Course Syllabus



Networking Fundamentals



Dominican University/Knowledge Alliance Network+ Course



A college-level preparation course leading towards the CompTIA Network+ ™ Certification that provides three (3) college credits or four (4) Continuing Education Units


Prepared: April, 2002

Prepared by: Nelson R. Herron,  Ph.D., MCSE, MCSE+I, CCNP, CCDP, Net+

Dominican University/Knowledge Alliance



PURPOSE OF THE COURSE                                                                                 


CATALOG DESCRIPTION                                                                        


COURSE PREREQUISITES                                                                                  


OVERALL COURSE OBJECTIVES                                                                     




            Mandatory Materials                                                                                       

            Optional Materials – Suggested Reading List                                        

            Suggested Web Sites                                                                                       


TEST PREPARATION TOOL                                                                                




COURSE CALENDAR                                                                                            



            Delivery Format                                                                                               

            Reading Assignments, Assignments Due, and Exam Schedule               


PERFORMANCE-BASED LEARNING OBJECTIVES                                      


EXAMS AND GRADING                                                                                       






Purpose of the Course


This college-level course provides a foundation in Networking Technology and Networking Practices for students studying to become Network+ ™ Certified Professionals.   This course is a prerequisite to all Microsoft Certified Professional (MCP), Microsoft Certified Systems Engineer (MCSE), and CISCO CCNA and CCNP courses.  This course is intended to be the second information technology class that students attend following A+ PC Operating Systems and Hardware.


Catalog Description


The Network+ Networking Fundamentals course is designed to provide the student with the basic networking competencies expected of a computer support professional with 18-24 months of experience. Specifically, the student will acquire basic knowledge of networking topologies, network operating systems, fault tolerance, networking media and connectors, cabling, routers, gateways, NIC cards, hubs, switches, bridges, and remote connectivity.  Students study the 7 layers of the OSI Reference Model, identify the purpose and function of each of these layers, and recognize the physical equipment operating at each layer, the engineering specifications applicable to each layer, and common networking protocols at each layer.  The course emphasizes the TCP/IP protocol suite used in the internet. Students will also learn standard networking practices and SOP’s for network installations including administrative and test accounts, passwords, IP addresses, IP configurations, environmental factors affecting computer network design and installation, interconnecting network components, applying vendor’s software patches, upgrading software, following a systematic approach to troubleshooting connectivity problems, identifying and resolving hardware problems and resolving configuration errors. During the course, students will test cables, install and upgrade operating systems and apply service packs, network computers, establish user accounts and permissions, configure NIC cards and protocols, and create various subnet masks.


Course Prerequisites


This course is intended as the second course of study in the IT Certification programs.  The prerequisite for this course is the “A+” PC Operating Systems and Hardware course or equivalent knowledge including some experience with Windows 95/98/ME, NT 4.0, or Windows 2000/XP. 



Overall Course Objectives


At the end of the course, students will be able to install and configure Local Area Networks (LANs) using a systematic approach to network design, industry-standard networking components, and Microsoft operating systems.  Students will also be able to diagnose and resolve network connectivity and access issues.  In addition to these pedagogical issues and hands-on skills, this course prepares the student for the vendor-neutral CompTIA Network+ Certified Networking Professional Exam.  Upon successful completion of this exam, the student will receive the Network+ certification confirming that the student possesses skills appropriate for PC networking support professionals with 18-24 months field experience.




Mandatory Materials


Network+ Vols. I & II (Version 3.07), / ComputerPREP, Inc. / 2001 / Part Number rd100501


Optional Materials – Suggested Reading List


Interconnection, Second Edition: Bridges, Routers, Switches, and Internetworking Protocols

            Radia Perlman/ Addison-Wesley / 2000 / ISBN 0-201-63448-1


The Switch Book: The Complete Guide to LAN Switching Technology

            Rich Seifert / John Wiley & Sons, Inc. / 2000 / ISBN 0-471-34586-5


Computer Networks: A Systems Approach

Larry Peterson, et al / Morgan Kaufmann / 1999 / 1558605142 / 2nd


Teach Yourself TCP/IP in 24 Hours

Matt Hayden / Sams / 1998 / 0672312484


Network+ Exam Prep : Learn Multi-Vendor Networking from the Exam Perspective

Melissa Craft, et al / Coriolis Group / 1999 / 1576104125 / Bk&Cd Rom


MCSE Training Kit, Networking Essentials Plus, Third Edition

Microsoft Corporation (Edit.) / Microsoft Press / 1999 / 157231902X / 3


Network + Practice Tests Exam Cram

Robert Gradante / Coriolis Group / 1999 / 1576104842 / Bk&Cd Rom



Suggested Web Sites: (for materials) (for comparisons)  (for Network+ exam objectives)  (for Sylvan Prometric testing sites) (for Vue Enterprises testing sites) (practice exams)           


Real-World Resources:


Stacy’s Bookstore, Market St., San Francisco

Border’s Books, Emeryville Market, Emeryville

Barnes & Noble, various locations



Test Preparation Tool


Dominican University offers its IT students access to online test preparation tools created by SelfTest Software.  SelfTest practice tests are web-based tools that allow students to practice their knowledge and test-taking skills online prior to attempting the actual certification exams.  SelfTest should be used as a measure of a student’s preparedness and to identify areas where the student needs additional study.  During the class, the instructor will provide a registration number to each student for the Network+ practice exam.  To use this access key, the student will enter the Knowledge Alliance website (, create a login and password, and provide the SelfTest key number.  After the initial login, the student will have unlimited use of the testing tool for 6 months.  





