Computer Networks (Jan-2021)
Mr. K

Computer Networks (Jan-2021)

Instructor: Maurice Kioko (Mr. K)


Phone No. +254111511186



The main emphasis of this course is on the organization and management of local area networks (LANs). The course objectives include learning about computer network organization and implementation, obtaining a theoretical understanding of data communication and computer networks, and gaining practical experience in installation, monitoring, and troubleshooting of current LAN systems. Students are introduced to computer communication network design and its operations, and discuss the following topics: Open Systems Interconnection (OSI) communication model; error detection and recovery; local area networks; bridges, routers and gateways; network naming and addressing; and local and remote procedures. On completion of the course, students should be able, in part to design, implement and maintain a typical computer network (LAN).


Learning Objectives

After successfully completing this course, students should be able to:

  • Describe the general principles of data communication. Transmission control protocol/Internet protocol (TCP/IP)
  • Describe how computer networks are organized with the concept of layered approach.
  • Describe how signals are used to transfer data between nodes and techniques used in data correction during transmission
  • network topology and designs
  • Implement a simple LAN with hubs, bridges and switches using virtual software.
  • Describe how packets on the Internet are delivered.
  • Analyze the contents in each data link layer packet, based on the layer concept.
  • Design logical sub-address blocks with a given address block.
  • Describe the IP multicast and how routing protocols work.
  • Understanding VoIP (Voice over IP) under IP telephony networks

Course Description

Fundamentals of computer networks; communication protocols; the ISO-OSI model; protocol design; internet naming and addressing; Error detection and correction; cyclic redundancy checks (CRC); Internet checksum; data multiplexing; bridges; spanning tree, flooding/multicasting; witching vs routing; switching architectures; IP multicast model; multicast forwarding; link-layer support; Routing protocols: distance vector vs link-state routing; port numbers; service models; flow control vs. congestion control; congestion collapse; Window-based control; rate-based congestion control; switching & signaling; cellular telephone networks.

Semester Planner

  • Week 1: Introduction and Network Models
  • Week 2: Data and Signals
  • Week 3: Digital and Analog Transmission
  • Week 4: Multiplexing, Error Detention, and Data Link Control & Class Activity
  • Week 5: Media Access Control (MAC address) and Ethernet
  • Week 6: Network Layer and Next Generation IP & CAT
  • Week 7: Datalink and Network-Layer Protocols
  • Week 8: Unicast and Multicast Routing
  • Week 9: Wired Networks, Virtual LANs
  • Week 10: Wireless Networks & Issue Virtual Practical Project Due in 2 weeks
  • Week 11: Network Management and Firewalls
  • Week 12: VoIP (Voice over IP)
  • Week 13: Group Presentation
  • Week 14: Exam
  • Week 15: Exam

Teaching Methodology

The course will use lectures, discussion and presentations, virtual practical demonstrations and independent readings.


Instructional Materials/Equipment

Physical Learning and eLearning Platform



This course will be assessed in three forms, namely:

Online Continuous Assessment Test             (20%)

Term Paper & Group Presentation                 (20 %)

Virtual Practical Project                                 (20%)

Written Examination                                      (40%)

Additional requirements

Students will also require the following:

  • A computer and any platform (Windows, Linux, or IOS)
  • cisco packet tracer.

Virtual tool to use in demonstrations: Cisco Packet Tracer


  1. Comer, D. (2015). Computer networks and Internets (6th ed.). Boston: Pearson. ISBN-10: 0133587932  
  2. Kurose, J. F., & Ross, K. W. (2017). Computer networking: a top-down approach (7th ed.). Pearson. ISBN-10: 0133594149
  3. Peterson, L. L., & Davie, B. S. (2012). Computer networks: a systems approach (5th ed.). Amsterdam: Morgan Kaufmann. ISBN-10: 0123850592
  4. Forouzan, B. A. (2013). Data communications and networking (5th ed.). New York, NY: McGraw-Hill. ISBN: 978-0-07-337622-6