Network and Computer Systems Administrators


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Network and Computer Systems Administrators


What you need:

  • To work as a data network administrator you must hold at least a bachelor of science degree in computer science or information science.
  • To work in a position where you install networks you may also need training in electrical engineering
  • Many network data administrators also hold master’s degrees in computer science and complete regular continuing education courses.

What you study:

As a computer science student you are likely to study all of the following:

  • Principles of Programming
  • Intro to Computer Science
  • Engineering
  • Algorithm Design and Analysis
  • Computer Systems Design
  • Software Design

What courses you’ll take

Below are examples of courses that you’ll likely take as a student preparing for a career in network and computer systems administration.

able id=”course-descriptions-table”> body align=”left”> r> h>Course h>Studies h>Purpose r> d>Business Telecommunications and Networks d>Basic principles of telecommunications; concepts and terminology involved in installing configuring and providing support for computer networks; types of network protocols and topologies (arrangements of elements within a network); challenges and standards specific to network and systems administration in business environments. d>Provide foundational knowledge of telecommunications and computer networks in the business world. r> d>Network Security d>Ways in which black-hat (malicious) hackers exploit network vulnerabilities; catching and preventing network attacks from internal and external sources; patching security holes and preventing attacks; legal and ethical concerns related to network security; securing a network within a business organization’s structure. d>Familiarize students with network vulnerabilities and appropriate responses. r> d>Operating System Administration d>Setting up configuring and maintaining networks in Windows Apple UNIX and Linux operating systems; managing storage of files and directories; handling file permissions; creating backups; installing hardware drivers; writing scripts of code to be executed on the network. d>Ready students to manage network resources within common operating systems. r> d>Administration of Networks and Servers d>Installation and configuration of servers (systems of software and hardware resources that respond to network requests) using Apache software and Microsoft Internet Information Server (IIS) software; enabling email and networking capabilities on a newly installed server; keeping servers up-to-date; troubleshooting. d>Enable students to turn a computer into a server and keep the server’s functionality working properly. r> d>Implementing and Managing Network Infrastructures d>Concepts and practices of network infrastructure (connections between the parts of a network); setting up Internet Protocol (IP) addresses for components of a network; managing digital security certificates and remote access as well as access to printers and network drives. d>Prepare students to bring the components of a network together into a working whole.

Video Overview

A quick introduction into the data network administrator occupation. Slightly out of date but still a helpful overview. Produced for the US Department of Labor.

Certifications and Licensing

Most professionals who work in data network administration earn certifications in various programming and computer operation systems. These certifications are offered by Microsoft Cisco Apple Red Hat and vendor-neutral certification bodies. They are designed to demonstrate advanced training in a certain area to potential employers.

Job Flexibility

Full-time versus part-time:

The work schedule for a data network administrator can be very demanding. You will need to get to work before most other employees in order to assess any system problems. You will also need to stay at work after most employees have left in order to complete data system and computer updates. However you will generally receive long breaks during the day and will be well-compensated for working overtime.

Work location:

As a data network administrator you will spend the majority of your time in your office and on the grounds of the organization for which you work. If your company runs multiple locations you may travel to these locations in order to perform installation maintenance and troubleshooting tasks.

Recommended Websites

  • U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Outlook Handbook for Network and Computer Systems Administrators: This Bureau of Labor Statistics handbook provides general information about careers in network and computer systems administration. A wealth of statistical information about hiring demands in this field and salary ranges is presented. However aspiring data network administrators should also check more qualitative sources for in-depth information about jobs in this field.
  • The League of Professional Systems Administrators: The LOPSA website offers chat rooms forums and listings of individual LOPSA chapters nationwide. New data networking professionals will find the mentorship program offered through LOPSA particularly helpful to their professional development. Proteges can post listings for mentors on the website.
  • Association of Information Technology Professionals: The AITP website offers knowledge resources e-learning opportunities and a job board. While this site is aimed at IT professionals in general prospective data network administrators will find a wide variety of resources tailored to their specific needs. Advanced learning materials are also provided for individuals who have experience in the field.

Salaries by City

See typical salaries and ranges for this career below*. Shift click to sort by more than one column — for example first shift-click on state and then shift-click on salary to find best and worst salaries in each state.

