The Best Online Bachelor’s in Network Administration

by TBS Staff
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A bachelor's in network administration prepares students to work with various computer systems and structures. A degree in this field can open doors to lucrative and exciting technology careers.

Students enrolled in the best network administration degree programs learn to diagnose and repair computer issues, maintain systems, and find solutions for organizations and users. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projects an 11% growth in computer occupations from 2019-2029 — nearly three times the average projected growth rate for all occupations.

Mechanic schools feature two- and four-year programs, including associate and bachelor's degrees. Some programs offer a certificate or minor degree concentration in automotive technology or management. Learners with a background in automotive technology move on to exciting careers such as industrial production managers, mechanical engineers, auto mechanics, diesel service technicians, and auto body shop managers.

While cloud computing could slow career growth in traditional network administration, the best online colleges equip graduates with skills and training for this evolving industry. This guide explores the network administration degree and possible careers it could lead to. This page also provides rankings of the best network administration degree programs.

Featured Online Programs

The Best Online Bachelor's in Network Administration

University of Alabama at Birmingham true View School Profile $$$ Birmingham, AL 58% 51% 58% University of Alabama at Birmingham is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). The program is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).

A public research university founded in 1831, the UAB offers an online bachelor of science in information systems. Students complete course requirements 100% online with access to 24/7 technical support.

Learners receive foundational training with courses such as business programming, fundamentals of financial management, international business dynamics, and business data communications. A capstone experience provides practical experience. The program offers networking opportunities and student-focused support staff.

Applicants need a high school diploma or GED equivalent to qualify for admission.

Dakota State University true View School Profile $$$ Madison, SD 47% 46% 65% Dakota State University is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

A public university founded in 1881, DSU offers an online bachelor of science in network and security administration.

Learners complete courses such as database management systems, information security fundamentals, operating environments, and survey of enterprise systems. Participants choose between an internship experience or undergraduate research scholarship to complete the program.

Applicants need a high school diploma and one of the following to qualify for admission: a minimum GPA of 2.6, a minimum ACT score of 18, or a graduating high school class ranking in the upper 60% of the class.

Concordia University-Saint Paul true View School Profile Saint Paul, MN 59% 60% 65% Concordia University-St. Paul is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC).

A public research university in 1974, CSP offers an online bachelor of science in information systems. Students complete 48 credits in 8-week terms. Students can complete major coursework in as little as 18 months.

Required courses include an introduction to information systems, foundations of cybersecurity and network defense, digital transformation of business, and the fundamentals of artificial intelligence.

Applicants need a high school diploma, and the department prefers students to possess some prior college experience with a minimum GPA of 2.0. Applicants with fewer than 20 transfer credits must also send a personal essay.

Maryville University of Saint Louis true View School Profile Saint Louis, MO 72% 49% 56% Maryville University is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC). The program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP).

A private university founded in 1872, Maryville offers an online bachelor of management information systems. Students complete all coursework online with no on-campus requirements.

The program includes both business core and networking courses. Required courses include business communications and financial accounting. Computer requirements include information technology concepts and applications, networks and security, and applied operating systems. The department offers both technical support and student support services online.

Applicants need a high school diploma or GED equivalent to qualify for admission. The school does not require students to submit standardized test scores.

Western Governors University true View School Profile Salt Lake City, UT 29% 55% 100% Western Governors University is regionally accredited by the Northwest Commission on Colleges and Universities (NWCCU). The program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP).

A private online university founded in 1997, WGU offers an online bachelor of science in business administration with a concentration in IT management. Students complete coursework completely online with no on-campus requirements.

The program organizes courses into micro-credentials in business, as well as network and security, IT management for business, and data management. The culmination of the degree ends with a capstone experience and a portfolio of all projects completed during the degree.

Applicants need a high school diploma to qualify for admission.

Dallas Baptist University View School Profile Dallas, TX 53% 59% 45% Dallas Baptist University is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). The program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP).

A private Christian university founded in 1898, DBU offers an online bachelor of business administration with a concentration in systems technology and information management. Students can explore the field through the lens of faith.

Students complete courses such as enhancing software user interfaces, business and public law, database design, and current IT trends and emerging technologies. In addition, learners complete general education courses and religion requirements.

