MCTI students

Master of Cybersecurity and Threat Intelligence (MCTI)

One year Master degree in Cybersecurity and Threat Intelligence (MCTI)

As Canada's only ONE-year Master Cybersecurity Program that focuses on Threat Intelligence (MCTI), the University of Guelph will help create the next generation of cybersecurity professionals. Located adjacent to Canada's Technology Triangle (CTT) and only a one hour drive from Toronto, our in-person program strongly connects to local industry and career opportunities. Graduates of the master's program will become leaders in security analysis and design, threat intelligence, penetration testing and malware analytics, cryptography engineering and digital forensics.

Cybersecurity is one of the fastest growing fields around the world. Threats to public safety are evolving at a rapid rate with the expansion of technology, networks and devices in existence and coming to market. There is a significant gap between skilled cybersecurity professionals and the need for this expertise – a gap which U of G is ready to address.

Why a degree in cybersecurity?

MCTI graduates enter exciting careers, growing an area that is advancing research and playing a major role in industry and consumer products around the world. Here are just a few careers our alumni choose to Improve Life:

  • Security Architect
  • Security Engineers
  • Security Analyst
  • Penetration Tester
  • Forensic Analyst
  • System Administrator
  • Cybersecurity Consultant
  • Vulnerability Analyst

Hear from two current students

"There is a deficit of cybersecurity people, and here in Canada, there is a lot of opportunities. All the companies need to have a cybersecurity team and there's no people! So that's why this program is very interesting and it's very important." - Gessuri Garcia

"I have a lot of chances to talk to different C-level individuals in the IT industry, especially in the Toronto area... Technology is changing every day. You need to be very agile and very adaptive and very proactive to learn new stuff. " - Milton Kwan

Students sit in the MCTI lecture hall

Degree Details

The MCTI program is a full-time, one-year, course-based program (3 semesters, or 12 months). Students will complete five core courses, one elective course and a culminating independent project. This is where students produce an evidence-based solution to a complex cybersecurity problem in partnership with an industry or academic expert. Or students can complete the six courses and choose an internship for their final semester. 

MCTI lobby with chairs, couches, and U of G sign and mural

State-of-the-art technology for the 2023 program

The University of Guelph has invested over $4M in a new state-of-the-art research, teaching and cybersecurity innovation facility. The 4,000-square foot facility opened in January 2023. It offers dedicated space to equip our masters students with practical learning experiences in the classroom and collaborative work spaces.

Students sit in the PhD lab at MCTI

Gain valuable experience through internships

Every MCTI student will have the opportunity to apply for internships with some of our most prominent industry partners. Depending on your cohort, you will finish your internship in either the summer or fall semester. The internship will provide hands-on experience working in the Cybersecurity and Threat-Intelligence field and networking opportunities.

Two students sit in the Student lounge at MCTI

Topic areas

  • Threat Intelligence
  • Security Architecture
  • Cryptography
  • Public Safety
  • Digital Forensics
  • Attacks and Defence
  • Artificial Intelligence
  • Privacy
Picture of downtown Guelph city hall wading pool
An hour southwest of Toronto, the city is home to one of the most specialized universities in Canada. Guelph attracts young, brilliant talent, and today it ranks #13 among Canada’s small cities for Young Adults. The citizenry is also well-educated, ranking #12 in Educational Attainment.

World Best Cities Rankings

Learn more here

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"Guelph has been voted in the top 10 small cities in all of Canada. With an unemployment rate of 3.8%, the city boasts a strong potential for new graduates in various sectors of the economy. Guelph is one of the best cities to easily find employment."

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8th largest bank in North America

Admission and Tuition

Four Year Honours Degree 

Applicants require a four-year honours degree in computer science or computer engineering. Applicants also need a minimum average of 75% during the last four semesters of full-time study.

Relevant Experience

Applicants with proven skills and working experience in cybersecurity may be considered. Relevant experience or background knowledge of data communication, networking and computer programming needed. 

English Proficiency Test

An English proficiency test is required for applicants whose first language is not English (English Waivers will not be accepted).

