The required textbook for this course is Computer Networks: A Systems Approach (6th edition) by Peterson and Davie. Earlier editions are also acceptable, but the reading assignments will use section numbers from the 6th (online) edition. While each lecture will be supported by accompanying readings from the course text, the lectures may, from time to time, introduce material that is not in the textbook. You are expected to read the assigned portions of the textbook before coming to class, as they will serve as the basis for the in-class discussions.

Readings are not a substitute for lectures. You are responsible for all material covered in lecture, whether or not it appeared in any assigned readings.

Note we will be using iClickers in this course. For students attending in person, if you haven't previously done so for another course, please make sure to register your iClicker on the Canvas site. For those attending remotely, or without a physical clicker, you can use either the iClicker Reef app or Web software.


This course will have roughly bi-weekly homework assignments, two substantial programming assignments, a midterm, and a final. Discussion sections will be held weekly to review the lecture material and answer questions about the readings, homeworks, and projects. Grades for this class will be based on:

  • 4% Participation (clickers)
  • 8% Homework
  • 42% Programming projects
  • 21% Midterm
  • 25% Final

Final grades will be curved.

No late assignments will be accepted. Exceptions for documented medical emergencies, death of an immediate family member, or other such life-altering situations must be requested from the instructor as soon as practical.


Date Topics Notes Readings
Mon 01/04 Class overview
Wed 01/06 Layers & Framing
1.3, 2.3
Fri 01/08 Error handling
Project 1a out 2.4
Mon 01/11 Reliable transmission
1.5, 2.5
Wed 01/13 Flow Control
HW 1 out 2.5
Fri 01/15 Transport protocols
5-5.2 (End-to-End)
Mon 01/18 MLK Day
Wed 01/20 Bridging
HW 1 due 3-3.1
Fri 01/22 From Networks to Internetworks
Mon 01/25 Internetworking
Project 1a due/1b out 3.3
Wed 01/27 Addressing
HW 2 out 3.3 (Global Addresses)
Fri 01/29 IPv6
Mon 02/01 Naming
3.3 (ARP), 9.3 (DNS)
Wed 02/03 Naming (cont)
HW 2 due 3.3 (ARP), 9.3 (DNS)
Fri 02/05 Midterm Exam
Mon 02/08 Link-state Routing
3.4 (Link State)
Wed 02/10 Distance-vector routing
Project 1b due 3.4 (Distance-Vector)
Fri 02/12 Interdomain routing
Project 2a out 4.1
Mon 02/15 Presidents Day
Wed 02/17 Border Gateway Protocol
HW 3 out 4.1 (BGP)
Fri 02/19 Router design
Mon 02/22 Buffering and Scheduling
Wed 02/24 Traffic Management
HW 3 due 6.2
Fri 02/26 Congestion control
Mon 03/01 TCP CC, Links and signaling
Project 2a due/2b out 6.3, 2.1
Wed 03/03 Modulation
HW 4 out 2.2
Fri 03/05 Media Access Control
Mon 03/08 Ethernet
Wed 03/10 802.11
HW 4 due 2.7
Fri 03/12 Review
Project 2b due
Fri 03/19 Final Exam (11:30-2:30pm)

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