Applicants need a high school diploma to qualify for admission. Students must also submit SAT scores (waived for high school students graduating in 2021).

Colorado State University-Global Campus View School Profile Aurora, CO 70% 49% 100% Colorado State University Global Campus is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC). The program is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP).

A public university founded in 1870, CSU Global offers an online bachelor of science in management information systems and business analytics.

Required courses include information systems design and management, statistics in business analytics, data science foundations, and web analytics. The program offers concentration options as well, including data management and analysis, cybersecurity, and organizational leadership.

Learners receive support services and virtual library access online as well. Applicants can apply every four weeks and need a high school diploma to qualify for admission.

Old Dominion University View School Profile $$$ Norfolk, VA 52% 56% 51% Old Dominion University is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

A public research university founded in 1930, ODU offers an online bachelor of science in business administration in information systems and technology. Online students do not need to come to campus to satisfy any requirements.

Students can choose to further specialize their degree by choosing concentrations in database, network engineering, e-business and e-commerce, and application development. Required core courses include an introduction to object-oriented programming, systems analysis and design, and strategic IT administration. Students then choose electives from their area of concentration as well as one elective in international business to satisfy degree requirements.

The school offers reduced tuition for active military. Applicants need a high school diploma or a GED equivalent to qualify for admission. The school also requires students to submit SAT or ACT scores.

Indiana State University View School Profile $$ Terre Haute, IN 41% 57% 43% Indiana State University is regionally accredited by the Higher Learning Commission (HLC). The program is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).

A public university founded in 1865, ISU offers an online bachelor of science in management information systems. Students can also add an online minor to specialize their studies further.

Students complete business courses such as business information tools or business finance. Information management systems courses include business systems analytics, network administration and security, and data and knowledge management. In addition, students take general education courses to complete degree requirements.

Applicants need a high school diploma with a minimum GPA of 2.5 to qualify for admission. Transfer students need a minimum GPA of 2.0 for eligibility.

Florida State College at Jacksonville View School Profile Jacksonville, FL 38% 21% 49% Florida State College at Jacksonville is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

A public college founded in 1965, FSCJ offers an online bachelor of applied science in information technology management.

Students complete general education courses as well as major requirements. Required courses include microcomputer applications for business and economics, introduction to computer programming, hardware configuration, and introduction to project management. A capstone experience rounds out the requirements for the 120-credit degree.

Applicants need a high school diploma or GED equivalent to qualify for admission. Students must also take placement exams prior to enrolling.

Morehead State University View School Profile $$ Morehead, KY 42% 44% 44% Morehead State University is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC). The program is accredited by the Association to Advance Collegiate Schools of Business (AACSB).

A public university founded in 1887, MSU offers an online bachelor of business administration with a concentration in information systems.

Students take both business and computer-related courses. Notable options include ethical decision-making in business, quantitative analysis for business, and data networking systems. Electives for the concentration include advanced programming, network administration, or mobile application development.

Applicants need a high school diploma with a minimum GPA of 2.5 for unconditional admission.

St Petersburg College View School Profile Clearwater, FL 32% 27% 57% St. Petersburg College is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

A public college founded in 1927, SPC offers a bachelor of applied science in technology development and management. Students complete all coursework online in eight-week terms with no on-campus requirements.

Students can choose from concentrations in cybersecurity or data science. Required courses include legal aspects of managing technology, cloud computing foundations, software design and methodologies, and IT services management. A capstone experience rounds out degree requirements.

Applicants need at least 60 credits of lower-division courses with a minimum GPA of 2.0 to qualify for admission.

St. Petersburg College is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

Keiser University-Ft Lauderdale View School Profile Fort Lauderdale, FL 65% 62% 45% Keiser University is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

A private university founded in 1977, Keiser offers an online bachelor of science in management information systems. The online program requires no campus visits.

Students complete both business and information systems courses. Business courses include legal and ethical environments of business, project management, and business analytics. Major courses include information systems implementation, management information systems, and information technology management. Students must complete general education coursework.

Applicants need a high school diploma or GED equivalent to qualify for admission.

Amridge University View School Profile Montgomery, AL 40% 90% 100% Amridge University is regionally accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges (SACSCOC).

