CEC Theses and Dissertations

Date of Award

2009

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Computing Technology in Education (DCTE)

Department

Graduate School of Computer and Information Sciences

Advisor

Marlyn K. Littman

Committee Member

Ling Wang

Committee Member

David Metcalfe

Abstract

Wireless Local Area Networks (WLANs) offer flexibility, mobility, and scalability to educational institutions. Students are increasingly expecting anywhere, anytime access to online resources. Secondary school administrators, who serve a similar population as the National Job Corps Program (NJCP), realize that student success in the 21st century workplace depends upon the student's ability to use new and emerging technologies, including wireless technology. Computer access anytime and anywhere is crucial to the success of students today.

Wireless technology has been broadly deployed at educational institutions, such as the Hartford Job Corps Academy (HJCA), but little is known about how these networks are deployed and used, specifically at a Job Corps center. HJCA deployed a WLAN in 2005. Information about the core aspects of the design and implementation of anytime, anywhere initiatives, such as wireless solutions in education, is needed to complement the current research. The NJCP does not have a model for standardizing, organizing, and maintaining wireless networks.

The goal of this investigation was to develop a model for planning, designing, and implementing a wireless solution for the Job Corps system. The case study findings from the investigation and the systems development life cycle (SDLC) provided the framework for structuring WLANs at other Job Corps centers. This framework also facilitated the investigation and a determination of the significance of the case study findings, and the analysis and development of the WLAN implementation model for the NJCP. The findings of the HJCA investigation from multiple sources are presented. Using the SDLC framework and the findings from the case study, the NJCP WLAN implementation model is presented. The NJCP WLAN implementation model may be used to facilitate the deployment of WLANs at government-operated, education and training facilities, such as the NJCP.

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