able style=”width:95%” class=”tablesorter”>head align=”left”>r>h align=”center”>Stateh align=”center”>City / Regionh align=”center”>Typical Salaryh align=”center”>Salary Rangeh align=”center”>Job Counth align=”center”>% of All Jobsbody align=”left”>r>d align=”center”>AKd>Anchoraged align=”center”>$74040d align=”center”>$50K – $107Kd align=”center”>650d align=”center”>0.38%r>d align=”center”>AKd>Fairbanksd align=”center”>$68940d align=”center”>$45K – $105Kd align=”center”>110d align=”center”>0.32%r>d align=”center”>ALd>Anniston – Oxfordd align=”center”>$63410d align=”center”>$46K – $98Kd align=”center”>60d align=”center”>0.13%r>d align=”center”>ALd>Auburn – Opelikad align=”center”>$70040d align=”center”>$38K – $93Kd align=”center”>90d align=”center”>0.19%r>d align=”center”>ALd>Birmingham – Hooverd align=”center”>$72340d align=”center”>$45K – $108Kd align=”center”>1730d align=”center”>0.36%r>d align=”center”>ALd>Decaturd align=”center”>$57820d align=”center”>$35K – $98Kd align=”center”>60d align=”center”>0.11%r>d align=”center”>ALd>Dothand align=”center”>$58180d align=”center”>$33K – $90Kd align=”center”>70d align=”center”>0.13%r>d align=”center”>ALd>Florence – Muscle Shoalsd align=”center”>$62650d align=”center”>$39K – $90Kd align=”center”>110d align=”center”>0.21%r>d align=”center”>ALd>Gadsdend align=”center”>$56780d align=”center”>$45K – $73Kd align=”center”>40d align=”center”>0.11%r>d align=”center”>ALd>Huntsvilled align=”center”>$70610d align=”center”>$44K – $117Kd align=”center”>840d align=”center”>0.41%r>d align=”center”>ALd>Mobiled align=”center”>$62790d align=”center”>$41K – $95Kd align=”center”>470d align=”center”>0.28%r>d align=”center”>ALd>Montgomeryd align=”center”>$60470d align=”center”>$43K – $90Kd align=”center”>550d align=”center”>0.35%r>d align=”center”>ALd>Tuscaloosad align=”center”>$53730d align=”center”>$39K – $84Kd align=”center”>290d align=”center”>0.32%r>d align=”center”>ARd>Fayetteville – Springdale – Rogersd align=”center”>$76860d align=”center”>$49K – $113Kd align=”center”>820d align=”center”>0.40%r>d align=”center”>ARd>Fort Smithd align=”center”>$56110d align=”center”>$40K – $86Kd align=”center”>140d align=”center”>0.13%r>d align=”center”>ARd>Jonesborod align=”center”>$51370d align=”center”>$34K – $68Kd align=”center”>70d align=”center”>0.13%r>d align=”center”>ARd>Little Rock – North Little Rock – Conwayd align=”center”>$62800d align=”center”>$42K – $91Kd align=”center”>770d align=”center”>0.23%r>d align=”center”>ARd>Pine Bluffd align=”center”>$57030d align=”center”>$35K – $99Kd align=”center”>40d align=”center”>0.12%r>d align=”center”>AZd>Flagstaffd align=”center”>$64340d align=”center”>$35K – $98Kd align=”center”>70d align=”center”>0.13%r>d align=”center”>AZd>Lake Havasu City $ Kingmand align=”center”>$54100d align=”center”>$33K – $114Kd align=”center”>80d align=”center”>0.18%r>d align=”center”>AZd>Phoenix – Mesa – Glendaled align=”center”>$74580d align=”center”>$44K – $116Kd align=”center”>5070d align=”center”>0.29%r>d align=”center”>AZd>Prescottd align=”center”>$64940d align=”center”>$41K – $90Kd align=”center”>60d align=”center”>0.12%r>d align=”center”>AZd>Tucsond align=”center”>$61130d align=”center”>$38K – $93Kd align=”center”>900d align=”center”>0.26%r>d align=”center”>AZd>Yumad align=”center”>$62110d align=”center”>$42K – $83Kd align=”center”>60d align=”center”>0.10%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Bakersfield – Delanod align=”center”>$70650d align=”center”>$50K – $107Kd align=”center”>610d align=”center”>0.22%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Chicod align=”center”>$67590d align=”center”>$46K – $118Kd align=”center”>90d align=”center”>0.13%r>d align=”center”>CAd>El Centrod align=”center”>$96020d align=”center”>$51K – $119Kd align=”center”>60d align=”center”>0.11%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Fresnod align=”center”>$61690d align=”center”>$41K – $89Kd align=”center”>310d align=”center”>0.10%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Los Angeles – Long Beach – Glendale (Metro Area)d align=”center”>$76850d align=”center”>$51K – $116Kd align=”center”>9660d align=”center”>0.25%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Madera – Chowchillad align=”center”>$69360d align=”center”>$30K – $109Kd align=”center”>N/Ad align=”center”>N/Ar>d align=”center”>CAd>Mercedd align=”center”>$71090d align=”center”>$40K – $109Kd align=”center”>90d align=”center”>0.16%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Modestod align=”center”>$69990d align=”center”>$42K – $95Kd align=”center”>200d align=”center”>0.13%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Napad align=”center”>$72140d align=”center”>$54K – $115Kd align=”center”>80d align=”center”>0.12%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Oakland – Fremont – Hayward (Metro Area)d align=”center”>$90340d