Network Infrastructure Essentials

I.     Course Prefix/Number: CNS 140

       Course Name: Network Infrastructure Essentials

       Credits: 3 (3 lecture; 2 lab)

II.    Prerequisite


III.   Course (Catalog) Description

Course covers the physical aspects of voice and data network cabling and installation. It also provides an overview of the industry and its worldwide standards, types of media and cabling, physical and logical networks, as well as signal transmission. This hands-on, lab-oriented course stresses documentation, design and installation issues, laboratory safety, on-the-job safety, and working effectively in group environments. The course helps prepare students for the BICSI Registered Certified Installer, Level 1 exam. This is the same course as CNS 140 (formerly CNA 105); students cannot receive credit for both ELT 105 and CNS 140.

IV.   Learning Objectives

After successfully completing this course, the student should be able to:

  • Identify different types of cables
  • Describe the components of typical network media
  • Describe how to implement a typical cable installation
  • Explain the codes and standards used in the industry
  • Demonstrate how to install copper and fiber optic media within a network enterprise
  • Demonstrate effective  team and group work on the lab

V.    Academic Integrity and Student Conduct

Students and employees at Oakton Community College are required to demonstrate academic integrity and follow Oakton's Code of Academic Conduct. This code prohibits:

• cheating,
• plagiarism (turning in work not written by you, or lacking proper citation),
• falsification and fabrication (lying or distorting the truth),
• helping others to cheat,
• unauthorized changes on official documents,
• pretending to be someone else or having someone else pretend to be you,
• making or accepting bribes, special favors, or threats, and
• any other behavior that violates academic integrity.

There are serious consequences to violations of the academic integrity policy. Oakton's policies and procedures provide students a fair hearing if a complaint is made against you. If you are found to have violated the policy, the minimum penalty is failure on the assignment and, a disciplinary record will be established and kept on file in the office of the Vice President for Student Affairs for a period of 3 years.

Please review the Code of Academic Conduct and the Code of Student Conduct, both located online at

VI.   Sequence of Topics

  1. Cabling and Safety
  2. Networking Basics
  3. Signals and Wires
  4. Copper media
  5. Fiber Optic Media
  6. Cabling Standards
  7. Structured Cabling
  8. Tools of the Trade
  9. Cabling Installation Process
  10. Rough-in Phase
  11. Trim Out Phase
  12. Finish Phase
  13. Customer Support Phase
  14. Emerging Cabling Technologies

VII.  Methods of Instruction

Lecture and hands-on lab assignments
Course may be taught as face-to-face, hybrid or online course.

VIII. Course Practices Required

Completion of on-line exams
Completion of final exam
Completion of lab projects
Course may be taught as face-to-face, media-based, hybrid or online course

IX.   Instructional Materials

Note: Current textbook information for each course and section is available on Oakton's Schedule of Classes.

X.    Methods of Evaluating Student Progress

Quizzes    30%
Labs    50%
Final Exam    20%

XI.   Other Course Information

If you have a documented learning, psychological, or physical disability you may be entitled to reasonable academic accommodations or services. To request accommodations or services, contact the Access and Disability Resource Center at the Des Plaines or Skokie campus. All students are expected to fulfill essential course requirements. The College will not waive any essential skill or requirement of a course or degree program.

Oakton Community College is committed to maintaining a campus environment emphasizing the dignity and worth of all members of the community, and complies with all federal and state Title IX requirements.

Resources and support for
  • pregnancy-related and parenting accommodations; and
  • victims of sexual misconduct
can be found at

Resources and support for LGBTQ+ students can be found at

Electronic video and/or audio recording is not permitted during class unless the student obtains written permission from the instructor. In cases where recordings are allowed, such content is restricted to personal use only. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited. Personal use is defined as use by an individual student for the purpose of studying or completing course assignments.

For students who have been approved for audio and/or video recording of lectures and other classroom activities as a reasonable accommodation by Oakton’s Access Disabilities Resource Center (ADRC), applicable federal law requires instructors to permit those recordings. Such recordings are also limited to personal use. Any distribution of such recordings is strictly prohibited.

Violation of this policy will result in disciplinary action through the Code of Student Conduct.