Cybersecurity (B.Sc.) at Saarland University - taught in English
Taught entirely in English. Starting in the 2021/2022 winter semester. Apply until July 31, 2021!
Young field of crucial importance with a bright future
Close collaboration with leading research institutions in the local area
Unique degree course taught entirely in English from the very first semester
Opportunities for language courses and internships that complement the academic syllabus
Choose your specialization from among a broad variety lectures and seminars on IT Security
Stay on at Saarland University after graduating and study for a master's degree
in Cybersecurity or Entrepreneurial Cybersecurity or enroll on a PhD preparation program at
the Graduate School for Computer Science and embark on an academic career at CISPA.
Cybersecurity threats have become prevalent in our daily lives. Vulnerabilites in computer systems
are exploited to spy on users and sabotage even the most security-critical infrastructure
(e.g. energy and water supplies, healthcare systems or transport networks). The abundance
of readily available, large-scale, privacy-sensitive datasets poses unprecedented risks
to user privacy. Consequently, there is an almost unlimited demand for cybersecurity professionals,
both from the academic sector and from industry.
This is why Saarland University has teamed up with the CISPA Helmholtz Center for Information
to offer a unique B.Sc. course in Cybersecurity that teaches the essentials from the very
start. CISPA is the world's no. 1 research institute for Cybersecurity, which attests to its high
standards and the broad range of topics investigated in CISPA's cutting-edge research. And best of
all: courses in this program are taught entirely in English, making them accessible to international
Actually, I want to be a Professor and research is part of it. The main reason why I chose this
career path is teaching: preparing and giving lectures, supervising students, and kindle their
interest and enthusiasm for my topics. What I found interesting as well is the freedom in terms of
topics. Part of being a researcher is solving problems that are yet unknown, which means you do not
necessarily know what will be the next step. You need to reflect, invent, come up with creative
ideas, implement and test your ideas. Sometimes the idea will work, sometimes it won’t. This freedom
to invent my own path (instead of doing what somebody wants you to do), was another important reason
for me to become a researcher.
What do you love about your job/your career path?
A lot of things!
My research is in the area of IT Security and I love the opportunity to contribute to making our
interconnected world more secure my means of our research. I like working on specific problems and
suggesting solutions. I also love a researcher’s freedom. I can chose my research areas, projects or
even people I want to work with independently. I can organize my work day according to my
preferences and I like being able to share my skills and research results with others, not just by
giving lectures or supervising students, but also giving talks at international conferences. These
conferences are a great means to build strong international networks and connections. What I also
like about conferences, is the opportunity to expand my knowledge in various areas.
What are you working on right now?
In my research, I am developing new methods to detect malware and vulnerable programs automatically
and accurately. Additionally, I am investigating how much we can rely on existing antivirus
Is it still unusual to work in IT-Security research as a woman?
Even if there are more male than female IT-Security researchers, this did not influence my decision
to work in this area and it has nothing to do with my work. There are also trainings or workshops
(Blackhoodie, e.g.) which try and encourage more women to work in this area. Saarland University
offers programs such as MentoMINT or the excellence program for female junior scientists. I also
enjoy answering questions or sharing my experience!
Solving the challenges of today
and providing security for tomorrow.
The course lasts six semesters and you will graduate with a Bachelor of Science
Lectures and seminars fueled by pioneering research in Cybersecurity are complemented by elements of
a regular Computer Science course.
Students will be able to specialize early on by choosing their elective subjects from a broad range
of topics, driven by state-of-the-art research in Cybersecurity at CISPA.
Additionally, students attend language courses and Computer Science courses taught in cooperation
with other excellent local Computer Science institutions.
Prof. Dr. Christian Rossow: 3 reasons for your Bachelor studies in Cybersecurity:
These courses teach:
Basic mathematical knowledge required in the context of a computer science or bioinformatics degree.
Ability to formalise and abstract
Ability to acquire further mathematical knowledge with the help of text books
Students get to know the most important methods of designing algorithms and data structures:
divide-and-conquer, dynamic programming, incremental construction, "greedy algorithms", decimation, forming hierarchies, randomization.
They learn to analyze algorithms and data structures for their time and space requirements with respect to the usual RAM machine model and to
compare them on this basis. Various kinds of analysis are considered (worst case, amortized, expected case).
