Training in an associate's program in computer network engineering involves classes and lab experience, and most programs require hands-on experience through an externship. These 2-year programs also call for general education courses. Applicants to an associate's degree program must have earned a high school diploma or a GED certificate; strong computer skills are required to excel in this program.
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Associate's Degree in Computer Network Engineering
Associate's programs in computer network engineering are computer- and technology-based. Coursework examines information technology, networking and computer systems. Courses cover programming and operating systems, as well as topics such as the following:
- Website development
- Network communications
- Network support
- Network administration
- Network security fundamentals
Popular Career Options
Associate's degree holders qualify for careers within computer systems and design companies, telecommunications companies, government organizations and financial firms. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment of network and computer systems administrators is projected to increase by 8% between 2014 and 2024 (www.bls.gov). Their mean salary was $82,200 per year as of May 2015, the BLS noted. Career titles in the field include:
- Network specialist
- Network designer
- Network engineer
- Intranet/Internet administrator
- LAN/WAN specialist
Continuing Education Information
A bachelor's degree in a computer-related field is typically the standard credential to become employed as a network engineer, reported the BLS. In addition to undergraduate degree acquisition, some academic institutions include A+, Microsoft, and CISCO certification training. Additionally, networking certifications can be earned through various computer associations, training institutions, and product vendors.
An associate's degree in computer network engineering prepares students for entry-level positions in careers including network designer, specialist, or engineer. Graduates may also wish to continue their education in a bachelor's program.