Tuition Fees

Full-time tuition is approximately $7,000/semester for domestic students and approximately $14,000/semester for international students. Part-time tuition is approximately $2500/semester for domestic students and approximately $9333/semester for international students. 

For more information on the fee structure for full-time and part-time tuition, please visit Guelph Graduate Fees.

Three students looking at a lap top in class

Application Dates

Full-time and part-time admission to the MCTI program commence in Fall and Winter semesters. 


Fall 2024 applications open on September 1st, 2023.

Winter 2025 applications open on January 1st, 2024.


Go to the Recommendations for International Applicants for suggested application timeline. All required documentation must be submitted by deadline or your application will be considered incomplete.

Application Deadlines

Full-time and part-time admission to the MCTI program commence in Fall and Winter semesters. 


Fall 2024 INTERNATIONAL - revised application deadline is March 1st, 2024.

Fall 2024 DOMESTIC - revised application deadline is May 1st, 2024.

Winter 2025 INTERNATIONAL and DOMESTIC - applications deadline is May 1st, 2024.


*Due to longer processing time for international student visas, students are encouraged to apply early as possible. Please allow 10-12 weeks for response time due to high demand and time required for processing applications.

**Attention International Applicants: Despite Canada's new restrictions (IRCC) on international student visas, our MCTI graduate program remains unaffected. For further information on Canadian study permit policies, please reach out to our International Student Advising Team.

Apply Now

Apply to the University of Guelph in one of two ways: 

OUAC

Common App

International Scholarships

More than $42.7 million in scholarships were awarded to students in 2021.

What you will learn

Concepts and technical measures that are employed to enforce security policies and protect networks and systems from malicious activities. Students will learn how to engineer a secure system and how to secure networks in an ethical manner.

In-depth understanding of theoretical concepts and practical issues in the field of digital forensics and incident response. Students will develop necessary skills, methodologies, and processes to detect cyber incidents and conduct in-depth computer and network investigation.

In-depth understanding of techniques for detecting, responding to, and defeating Advanced Persistent Threats (APT) and malware campaigns using artificial intelligence and data mining techniques. Students will identify, extract, and leverage intelligence from different types of cyber threat actors.

This course provides an in-depth understanding of techniques for detecting, responding to, and defeating Advanced Persistent Threats (APT) and malware campaigns using artificial intelligence and data mining techniques. Students will identify, extract, and leverage intelligence from different types of cyber threat actors.

This course provides an in-depth view of the privacy, regulatory, and ethical issues surrounding cybersecurity. It covers methods of mitigating/treating privacy risks associated with emerging technologies that collect, manage, and analyze data. This course also examines data protection regulations and compliance strategies.

This course provides an in-depth understanding of modern cryptography, with emphasis on practical applications. Topics covered include classical systems, information theory, symmetrical cryptosystems, block ciphers, stream ciphers, DES, AES, asymmetric cryptosystems, ECC, provable security, key exchange and management, and authentication and digital signatures, among others.

This course provides a comprehensive review of tools, techniques, and procedures for monitoring network events and assets to build a secure network architecture. It trains students in methods for hunting attackers that could bypass designed network defense mechanisms in an enterprise.

This two-semester course offers a multidisciplinary forum for discussion of topics related to cybersecurity. The seminar fosters professional skills development (academic and industry), promotes collaboration between industry experts and graduate students, facilitates mentoring and project development, and contributes to the transfer of knowledge between industry and academia.

This course provides an in-depth view of a variety of advanced topics within cybersecurity. Subject areas discussed in any particular semester will depend upon the interests of both the students and the instructor. Students should check with the School of Computer Science to determine what topics will be offered during specific semesters.

"We're approaching a cyber-security talent shortage of 2 million people worldwide in the next 3 to 5 years. Every cyber-security provider can contribute, and when we're joined by respected education institutions like the University of Guelph, our combined effort makes the world safer."

Christopher D. Young, Former CEO, McAfee

Students

Talk to a Current Student

Don’t just take it from us – hear from one of our many students on their experiences with Guelph, integrating into U of G life, and much more. Start chatting with students from Canada or international students.

