UPDATED - Aug. 2009 for Academy Curriculum (4.0) and CCNA Exam - 800 series.


Overview of the Program:

 The CISCO Networking Academy is a partnership between Raritan Valley Communicty College (RVCC) and the CISCO Corporation that enables students to acquire an up-to-date, quality education in Data Communications and Networking working with current networking equipment in real-life situations.  The Cisco Networking Academy program teaches students how to design, build and maintain computer networks. Students who complete the full program will be qualified to pursue a number of industry-standard certifications including Cisco Certified Networking Associate (CCNA) and Computing Technology Industry Association (CompTIA) Network+ certifications.  The CCNA is an important benchmark for those students who aspire to entry-level positions in Networking and will assure their consideration over other, non-certified professionals.

The Program offers four separate courses and requires approximately 9 months to complete.  Each course is 7 ½ weeks long and is offered two evenings each week.  (Daytime courses may also be offered if attendance warrants.)   Each of the four courses earns the student 3 credits which can be used in pursuit of a 31 credit CS Networking Certificate or the new 15 credit Certificate of Competion.  The student completes two courses each RVCC semester for a total of 6 credits per semester.  Because of our agreement with Cisco, no student may enter into this program in the middle unless they are transferring from another Cisco Academy.  This program is intended for those who are majoring in Networking for  the RVCC Networking Certificate(s) and for community professionals who are seeking CCNA certification to enhance their current jobs or to prepare for a career change into Networking. 


 If you have questions about the CISCO Academy or require additional information related to courses, contact Dr. Thomas Edmunds: (908) 526-1200, x8304 or e-mail  tedmunds@raritanval.edu. Email is preferred.


To register for the first course in the sequence (Introduction to Cisco Networking), you may download a registration form from our web site.  Log on to www.raritanval.edu and click on the “Registration” button.  You may also register in person at the Office of Enrollment Services.  The exact times and locations are listed in the RVCC course catalog which can be viewed online at www.raritanval.edu .


Cisco Academy Program - Curriculum

The Academy curriculum covers a broad range of topics, from basic networking skills such as pulling cable to more complex concepts such as applying advanced troubleshooting tools.  The student will become knowledgeable in the fundamentals of networking including Local Area Networks, Wide Area Networks, the Internet, Broadband Services, Networking Equipment (Servers, Workstations, Hubs, Routers, Switches, Bridges, Terminal Servers, etc.)  The student will gain skills in the areas of Network Configuration including Router setup and configuration.  Students will be graded separately for each of the four courses that comprise the Academy curriculum.


Introduction to Cisco Networking  [Cisco CCNA Semester 1] - 7 1/2 weeks

            Students are introduced to the basics of modern networking.  They will examine the most popular versions of LANs and WANs and how they work.  Students will learn the fundamentals of:

  • Networks and layered communication
  • The OSI Model
  • Review of PC operations and the binary and hexadecimal number systems
  • Networking Device Introduction – Hubs, Routers, Switches, Bridges
  • Introduction to TCP/IP including IP addressing and subnet masking, ARP and RARP
  • IP Classful and Classless Addressing and IP Routing Protocols
  • Media and Design such as LAN hardware and various cable types including fiber and wireless and basic cable testing
  • Network Topologies and Network Management including Ethernet switching and 100 and Gbps Ethernet

Labs will include the wiring of networking equipment to terminal blocks and patch panels, the testing of cables using Network Testing Devices, the configuration of an MS XP workstation to run TCP/IP, and various other assignments of interest.

Intermediate Cisco Networking  [Cisco CCNA Semester 2] - 7 1/2 weeks

            Students will gain valuable insights into Networking Protocols and the ability to connect networks with the Internet.  The fundamentals of routers and the basics of Cisco Routers will be covered.  The major topics covered in this semester are:

  • Introduction to Routing and Packet Forwarding

  • Routing Algorithms (Distance Vector, Link State)Routing Algorithms (Static, Dynamic)

  • Router configuration; Router startup/setup

  • Distance Vector Routing (RIPv1, RIPv2 and EIGRP)

  • Routing Table Processing

  • Link State Routing (OSPF)

  • Routing with VLSM and CIDR

Labs will include detailed hands-on Router experiments; developing an initial configuration on a Router; design and implementation of a “WAN” in the lab including Workstation setup, Router configuration and setup and deployment, building of Access Control Lists and application in a Router.


Advanced Cisco Networking – Part I  [Cisco CCNA Semester 3] - 7 1/2 weeks 

Through a hands-on approach, students will learn the switching protocols in depth, network standards, switch configuration and IOS.  The topics to be covered include:

  • LAN Switching and Design

  • Basic Switch Concepts and Configuration

  • Spanning Tree Protocol for Switches

  • VLAN’s - design and implementation

  • VTP, Trunking and Inter-VLAN Routing

  • Basic Wireless Concepts and Configuration

Advanced Cisco Networking – Part II (Cisco CCNA Semester 4) - 7 1/2 weeks

This is a continuation of Advanced Networking – Part I.  Topics to be covered include:

  • WANs and WAN design

  • Using NAT, PAT and DHCP

  • Point to Point Protocol (PPP)

  • Frame Relay

  • Introduction to Network Security

  • Network Troubleshooting

  • Final Review for the CCNA Certification Exam (not given at RVCC)


Pedagogical Approach to the Academy Program 

 Combinations of instructional techniques are utilized in the presentation of the Academy Program.  The major tutorial material has been developed by Cisco and is standard at any registered Cisco Academy.  It is online and can be accessed by the student at RVCC and completed at his/her own pace.  Each unit will include an online quiz and examination.  At the end of each semester, a final, online exam will be given.  The result of each semester’s final exam is recorded centrally by Cisco.  All finals must be passed and registered for the student to be deemed prepared to take the CCNA certification exam.

 There is a heavy emphasis on Lab experiments in each of the semesters ranging from simple installation tasks such as making cables, installing cables and testing cables to more sophisticated exercises involving the design and building of a “WAN” in the Lab.  Each student will receive and become proficient in Cisco's Packet Tracer, a network simulator.  Many of the Lab exercises will be completed in this fashion.  Each student must pass a skills test for each semester in which he/she demonstrates a mastery of the material covered in the online tutorials as well as the hands-on Lab.  Other exercises will be assigned at the discretion of the Instructor.

 Students will be expected to complete the tutorials on their own.  There will be traditional lectures presented on the highlights of the topics in the online curriculum.   Labs will involve both stand alone work and work in teams and will be graded appropriately.