Top 5 Affordable Associate’s in Network Administration Online 2020

Most Affordable ProgramsSTEM degrees are a great way to land a fantastic job. Most of the highest paying jobs are in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. An online associate’s degree in network administration falls squarely within the “technology” category. Jobs as cybersecurity specialist, network analyst, network engineer, and systems administrator all pay quite well and are growing at a faster than average rate. So jumping into your career by earning your network administration associate degree online is a great idea. This ranking features the following schools:

  • Georgia Piedmont Technical College
  • Dakota State University
  • Central Texas College
  • Lake Superior College
  • Montgomery County Community College

They are ranked according to which schools had the cheapest out-of-state annual tuition rate.

#1. Georgia Piedmont Technical College

Online Associate’s in Network Administration

GPTC-Most Affordable Online Associate's in Network Administration

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Georgia Piedmont Technical College’s online networking specialist degree requires 66 credit-hours to complete. Students in this very affordable associate’s in network administration online will take courses like principles of economics, conceptual physics, mathematical modeling, computer networking fundamentals, hardware installation and maintenance, program design and development, and information security fundamentals.

  • Tuition: $4,986

#2. Dakota State University

Online Associate’s in Network Administration

Dakota State University-Most Affordable Online Associate's in Network Administration

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Graduates from this program have found jobs as systems administrators, network systems engineers, penetration testers, and data communication analysts. Courses available in this affordable network administration associate’s online include networking I&II, computer science I&II, routing and switching, information security management, and information security fundamentals.

  • Tuition: $5,906

#3. Central Texas College

Online Associate’s in Network Administration

CTC-Most Affordable Online Associate's in Network Administration

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Central Texas College offers multiple academic options including certificates like IT Network Analyst, IT Industry Certification Preparation, and Telecommunications Technician in addition to the 60 credit-hour online network systems administrator associate’s degree. Students in this affordable online associate’s network administration degree will take courses like information technology security, network defense and countermeasures, introduction to database, and implementing network directory services.

  • Tuition: $6,420

#4. Lake Superior College

Online Associate’s in Network Administration

Lake Superior College-Most Affordable Online Associate's in Network Administration

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Lake Superior College has been designated a National Center of Academic Excellence in Cyber Defense by the NSA (National Security Agency) and Department of Homeland Security (DHS). Students will take courses like A+ operating systems technology, A+ core hardware, network administration: security, intrusion detection and prevention systems fundamentals, and network forensics and incident response. Lake Superior is another great option among affordable online associate’s in network administration programs.

  • Tuition: $7,500

#5. Montgomery County Community College

Online Associate’s in Network Administration

MCCC-Most Affordable Online Associate's in Network Administration

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MCCC offers a program between 60 and 62 credits. Students will take courses like programming for everyone, computer science: programming and concepts, windows server administration and support, database management systems/sql, introduction to cloud computing, network security fundamentals, and network planning, project management and implementation.

  • Tuition: $14,850

FAQ

What is the difference between network administration and information technology?

Network administrators are specialized while IT professionals are generalists (who may have trained in certain specializations). Network administrators are responsible for everything involving a company’s computer network right down to the actual physical hardware and cables. IT professionals are responsible for the machines that use the company’s networks. Networking is concerned primarily with the transmission of data, whereas IT deals mostly with storing and interacting with that data in various ways through computer applications that provide users with access to databases.

What does a network administrator do?

Network administrators are responsible for the design and maintenance of an organization’s networking infrastructure. Servers, hubs, routers, switches, cables, all of these fall under the network administrator’s purview. They replace parts, fix what breaks, and strive to secure the network and its components against cybersecurity threats. In smaller to medium sized organizations there may be a lot of crossover between network administration and IT tasks.

How much do computer networking jobs pay?

The Bureau of Labor Statistics puts the median pay for network administrators at $82,050 per year. If you decide to earn your bachelor’s degree you may become a computer network architect which has a median salary of $109,020 per year. If you decide to specialize in network security, information security analysts earn $98,000 per year.

Why rank these associate’s in network administration online schools according to affordability?

Did you know that if you find an affordable enough school, almost all your tuition can be covered by financial aid? The basic grants provided by the federal government through FAFSA are often enough to almost entirely cover the expenses of low-cost community college education. And whether you decide to find a job with your associate’s degree, or move on to a four-year school, this can drastically reduce the overall cost of your college degree. And low-cost doesn’t mean low quality. Community colleges are subsidized by the state and federal government to keep their tuition low and ensure they are accessible to the most students possible. The crazy thing is, the affordable prices of the community colleges on this ranking is, for the most part, representative of out-of-state costs. If you can find a community college local to you, the in-state and sometimes in-district tuition can be even lower.

OAD Staff
September 2019

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This concludes our ranking of the cheapest online associate’s in network administration degree programs for 2020.