align=”center”>$59K – $125Kd align=”center”>4180d align=”center”>0.43%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Oxnard – Thousand Oaks – Venturad align=”center”>$75080d align=”center”>$42K – $110Kd align=”center”>600d align=”center”>0.21%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Reddingd align=”center”>$60190d align=”center”>$42K – $102Kd align=”center”>60d align=”center”>0.11%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Riverside – San Bernardino – Ontariod align=”center”>$74100d align=”center”>$42K – $138Kd align=”center”>1630d align=”center”>0.14%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Sacramento – Arden – Arcade – Rosevilled align=”center”>$77590d align=”center”>$50K – $114Kd align=”center”>1780d align=”center”>0.22%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Salinasd align=”center”>$70780d align=”center”>$52K – $97Kd align=”center”>160d align=”center”>0.10%r>d align=”center”>CAd>San Diego – Carlsbad – San Marcosd align=”center”>$75810d align=”center”>$50K – $113Kd align=”center”>4030d align=”center”>0.32%r>d align=”center”>CAd>San Francisco – San Mateo – Redwood City (Metro Area)d align=”center”>$92580d align=”center”>$60K – $136Kd align=”center”>4740d align=”center”>0.47%r>d align=”center”>CAd>San Jose – Sunnyvale – Santa Clarad align=”center”>$93730d align=”center”>$52K – $144Kd align=”center”>4480d align=”center”>0.50%r>d align=”center”>CAd>San Luis Obispo – Paso Roblesd align=”center”>$65750d align=”center”>$41K – $97Kd align=”center”>260d align=”center”>0.26%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Santa Ana – Anaheim – Irvine (Metro Area)d align=”center”>$80460d align=”center”>$52K – $116Kd align=”center”>4610d align=”center”>0.33%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Santa Barbara – Santa Maria – Goletad align=”center”>$71550d align=”center”>$51K – $106Kd align=”center”>390d align=”center”>0.23%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Santa Cruz – Watsonvilled align=”center”>$76400d align=”center”>$37K – $104Kd align=”center”>210d align=”center”>0.25%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Santa Rosa – Petalumad align=”center”>$66520d align=”center”>$37K – $108Kd align=”center”>320d align=”center”>0.19%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Stocktond align=”center”>$63890d align=”center”>$41K – $93Kd align=”center”>190d align=”center”>0.10%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Vallejo – Fairfieldd align=”center”>$82930d align=”center”>$54K – $118Kd align=”center”>220d align=”center”>0.18%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Visalia – Portervilled align=”center”>$64120d align=”center”>$38K – $104Kd align=”center”>100d align=”center”>0.08%r>d align=”center”>CAd>Yuba Cityd align=”center”>$73500d align=”center”>$46K – $97Kd align=”center”>40d align=”center”>0.11%r>d align=”center”>COd>Boulderd align=”center”>$84890d align=”center”>$49K – $147Kd align=”center”>980d align=”center”>0.61%r>d align=”center”>COd>Colorado Springsd align=”center”>$75150d align=”center”>$50K – $102Kd align=”center”>1390d align=”center”>0.57%r>d align=”center”>COd>Denver – Aurora – Broomfieldd align=”center”>$76990d align=”center”>$48K – $115Kd align=”center”>5600d align=”center”>0.45%r>d align=”center”>COd>Fort Collins – Lovelandd align=”center”>$68930d align=”center”>$44K – $98Kd align=”center”>350d align=”center”>0.26%r>d align=”center”>COd>Grand Junctiond align=”center”>$69490d align=”center”>$45K – $91Kd align=”center”>80d align=”center”>0.14%r>d align=”center”>COd>Greeleyd align=”center”>$67920d align=”center”>$44K – $101Kd align=”center”>150d align=”center”>0.19%r>d align=”center”>COd>Pueblod align=”center”>$52020d align=”center”>$35K – $85Kd align=”center”>90d align=”center”>0.17%r>d align=”center”>CTd>Bridgeport – Stamford – Norwalkd align=”center”>$88170d align=”center”>$54K – $142Kd align=”center”>1190d align=”center”>0.29%r>d align=”center”>CTd>Danburyd align=”center”>$74620d align=”center”>$50K – $127Kd align=”center”>90d align=”center”>0.14%r>d align=”center”>CTd>Hartford – West Hartford – East Hartfordd align=”center”>$80170d align=”center”>$54K – $116Kd align=”center”>1450d align=”center”>0.26%r>d align=”center”>CTd>New Havend align=”center”>$87710d align=”center”>$54K – $119Kd align=”center”>380d align=”center”>0.14%r>d align=”center”>CTd>Norwich – New Londond align=”center”>$68880d align=”center”>$50K – $96Kd align=”center”>200d align=”center”>0.16%r>d align=”center”>CTd>Waterburyd align=”center”>$69950d align=”center”>$49K – $98Kd align=”center”>100d align=”center”>0.15%r>d align=”center”>DCd>Washington – Arlington – Alexandria (Metro Area)d align=”center”>$90760d align=”center”>$52K – $141Kd align=”center”>17720d align=”center”>0.76%r>d align=”center”>DEd>Doverd align=”center”>$52790d align=”center”>$36K – $73Kd align=”center”>120