04-641-Carnegie Mellon University in Rwanda - Carnegie Mellon University

Fundamentals of Telecommunications and Computer Networks

Course discipline: Networking
Units: 12
Lecture/Lab/Rep hours/week: 4 Lecture hours per week.
Semester/year offered (fall/spring, even/odd/all years): Fall
Pre-requisites: None

Course description:

This is a graduate-level, first-course in communication networks. Students learn the fundamental principles underlying modern communication networks with a focus on the Internet. Using a top-down approach, topics in the application, transport, network and link layers of the protocol stack are covered. Also covered are advanced topics, including network management, traffic engineering, and router internals. Besides learning about the nuts and bolts, students gain an understanding of the engineering tradeoffs and design principles used in communication networks.

Learning objectives:

The primary objective of this course is for students to learn the fundamental principles underlying modern communication networks with a focus on the Internet. The second objective is for students to learn specific protocols that embody these principles and be familiar with how these protocols collective enable a complete communication system. The third objective is for students to become familiar with basic networking measurement and analysis tools.  


After completing this course, students should be able to breakdown a communication system into its component functional parts. That is, they should be able to identify the application, transport, networking, and link components. They should be able to use basic Internet tools to evaluate a communication system. 

Content details:

The course will cover the following topics:
  • Networking Introduction
  • Architecture
  • Design Principles
  • ISPs, Backbones, and Peering
  • The Application Layer --- HTTP
  • Domain Name System
  • Queueing Theory
  • Peer-to-Peer Networking
  • Rwandan Broadband Policy
  • The Transport Layer/UDP
  • Principles of Reliable Transfer
  • TCP
  • Congestion Control at the Host
  • Advanced Congestion Control at the Host
  • The Network Layer
  • Routing Algorithms
  • Internet Routing
  • Plug-N-Play Networking: IPv6
  • Network Measurement
  • Network Neutrality
  • Congestion Control: The Router's View
  • Internet Routing Instability
  • Link Layer: Ethernet
  • Link Layer Devices
  • Virtual Link Layer
  • Wireless Networks
  • Mobility and Cellular Networks
  • Business Continuity & Disaster Recovery Planning