations of security science and technology, methods, and algorithms;
  • Application areas, including Critical Infrastructures-- e.g., communications/IT/cyber, power/energy, water, and transportation; food/infectious diseases, financial networks, supply chain management, etc.;
  • Coupled dynamic systems: Infrastructure interdependencies and dynamics of coupled infrastructures, system-wide risk/threat management, and complex interactive networks (including finance and economics, policy and regulation);
  • Regulatory, policy, legal, economic and business implications;
  • Management and leadership development (including communication skills, change management, ethics, project management, conflict management).

The following diagram demonstrates the building blocks of the MSST. The core areas are depicted in white, with flexibility allowed to develop specialization for a variety of application areas as indicated in gold.

Chart depicting interrelatedness of MSST courses

The program culminates with a Capstone Project, an independent applied investigation on a relevant issue in the area of Security Technologies or homeland security.

The MSST degree is offered by the Technological Leadership Institute (TLI) within the University of Minnesota’s College of Science and Engineering. MSST classes launched in June 2010.

To find out more, please go to the MSST Prospective Students page.  

Read articles from TLI's newsletter about the MSST program.

290 McNamara Alumni Center
200 Oak Street SE
Minneapolis, MN 55455
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(612) 624-5747

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