Module Details

CE321-6-AU-CO: Network Engineering

Year: 2016/17
Department: Computer Science and Electronic Engineering
Essex credit: 15
ECTS credit: 7.5
Available to Study Abroad / Exchange Students: Yes
Full Year Module Available to Study Abroad / Exchange Students for a Single Term: No
Outside Option: No
Pre-requisites: CE231

Supervisor: Dr Martin Reed
Teaching Staff: Dr Martin Reed
Contact details: CSEE School Office, email: csee-schooloffice (non-Essex users should add to create full e-mail address), Telephone 01206 872770

Module is taught during the following terms
Autumn Spring Summer

Module Description

Learning Outcomes

After completing this module, students will be expected to be able to:

1. Understand the principles behind simulating and analysing network performance using basic concepts in traffic theory
2. Discuss and analyse the fundamental principles behind contemporary network architectures and protocols, and understand how and why new protocols are created by standardization bodies
3. Explain and configure Internet routing protocols for interconnecting WAN and LAN technologies
4. Understand the principles of access technologies and configure routers to use these technologies
5. Assess the suitability of relevant WAN protocols within a modern communications infrastructure

Outline Syllabus

Elementary traffic theory and communications switching theory
o The Erlang and basic concepts in traffic theory
o Principles of computer simulation

Network architectures and principles of network protocols
o Core, metro and access networking
o Transport network technologies - MPLS, SDH
o Communicating routing algorithms and protocols
o The standardization process (case study - the evolution and development of MPLS)

Data link layer protocols
o PPP (Point-to-Point Protocol)
o ISDN (Integrated Services Digital Network)
o Frame Relay
o DSL (Digital Subscriber Line)

Wide area network access
o Configuring routers for WAN access
o Comparison of WAN protocols
o Securing WAN networks

Learning and Teaching Methods

Lectures and Cisco laboratory


30 per cent Coursework Mark, 70 per cent Exam Mark


Assignment: Connecting Networks - Report and Packet Tracer simulation, weighting = 15%, submitted in Week 9. Cisco Connecting Networks Test (online MCQ), weighting = 15%, to take place in Week 16.

Exam Duration and Period

2:00 during Summer Examination period.

Other information


This module includes Cisco CCNA Connecting Networks, (Semester 4) which requires that students have taken CCNA Semseters 1-3 as taught in CE155 and CE231. Thus both of these modules are required as a prerequisite. This module information is subject to review and change.


  • Reading list
  • * Cisco Networking Academy, Connecting Networks a Companion Guide (Cisco Press 2014)
  • * Tanenbaum, A.S., and , David J. Wetherall, (2011) Computer Networks, Prentice-Hall; 5th ed. TK 5105.5.T2
  • * PETERSON, L.L. and DAVIE, B.S., Computer Networks: A Systems Approach, Fourth Edition, Morgan Kaufmann, 2007.
  • * DAVIE, B and REKHTER, Y., MPLS Technology and Applications, Morgan Kaufmann, 2000.

External Examiner Information

  • Name: Dr Tahmina Ajmal
    Institution: University of Bedfordshire
    Academic Role: Senior Lecturer