Frequently Asked Questions

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When can I start?

Students may start the program any quarter, but should be aware that some classes are not offered every quarter. It is strongly recommended to students that they meet with an Advisor to build a specific academic plan, to ensure classes are taken in the correct order.

What are the program prerequisites, and requirements for employment?

  • Proof of placement into MATH 094 (Basic Math) or above, or credits earned in higher level math course; and,
  • Proof of placement into ENGL 092 (Critical Analysis) or above, or credits earned in higher level English courses; and,
  • The CIS AS degree requires students either pass CIS 100 (Computer Literacy) or have the department chair's permission to register in higher level CIS classes.
  • The Cybersecurity AAS-T degree requires completion of CIS 105 (Computer Operating Systems I) with a C (2.0) grade or better.

While not a requirement for entrance into the CIS Program, students should be aware that many employers in this career field require criminal background checks.

What are CISCO and the CCNA Certifications?

Cisco Systems is the world leader in internet working products. The CCNA is the Cisco Certified Networking Associate certificate; it is an indication the individual is qualified for an entry level networking position. The goal is that students who complete a certain series of courses (CIS 226, 227, 228, 229) will be qualified to take and pass both the Network + and the CCNA exams, and thus earn these industry-wide recognized professional certifications.

What are the 4011 and 4013 Certifications?

WCC's Computer Information Systems program is one of only four college programs in Washington State to earn the prestigious endorsement of the Committee on National Security System (CNSS) for mapping their curriculum to the defined specific sets of skills that are needed by governmental agencies to keep their digital information secure. These sets of skills are defined in National Standards 4011 (for Information Security Systems Professionals) and 4013 (for Systems Administrators). Students successfully completing WCC's 25 credit Certificate of Proficiency/CIS Information Systems Security will be ready to sit for exams that result in the 4011 and 4013 certifications.

What is CyberWatch?

WCC is a member of CyberWatch, a consortium of higher education institutions, businesses, and government agencies that is focused on building and maintaining a stronger information security/assurance workforce. In addition, CyberWatch is committed to improving the quality and increasing the awareness of information security/assurance in the education and business communities. CyberWatch is funded by the National Science Foundation.

What is CyberWatch West?

WCC is the lead institution of CyberWatch West, a consortium of higher education institutions, businesses, and government agencies that is focused on building and maintaining a stronger information security/assurance workforce. CyberWatch West is a consortium of 62 institutions (and growing) with a regional, west coast focus. CyberWatch West is funded by the National Science Foundation.

What are the standards to be successful in the CIS program?

Students of Whatcom's CIS program must maintain a grade point average (GPA) of at least 2.0 (C) to remain in the program.

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