Computer Forensics Degree: Requirements to Enroll in and Complete a Computer Forensics Degree Program

Published Aug 24, 2009

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Computer Forensics investigators are able to recover and analyze data from computers for use as evidence in the increasing number of cyber-crime investigations. As this field grows, so has the availability of education programs specializing in Computer Forensics. Read on to find out more about the requirements to enroll in and complete a Computer Forensics degree program.

Enrolling in a Computer Forensics Degree Program

Computer Forensics programs are offered as bachelor's and master's degree programs as well as certificate programs designed to compliment a related degree. No prior experience is required for undergraduate programs. However, a minimum level of comfort and familiarity with computers is expected. Most degree programs focus on the computer science aspect of Computer Forensics. Graduate degree programs might require an undergraduate degree in computer science or another closely related area.

Completing a Computer Forensics Degree Program

A bachelor's degree in Computer Forensics generally takes four years to complete or approximately 120 hours of coursework. Programs vary in the amount of coursework directly related to Computer Forensics. Most programs focus heavily on computer science. A few programs focus more on criminal justice. Either program type includes coursework on computer systems, computer forensics tools and procedures, investigative techniques and the legal issues surrounding the field. Many programs require students to demonstrate their skills during a hands-on project. A master's degree in Computer Forensics might take an additional two years beyond the undergraduate degree. Coursework expands on the skills learned during the undergraduate program. A doctorate might take three years beyond the master's. Doctorate programs generally require completion of a thesis or research project.

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