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Learn network computing with online courses and programs

Network computing refers to the distribution of computer processing tasks across many interconnected devices. Learn about network computing with online courses delivered through edX today.

What is network computing?

Network computing is a technique used to distribute processing tasks among multiple computers or devices called nodes. These nodes share resources and processing power, working together as if they were a single computer.Footnote 1

The benefits of network computing include resource sharing and communication, which allows for streamlined collaboration. Network computing makes it much easier to give people in the organization access to the right tools and resources, such as data analysis software or remote access to specialized equipment.

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Network computing course curriculum

An introductory class can start with the basics of network computing, as well as instruction on foundational topics, such as network management, network security, and the fundamentals of network systems optimization.

Intermediate classes may cover how to design and manage computing networks and how to optimize network functions. You may have an in-depth review of network technologies used for accessing information via the internet and mobile devices. These network computing tutorials can also expand your knowledge of various topics, including:

  • Essentials of network architectures

  • Cloud computing network and its applications

  • Security and privacy for modern data center networks

  • Remote access applications

  • Virtual Network Computing on Android

More advanced courses can focus on network auditing, security strategies, and systems design.

There are many different paths to learn network computing, from quick tutorials to advanced degrees, such as a master’s degree in computer science. Whichever you choose depends on your goals and the level of proficiency you hope to achieve in network computing.

Start building the knowledge you need to work in network computing with edX. From accelerated boot camps to comprehensive programs that allow you to earn a bachelor’s degree or (for more advanced learners) a master’s degree, there are many different learning formats available to fit your needs. Busy professionals can even take advantage of executive education courses tailored to those in leadership and management positions. Find the right course for you.

Explore jobs that use network computing

A basic understanding of network computing can benefit many professionals. However, for specific roles, such as cybersecurity experts and network administrators, advanced network computing skills are essential for building and maintaining secure, reliable networks.

Many jobs in fields such as IT, telecommunications, network operations, and cybersecurity use a comprehensive understanding of network computing. Examples of such roles include:

  • Network and computer systems administrator: Responsible for the maintenance and security of a network; network computing knowledge is part and parcel of their daily responsibilities.Footnote 2

  • Computer network architect: Designs and builds computer networks. They may be expected to know the most effective network topology, which maps how different nodes in a network are connected.Footnote 3

  • Software developer: Designs and develops software applications. Since many software programs need to work online, developers may need to code a cloud-based application that requires network computing expertise.Footnote 4

  • Cybersecurity analyst: Protects networks and systems from security threats. To properly protect their systems, cybersecurity teams need to analyze their networks, which requires network computing knowledge.Footnote 5

Each of these roles will have different education and skill requirements. For example, you may be able to build relevant skills in a cybersecurity bootcamp or develop your programming skills in a coding boot camp.

How to use network computing for computer processing 

Network computing allows many tasks in various professions to be finished more quickly and accurately.

For example, the e-commerce industry has greatly benefited from network computing, which enabled retailers to sell online to people sitting in their living rooms at midnight. They also gained the ability to quickly gather customer data, track customer behavior, and optimize the customer journey.

This task is often the job of an e-commerce data scientist, who may need access to a computing network to gather customer experience data from various online apps and websites. This requires access to a lot of computer processing power, which is made possible through network computing.