purestopbanner

Computer Engineering Technician

Program Description
Credential: 2-Year Diploma
Delivery: Full time
Program Length: 4 Semesters

Computers and network systems are everywhere: in industry, business, vehicles, law enforcement, laboratories and homes. Computer engineering technicians are needed to support them! This program addresses many applications for computers including business analysis, networking and system security. Computer Engineering Technicians maintain software, systems and networks to improve life for society. This program prepares students to write exams for certifications such as Cisco (CCNA), CCNA Security, Networks +, A+ Certification, Server+ and Linux + Certification.

Career Opportunities
Northern College graduates are able to develop and maintain networks, systems and programs for both business and industry. Graduates can expect to find employment in the following fields/positions:

  • Programmer/Analyst
  • System/Network Administrator
  • Telecommunications
  • Municipalities
  • Boards/organizations

Start Date
January, May, September


  • Semester 1
    CM1903 Communications I – Model A
    GN1033 Health and Safety
    IN1104 IT Essentials I
    IN3263 Embedded Programming and Networks
    IN3324 Cisco Networking I
    MA1004 Mathematics of Finance I

    Semester 2
    CM2903 Communications II – Model A
    IN2104 IT Essentials II
    IN3045 Intermediate Programming I
    IN4324 Cisco Networking II
    MA2033 Mathematics of Finance II
    EL- 1003 Elective I
    IN2042 E-Business and Web Research

  • Semester 3
    CM3103 Report Writing I
    GN2133 Law and Ethics
    IN2105 Markup Languages
    IN3193 Database Management
    IN3244 Operating Systems I
    IN5324 Cisco Networking III

    Semester 4
    ET6073 Voice and Data Cabling (Timmins Campus only)
    IN2004 Systems Security
    IN4105 Internet Programming
    IN4254 Operating Systems II
    IN6003 Systems Analysis
    IN6324 Cisco Networking IV

Semester 1
CM1903 A Communications I
Communications I is a practical course designed to help strengthen both oral and written skills. Students will be exposed to a variety of learning methods and communication formats. Emphasis will be placed on the use of appropriate structure, writing conventions and style. Students will also develop discipline-specific documents as well as learn the basics of portfolio assembly and presentation.

GN1033 Health and Safety
This course is an introduction to the Occupational Health and Safety Act and Regulations. Topics include the Act and several related regulations. The student will also complete a valid WHMIS certification course during the semester.

IN1104 IT Essentials I
This course presents an in-depth exposure to computer hardware and operating systems. Students learn the functionality of hardware and software components as well as suggested best practices in maintenance, and safety issues. Through hands on activities and labs, students learn how to assemble and configure a computer, install operating systems and software, and troubleshoot hardware and software problems. In addition, chapters on networks and communication skills are included. This course helps students prepare for CompTIA’s A+ certification. Prerequisite: None.

IN3263 Embedded Programming and Networks
The first part of this course introduces the learner to the fundamentals of computer and how they are networked. Topics include a basic overview of computer/network equipment, networking fundamentals and standards, and network design. The second part of the course provides the learner with an introduction to computer programming using embedded systems. Topics covered include syntax, variables, equations, data types, loops, conditional statements, logical statements, and ADC interfacing.

IN3324 Cisco Networking I
A computer network is a collection of interconnected computers and network devices. The network provides a path for the communication of device control information and user data. This course is an introduction to computer networks with an emphasis on Cisco-supported networking technologies. This is the first course in a series of four courses designed to give the student all the material, information and hands-on experience required to write the Cisco CCNA exam. In this first course the student will be introduced to basic electronics, computer and network theory. The course material is delivered through both lecture and hands on lab work. Prerequisite: None.

MA1004 Mathematics of Finance I
This course is divided into several building blocks. The primary focus is to start with fundamental arithmetic and algebra and apply the learned techniques to common business problem solving. In tandem, students will also learn several business mathematics techniques and their application.

Semester 2

CM2903 Communications II Model A
Communications II is a continuation of Communications I and is designed to strengthen practical written and oral presentation skills. Students will apply the appropriate principles and formats to job-related documents and will continue to review grammatical structures and apply editing strategies.

IN2104 IT Essentials II
The goal of this course is to lay a foundation of the basic information required for network operating system administration and other network administration tasks. It is designed to follow the IT Essentials I course to further prepare students to pass the Server+ certification exam. . The course is intended for students who want to pursue a career in information technology or who want to have knowledge about how a computer works, how to administer Windows Server 2008 and Linux Debian Linux Operating Systems, and how to troubleshoot operating system issues. Prerequisite: IN1104 IT Essentials I with a minimum grade level of “C”.

IN3045 Intermediate Programming
This course covers more advanced programming concepts such as object-oriented programming (OOP), data structures, graphical user interface (GUI) design and event-driven programming. Students will apply these concepts in a series of small to medium sized programming projects. Modularization of code and proper planning and documentation will be emphasized as the students learn to develop increasingly complex applications. Prerequisite: IN1105 Introduction to Programming.

