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Degree Overview: Associate of Arts (A.A.) Degree in Computer Networking

Majors Overview January 20, 2014

Those who like computers and are interested in a career related to managing network systems may want to pursue an Associate of Arts (A.A.) degree in computer networking. Students will be prepared for entry-level jobs in the information technology (IT) field but can also choose to continue education at the bachelor’s degree level.

A.A. Programs in Computer Networking

Students enrolled in a computer networking program are taught how to design, install and configure computer networks for organizations and businesses. Repair techniques, hardware troubleshooting, software installation and project management may be additional focuses of these programs.

Apart from being trained in handling and storing vital information, students are also helped to develop computer, critical-thinking and analytical skills needed in the profession. Admission criteria typically require applicants to hold a GED certificate or high school diploma.

Coursework

Classroom lectures and lab instruction are augmented through participation in cooperative education experiences and supervised internships whereby real-world experience in networking can be gained by students. Day and night classes are offered by various schools. Coursework typically includes subject areas such as:

•Database design and management
•Local area networks
•Computer repair essentials
•Configuring and troubleshooting Windows
•Programming with Visual basic
•Computer science
•Computer systems technology
•Linux/UNIX
•PC assembly

Career Choices

After they complete the program, graduates can seek entry-level work in various industries that depend for their day-to-day running on computer networks. They can improve their employability with relevant work experience and choose from a range of career titles such as:

•Network manager
•Computer security specialist
•Network technician

Continuing Education Choices

Recruiters for positions such as network architect or database administrator prefer candidates who hold at least a bachelor’s degree in subjects like information technology, information science or computer science. Earning a master’s degree in a similar field would lead to career advancement.

Training programs, product vendors and certifying organizations are avenues by which graduates can obtain professional Certifications in specific software programs. While certification may not be provided by the training programs, students can use them to prepare to take certification examinations.

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