A private university founded in 1967, Amridge offers an online bachelor of science in information systems. Students complete 128 credits with no on-campus requirements.

In addition to general education courses required for the bachelor's degree, students complete major courses such as management information systems, managing business projects via technology, principles of training and development in IT, and database management.

Applicants need a high school diploma to qualify for admission. First-time students must also send SAT or ACT scores.

Champlain College View School Profile Burlington, VT 64% 54% 52% Champlain College is regionally accredited by the New England Commission of Higher Education (NECHE).

A private college founded in 1878, Champlain offers a bachelor of science in management information systems. Students complete coursework in seven-week sessions with no on-campus requirements.

Required courses include networking fundamentals, introduction to Python, enterprise database systems, and information systems development. The program also requires business courses, and students choose a specialization in Windows or Linux.

The school allows students to transfer up to 90 credits toward their degree. Applicants need a high school diploma with a minimum GPA of 2.5 to qualify for admission.

Best Online Bachelor's

Online Bachelor's in Network Administration Degree Program Ranking Guidelines

We ranked these degree programs based on quality, curricula, school awards, rankings, and reputation.

Our Methodology

Here at TheBestSchools.org, we take the trust and welfare of our readers very seriously. When making our school and program rankings, our top priority is ensuring that our readers get accurate, unbiased information that can help them make informed decisions about online education. That's why we've developed a rigorous ranking methodology that keeps the needs of our readers front and center.

Our proprietary, multi-criteria ranking algorithm analyzes key data indicators — as collected by the federal government — for each school or program. What data we use depends on the focus of each specific ranking, but in all cases, our ranking methodology is impartial: Schools cannot buy better rankings at TBS.

While specific criteria under consideration can vary by ranking, there are a few data points that we value most highly. They are affordability, academic quality, and online enrollment. Below, we break down our algorithm to help you understand what you're getting when you use one of our rankings.

  • Academics
  • Affordability
  • Online Enrollment

Data Sources

The data used in TBS rankings comes primarily from the federal government, and much of it is provided by the schools themselves. We aggregate and analyze this data to build our rankings.

The Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) is our primary source. Its data comes from annual surveys conducted by the U.S. Department of Education's National Center for Education Statistics (NCES). Every college, university, or technical school with access to federal financial aid must participate in these surveys, which include questions about enrollment, graduation rates, finances, and faculty qualifications. This is publicly available data, which you can access yourself through the College Navigator.

Additionally, because we value a personal touch and the professional experience of our staff and Academic Advisory Board, we vet all results and adjust rankings as necessary based on our collected knowledge of schools and degree programs. Depending on the ranking, we may obtain additional input from AcademicInfluence.com, subject matter experts, prior TBS ranking lists, or other sources we deem relevant to a particular ranking.

Breakdown of Our Rankings Methodology

About Our Ranking Factors

Here at TBS, we value what you value: quality education, affordability, and the accessibility of online education. These factors guide all of our program rankings.

Each of these factors are further broken down into weighted subfactors. For example, retention rates are weighted more heavily than availability of program options because they are a better indicator of student success.

We chose the following factors for our rankings because of their influence on learning experiences and graduate outcomes. However, students should always balance our rankings against their personal priorities. For instance, a learner who needs a fully online program may prioritize online flexibility more than our rankings do. Our rankings are designed to help you make a decision — not to make a decision for you.

Academics - 75%
Affordability - 15%
Online Enrollment - 10%

In all our school rankings and recommendations, we work for objectivity and balance. We carefully research and compile each ranking list, and as stated in our advertising disclosure, we do NOT permit financial incentives to influence rankings. Our articles never promote or disregard a school for financial gain.

If you have questions about our ranking methodology, please feel free to connect with our staff through contact page.

We thank you for your readership and trust.

What Is an Online Bachelor's in Network Administration Degree?

The best network administration degrees teach students how to set up and maintain communication networks. They also prepare graduates to manage organizations' servers, storage, and applications.

A bachelor's in network administration equips students with the skills to handle local area networks, wide area networks, and virtual private networks. Enrollees also receive training in troubleshooting common issues, installing hardware and software, and maintaining infrastructure. In addition to technical skills, students also develop their people skills, such as communication, teamwork, and attention to detail.

