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Networking and Systems Administration BS

Stephen Zilora, Chair
(585) 475-7645, Steve.Zilora@rit.edu

http://nsa.rit.edu/

Program overview

Networking is the technology of interconnecting computing devices of all types so information can flow between them. This includes activities as simple as topology design to those as complex as the configuration of services and protocols to enable an entire intranet and the support of that environment.

While all that data eventually gets to the user, it spends most of its time on hundreds of interconnected servers. Systems administration is the design, installation, configuration, operation, and support of these servers. Networking professianls must be knowledgable in considering when to use physical or virtual servers, when to use a public or private cloud, and other key performance, reliability, and security issues.

In today’s information-rich environment, computer systems exist at the heart of nearly every organization and are critical to the organization's success. Upon graduation, students can work in nearly any industry as a valuable part of the team helping to ensure their organization's products and services are always available.

Curriculum

The BS degree in networking and systems administration is designed to teach students to be the designers, implementers, operators, and maintainers of computing networks and the computer systems attached to the network. Students evaluate existing networks and computing systems, suggest improvements, monitor such systems for faults, and plan for growth. They will have the opportunity to work in small- to large-scale companies in any industry segment that interests them.

An important goal of the major is to provide students with a level of specialization beyond that provided by typical information systems or information technology programs. To accomplish this, the major focuses on networks of all types and the full range of computer system platforms that can attach to them. In this way the degree program favors depth over breadth. It is this approach that allows faculty to guide students in their exploration of conceptual knowledge, which is enhanced with required cooperative education experiences.

The curriculum includes required core and introductory courses in areas such as programming, database and security, and fundamental courses in computer networking and system administration.

Networking and systems administration, BS degree, typical course sequence

Course Sem. Cr. Hrs.
First Year
NSSA-101 NSSA Themes 3
ISTE-100 Computer Problem Solving: Network Domain I 4
  LAS Foundation 1: First Year Seminar† 3
MATH-131 LAS Perspective 7A: Discrete Mathematics 4
  LAS Perspective 1 3
NSSA-102 Computer Systems Concepts 3
ISTE-140 Web I 3
NSSA-241 Introduction to Routing and Switching 3
ISTE-101 Computer Problem Solving: Network Domain II 4
ISTE-110 Ethics in Computing: First Year Writing 3
  YearOne 0
  Wellness Education* 0
Second Year
NSSA-221 System Administration I 3
NSSA-242 Wireless Networking 3
ISTE-230 Introduction to Database and Data Modeling 3
  LAS Perspective 2, 3 6
STAT-145 Introduction to Statistics I 3
  LAS Perspective 5 4
  Free Elective 3
  Cooperative Education (summer) Co-op
Third Year
NSSA-322 System Administration II (WI) 3
MATH-161 LAS Perspective 7B: Applied Calculus 4
NSSA-244 Virtualization 3
  NSSA Concentration Courses 6
  LAS Perspective 6 4
  LAS Elective 3
NSSA-245 Net Services 3
NSSA-370 Project Management 3
NSSA-443 Network Design and Performance 3
  LAS Immersion 1 3
  LAS Perspective 2 3
  Free Elective 3
Fourth Year
  NSSA Concentration Courses 6
  LAS Immersion 2, 3 6
  Free Electives 9
  LAS Elective 3
  LAS Perspective 4 3
Total Semester Credit Hours 126

Please see New General Education Curriculum-Liberal Arts and Sciences (LAS) for more information.

(WI) Refers to a writing intensive course within the major.

* Please see Wellness Education Requirement for more information. Students completing bachelor's degrees are required to complete two Wellness courses.

† The First Year Seminar requirement is replaced by an LAS Elective for the 2014-15 academic year.

