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Learner Reviews & Feedback for The Bits and Bytes of Computer Networking by Google

31,617 ratings
7,337 reviews

About the Course

This course is designed to provide a full overview of computer networking. We’ll cover everything from the fundamentals of modern networking technologies and protocols to an overview of the cloud to practical applications and network troubleshooting. By the end of this course, you’ll be able to: ● describe computer networks in terms of a five-layer model ● understand all of the standard protocols involved with TCP/IP communications ● grasp powerful network troubleshooting tools and techniques ● learn network services like DNS and DHCP that help make computer networks run ● understand cloud computing, everything as a service, and cloud storage...

Top reviews

Aug 5, 2019

This was a very fun course! I really enjoyed the style and pace of the information given. A lot of technical information was given while the course made it easy to take in and comprehend the material!

Mar 25, 2020

Great course. It is great for beginners and for people that may have forgotten a thing or two. The way it was taught makes it so much better than reading man pages or something else as dry and boring.

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By kushal b

Dec 16, 2020

This course had positives and negatives.

The positives are mainly the information covered which seems like a thorough syllabus of the subject of networking and overall i am satisfied with what I have learnt and grateful.

The main negative was how many of the lectures were structured and how the concepts were explained.

I understand my next point is based on personal learning preferences however I think the point is still valid.

My main gripe is how the lectures just tell us information and not really teach us the information. A good example of this was the ethernet frame lecture and subnetting lecture. The information was presented in a linear fashion, eg.

"An ethernet frame is (followed by definition), the structure of the frame is the header and payload, the header is x bits long, the next field is this, this field is used in the process named y, followed by a definition of process y"

Before I could gain an understand of the information, there would be new information explained in the video. By the time I am onto process Y (in my example)I have already forgotten about the payload and the previous information.

I think a more successful manner of presenting the information (now I am talking about many of the lectures in general) could of been by explaining the general structure of the frame and how it works then giving details about structure.

In practice I adapted by reading one line at a time, noting down and watching the video over, I found other videos on YouTube which were more successful in teaching me the subject in a more efficient manner, by first not describing the process in a technical manner, but more in a metaphorical manner so I understood the general concept. A good example of this could be how the TCP handshake was taught and how It could be improved.

Instead of just listing how the process works as in, first a syn packet is sent then a syn ack is sent back etc. You could, explain how TCP works in three steps by using no technical words,

First the computer asks the server can I connect to you?

The computer responds and a connection is made

Then data transfer happens.

Then the computer asks can i close the connection.

From this point, the technical details can the be explained on top of this understanding. Now I already know the purpose of the 3 way hand shake and 4 way hand shake, thus when the control flags are explained, it can be fitted upon the general guideline of how the tcp connections works.

Thanks for reading if you have.

By Dave H

Dec 19, 2020

It was tough and complex to learn, but very educational about the world of IT.

a couple of the videos need to have the Text Script corrected to what the Speaker is actually saying, not what the computer interprets what the speaker is saying (a little confusing when reviewing NOTES with the Video). Some of the graphics have typos and errors in them,

3 quizzes that involved using the plug-in components were difficult to process with the correct answer because the quiz would continually make them incorrect. I don't know how I got the answer correct by inputting an incorrect answer to pass the quiz 100%. Very frustrating and time consuming all for 1 pt.

Please have the Mentors in the Discussion Forum try the actual quiz before giving advice or explanation to see if it is a student error with their answer or a technical error with the actual quiz. Reviewed the Discussion Forum and noticed a lot of frustrating comments about these quizzes that dated over a year ago with the same student complaints today. Please clean up the Discussion Board with only comments within 3 months and fix any technical problems with the quiz prior to these 3 months. It might require retooling or scrapping the quiz completely to avoid students (aka the consumer) from being totally frustrated with the grade quiz and not completing the course (or worse, not continuing with any future Coursera programs = lost future revenue for Coursera and Google).

I will be glad to assist you where exactly all of these errors in the course materials and quiz are if you ask. I have them all written down, like a good IT support specialist would do with proper documentation,

By Erik N

Apr 28, 2020

Information presented was broad and useful, but I have some criticisms.

Test question format is a typical dark-ages multiple choice format. Plugin tests were sometimes obscure or confusing. Lack of learning reinforcement; lack of ways to demonstrate application of specific knowledge; no way to stimulate learners to synthesize knowledge rather than regurgitating it. Lectures are OK but could be tightened up and made considerably more clear in technical spots. I believe there should be more practice quizzes and more review of material to guarantee that it is learned. More hands-on exercises are needed, especially when we are talking about things like netcat, nslookup, etc. Too much data presented without any particular schema for remembering it.

Overall specification of how internet works leaves something to be desired. I believe clarifying and improving source lecture and test materials would seriously improve both the quality of the students coming out of the course, and their satisfaction.

To recapitulate: test concepts, not miscellaneous, specific facts that can be easily looked up (discourage rote learning in favor of understanding). Encourage learners to synthesize knowledge and responses rather than just gaming a multiple choice test. Always back abstract concepts with practice sessions and ways to concretely apply the data. Present information in a way that can be digested easily. Improve clarity and specificity. Back up information with application.

By William S L

Feb 6, 2018

More complicated and complex, maybe not as well for someone with no experience. Problem with fill-in-the-blank graded quizes are even though you might have the right word, if it is spelled wrong at all, it is not accepted. Probably not easy for people that don't have English as their first language. Questions also don't help explain why and answer is wrong and what the right answer is, just to review the lesson again, but sometimes reviewing the lesson doesn't help if you just aren't getting it. The peer-reviewed assignment seems very complex and vague. There isn't a rubric to look at ahead of time, but once you turn it in, you can see it by reviewing others and resubmit. The peer-reviewed assignment almost made me want to stop taking this course and not continue. I wonder how many other people felt held-up by this assignment. First person I reviewed turned in a blank document, second person just listed definitions and not the processes. I listed definitions and processes, but feel like I did way more work than I was suppose to. Again, it was very vague and leaves interpretation up to the ones reviewing the work.