Computers and Telecommunications Associate Degree
An associate's degree with coursework in telecommunications and computers can prepare you for a career installing and repairing cables, towers and networks. Learn about course requirements and continuing education options.
What Is an Associate's Degree in Telecommunications?
An associate's degree in telecommunications, which typically includes computer-focused coursework, is a 2-year program that helps you become proficient in the installation and repair of voice, data and video technology. These programs combine lecture and lab courses to teach you the theoretical and practical aspects of telecommunications.
In the program, you are exposed to the various skill sets needed to work in the telecommunications industry. You will learn about electronics, fiber optics, network configuration, computer programming and data cabling. Most programs culminate in an internship, and you are often prepared for particular certification exams, such as the Cisco certified network associate.
|Other Requirements||Internships may be required at end of program|
|Common Courses||LINUX command, SHELL programming, fiber optic communications, network management, internet security|
|Continuing Education||Bachelor of Science and Master of Science degrees are both available after graduation|
|Possible Careers||Network administrator, computer administrator, computer support specialist, telecommunications technician|
|Median Salary (2018)||$82,050 (for all network and computer systems administrators)|
|Job Outlook (2016-2026)||6% growth (for all network and computer systems administrators)|
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
What Classes Will I Take?
These programs generally incorporate a mix of general education and core course requirements. General education classes cover topics such as English, algebra, economics and social sciences. Many courses can be found online; however, most programs cannot be completed completely online because internships require on-site attendance. Core course requirements include:
- Cisco router configuration
- Network management
- Internet and firewall security
- Wireless LAN technologies
- Voice over Internet protocol
- Fiber optic communications
- LINUX command and SHELL programming
- Physical layer transmission
Can I Pursue Continuing Education?
Many companies may prefer applicants with a bachelor's degree in the field. You can find programs like the Bachelor of Science (B.S.) in Telecommunications Engineering degree. Beyond this degree, you have the option of pursuing the Master of Science (M.S.) in Telecommunications or the M.S. in Telecommunications and Computers. The higher degree you earn, the more options you will have for employment.
What Career Options Do I Have?
With an associate's degree in telecommunications, you might become a network or computer administrator, computer support specialist or telecommunications technician. Some of the responsibilities of these entry-level positions are to install and repair cables in homes and offices, configure networks, establish security for computers and Internet, customer service, research and computer programming. There are diverse types of employment options within schools, offices, software developers and television companies. Bachelor's and master's degrees allow you to pursue upper-level employment in similar work environments.