Students get acquainted with important efficient data structures and algorithms. They should acquire the ability to apply theoretial analyses
and considerations to given methods in order to check their applicability to actually occuring scenarios. Moreover, students should school their
skills in developing or adjusting algorithms and data structures with performance guarantees in mind.
Students shall understand the functionality and the most important properties of modern computer architectures and operating systems.
Furthermore students shall understand the design principles underlying their implementations.
More information can be found here.
The students apply the knowledge they have learned within the Foundations of Cybersecurity 1 & 2 lectures.
In particular, they extend their theoretical knowledge through practical exercises. They learn to solve IT security challenges and
organize themselves within a team. They are hence knowledgable about the core aspects of IT security, privacy, and usability.
At the end of the proseminar, students have gained a basic understanding of current or fundamental aspects of a specific subfield of computer science.
In particular, they have gained basic competence in independent scientific research, classification, summarization, discussion, criticism and presentation of scientific findings.
Compared to the seminar, the focus of the proseminar is on the acquisition of basic scientific working methods.
At the end of the seminar, students have primarily gained a deep understanding of current or fundamental aspects of a specific subfield of computer science.
They have gained further competence in independent scientific research, classifying, summarizing, discussing, criticizing and presenting scientific findings.
Take a look at some example schedules for your
Course providing you with the opportunity to choose your elective courses according to your preferred
Cryptography, Software Security, or Human-Centric Security.
Our course aims to train the next generation of elite cybersecurity experts and is therefore competitve.
We select the best of the best, which also creates a great atmosphere for learning once you start your
Since our course is taught in English, good proficiency in English (level C1) is required.
Students have to submit their application documents via Saarland University's online appication system.
The best candidates will then be selected by our admissions panel.
Please find detailed information about requirements on the bachelor's website of Saarland
coming soon: application portal opening November 1, 2021
Curriculum Vitae, High-School diploma/school-leaving certificate, aptitude test, certificate of
proficiency in English.
Your application consists of 2 parts:
your school-leaving certificate qualifying you for entrance to a German university, and
The results of both an aptitude test (SAT or TestAS) and an English proficiency test (IELTS
or TOEFL), the latter is not required if you are a native speaker of English.
(If you are unable to provide either of these results, your can either provide a certificate
proving that you have taken part in the (semi-)finals or of an international Computer Science
competition (such as IOI), or you can come to Saarbruecken for an interview here in person.)
All applications will be ranked according to the final grade obtained in the school-leaving
certificate and any grades achieved in the second component (if applicable).
Places will be allocated to ranking from highest to lowest.
As part of the admissions process, you will be sent further information on how to prepare your time
in Saarbruecken and (if applicable) details of your scholarship and accommodation. After your arrival, we
will provide you with assistance during your first few days as part of our Welcome Week.
from November 1
until January 1
from May 1
until July 15
The Cybersecurity Course starts every winter semester.
Students are admitted twice per year: early admission (in January) and regular admission (July).
We accept applications for regular admission from May 1, 2021.
Please apply via Saarland University's online application portal.
Our admissions panel will then select the best- qualified students.
Successful candidates will be notified during the month following the application deadline.
Saarland University enjoys close cooperation with other research institutes on campus, giving it a strong competitive edge in the fields of Computer Science and Nanoscience and in European Studies.
Academic excellence of our degree courses and our teaching
Top CHE university rankings, high-quality supervision and a modern
infrastructure on a well-connected campus.
University life here is international, not just because we are very close to
the borders with France and Luxembourg but also because of our degree courses taught in English
and collaboration with international institutions.
With good public transport connections to the city center, the University
is also close to the forest and offers a variety of sports and
leisure activitites on campus.
Our Computer Science courses are rated as excellent in CHE rankings. There are no tuition
fees and the cost of living in a smaller city with a vibrant cultural scene is moderate.
Sounds too good to be true? Saarland University’s study courses are state-funded so there
are no tuition fees for bachelor' and consecutive master's degreee courses.
Students only have to pay an administrative fee of €286 per semester. This
includes a pass for free public transport throughout the state of Saarland, payment of
premiums for insurance coverage as well as access to university facilities that entitles
students to eat at the university canteens at reduced prices.
