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.
Plan of study
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.
Students are required to choose up to four electives from the following choices.
- 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.