module specification

CC2009 - Communications Networks (2017/18)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2017/18, but may be subject to modification
Module title Communications Networks
Module level Intermediate (05)
Credit rating for module 15
School School of Computing and Digital Media
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 50%   Individual report and software simulation
Unseen Examination 50%   Unseen 2 hour examination *FC*
Running in 2017/18 No instances running in the year

Module summary

This module provides an understanding of key issues relating to networking
structures, systems and services.

Prior learning requirements

Successful completion of Certificate level (or equivalent)

Module aims

The module aims to:

- provide students with an understanding of key issues relating to networking structures, systems
and services.

- The principal graduate attribute focused on in the module is A2 [performance in a variety of
idioms and contexts].


The major topics of study on this module are:

- communication fundamentals [frequency, amplitude, bandwidth, modulation, transmission
media, etc].

- local area network topologies, protocols and standards.

- wide area network topologies, protocols and standards.

- mobile communications and wireless technology.

- communications systems and services.

- multimedia communications.

- internet technologies and security.

Learning and teaching

Topics will be introduced through the medium of formal lectures, supported by tutorial sessions and practical workshops. The lecture material, including lecture notes and presentations, tutorials and workshop notes shall be supplied on-line to the students. Teaching is structured around four hours of weekly contact time with students, as follows:

- Lecture - One hour per week - the tutor shall discuss the week's topic by presenting the main theoretical analysis, illustrated with examples.
- Tutorial - One hour per week - The tutorial represents a forum where students will have the opportunity to discuss in more detail some of the theoretical and technical issues raised during the lecture. The tutorial is regarded as an opportunity for discussion and debate.
- Workshop - Two hours per week - The workshop supports the students in mastering features of the network simulation tool.

Indicative students' learning time on the module:

Class contact [lectures, tutorials, and workshops] - 44 hours
Individual research and examination preparation - 50 hours
Learning network simulator and undertaking course assignment - 56 hours

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module, students should be able to:

1. Demonstrate an understanding of basic network systems concepts [A2]

2. Demonstrate an understanding of organisational features of network systems [A2]

3. Describe and critically evaluate existing electronic-based services [A2]

Assessment strategy

Assessment methods:
- An unseen 2 hour examination [50%]
- coursework [50%]: an individually-produced software simulation and technical report. Students should obtain 40% pass on aggregate from examination and coursework.

Assessment Profile:
- The unseen examination element tests knowledge of communication networks introduced in the lecture programme [relates to Learning Outcomes 1 and 3].
- The coursework is designed to enhance learning by requiring students to create a network design solution using a computer simulation network package [relates to Learning Outcome 2].

Opportunities for formative feedback:
- Continuously, throughout the semester, during the workshops and tutorials sessions.

Timing of assessment:
- The unseen examination is taken by students during the examination period at the end of the semester.
- The coursework assignment is published during week 1 and is due for submission in week 10.


Kurose, J.F. and Ross, K.W. (2005), Computer Networking, a top-down approach featuring the internet. Third Edition, Published by: Addison Wesley, ISBN 0-321-26976-4.

Stallings, W. (2004), Computer Networking with Internet Protocols and Technology, Published by: Pearson Prentice Hall, ISBN 0-13-191155-4.

Halsall, F. (2005), Computer Networking and the Internet. Fifth Edition, Published by: Addison Wesley, ISBN 0-321-26358-8.

Shelly, G.B., Cahman, T.J., and Serwatka, J.A. (2004), Business Data Communications, Published by: Thomson Course Technology, ISBN 0-7895-6806-3.

Regan, P. (2004). Wide Area Networks, Published by: Pearson Prentice Hall, ISBN 0-13-046578-X.

Regan, P. (2004). Local Area Networks, Published by: Pearson Prentice Hall, ISBN 0-13-046577-1.