This project establishes a versatile computer networks laboratory to enhance the CIS curriculum to meet the challenges presented by the rapid advancement of telecommunications technology. The laboratory is being designed for versatility, scalability and adaptability to new technology and is separately or concurrently configured to handle four (4) protocols: 10Mbps ethernet, fast ethernet, asynchronous transfer mode (ATM), and fiber distributed data interface (FDDI) on token ring. The design of the laboratory and the lab exercises are being adapted from previous exemplary NSF projects as well as from the current literature.
Previously, the course in computer networks was taught without any hands-on laboratory exercise to reinforce class lectures. The laboratory exercises designed to be used in the proposed laboratory are dramatically changing the way several computer courses are being taught. Some of the laboratory projects and exercises are adaptations and implementations of exemplary materials from previous NSF grants of similar nature. Others are gathered from published literature expounding on successful networking projects which resulted from grants that were directly or indirectly supported by NSF. All of these adaptations are being implemented based on the current state of networking technology and network traffic.
The proposed laboratory and its innovative activities will have a positive impact on the way computer science is taught at the local site. It has potential to be a model suitable for adaptation for other sites as well.