Master of Computing Technology (MCT) - Curriculum 357 (Distance Learning)

Program Manager

Loren E. Peitso

Code CS/Lp, Glasgow East, Room 335

(831) 656-3009, DSN 756-3009

Academic Associate

Alan Shaffer, Ph.D.

Code CS/As, Glasgow East, Room 218

(831) 656-3319, DSN 756-3319

Brief Overview

The MCT degree offers its graduates the knowledge and skills necessary to specify, evaluate, and manage computer system development, as well as the ability to provide technical guidance in the analysis, design, and application of software and firmware used in the Navy. The MCT program consists of 12 courses selected to provide breadth and depth in the latest computing technologies. Four courses provide a foundation in computing for those without a Computer Science background. Four specialization fundamentals courses provide breadth in computing technologies and techniques examined with respect to a consistent specialization theme, and the final four specialization depth courses develop strong expertise in the specialization area. A capstone paper completes the degree.

The MCT degree provides a graduate education for those in unique circumstances. State-of-the-art distance learning (DL) technology is used to bring the MCT program straight to the student on duty. With fully Web-based courses, there is no required "class time"-no need to get off the flight schedule, miss any watches, or adjust a duty schedule. MCT offers a seamless transition from duty station to duty station; when you move the program goes with the student, even on the road. For organizations that desire to sponsor groups of students, we can arrange to deliver courses at an accelerated pace via video tele-education (VTE), this option requires scheduled on-duty classroom time.

The MCT degree is fully accredited and taught by the same faculty that teaches NPS resident courses. All courses are web-based conversions of existing NPS courses. These fully-online versions are taught by faculty that teach the courses in residence.

MCT is an excellent fit for those officers and government service (GS) personnel whose career track would not otherwise lend itself to receiving a resident technical graduate education. Available anywhere in the world, at home, on detachment, and at sea.

Requirements for Entry

A baccalaureate degree, or the equivalent, with above average grades in mathematics, (including differential and integral calculus) resulting in an academic profile code (APC) of at least 325 is required. Undergraduate degrees in applied science or engineering are highly desirable. Students lacking these prerequisites may be acceptable for the program, providing their undergraduate records and/or other indicators of success, such as the Graduate Record Examination (GRE), indicate an ability to work in quantitative subjects. While previous academic or practical experience in computer science is certainly helpful and can enhance the applicant's potential for admission, such experience is not a prerequisite. Active/Active Duty Reserve U.S. military and GS personnel are eligible.

Entry Date

The MCT is a 12-quarter (one course per quarter), fully-online curriculum with entry dates in January/July. If further information is needed, contact the Program Officer or the Academic Associate for this curriculum.


Master of Computing Technology

The Master of Computing Technology program is awarded after the satisfactory completion of a program which satisfies, as a minimum, the following degree requirements:

  1. At least 40 quarter-hours of graduate-level work, of which at least 12 quarter-hours must be at the 4000 level.
  2. Completion of an approved sequence of courses constituting specialization in an area of computing technology.
  3. Completion of a capstone paper.


None currently assigned. DL students desiring a computer science subspecialty code (6203P) may be able to arrange a resident assignment at NPS with their sponsor/community detailer to add a research element to their degree program and complete the ESR requirements for a computer science subspecialty code. Six months of resident study will be required.

If a transition to a MS in Computer Science (MSCS) degree is also desired, the research element must be arranged before the MCT curriculum is finished. A MSCS (in lieu of the MCT degree) will be granted after completion of the research element and thesis. The MSCS cannot be granted if the MCT has been awarded for the same coursework.

Typical Course of Study

1st Year Computer Science Foundations

Course NumberTitleCreditsLecture HoursLab Hours
CS2020Introduction to Programming


Current: 4; New: 2

CS3030Fundamentals of Computer Architecture and Operating Systems



CS2121Fundamentals of Automata and Algorithms



CS3502Computer Communications and Networks



2nd Year Specialization Fundamentals

Four-course sequence, all courses at the 3000 or 4000 level, in one of the listed specializations:

3rd Year Specialization Depth

Four-course sequence, minimum12 credits at the 4000 level, continuing the specialization sequence:

Specialization Options

Information Security Systems Engineering (ISSE)

The role of Information Systems Security Engineering (ISSE) is to help ensure that the security requirements of systems are met. Lacking proper security engineering, systems fail to be certified and accredited, causing costly delays or failures. Ideally the Information Systems Security Engineer (also known as an ISSE) will be a member of the system development team throughout its lifecycle; however, for preexisting systems, the ISSE may be required to assess existing system vulnerabilities and determine mitigating strategies. As systems have grown more complex and adversaries continue to successfully exploit numerous vulnerabilities, the need for improved secure system engineering and the formation of a larger cadre of skilled ISSEs has become more acute. The ISSE course sequence will provide the knowledge and analytical skills required to contribute productively in system developments and assist in building a larger cadre of skilled ISSEs to combat adversaries.

Principles of Cyber Defense

The Principles of Cyber defense fundamentals sequence is comprised of the courses offered in the Cyber Security Fundamentals graduate certificate. It is intended to provide a technically rigorous foundation upon which to build knowledge and skills in computer network defense, attack and exploitation. Each course is comprised of both instruction and laboratory exercises involving cyber security aspects of computers and networks. These synergistic activities allow students to internalize key concepts in cyber security. The specialization depth sequence will give the student a detailed understanding of and ability to function in real operational situations involving cyber security sharing courses with the Cyber Security Defense Certificate. They will gain the technical depth required to actively prepare for and respond to attacks. Students will learn to analyze network traffic to extract the observable characteristics of networks and network devices, thus providing a basis for defensive strategies. They will learn to build tools and how to configure systems and networks to permit systems to foster resiliency and continuity of operations, perhaps with reduced capacity, through attacks. Students will learn how to construct systems and tools to mitigate the impact of malicious software. Students will learn forensic techniques to retrieve and analyze stored information that may be corrupted or hidden. Considerable programming and hands-on work with systems and networks will be required.


The Computer Networks specialization is designed to provide knowledge of computer architecture, networks, and system software for real-time and multicomputer systems and in the rapidly growing areas of wireless networking, mobile devices, and related topics, including mobile computing and wireless security.


The generalist specialization concentrated on understanding a broad cross section of the computing field with respect to the technologies in defense communications and weapons systems the unrestricted line officer will work with in the near to medium term. Topic areas include computer and network security, autonomous and robotic systems, networked distributed systems including cloud technologies and emerging wireless mobile computing technologies.