Situated in the region where the borders of
France, Luxembourg, and Germany meet, everyday life in Saarland has traditionally been
in character. Investigate our Center for International Students.
Five more reasons to live and study in Saarbruecken or its surroundings:
The open and down-to-earth nature of the people from Saarland (the
Saarländers) has always made it easy for newcomers to settle in quickly.
Whether you come from Germany, an EU country or other regions of the world -
you are always welcome in Saarland!
Saarland is located in the heart of Europe. In only 1h and 50 minutes, you
can reach Paris by train and we have 4 international airports within easy
reach. (Saarbrücken, Luxembourg, Frankfurt-Main, and Frankfurt-Hahn)
Saarland is green! It has the highest proportion of public forest with over
70% and the most natural forest in Germany. It can come up with no less than
3,545 kilometres of rivers and creeks. So: go out into nature, recharge your
batteries, and simply leave the stress of everyday life behind you. With its
varied landscapes and extensive forests, Saarland is the number one address
for health-conscious people from everywhere.
We love festivals and one event follows another, no matter if you are
looking for street food, French-German theater, rock music or classical
music: everyone finds an event matching his or her own taste. The festival
year begins in Saarbrücken with the Max Ophüls festival for talented
German-language filmmakers, which marks the discovery of young talents from
Austria, Germany and Switzerland for 36 years. It is followed in early
summer by the PERSPECTIVES festival with theatre, acrobatics, dance and
performance and in summer, there are several open-air events.
We are enthusiastic about sports! No surprise, because there could not be a
better framework. More than 390,000 people take part in sports in app. 2,200
Saarland clubs. With 40 percent of the population, the state is the absolute
leader in a nationwide comparison. Popular sports include hiking, cycling,
running, tennis, horseback riding, etc.
There are no tuition fees at Saarland University and the cost of living is moderate compared
to other cities in Germany. There are various funding opportunites to support your studies
Students who are not eligible for German stipend programs (such as BaföG) are eligible to
apply for our stipend program that will provide stipends from industry and academic
partners. Stipends will cover your living expenses.
We cooperate with a stipend foundation to select who will receive such scholarships. You
will learn whether or not you're eligible for a stipend together with your study program
More information on how to finance your stay.
Work as a student helper or tutor:
CISPA is offering part-time employment as a student helper in research, as tutors, or as a
team member of our CISPA Cysec Lab. Check out
Welcome Center’s Guide
for general information on working in Germany.
Am I actually allowed to travel to Saarbrücken? Yes! We're looking forward to welcoming
international students and visitors to Saarland University.
We are prepared for both high-quality virtual courses as well as providing hygiene
guidelines on site. Read More
If you aren’t living in Germany yet, you can apply to rent one of the apartments reserved by
the university for its international BSc programs.
These apartments are intended to make it easier for you to settle in and can be rented for
By the end of the first year, you’ll need to find new accommodation (either in a university
hall of residence or on the private housing market).
The university provides assistance with both.
It is also very common to share an apartment with fellow students (called Wohngemeinschaft
in German, or WG for short).
Although both our Bachelor’s Course Cybersecurity as well as all consecutive Master’s
Courses are fully taught in English, you may still find it interesting or helpful to study
some German for your daily life and free-time activities.
Please note that this is an optional offer for those you may be interested in getting to
know some of the local culture and language. It is perfectly possible to get by in English.
More information on German language courses can be found
Prepare your stay at Saarland University:
Once you have received confirmation of acceptance, you just need to enroll, pay your
semester fee, and find accommodation (See Support & Services).
Please have a look at our checklist summarizing
everything you need to do and take care of before travelling to Germany as well as the
administrative tasks you need to complete upon your arrival (e.g. health insurance coverage,
bank account, temporary residence permit, registration with local authorities, etc.)
Have a look at
Saarland Unversity's Welcome Center.
helping your with planning your arrival and initial formalities. They will be happy to
Just send them an e-mail at
Upon your arrival in Saarbruecken, you can look forward to your
CISPA Helmholtz Center for Information Security is a German national Big Science Institution within
Helmholtz Association. Our research encompasses all aspects of Information Security.