IN4324 Cisco Networking II
This is the second course in a series of four courses designed to give the student all the material, information and hands-on experience required to write the Cisco CCNA exam. CISCO II expands upon the material in CISCO I by covering WAN technologies in more detail. Router hardware, set-up and configuration are covered in depth. IP addressing, routing / routing protocols and network troubleshooting will also be explored. The course material is delivered through both lecture and hands on lab work. Prerequisite: IN3324 – Cisco I with a min. grade level of C.

MA2033 Mathematics of Finance II
This course begins with an introduction to common arithmetical techniques used in the world of finance. As the course progresses, students will progress to the more advanced techniques followed in financial problem solving. Students will also become proficient in the use of various financial calculators. Prerequisite: MA1004 Math of Finance I.

EL1003 Elective
Students may choose a postsecondary course from a program they are working towards or a regular General Arts and Science course as an elective. Notes: Students cannot take post-secondary courses which require prerequisites. Certain programs such as, BSc. Nursing, Law Clerk and others, have predetermined electives. A list of eligible elective courses for these programs will be provided by the program coordinator at the beginning of each semester in which an elective is required.

Semester 3

CM3103 Report Writing I
This course is an extension of Communications I and II, and concentrates on the writing of business reports. The course introduces students to the methodology of researching, organizing, compiling, analyzing and interpreting information to solve business problems. Students learn the theory and apply it to writing short, informal reports, proposals and a long formal report. Prerequisite: CM2173 Communications II or CM2113 Communications II.

GN2133 Law and Ethics
This course provides a basis for legal and ethical issues of importance to graduates and specifically covers torts, professional liability and contract law. Its goal is to begin preparing the student for professional designations and/or examinations.

IN2105 Markup Languages
This involves the study of markup languages as applied to designing & building Web sites. Students will learn to design and administer an enterprise level Web site and will gain experience in the use of Internet technologies such as X/HTML, CSS, XML and RSS. Students will be introduced to client-side web scripting. Students will learn and apply techniques for professional Web design, maintenance and search engine optimization.

IN3193 Database Management
This course will introduce the student to many features & applications of MS Access 2010. Access terminology, the Access 2010 Window, & the basic characteristics of a database will be followed by topics as creating, querying, maintaining, & presenting a database. Procedures for converting an Excel worksheet to an Access database will be studied. Prerequisite: None.

IN3244 Operating Systems I
This course comprises a study of the software that manages the resources of modern computing systems. Topics include: Debian Linux command line, system administration, application management, system configuration, process and module management, system maintenance and networking. Prerequisite: IN2104 IT Essentials II with a minimum grade level of “C”.

IN5324 Cisco Networking III
This is the third course in a series of four courses designed to give the student all the material, information and hands-on experience required to write the Cisco CCNA exam. CISCO III expands upon the material in CISCO II by covering the OSI model and how routing relates to the models various layers. LAN switching, VLANS and LAN design will also be introduced in this course. More information regarding routing protocols will be studied as well as Access Control Lists (ACLs), and general network management tasks. The course material is delivered through both lecture and hands on lab work. Prerequisite: IN4324 – Cisco II with a min. grade level of C.

Semester 4

ET6073 Voice and Data Cabling
This course is designed to provide the student with a basic understanding of communication networks, telecommunication cabling, communication standards, and how to properly install and test an F connector and RJ45 jack.

IN2004 Systems Security
This course is an introduction to network security. The following will be covered, methods used to attack or infiltrate computers, network devices and the networks these items are attached to. Software used to determine where vulnerabilities exist, if an attack is taking place or just happened will be discussed. Practical work will include a number of labs that allow the student to apply the theory learned during the discussion of the above mentioned items. Prerequisite: IN5324 – Cisco Networking III with minimum “C” Grade Level.

IN4105 Internet Programming
This course provides a hands-on introduction to web application development. Students will design and implement a series of projects that reflect the current trends in web applications. Sample projects include shopping cart systems, blogs and content management systems. Students will gain experience with web scripting languages and enabling database-driven content.

IN6003 Systems Analysis
This course provides an overall examination of systems analysis as it applies to all phases of the Systems Development Life Cycle (SDLC). The actual components of these phases, in theory and in practice, are explored in relation to completing assigned projects. The projects will involve the planning, analysis, & design of a system. As an integral part of this course, students will be expected to produce & deliver both oral & written presentations discussing assigned projects. Prerequisite: IN4254 Operating Systems II.

IN6324 Cisco Networking IV
This is the final course in a series of four courses designed to give the student all the material, information and hands-on experience required to write the Cisco CCNA exam. CISCO IV expands upon the material in three previous courses with more in depth information regarding WANs and WAN design. The WAN technologies such as Point-to-Point Protocol (PPP), Integrated Services Digital Network and Frame Relay will be covered in depth. Additional material regarding network management is also offered. Finally, a Network Certification Exam review and CCNA Exam review will be completed. The course material is delivered through both lecture and hands on lab work. Prerequisite: IN5324 – Cisco Networking III with a min. grade level of C.