Student guide Faculty of Engineering A.Y. 2011/12

Information Structure and Management
Aim of the course
Presentation of the course and introduction to DBMS » Entity-Relationship model › Introduction to the Entity-Relationship model › Exercises on the Entity-Relationship model » Introduction to the Relational model › Relational Algebra › SQL › Exercises on SQL » Translation from the ER to the Relational model » Introduction and use of an actual DBMS (either Microsoft Access or MySQL) Timetable To be defined according to students’ and lecturers’ agenda
Pre-competencies (i.e. what enrolled students are expected to know) How to use a computer for basic operations » word processing, » spreadsheets, » file & program management. Basic architecture of a computer based system » computer architecture (CPU+MEM+I/O+…) » operating system architecture » computer network architecture » problem solution –> algorithm –> program –> process
The course intends to provide students with the tools required to understand the formality and the possibility of utilizing information technology, with specific attention given to the planning and design of information systems based on a data base. In particular, the course aims to study the following: » provide basic notions on the technology utilized for managing information; » study the formality of information management applications in a business context; » understanding of the advantages of automatic information (data) management with particular emphasis on Data Bases Management Systems (DBMS); » knowledge of Database design techniques both at the conceptual and at the logical level › Entity-Relationship model for DB design at the conceptual level › Relational model for DB design at the logical level » experience in design and implementation of simple DBs › definition of the data model › specification of the data structure › definition of the data base schema › implementation of the data base (using MS Access or a similar tool)
Evaluation The final evaluation will be based mainly on assignments given during the course and in class participation. A possible final written exam will be worth no more than 30% of the final grade. Weight of the different part: » in-class participation (at least 25% of the final grade) » assignments (at least 45% of the final grade) › discussions and/or DB design about mini-cases and/or short articles; › one final larger assignment that will be proposed to groups of 2-3 students. » final written exam (no more than 30% of the final grade – optional)
Reading list
» Atzeni, Ceri, Paraboschi, Torlone, “Database Systems – Concepts, Languages and Architectures”, McGraw-Hill. » Further readings and material will be distributed by the lecturers. Further recommended readings: » Silberschatz, Korth, Sudarshan, “DataBase System Concepts”, McGraw-Hill. » Ullman, Widom, “A First Course in DataBase Systems”, Prentice-Hall. » Ramakrishnan, Gehrke, “Database Management Systems”, McGraw-Hill.