PhD Program

This program engages faculties from the Khoury College of Computer Sciences, the College of Engineering, and the College of Social Sciences and Humanities. It prepares students from diverse backgrounds and interests to advance the reliability and security of cyberspace as researchers, faculty members, and policy advisors.

In addition to focusing on using technology to address global threats, the program investigates how law, policy, and human behavior influence the design and implementation of security measures. Whether your background and interests are in academia, industry, or government, you’ll graduate as a high-demand professional ready for a successful career.

Our program is affiliated with the International Secure Systems Lab, a collaboration between European and US researchers focused on web security, malware and vulnerability analysis, intrusion detection, and other computer security issues. We are also the lead institution in the ALERT Center, a multi-university Department of Homeland Security Center of Excellence involved in research, education, and technology related to threats from explosives.


  • Admitted PhD students are guaranteed full tuition scholarship and are supported with stipends or fellowships for the first five years of their program
  • Northeastern University has been designated by the National Security Agency and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security as a Center of Academic Excellence in Information Assurance/Cyber Defense, in IA Research, and in Cyber Operations
  • Boston area is home to some of the nation’s largest Department of Defense contractors as well as prestigious government and independent labs, such as MIT Lincoln Lab, MITRE, and Draper Lab
  • Interdisciplinary nature of the program distinguishes it from traditional doctoral degree programs and makes it unique in the Boston area


Application Materials

  • Online application and fee
  • Unofficial undergraduate/graduate transcripts (you can submit official transcripts from all colleges/universities attended at the time of admission)
  • Statement of purpose that should include career goals and expected outcomes and benefits from the program
  • Recent professional resume listing detailed position responsibilities
  • Three confidential letters of recommendation
  • GRE Test Scores Optional for 2022-23
  • Proof of English Proficiency for all applicants (from one of the following):
    • Degree earned or in progress at an U.S. institution
    • Degree earned or in progress at an institution where English is the only medium of instruction
    • Official exam scores from either the TOEFL iBT, IELTS, or PTE exam
  • Applicants seeking enrollment prior to the Fall 2023 term should apply through this link.


Applicants must submit the online application and all required admission materials no later than the stated deadlines to be considered for admission. Admissions decisions are made on a rolling basis.

Applicants are reviewed annually for admission to the Fall Term:

  • December 15

Applicants seeking enrollment prior to the Fall 2023 term should apply at the link under application materials below.

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