Research at CISPA feeds into the curriculum of the degree programs in Cybersecurity at Saarland
seminars and lectures will cover the very latest research topics.
Cybersecurity is a young and fast-developing field.
As a Helmholtz Center for Information Security, CISPA is dedicated to cutting-edge
foundational research combined with innovative application-oriented research in the fields of
We are committed to the highest international academic standards. Our world-class
research environment offers extensive resources to a wide range of researchers, thus providing an
attractive destination for talented academics and top scientists from around the globe.
No, you don't require any previous knowledge of German.
Our courses are taught entirely in English.
At Saarland University and CISPA we are used to working with with international students and
staff on a daily basis.
We are providing the best conditions to make you feel welcome at Saarland University.
Additionally, we offer
courses for beginners and intermediate students
if you are interested in improving your every-day language skills.
All rooms are rooms in shared apartments, which means you will have your own private
bedroom and share the kitchen and bathroom with other students.
Usually 3 or 4 students will share one apartment.
The rooms are located in a good distance to the university and you can reach the
university campus by bus.
The rooms are fully furnished and vary in size, but range between 14m² and 23m².
The rental prices range between 300€ and 400€ per month, including utilities.
Rental costs are not included in the program and have to be paid by the students
In addition, a refundable security deposit of around 500€ will have to be paid.
Details on the specific room that can be offered to you will be made available to you
The decisive source for this is the ANABIN database issued by the German federal
Anabin classifies foreign school-leaving diplomas as either to be equivalent to a German
university entrance qualification or specifies addition requirements.
Unfortunately, ANABIN is available in German only.
Below, you find instructions on how to use Anabin to check if your diploma is eligible.
Additionally, here is a list of the most common cases per country.
You're presented with a list of all certificates that are relevant for admission
in German universities.
Select your certificate and a window opens that shows the eligibility with this
the relevant statement here is “Direkter Zugang (für alle Fächer) zu allen
This means that your certificate equals a German university entrance
Any other statement there means that additional restrictions apply that you
unfortunately need to translate using an online translation service.
Some Examples Most common school-leaving diplomas of EU countries are accepted
In doubt, please check Anabin as described above. Here are some examples for
Scottish Qualifications Certificate (SQC) - Higher/Advanced Higher,
General Certificate of Education - Advanced Level / Advanced Subsidiary Level,
Cambridge Pre-U, AICE, International Advanced Level,
Switzerland: Matura (other special cases in Anabin)
Albania: Deftese pjekurie with Certificate Matura Shteterore
Turkey: Lise Diplomasi 11 years in conjunction with Turkish
university admission exam documented by code card with more than 180000 points
(in SAY, SÖZ, EA or DIL).
Israel: Te'udat bagrut
India: IIT Joint Entrance Exam (Main and Advanced)
China: DSD-II School and gaokao
USA: High-School Diploma with advanced placement test (required
grades specified in Anabin)
Within the first two semesters, changing between study courses in the area of Computer
Science and Cybersecurity is not difficult.
Apart from a strong focus on Cybersecurity topics, the course also teaches foundations of
Computer Science, programming I and II, algorithms, theoretical Computer Science, etc offering
you sufficien flexibility during your studies and plenty of career paths to choose from.
If you start out with Computer Science and realize that you want to change your specialization,
you can still switch to Cybersecurity.
A large part of your course work (e.g. all courses listed above) will be recognized - vice
We highly recommend that you provide results of the above-mentioned study entrance tests as part
of your application.
If you choose to apply for an on-site interview, we will announce in July/August if interviews
will be carried out remotely because of the pandemic.
We will send out notifications of acceptance or rejection within the month following the
Please be aware that we cannot inform you before the end of the application period.
Thus, even if you apply by May 31 e.g., your notification will be in August.
We are encouraging you to apply for early admission (your notification will then be in the month
We apply the same admission criteria to all students.
By graduating from VSi+MINT, you acquire a German university entrance qualification.
However, the international BSc programs for Computer Science and Cybersecurity require
additional qualifications that you have to provide.
Please check the relevant section on Admission requirements.
Uni assist documents are not necessary.
However, appropriate uni-assist documents are one way of proving your German university entrance
So, if in doubt, submit them if you have them.