ISA Cybersecurity Inc. Scholarships in Cybersecurity [I5991]

Selection will be based on academic achievement in semester one (fall semester) for registered MCTI students. Not tenable with other awards offered in the Master of Cyber Security and Threat Intelligence program. Preference will be given to award one award to a female student and one award to a male student. Application is not required.

Read Full Description of Award I5991

Georgian Scholarship in Cybersecurity [I5993]

Selection will be based on academic achievement in semester one (fall semester) for registered MCTI students. Not tenable with other awards offered in the Master of Cyber Security and Threat Intelligence program. Preference will be given to a female student. Application is not required.

Read Full Description of Award I5993

eSentire Scholarship in Cybersecurity [I5994]

Selection will be based on academic achievement in semester one (fall semester) for registered MCTI students. Not tenable with other awards offered in the Master of Cyber Security and Threat Intelligence program. Preference will be given to a female student. Application is not required.

Read Full Description of Award I5994

Co-operators Scholarships in Cybersecurity [I6002]

Selection will be based on academic achievement in semester one (fall semester) for registered MCTI students. Not tenable with other awards offered in the Master of Cyber Security and Threat Intelligence program. Preference will be given to award one award to a female student and one award to a male student. Application is not required.

Read Full Description of Award I6002

Longview Systems Scholarship in Cybersecurity [I6010]

Selection will be based on academic achievement in semester one (fall semester) for registered MCTI students. Not tenable with other awards offered in the Master of Cyber Security and Threat Intelligence program. Application is not required.

Read Full Description of Award I6010

Bruce Power Scholarship in Cybersecurity [I6056]

Selection will be based on a combination of high academic achievement and research potential in semester one (fall semester) for registered MCTI students. Not tenable with other awards offered in the Master of Cyber Security and Threat Intelligence program. Preference will be given to an Indigenous student and/or student that identifies as female. Application is not required.

Read Full Description of Award I6050

Canadian Tire Scholarship in Cybersecurity [I6030]

Selection will be based on academic achievement in semester one (fall semester) for registered MCTI students. Not tenable with other awards offered in the Master of Cyber Security and Threat Intelligence program. Application is not required.

Read Full Description of Award I6030

  • Applicants require a four-year honours degree in computer science or computer engineering, or another discipline with a minor in computer science or computer engineering (applicants with proven skills and working experience in cybersecurity may be considered).
  • A minimum average of 75% (B) during the last four semesters of full-time study for an accredited undergraduate university degree is required.
  • Relevant experience or background knowledge of Data Communication and Networking and Computer Programming
  • A valid English proficiency test is required for applicants whose first language is not English (English Waivers will NOT be accepted).

    Availability is required to attend in-person classes during business hours, after-hours, weekends and off-campus. Use of personal laptop is also required, as per the MCTI Program Laptop Specifications.

Full Admission Requirements

The curriculum for the MCTI program is unique in its core focus on highly desirable and diverse security skills including threat intelligence using artificial intelligence techniques, Security Incident and Event Management (SIEM), intrusion prevention, malware analysis, penetration testing, and computer forensics, and in its integration of experiential lab-based learning.

The innovative curriculum is complemented with experiential learning opportunities developed in support of this proposed program will prepare students for fulfilling and challenging careers in the security field. To keep the curriculum relevant to the industry needs, a Cybersecurity Advisory Committee, consisting of partners from the industry has been formed. These industry partners have also agreed to serve as long-term advisors to the program and they will be responsible for providing feedback on curriculum and other potential areas of program improvement.

In addition to coursework, full-time students will have the option to complete a project with an industry partner that should advance knowledge or practice, and address an emerging challenge in security and privacy.

CIS*6560 [1.00] Cybersecurity and Threat Intelligence Project

Important! You need to bring your own system configured according to these instructions! 

MCTI is a very hands-on program and you need to bring a properly configured system. If you do not carefully read and follow these instructions, you will likely not be able to participate in hands-on exercises. Therefore, we strongly urge you to arrive with a system meeting all the requirements specified below. Please back up your system before class. Better yet, do not have any sensitive data stored on the system. We can’t be responsible for your system or data. 

