Computer Science

ECS 115 Computer Networks for Non-Majors


Lecture: 3 hours
Discussion: 1 hour

Catalog Description:
Overview of computer networks, World Wide Web, e-mail, YouTube, local and wide-area computer networks, TCP/IP protocol suite, network protocols for data transmission and internetworking, introduction to basic TCP/IP and network programming. Course not intended for CS or CSE majors.

Prerequisite: Programming skills on the level of course 30

Grading: Letter; homework (25%),projects (10%), midterm (30%) final (35%)

Summary of course contents

  1. Introduction
    1. Wide Area Networks (WANs)
    2. Local Area Networks (LANs)
    3. Terminology
    4. Introduction to OSI standards
  2. Networking Applications
    1. Network Library Routines
    2. File Transfer Protocol (FTP)
    3. Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP)
    4. Telnet / Remote Login
    5. Domain Name System (DNS)
    6. Electronic Mail
    7. Peer-to-Peer File Sharing
  3. Internetworking (TCP/IP)
    1. User Datagram Protocol (UDP)
    2. Transmission Control Protocol (TCP)
    3. Transport Layer Interfaces
    4. Internet Protocol (IP)
    5. Routing protocols
  4. Local Area Networks
    1. Link layer protocols
    2. Channel Partitioning: FDMA, TDMA, CDMA
    3. Random Access: ALOHA, CSMA/CD
    4. Ethernet <
    5. Wireless LANs

Goals: Student will: (1) acquire a technical understanding of the workings of the Internet; and (2) get a good understanding of networking, along with case studies of several networking applications.

Illustrative reading
J. Kurose and K. Ross, Computer Networking: A Top-down approach featuring the Internet, Addison Wesley, third edition, 2005.

Computer Usage:
Since the programming will be moderate in amount and elementary in level, and since scripting languages such as Perl are platform-independent, the impact on campus computing resources should be light.

Engineering Design Statement:
The course work will involve designing computer programs for network communications.

ABET Category Content:
Engineering Science: 0 unit
Engineering Design: 1 unit

Students will:

  • have the technical understanding of the workings of the Internet
  • have a good understanding of networking along with case studies of several networking applications

Program Outcomes:

  • This course is for non-majors

Science & Engineering
Scientific Literacy

Overlap   This course is a shorter version of courses 152A and 152B, thus with overlap, but aimed at the non-major audience. MGT 286 covers some of the topics, but focuses on the economic aspects.

Instructors   D. Ghosal, X. Liu, N. Matloff, P. Mohapatra, and B. Mukherjee

History   2012.10.26 (D. Ghosal):Renumbered course (formerly 157). Updated the catalog description and revised the course contents. Prior version by N. Matloff and X. Liu (March 2005).