Module code: COM2022

Module Overview

Computer networks are an essential part of almost all corporate computing facilities and even most domestic ones.  Interoperability is the key – all components must conform to the same hardware and packet specifications in order that they can be interconnected successfully.  This module introduces essential concepts about all the computer networking layering levels with some emphasis on the routing algorithms and implementation of network sensing.

Module provider

Computer Science

Module Leader

WESEMEYER Steve (Computer Sci)

Number of Credits: 15

ECTS Credits: 7.5

Framework: FHEQ Level 5

Module cap (Maximum number of students): N/A

Overall student workload

Independent Learning Hours: 106

Lecture Hours: 22

Tutorial Hours: 5

Laboratory Hours: 8

Module Availability

Semester 2

Prerequisites / Co-requisites


Module content

The module content is divided into the following areas:

  • Introduction to Computer Networks; Local and Wide Area Networks

  • Layers and Protocols; ISO and TCP/IP models

  • Application Layer; Web services – the HTTP protocol

  • Transport Layer; Addressing

  • Network Layer; Routing

  • Link / Physical Layer; Data communications – Ethernet, WiFi, ADSL, Physical Addressing

  • The IP datagram protocol, the Address Resolution Protocol, PPP and DHCP

  • The TCP protocol – flow control and retransmission methods

  • Electronic mail and file transfer - SMTP, POP, IMAP and FTP.

  • Network monitoring and ethical issues of monitoring network traffic

  • An introduction to network security - methods, vulnerabilities and uses of encryption.

Assessment pattern

Assessment type Unit of assessment Weighting

Alternative Assessment


Assessment Strategy

The assessment strategy is designed to provide students with the opportunity to demonstrate

·         Their understanding of the communication networks over the internet and the limitations involved by implementing the sensing and testing criteria.

·         Their ability to design an efficient means of computer networking considering all the pros and cons.


Thus, the summative assessment for this module consists of:

·         An individual coursework exercise and accompanying report. This assesses LO2, LO3, LO5 and LO6.

·         A 2 hour closed-book examination during the exam period. This will assess LO1, LO2, LO3, LO4 and LO6.


Formative assessment and feedback:

Formative feedback is provided as part of the feedback for the summative assessment as well as during the lab sessions.

Module aims

  • This module provides a grounding in how computers are interconnected using a variety of networking components.  Then, it also shows how software protocols provide access to the network from higher-level applications. The student should also understand in how to sense the network and how the check the parameters involved in network communications.

Learning outcomes

Attributes Developed
1 Appreciate how network protocols are layered and how they operate together to perform common communication functions;
2 Demonstrate a thorough understanding of the main protocols (TCP, IP, etc.);
3 Understand the main operational characteristics of Ethernet and wireless networks;
4 Be familiar with the use of the RFC protocol specifications;
5 Be familiar with the use of network analyser software.
6 Formulate arguments about network behaviour from an inspection of network packets

Attributes Developed

C - Cognitive/analytical

K - Subject knowledge

T - Transferable skills

P - Professional/Practical skills

Methods of Teaching / Learning

44 contact hours in weeks 1-11, consisting of:

  • 2 hours of lectures per week

  • 2 hours of labs per week


Students will be expected to spend a minimum of 2 hours per week on self-study in order to prepare, complete and reflect on lab exercises.

Indicated Lecture Hours (which may also include seminars, tutorials, workshops and other contact time) are approximate and may include in-class tests where one or more of these are an assessment on the module. In-class tests are scheduled/organised separately to taught content and will be published on to student personal timetables, where they apply to taken modules, as soon as they are finalised by central administration. This will usually be after the initial publication of the teaching timetable for the relevant semester.

Reading list
Upon accessing the reading list, please search for the module using the module code: COM2022

Programmes this module appears in

Programme Semester Classification Qualifying conditions
Computer Science BSc (Hons) 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module
Computing and Information Technology BSc (Hons) 2 Compulsory A weighted aggregate mark of 40% is required to pass the module

Please note that the information detailed within this record is accurate at the time of publishing and may be subject to change. This record contains information for the most up to date version of the programme / module for the 2019/0 academic year.