module specification

CT7155 - Switched Networks (2023/24)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2023/24
Module title Switched Networks
Module level Masters (07)
Credit rating for module 20
School School of Computing and Digital Media
Total study hours 200
48 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
100 hours Guided independent study
52 hours Assessment Preparation / Delivery
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 50%   Case Study Report (2500 Words)
Unseen Examination 50%   Unseen Exam (2 Hours)
Running in 2023/24

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Summer studies North Monday Morning
Summer studies North Wednesday Afternoon
Spring semester North Friday Morning

Module summary

This module develops in depth analytical and practical knowledge and skills for configuring and managing Internetworking devices in Local Area Networks using both basic and advanced Switching protocols.

Student are able to demonstrate knowledge and understanding of concepts, principles and technologies that underpin computer networking practice, design and application; as well as knowledge of the principal features of the computer Networking industry, its role, structure and organisation; The student would be able to draw independent conclusions based on a rigorous, analytical and critical assessment of argument, opinion and data.

The module introduces the student to current best practice in the design, deployment and maintenance of complex local area networks. It focuses on the delivery of high availability networks and the deployment of voice within the scalable campus network with a close attention to switch security.

Upon successfully completion of this module student should be able to sit for CCNP Switch industry certification subject to satisfying relevant pre-requisite (CCNA).


Introduction to LAN Switching, switching concepts, switch configuration and Switch Operation, LAN Design, Switch Configuration, Redundant Topologies, Spanning Tree Protocol (STP),802.1w Rapid Spanning-Tree Protocol, Ether Channel, VLAN Trunking and Dynamic Trunking Protocol (DTP), Configuring VLANs and VMPS,VLAN Trunking Protocol (VTP), VTP Configuration and , Inter-VLAN Routing , Wireless LANs,  Scaling Networks with DHCP, NAT and PAT.
The Enterprise Composite Network Model, Pruning, Multi-layer switching. Configuring Layer 3 Redundancy with HSRP, VRRP and GLBP. (VoIP) Converged Network Benefits, Switch Security Issues.

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

A variety of approaches will be adopted. The recommended textbooks in bibliography, covers the detailed syllabus of this module. In addition to this, students also have access to course material from Weblearn which will enable them to further enhance their learning. Formal lecture classes will further emphasis the key features of each syllabus and provide opportunities for interactive discussion on some of the more important issues of switching protocols. Through series of in-depth lab activities students would gain adequate knowledge to design a basic network which meets a small to large business network requirement.    Students are required to provide evidence (logbooks) how they have completed each phase and demonstrate that their design and configuration meets the initial user's requirement.

The aim of the laboratory programs is to help students to gain knowledge and skill of designing and implementing Switching protocols as well as configuring the network infrastructure, such as configuring switches and creating VLANs, Switch security, etc in an Enterprise Networks.

Learning outcomes

On successfully completing the work covered in this module, the student should be able to:

LO1. Development of analytical and practical knowledge and skills for configuring and managing  Internetworking devices in a small to medium to large Enterprise networks using various switched network technologies.

LO2. To understand the benefit of scaling IP addresses and to evaluate  the characteristics of Layer 2 and 3 networks in identifying the reasons for using a multilayer switch.

LO3. Implementing and configuring advanced network technologies to support a secure and scalable enterprise network architecture.

LO4. Work effectively to design and demonstrate a simple Network structure using advanced  switching protocols.

LO5 . Plan, execute and report on individual or group programmes of work.

Assessment strategy

The assessment is designed to cover all the learning outcomes.

The module is assessed by a case study (2500 Words, formative and summative) on a complex network topology using basic and advanced switching protocols. This covers and assesses LO1-9. The student will be given a detailed brief and will be required to provide an efficient, scalable and innovative solution. A typical case study would comprise a large converged campus network comprising multiple core, distribution and access layer switches. The student would be required to develop an efficient, scalable and Secure solution and deploy their solution in the lab. Students are required to record any activities towards the completion of their case study in a separate logbook (not the laboratory logbook). The weekly progress of their case study will be monitored and signed by their supervisor. The final mark of the case study is based on the presence of the case study logbook and successfully completion and submission of the case study report. The final mark will take into consideration the marks achieved through several in class tests that covers the topics in their case study. The case study requires individual work and is assessed by written reports and possible demonstration.

Final practical examination (summative) covering LO2- LO8 and consists of configuring a switched LAN topology using Internet Operating System (IOS) command line. All assessments will take place in the laboratories.