Associate's programs in network and information systems technology are designed to familiarize students with the knowledge and skills needed in the installation and maintenance of network hardware and software. These 2-year degree programs teach students to analyze, install, manage, and troubleshoot networks and information systems. Online availability of courses is limited due to the hands-on nature of the program. For admission to these programs, applicants must have a high school diploma or the equivalent. Some familiarity with computer applications and math may also be beneficial.
Associate's Degree in Network and Information Systems Technology
Associate's degree programs in network and information systems technology teach students how to use computer programs and operating systems through a combination of classroom and practical training opportunities. They may also complete some general education courses, like English or social science. Some common courses may include the following:
- Intranet and Internet firewalls
- Software design
- Website administration
- WAN technology
Popular Career Options and Earning Potential
Graduates may be able to pursue computer service, networking, information management, and website development jobs in the broad field of information technology (IT). They may be involved with managing networks and solving user issues with computer systems. They may also be in charge of developing or programming software or databases. Some popular careers may include:
- Network engineer
- Computer systems administrator
- Database administrator
- Computer security specialist
Earning potential in a database administrator position, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) in May 2015, is a median annual income of $81,710 (www.bls.gov). The BLS also reported that the median annual income for network and computer systems administrators was $77,810 in that same year.
Continuing Education Information
The BLS states that some employers prefer workers with a bachelor's degree or a master's degree for certain jobs. Some bachelor's degree programs may provide a comprehensive foundation in business, communications and IT. Students may also learn the technical aspects of network security.
A master's degree program in networks and information provide more advanced topics in network technology, security, and information assurance. Students also choose electives that can range from topics of accounting to cryptology. Students may have to complete a master's thesis project.
An associate's degree program in network and information systems technology gives students the opportunity to learn the foundational knowledge of computer programs and operating systems. Graduates of this program can continue their education with a bachelor's or master's degree, which are preferred by many employers.