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Computer Networking

What Will I Learn?

This computer networking program prepares students for positions in the field of computer networking.

What Is The Occupational Outlook?

As a graduate of Heartland Community College's two-year Associate in Applied Science degree program you will be able to gain employment in a variety of settings that incorporate information technology. Employers interested in our graduates include manufacturers, IT firms, insurance, healthcare, and education. The outlook for employment in the IT field is good and is expected to rise. The average entry level salaries for network administrators range from about $38,000 to $45,000. The median salaries for networking professional in Illinois ranges from $68,000 to $72,000.1

What Are My Options?

The Associate in Applied Science Degree in Computer Networking Technology prepares the student for a variety of entry-level positions. Typical job titles include Network Technician, Assistant Network Administrator, Wireless Technician, and PC Technician. Students may select an area of emphasis such as Cisco, Microsoft, or Linux. Upper level courses are available in the advanced Cisco, Security, wireless, and Voice over IP areas. You'll learn to install, configure and maintain networks utilizing state of the art devices, hardware, and software. Students will be prepared to sit for a variety of professional certifications such as the Cisco CCNA, Microsoft MCP/MCSE, A+, Linux+, and Network+.

Graduates of the Computer Networking program will have a variety of options available to them. Many students seek immediate employment upon graduation while others continue their education as a full-time student in a bachelor's degree program. BS degree options include programs such as computer science, information technology, industrial technology, management information systems, and applied management. There are bachelor's programs available in an on-line format and also as a 3+1 arrangement.

The Computer Network Cisco Academy certificate prepares students for entry-level positions in the field of computer networking. Successful completion of this certificate results in a basic understanding of networking, routers and switches, as well as fundamental knowledge of Local and Wide Area Networking operation. The concepts covered in this certificate enable the student to develop experience in cabling, routing, IP addressing, routing protocols and network troubleshooting.In addition to the Cisco Certfieid Networking Professional Certification exam objective, this certificate covers topics to enhance your overall understanding of the networking industry. Hands-on experience is emphasized throughout the entire program.

The Computer Network Advanced Cisco Academy certificate prepares students for advanced-level positions in the field of computer networking. Successful completion of this certificate results in an in-depth understanding of networking, routers and switches as well as knowledge of Local and Wide Area Networking operation. The concepts covered in this certificate enable the student to develop experience in remote access, advanced switching, routing, IP addressing, advanced routing protocols and network troubleshooting. In addition to the Cisco Certfieid Networking Professional Certification exam objectives, this certificate covers topics to enhance an overall understanding of the use of virtual private networks. Prerequisite for this certificate is a current CCNA certification or successful completion of NETW 124.

The Computer Network Security Specialist certificate prepares students for entry-level positions in the field of computer networking security. Successful completion of this certificate results in an in-depth understanding of networking, router and switch security, as well as knowledge of Local and Wide Area Networking operation and security. The concepts covered in this certificate enable the student to develop security experience in remote access, advanced switching, routing, IP addressing and network troubleshooting. Wireless and securing wireless networks will also be covered. Specific Cisco Networking Academy courses prepare students to take several Cisco Certified Networking exams as well as the CompTIA Security+ exam. Prerequisite is the successful completion of the following three basic certificates: Computer Networking: Linux, Computer Networking: Windows and Computer Network Cisco Academy.

The Computer Networking: Windows certificate prepares students for an entry-level position as a network administrator using Windows. The first half of the program introduces students to basic computer concepts and networking. During the second half of the program, students intensively study Windows operating systems and utilities including network client/server capabilities. Specific courses in this program prepare students to take the A+ certification exams as computer technicians, the Network+ certification exam and the Microsoft Certified Professional exam. Hands-on experience is emphasized throughout the entire program.

With the Computer Networking: Advanced Windows certificate students intensively study the Windows platform and Microsoft Windows server system software in this certificate program. Topics follow the objectives for Security+, Microsoft Certified Systems Administrator and Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer track exams. Hands-on experience is emphasized throughout the entire program. Prerequisite for this certificate is successful completion of the Computer Networking Windows certificate.

The Computer Networking: Linux certificate prepares students for an entry-level position as network administrator using Linux. The first half of the program introduces students to basic computer concepts and networking. During the second half of the program, students intensively study Linux operating system and its utilities including networking capabilities and security issues. Specific courses in this program prepare students to take the A+ certification exams as computer technicians, the Network+ certification exam and the Linux+ certification exam. Hands-on experience is emphasized throughout the entire program.


  1. Department of Employment Security, State of Illinois, Wage Data 2009, on the Internet at http://lmi.ides.state.il.us/PDFs/statewidewage_pub.pdf