CSIS 340 - Database Systems
Dilbert Strip

Course Description

A study of the organization of database systems for information storage, retrieval, and security. Examples of relational and non-relational systems are presented.


Dr. David M. Hansen


  • Elmasri & Navathe. Fundamentals of Database Systems. Reading, Massachusetts: Addison-Wesley.
    (Good SQL help - great for CSIS 314 too)
  • Ben Forta, Sams Teach Yourself SQL in 10 Minutes Indianapolis, IN: Sams Publishing.


Students will be exposed to practical and theoretical aspects of database management. Specifically, students will understand:
  • When, why, and how to use a database management system.
  • Fundamental relational theory.
  • Basics of the SQL query language.
  • How to use a high-level data modeling technique, such as Entity-Relationship diagrams, for database design.
  • How a DBMS functions including:
    • File and index structures
    • Query processing
    • Transaction mechanisms
    • Recovery mechanisms
    • Security
Students may also be exposed to advanced topics including object-oriented and extended-relational data models, data warehousing, distributed database management, etc.

Through a group-oriented hands-on project students will:

  • Gain practical experience with a client-server DBMS
  • Design and document (using ER diagrams) a relational database
  • Acquire SQL query skills

Course Organization

The course will include regular homework assignments and a group-oriented database design & implementation project (please see my comments on collaboration. Assignments are due before 11:59pm on the due date; there will be NO CREDIT given for late assignments (without an excused absence) - turn in as much as you can.

Reading assignments should be completed before the lecture covering the material. Not all reading material will be covered in the lectures, but you will be responsible for the material on homework and exams. Quizes over the assigned reading may be given at any time.

The Vision Statement of the Computer Science and Information Systems majors states that our students are distinctive by: "Bringing a Christ-centered worldview to our increasingly technological world." As one step towards the fulfillment of this objective, each semester, we will identify an influential Christian writing to be read and reflected upon by students in our classes throughout the term. This will be treated as an official component of every course and will be uniquely integrated and assessed at our discretion, generally as a component of the quiz grade. See the semester's reading schedule. In addition, regular meetings will be scheduled throughout the semester that can be attended for Chapel credit.

It is my hope that students will not view this as one more task to complete, but as a catalyst for continued discussion ultimately leading to a deeper walk with Christ.

The chief end of man is to glorify God, and enjoy Him forever.
(Westminster Confession)

If you have specific physical, psychiatric, or learning disabilities and require accommodations, please contact the Disability Services Office as early as possible so that your learning needs may be appropriately met. You will need to provide current documentation of your disability to the Disability Services Office. For more information, go to ds.georgefox.edu or contact Rick Muthiah, Dean of the Center for Teaching and Learning (ext. 2314)


Grading Scale

The final grade will be based on:

Tentative Schedule

Week DateTopicReading
1 8/25 Introduction  
8/27 Databases & Users 1, Project
2 9/1 Database Concepts 2
9/3 ER Model Elements 3.1-3.4
3 9/8 ER Model Relationships & UML 3.5-3.8; skim 4.1-4.6
9/10 ER Examples 3.9-3.11
4 9/15 Relational Model 5
9/17 Relational Algebra 8.1-8.5; skim 8.6-8.7
5 9/22 ER-to-Relational Mapping 9
9/24 Examples of Description->ER->Relations  
6 9/29 SQL Data Definition & Retrieval 6.1-6.3
10/1 SQL Data Manipulation 6.4-6.6
7 10/6 SQL Complex Queries 7.1
10/8 SQL Constraints, Views, Schema Maintenance & Security 7.2-7.5; 30.1-30.2
8 10/13 Functional Dependencies 14.1-14.2; 15.1-15.2
10/15 Normal Forms 14.3-14.5
9 10/20 Midterm Exam
10/22 Schema Design 15.3-15.4
10 10/27 File Storage 16.1-16.7, 16.10
10/29 Practical Indexing 17
11 11/3 Query Processing 18.1-18.9
11/5 Heuristic Query Optimization 19.1-19.6
12 11/10 Transaction Processing Concepts 20.1-20.3
11/12 Serial Schedules 20.4-20.7
13 11/17 Concurrency Control 21.1-21.8
11/19 Database Logging & Recovery 22.1-22.3
14 11/24 Distributed Databases 23.1-23.4
11/26 Thanksgiving Psalm 111
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