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Networking and System Administration MS

Pete Lutz, Graduate Program Director
(585) 475-6162, Peter.Lutz@rit.edu

http://www.ist.rit.edu/

Program overview

Trends in network communications–unifying wired and wireless infrastructures, Cloud computing, scalability, collaboration tools, and security–can only be coalesced into reliable communication services if there are highly educated and technically proficient networking and system administration professionals who understand both traditional and emerging communication technologies as well as how to apply these technologies to organizational needs and opportunities.

The explosion in ubiquitous computing today means an increased need for greater efficiency and for better management oversight in the provision of IT services. Network environments are not only becoming increasingly complex, there is a greater recognition of the power of information technology to be a strategic enabler of corporate growth and adaptation.

The master of science program in networking and system administration is designed to provide both the knowledge and the technical skills needed to successfully compete in this environment. It is uniquely focused to address current issues in networking and systems administration through investigation of both the theoretical and the practical aspects of this continually evolving field. Course work examines the organizational and technological issues involved in enterprise scale networking, including emerging network technologies, network processing, high performance computing, network programming, and security.

The program is intended to prepare graduates to assume leadership positions in for-profit and not-for-profit organizations dealing with evolving networking solutions or to continue their education through advanced degrees. It is available for full- and part-time study in both an online format as well as a traditional on-campus setting.

Curriculum

The program consists of two required core courses, a three-course knowledge domain sequence, up to four technical electives (depending upon the capstone option chosen), and a capstone thesis or project.

Knowledge domains

Students are required to complete a three-course sequence in one of the following knowledge domains. 

Course
Manangement
ACCT-703 Accounting for Decision Makers
DEC-744 Project Management
MGMT-740 Organizational Behavior and Leadership
Professional
NSSA-620 Emerging Computing and Networking Technologies
NSSA-621 Design and Deployment of Wireless Networks
NSSA-622 Carrier Networks
Research
NSSA-610 Advanced Wired Networking Concepts
NSSA-611 Advanced Topics in Wireless Networks and Technologies
NSSA-612 Network Modeling and Analysis

Electives

Students are required to choose up to four electives from the following choices.

Course
NSSA-710 Network Management
NSSA-711 Advanced Routing Protocols
NSSA-712 Advanced Storeage Technologies
NSSA-713 Enterprise Service Provisioning
NSSA-714 Advanced Large Scale Computing
NSSA-715 Network Design and Performance
NSSA-716 Enterprise Mobile Computing

Networking and system administration (thesis option), MS degree, typical course sequence

Course Sem. Cr. Hrs.
First Year
NSSA-601 Research Methods and Proposal Development 3
NSSA-602 Enterprise Computing 3
  Knowledge Domain Courses 9
  Electives 6
NSSA-790 MS Thesis 3
Second Year
  Elective 3
NSSA-790 MS Thesis 3
Total Semester Credit Hours 30

Networking and system administration (project option), MS degree, typical course sequence

Course Sem. Cr. Hrs.
First Year
NSSA-601 Research Methods and Proposal Development 3
NSSA-602 Enterprise Computing 3
  Knowledge Domain Courses 9
  Electives 9
Second Year
  Elective 3
NSSA-791 MS Project 3
Total Semester Credit Hours 30

Admission requirements

To be considered for admission to the MS program in networking and system administration, candidates must fulfill the following requirements:

  • Hold a baccalaureate degree from an accredited institution,
  • Have a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.0 (B)*,
  • Submit official transcripts (in English) of all previously completed undergraduate and graduate course work,
  • Submit two professional recommendations, and
  • Complete a graduate application.
  • International applicants whose native language is not English must submit scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Minimum scores of 570 (paper-based) or 88 (Internet-based) are required. Applicants with a lower TOEFL score may be admitted conditionally, but will be required to complete a prescribed program in English preparation along with a reduced program course load. Applicants from foreign universities also must submit Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores. Visa forms cannot be issued by RIT for part-time or distance education.

* The GRE is recommended for those applicant's whose undergraduate grade point average is less than 3.0.

Additional information

Bridge courses

Students must have solid backgrounds in computer programming (C++ required); networking and systems administration theory and practice; and statistics. Students whose undergraduate preparation or industrial experience does not satisfy these prerequisites can make up deficiencies through additional study. The graduate program director will make recommendations on prerequisite course work. Formal acceptance into the program may be possible even though the applicant must complete bridge courses.