  • CPU: 64-bit Intel i5/i7 (4th generation+) - x64 bit 2.0+ GHz processor or more recent processor is mandatory. 

  • CRITICAL NOTE: Apple systems using the M1 processor line cannot perform the necessary virtualization functionality needed in some courses and therefore cannot in any way be used!  

  • It is critical that your CPU and operating system support 64-bit so that our 64-bit guest virtual machines will run on your laptop. VMware provides a free tool for Windows that will detect whether or not your host supports 64-bit guest virtual machines. For further troubleshooting, this article also provides good instructions for Windows users to determine more about the CPU and OS capabilities. For Macs, please use this support page from Apple to determine 64-bit capability.

  • BIOS settings must be set to enable virtualization technology, such as "Intel-VT". Be absolutely certain you can access your BIOS.

  • 32 GB (Gigabytes) of RAM or higher is recommended
  • USB 3.0 Type-A port is required. At least one open and working USB 3.0 Type-A port is required. Therefore, a Type-C to Type-A adapter may be necessary for newer laptops. Some endpoint protection software prevents the use of USB devices - test your system with a USB drive to ensure you can load the course data. 

  • 200 Gigabytes of Free Space on your System Hard Drive. Free Space on Hard Drive is critical to host the VMs we distribute. 

  • Local Administrator access is absolutely required.  

  • Wi-Fi 802.11 capability is mandatory. You'll need to connect to an in-class Wi-Fi network in some courses. 

  • Host Operating System: Your system must be running either Windows 10 Pro, Linux or macOS 10.14 or later that also can install and run VMware virtualization products. 

  • It is necessary to fully update your host operating system prior to the class to ensure you have the right drivers and patches installed to utilize the latest USB 3.0 devices. 

  • Those who use a Linux host must also be able to access exFAT partitions using the appropriate kernel or FUSE modules. 

  • Download and install 7-Zip (for Windows Hosts) or Keka (macOS). Without these extraction tools, you'll be unable to extract large archives we'll supply to you in class. 

  • Download and install the latest version of VMware Workstation Pro or VMware Fusion Pro versions before class. If you do not own a licensed copy of VMware Workstation or Fusion, please contact us to provide you a license.  

  • You must get the versions of the products that have "Pro" in their name. The free non-Pro versions of these products (e.g., VMware Workstation Player) are not sufficient because they do not support snapshot functionality, which we will need to use. 

  • Other virtualization software, such as VirtualBox and Hyper-V, are not appropriate because of compatibility and troubleshooting problems you might encounter during class. 

  • VMware Workstation Pro on Windows 10 is not compatible with Windows 10 Credential Guard and Device Guard technologies. Please disable these capabilities for the duration of the class, if they're enabled on your system. 

 

The MCTI program is made possible through in-kind investments of upwards of $2 million by industry partners McAfee Canada, Cisco Systems, IBM, BlackBerry, eSentire, and Kaspersky Lab. The experiential learning will leverage open-source and proprietary security software from our industry partners including Cisco Systems, IBM, Kaspersky Lab and McAfee. The experiential learning takes place in in a new state-of-the-art cybersecurity teaching lab, which enables students to work with real and simulated security attacks independently and collaboratively.

 

Meet our faculty.

Anderson Ferneyhough

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Samira Eisaloo

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Adesola Anidu

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Aaruni Upadhyay

LinkedIn

Curtis Collins

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Dilip Sahoo

LinkedIn

Alex Chen

LinkedIn

Zibekieni Obuzor

LinkedIn

Prabhat Semwal

LinkedIn

Kassidy Marsh

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Nidhip Chikhalia

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Yash Dhawan

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All MCTI classes are held just off campus at our brand new $2 million cyber security office.

The address is 150 Research Ln - Suite 120, Guelph, ON N1G 4T2 - located on main floor.

https://goo.gl/maps/ttENkELQqLMu7p4QA

Please email the MCTI team directly at cyber@uoguelph.ca.