Nelson R. Herron, Ph.D., M.A., MCSE+I/MCSE, CCNP, CCDP, Net+

Phone: 510-235-6983



Course Calendar



The class will meet Tuesdays, and Thursdays from 6-10 pm for 10 sessions. (40 class hours).  Break times will be negotiated at the first class meeting.


Delivery Format

Classes will be a combination of lecture and lab exercises.  The course will develop many ideas based on using packet capture software.  These exercises will run simultaneously with the lecture.  Students will perform additional exercises after the lecture portion of the class.  The lecture will cover the topics significant topics in detail, roughly paralleling the text assignments.  Students are requested and expected to ask questions from the assigned readings and the instructor will clarify concepts.  Because there is a lot of material to cover, the lectures will cover only the most important material in the topics at hand.

Reading Assignments

To make class time more productive, it is imperative that the student read assignments before attending class.


The following are the reading assignments, assignment due dates, and exam schedules for each class meeting.








Meeting #1



Math Review


Lesson #1



Basic Math and Binary Concepts


Internet Overview


Install Packet Capture Software





Meeting #2

Lesson #2



Lesson #3


Lesson #4

Network Basics

Topologies, NOSs, Clients, Directory Services

The OSI Model

OSI Model and associated Protocols

LAN/WAN and Network Devices

LANs, WANs, internet

Broadband, Baseband

Media, Environmental Factors

Devices: Hubs, Bridges/Switches, Routers




Meeting #3

Lesson #5




Lesson #6



Assignment #1Due

The Data Link Layer

MAC addresses, Ethernet, Token Ring

IEEE 802 Specifications (MAC  and LLC)

        WAN Carriers


        IP: IP, ARP,  OSPF, EIGRP

        TCP: UDP, TCP, ICMP, Ports




Meeting #4

Lesson #7



Lesson #8

IP Addressing

Network Classes/Ranges, Network Masks, CIDR, Reserved & APIPA addresses


        Routed/Routing Protocols, Frame/Packet

        Operations, Static vs. Dynamic Routing


Install Win2000 Server




Meeting #5

Lesson #9


Lesson #10



Assignment #2 Due

TCP/IP Standard Utilities

Ping, Trace Route, NSLookup

Servers on the Network

         File, DNS, DHCP, Web, FTP, Directory

Install MS Server Management Tools




Meeting #6

Lesson #11


Lesson #12


Midterm Exam (Take Home)

Name Resolution


IP Address Assignment

BootP, DHCP, Dynamic DNS




Meeting #7

Lesson #13


Lesson #14


Mid-Term  Exam Due

Remote Access

Remote Access Protocols

Examining Remote Connection Options

         Dial-Up Networking

User Management

Peer- vs User- Access

Creating Users, Groups, Shares

Managing Permissions





Meeting #8

Lesson #15


Lesson #16

Network Printing

        Printer Servers, Queues, Shares

Data/Operations Protection

          Baselines, Fault Tolerance, Backups




Meeting #9

Lesson #17



Lesson #18




Assignment #3 Due

Network Security

Security Models, Threats, Auditing

Viruses, Worms, Hackers

Implementing Network Security

Password Security

Data Encryption (Local, Network, I’net)

Firewalls and Proxy Servers

Network Address Translation




Meeting #10

Lesson #19



Lesson #20



Final Exam

Maintaining the Network

Network Documentation/Change Control

Patches and other Software Upgrades

Troubleshooting the Network

Exploring Troubleshooting Models

Identifying Troubleshooting Tools







Performance-Based Learning Objectives


Upon completion of this course, the student will be able to:


·        Describe the purpose of networking protocols and networking in general.

·        Identify features of various NOSs and the clients used to access them.

·        Describe the OSI reference model and its relationship to network activities. 

·        Describe components, functions, and protocols relating to these OSI layers:

o       Physical Layer

o       Data Link Layer

o       Network Layer

o       Transport Layer

·        Describe the function of the Session layer of the OSI model. 

·        Explain how data is transmitted over a network.

·        Explain the concepts of the TCP/IP protocol suite and use a TCP/IP network.

·        Explain and use TCP/IP addresses and subnets.

·        Describe the requirements for remote network access. 

·        Explain the need for and ways to implement network security and fault tolerance.

·        Describe the types of information required prior to installing or updating an NOS.

·        Explain ways to monitor and manage a network. 

·        Describe a systematic approach for troubleshooting network problems. 


Exams and Grading



The student will be allowed to make up any missed exams.  However, the student will be penalized 10 percent for taking an exam after the scheduled exam date (i.e., the grade will be 90% of the points earned on an exam taken after the scheduled time).  If the student knows he or she will be out of town on the day of the exam, he may contact the instructor and arrange to take the exam early.




Grades are based on a scale of 100 points (100%).  There will be two written exams, a MIDTERM and a FINAL.  Each exam is worth 35 points.  Successful completion of assignments is worth 30 points; 10 points per assignment. All points are totaled to provide the overall grade.  The mid-term and the first two homework assignments may be resubmitted one class period after grading for a maximum of 50% improvement in grade because I believe studying the material is critical in this business.


Grading Standards


            90% and above            A                    

            80% to 89.9%              B                                 

70% to 79.9%              C                    

            60% to 69.9%              D

            Below 60%                  F


Grading is the province of the instructor.  As in most college courses, the average student doing the average amount of work can expect to earn a grade of “C” for the course.