Bridge courses are not part of the required curriculum for the master’s degree. Grades for these courses are only included in the student's GPA if courses are completed after matriculation. Bridge course work can be designed in a variety of ways. Other courses can be substituted, or courses at other colleges can be applied. Contact the graduate program director for more information.

Study options

This program may be completed on a full- or part-time basis, through on-campus instruction or via online learning. Full-time students may be able to complete the program in two years; part-time students may take approximately four years.

Maximum time limit

University policy requires that graduate programs be completed within seven years of the student's initial registration for courses in the program. Bridge courses are excluded.

[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

Effective technical leadership in a modern enterprise relies on a combination of technical knowledge and an understanding of basic business concepts and processes. The master of science in networking and systems administration enables students to study, develop, and become proficient in the practices, methodologies, and techniques used in the management of a modern IT networking infrastructures. The focus is on enterprise-scale problems and solutions, addressing the needs of a medium to large organization.

Curriculum

The program consists of seven required core courses, four elective courses (chosen from an approved list of electives), and a four-credit capstone thesis or project. Two quarters of cooperative education experience are optional.

Networking and system administration, MS degree, typical course sequence (quarters)

CourseQtr. Cr. Hrs.
First Year
0102-740 Organizational Behavior and Leadership 4
0106-744 Project Management 4
4055-726 Research Methods 4
4055-755 Secured Wireless and Wired Networks 4
4055-817 Emerging Network Technologies 4
4055-850 Network Design and Performance 4
4055-882 Enterprise Security 4
Choose four of the following technical electives: 16
   0101-703    Accounting for Decision Makers  
   4055-760    Computer Viruses and Malicious Software  
   4055-780    Computer System Security  
   4055-818    Network Management  
   4055-841    Advanced Computer Forensics  
   4055-862    Advanced Routing Protocols  
   4055-883    Enterprise Networking  
   4055-884    Enterprise Service Provisioning  
Choose one of the following: 4
   4055-897    NSSA Thesis  
   4055-898    NSSA Project  
Total Quarter Credit Hours 48

Admission requirements

To be considered for admission to the MS program in networking and systems administration, candidates must fulfill the following requirements:

  • Hold a baccalaureate (or equivalent) degree from an accredited institution,
  • Have a minimum cumulative grade point average of 3.0 (B)*,
  • Submit official transcripts (in English) of all previously completed undergraduate and graduate course work,
  • Submit two professional recommendations, and
  • Complete a graduate application.
  • International applicants, whose native language is not English, must submit scores from the Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL). Minimum scores of 570 (paper-based) or 88 (Internet-based) are required. Applicants with a lower TOEFL score may be admitted conditionally, but will be required to complete a prescribed program in English preparation study along with a reduced program course load. Applicants from foreign universities also must submit Graduate Record Examination (GRE) scores. Visa forms cannot be issued by RIT for part-time or distance education.

* The GRE is recommended for those applicant's whose undergraduate grade point average is less than 3.0.

Additional information

Bridge course

Students wishing to enter the program must have a solid educational or employment record in networking and in systems administration. If a student does not have the necessary background, bridge courses will be required to help students to meet these prerequisites. Formal acceptance into the master’s program may be possible even though the applicant must complete bridge program courses.

Students whose undergraduate preparation or industrial experience does not satisfy the technical prerequisites of this degree can make up this deficiency through study, taking one or more of the following RIT courses, as prescribed by the graduate program director:

Technical prerequisites

4050-211 C++ for Networking and Systems Administration
4055-721 PERL for System Administration OR 4050-302 Scripting in Perl
4055-761 Principles of System Administration
4055-746 Telecommunications Network Protocols

Bridge courses are not part of the 48 credit hours required for the master’s degree. Grades for these courses are not included in a student’s graduate GPA, if the courses are taken before matriculation; courses competed after matriculation are included.

Bridge course work can be designed in a variety of ways. Other courses can be substituted, or courses at other colleges can be applied. Contact the graduate program director for approval.

Study options

This program is designed for full- or part-time study through on-campus instruction or through online learning. Students who take at least three courses per quarter are considered full-time and may be able to complete their course work in one year. Part-time students may take as few as one course per quarter, and may take approximately four years to complete the program.

Maximum time limit

University policy requires that gradaute programs be completed within seven years of the student's initial registration for courses in the program. Bridge courses are excluded.