Choosing an Online Program

When choosing an online college, prospective students need to consider school and program accreditation, program cost, and curriculum requirements. Online learners should also research access to in-state tuition rates, residency requirements, and synchronous vs. asynchronous delivery methods.

What to Expect in a Network Administration Major

While each network administration program delivers a unique curriculum, most degrees share some core components. Enrollees typically study project management, cybersecurity, database management, and mobile and cloud systems and applications. These degree-seekers need analytical and multitasking skills to thrive. They should also have an interest in computers and basic technical skills.

Many assignments feature practical work, such as handling servers and control devices and building test networks. Students often work independently in their school's network administration labs, though most programs also require group work. Capstone projects typically require enrollees to create functioning network applications.

Network Administration Concentrations

Cybersecurity

Cybersecurity concentrations teach students how to establish security measures in different networks and systems. Learners also explore methods to identify and test network inefficiencies and security vulnerabilities. They may learn strategies for threat detection, handling attacks, and mitigating their damage.

Business Management

This course provides information about different sectors' distinct networking needs. Learners can also develop general leadership and project management skills in this course of study.

Project Management

Concentrations in project management provide students with leadership and communication strategies. The training focuses on overseeing projects from conception to implementation, including scheduling, risk management, and quality management. In a network administration program, this concentration may explore large-scale network installation and user and administrator training.

Network Administration Curriculum

  • Computers and Information Systems: These courses examine the different types of computer and information systems, including networks, software, and the various components. Students learn how different organizations implement systems.
  • Database Operations: Database operations courses teach students how databases can help organizations improve processes and decision-making. Learners gain skills in table design, data entry, and rule creation.
  • Wireless Network: These classes explore the design and deployment of wireless and mobile networks. Students consider the architecture and components of these networks and their many applications.
  • Network Architecture: Network architecture courses teach students to plan, build, and set up various networks. Coursework may also include security and maintenance processes for network administrators.
  • Programming for Network Administration: In this course, students learn to apply programming skills to networks. The training may cover programming of design, diagnostic, and performance analysis tools.

Network Administration Careers

Most graduates with doctoral degrees in addiction and recovery work as counselors or clinical psychologists specializing in addiction and substance abuse counseling. However, this degree provides a strong footing for other jobs in academia, research, and non-clinical psychology, some which require additional study or credentialing. For instance, psychiatrists need to complete medical school to become board certified.

While most graduates pursue careers as network administrators, they also have access to other computer and information technology careers. The versatile training applies to hardware, software, and management roles.

Available careers vary by location and employer, but the following information highlights some common and best-paying careers for bachelor's graduates. The table also lists the median annual salaries for each position.

Common Careers With Network Administration Degrees
Career Median Annual Wage (2020)
Computer Network Architects $116,780
Software Developers $110,140
Database Administrators $98,860
Computer Systems Analysts $93,730
Computer Programmers $89,190
Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics

Certifications for Network Administration

In addition to network administration degrees, students can pursue industry and vendor certifications to enhance their resumes and improve their career prospects. While there are no industry-wide mandatory certifications, some employers may require candidates to possess credentials from specific vendors for employment.

Some popular certifications include CompTIA network+, Microsoft certified professional, and Network5 certification. Candidates typically need to pass an exam to receive the certification, though requirements may vary.

Network Administration Organizations

Professional organizations offer extensive support to network administration and computer science students and professionals. These organizations typically offer access to industry news, certifications, and networking events. They also provide professional development opportunities.

Some of these organizations host national or international members. Others maintain more regional member bases. Some popular network administration organizations include:

Frequently Asked Questions About Bachelor's Degrees in Network Administration

true Which Courses Are Best for Network Administrators?

The best courses in network administration depend on the student's interests and goals. Graduates who complete coursework in operating systems, cybersecurity, and architecture can thrive among the competition in the job market.

Is Network Administrator a Good Career?

Network administrator careers offer plenty of benefits, including competitive salaries and a positive job outlook. The BLS projects a 4% employment growth rate for network administrators from 2019-2029, keeping pace with the average for all occupations. These professionals make a median annual salary of $84,810 as of May 2020.

How Do I Become a Network Administrator?

Most network administrators possess bachelor's degrees at minimum, according to the BLS. Some employers may hire candidates with associate degrees or industry certifications.

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