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Degree Overview: Associate of Computer Networking

Majors Overview August 19, 2013

Individuals who are interested in a growing career that offers the opportunity to work with networks and computers should consider pursuing an associate’s degree in computer networking. The first step towards this career goal is to complete an associate degree program in computer networking.

Associate Degree Program in Computer Networking

Students enrolled in a computer networking associate degree program will be prepared to seek entry-level occupation as networking professionals in a variety of work environments. Technical schools and community colleges offer these programs that usually last two years, if students are enrolled full-time, and programs are also available online. Enrolled students are taught about information technology, computer forensics, operating systems management and networking fundamentals. Admission criteria typically require applicants to hold a general educational development (GED) certificate or a high school diploma.

Program Coursework

Typically, the associate degree programs include hands-on training and coursework in computer labs. Students generally take courses in subjects such as:

•Server administration
•Security concepts
•Network technologies
•PC operating systems
•Computer concepts

Career Options

Computer networking associate degree program graduates will be prepared for entry-level positions in the field, and some administrative positions, though the completion of a bachelor degree program will be necessary for more advanced positions. Graduates can pursue the following career options:

•Network designers
•Security specialist
•Computer support specialist
•Computer systems administrator
•Network administrator

Information on Continuing Education

Although computer and network systems administrators might be hired with only an associate’s degree, most employers will prefer candidates who possess a bachelor’s degree. Associate degree program graduates can transfer credits earned to a four-year bachelor degree program in subjects such as computer programming, computer science, computer engineering, or information systems.

Certifications will help enhance employment opportunities as well as demonstrate expertise and knowledge in the profession. Computer hardware and software vendors usually offer certifications when businesses use their products. Generally, computer networking associate degree program graduates will be prepared for professional certifications, including:

•Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP)
•Certified Information System Auditor (CISA)
•Security+
•CompTIA Network+

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