Additional information

Cooperative education

Students complete two or three blocks of cooperative education depending on when they start their degree program. Students have found co-op positions in nearly every type of business that requires computer systems and/or networks. These vary from small- or medium-sized businesses to large international companies, from computing-centric organizations (network hardware manufacturers, software services providers) to users of information technology (manufacturing companies, school districts, and the entertainment industry). Co-op gives students real-world experience and a definite advantage over other applicants when applying for jobs after graduation. Typically, co-ops occur during the summers following the second and third years and during one of the academic semesters in the third year. Students must complete their co-op requirement prior to completing their course work and preferably prior to their senior year.

[arrow] Click to view program requirements in the Quarter Calendar

Quarter Curriculum - For Reference Only

Effective fall 2013, RIT will convert its academic calendar from quarters to semesters. The following content has been made available as reference only. Currently matriculated students who began their academic programs in quarters should consult their academic adviser for guidance and course selection.

Program overview

Networking, the technology of interconnecting computing devices so information can flow between them, includes the design, deployment, operation, and maintenance of computer networks using developed components. This includes activities as simple as topology design to those as complex as the configuration of services and protocols to enable an entire intranet and the support of that environment. As the number of computing devices in the network scales up, the task becomes more difficult, involving design tradeoffs, performance considerations, and cost issues.

Systems administration includes the system design, installation, configuration, operation, and support of computer system platforms from mobile devices, servers, and large scale systems to the deployment of clouds and the use of virtualization. This includes the specification and implementation of all the hardware and software structures required to support and deploy these environments.

These disciplines are also concerned with the security and privacy of the information that is stored on these platforms and communicated over the networks they are attached to. In today’s information-rich environment, computer systems exist at the heart of a network and often work together to provide services as well as repositories for information. Students will be able to take all of this into consideration as they design and deploy secure system and network solutions in support of an organization's strategic and tactical goals.

Curriculum

The BS degree in applied networking and system administration is designed to teach students to be the designers, implementers, operators, and maintainers of computing networks and the computer systems attached to the network. Students will evaluate existing networks and computing systems, suggest improvements, monitor such systems for faults, and plan for growth. They will have the opportunity to work in small- to large-scale companies in any industry segment that interests them.

An important goal of the program is to provide students with a level of specialization beyond that provided by typical information systems or information technology programs. To accomplish this, the program focuses on networks of all types and the full range of computer system platforms that can attach to them. In this way the degree program favors depth over breadth. It is this approach that allows faculty to guide students in their in-depth exploration of conceptual knowledge, which is enhanced with required cooperative education experiences.

The program includes required core courses which are complimented with five advanced courses selected by the student. The core includes a programming sequence, introductory courses in database and security, and fundamental courses in computer networking and system administration.

Advanced courses

Students choose five of the following courses:

4050-403 Wireless Network Concepts
4050-422 System Administration II
4050-423 System Administration III
4050-519 Network Troubleshooting
4050-521 Perl for System Administration
4050-530 Telephony Integration
4050-550 VoIP Security and QoS
4050-540 Network Design and Performance
4050-545 Advanced Routing and Switching
4050-582 Wireless Ad-Hoc/Sensor Networks

Semester conversion
Effective fall 2013, RIT will convert its academic calendar from quarters to semesters. Each program and its associated courses have been sent to the New York State Department of Education for approval of the semester plan. For reference, the following charts illustrate the typical course sequence for this program in both quarters and semesters. Students should consult their academic advisers with questions regarding planning and course selection.

Program title change
Effective fall 2013, the applied networking and system administration program will be renamed networking and systems adminstration. This change will not affect currently matriculated students.

Applied networking and system administration, BS degree, typical course sequence (quarters)

CourseQtr. Cr. Hrs.
First Year
4050-202 Introduction to Unix/Linux 1
4002-208, 210, 4050-212 C++ Programming Sequence 12
4050-220 Cyber Self-Defense 4
4050-350 Computer System Fundamentals 4
4050-351 Networking Fundamentals 4
1016-204 College Algebra 4
1016-205, 206 Discrete Math for Technologists I, II 8
  Liberal Arts* 12
1105-051, 052 First-Year Enrichment 2
4050-203 Co-op Preparation Seminar 1
Second Year
4050-302 Scripting in Perl 4
4050-515 Introduction to Routing and Switching 4
4050-421 System Administration I 4
4050-413 Application of Wireless Networks 4
4002-360 Introduction to Database and Data Modeling 4
1016-319 Data Analysis 4
  Lab Science Electives 8
  Liberal Arts* 12
Third and Fourth Years
  Cooperative Education§ Co-op
4050-516 Network Services 4
4002-455 Needs Assessment 4
4002-460 Technology Transfer 4
  Advanced Track Courses‡ 20
  Liberal Arts* 12
  Free Electives 20
  General Education Electives 14
  Communication Elective 4
  Wellness Education† 0
Total Quarter Credit Hours 182

* Please see Liberal Arts General Education Requirement for more information.

† Please see Wellness Education Requirement for more information.

‡ A five-course advanced work track is required.

§ Three quarters of cooperative education are required after completion of the second year.

Networking and systems administration, BS degree, typical course sequence (semesters), effective fall 2013

CourseSem. Cr. Hrs.
First Year
NSSA-101 NSSA Fundamentals 3
ISTE-100 Computer Problem Solving: Network Dom I 4
  LAS Foundation 1: First-Year Seminar 3
STAT-145 LAS Perspective 7A: Introduction to Statistics I 3
  LAS Perspective 1, 2 6
NSSA-102 Computer Systems Concepts 3
NSSA-161 Fundamentals of Information Security 3
ISTE-101 Computer Problem Solving: Network Dom II 4
ENGL-150 LAS Foundation 2: Writing Seminar 3
  Wellness Education* 0
Second Year
NSSA-220 Introduction to Scripting 3
NSSA-241 Networking I 3
ISTE-230 Introduction to Database and Data Modeling 3
PHYS-111 LAS Perspective 6: College Physics I 4
  LAS Perspective 3, 4 6
NSSA-242 Networking II 3
NSSA-243 Networking Lab 3
NSSA-221 System Administration I 3
PHYS-112 College Physics II 4
  Cooperative Education (summer) Co-op
Third Year
NSSA-322 System Administration II (WI) 3
NSSA-323 System Administration Lab (WI) 3
  NSSA Option Courses 6
MATH-181 LAS Perspective 7B: Project-Based Calculus I 4
  LAS Perspective 5 3
MATH-182 Project-Based Calculus II 4
  Ethics Elective 3
  LAS Immersion 1 3
  Free Elective 3
Fourth Year
NSSA-362 Cryptography and Authentication 3
  NSSA Option Courses 9
  LAS Immersion 2, 3 6
  Free Electives 9
NSSA-363 Cyber Security Policy and Law 3
Total Semester Credit Hours 126

Please see New General Education Curriculum-Liberal Arts and Sciences (LAS) for more information.

(WI) Refers to a writing intensive course within the major.

* Please see Wellness Education Requirement for more information.

Additional information

Cooperative education

Students complete two or three quarters of cooperative education depending on when they start their degree program. Students have found co-op positions in nearly every type of business that requires computer systems and/or networks. These vary from small- or medium-sized businesses to large international companies, from computing-centric organizations (network hardware manufacturers, software services providers) to users of information technology (manufacturing companies, school districts, and the entertainment industry). Co-op gives students real-world experience and a definite advantage over other applicants when applying for jobs after graduation. Typically, co-ops occur during the summers following the second and third years and during one of the academic quarters in the third year. Students must complete their co-op requirement prior to completing their course work and preferably prior to their senior year.

Accreditation

The BS in applied networking and system administration is accredited by the Computing Accreditation Commission of ABET, http://www.abet.org.

Part-time study

The program is available on a part-time basis. Courses are available during the day and in the evening to accommodate those who work. Please refer to the Part-time Study website (rit.edu/ptgrad/parttime) for more information on this option.