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CIT 480
SQL Database Design
& Implementation

Revised: March, 2008
Credits: 3
Instructor: Ed Nickel
Office: HTC 133
Phone: 753-2241 (office with voice mail)
E-mail: due to increased spam my email address will be provided the first day of class
Class Web Page:
Textbooks: The required text for this class is MySQL, by Paul DuBois, 3rd edition, ISBN 0672326736; click here for some discounters/used book dealers, or pay full price at the college bookstore.


CATALOG DESCRIPTION: Covers concepts required to design and implement a database management system for use in a modern organization. The emphasis will be on database structures, logical and physical data organization, the relational database model, query facilities, and experience with microcomputer database systems. (Prerequisite: COT 135B, CIT 203, or COT 301)

Welcome to CIT 480, SQL Database Design & Implementation. This course provides advanced level instruction in designing and implementing structured query language (SQL) databases as used in today's businesses. We will cover database management principles including but not limited to data organization, data structures, security, data visualization, information extraction, and information modeling. Designing logical and coherent data structures are the basis for a useful and usable database, therefore we will begin with good design principles and build up from there. Either COT 135B, CIT 203, or COT 301 are required as prerequisite to CIT 480. You will need additional time each week outside of scheduled class time to complete assignments and to create your final project. Some of the computers available in the GBC High Tech Center will have the software used in class for your use outside of class. If you have the necessary hardware and software, doing your assignments at home is acceptable.

The weekly chapter readings, links to supplemental readings, and the most significant assignments are listed in the schedule below. Assignments are due the week after they have been assigned. Additional assignments may be given from time to time depending on class progress with due dates noted when the assignments are given. To complete assignments students may use open GBC computer labs at some of the GBC Centers or, if available, use your own computer and appropriate software.

I can be reached via WebCampus, at the phone number listed above, you can make an appointment to see me, or use my on-line office hours via Skype. My office hours are posted on my office door and on my website. The schedule of readings, assignments, homework, and tests is found below. Any additional assignments will be given through postings on this class's WebCampus site.

METHOD OF INSTRUCTION: This class will be taught via the Internet using GBC's web instructional delivery system. You are expected to participate in weekly on-line discussions, complete various assignments, and create your own major project.

As an Internet based class, there are no traditional lectures, discussions, or labs. However, I plan to produce several database design lessons which will be linked to WebCampus for you to download. These lessons will be recorded in the mp3 or wmv formats and can be reviewed using any Windows, Mac, or Linux computer or even some mp3 players. Furthermore, you are expected to keep up with the weekly chapter reading assignments from the books. In lieu of lectures I will create various posts and links to supplementary materials which you are also expected to review each week. Instead of classroom discussions you will be expected to post your own college quality written comments on one topic related to the class readings each week as well as respond to your fellow students' comments. To help you with ideas for posts, I will post potential discussion ideas and comments from time to time. I will read and assess your posts as well as comment on them as necessary for clarification purposes.

In order to facilitate completion of the hands-on exercises for those of you not able to use GBC lab facilities, I will post a link to various SQL websites including that of MySQL where you can download free versions of their software which can be used to complete these exercises. Computers will be available in some GBC Center computers labs which will have full versions of this software.


The primary objective for this class is to provide students with a strong working knowledge of database design and implementation concepts. Students who successfully complete this class should be capable of managing a SQL database project with multiple elements and seeing it through to a satisfactory conclusion. The more important topics to be covered in this class include:

  • database structures and their use in design
  • managing data input and quality
  • ethical acquisition of data
  • data uses and information presentation design
  • database replication and backups
  • database security and access rights

In order to achieve the major objectives of this class, which include learning to manage and complete a database project, each student will create a project for presentation at the end of the class. The final version of all students' projects will be presented for peer review by your classmates.


The successful student in this class will be able to:

  1. appraise database design effectiveness under differing circumstances;
  2. design, manage, and complete a database project in a timely manner;
  3. analyze various database design techniques for specific applications;
  4. create useful, analytical information reports from organized data
  5. apply database access rights and implement good database security practices;
Learner Outcome Measurements
Measurement Method Learner Outcomes
Class Discussion 1, 2, 3, 4, 5
Hands On Exercises 2, 3, 4, 5
Final Project 1, 2, 3, 4, 5


GRADING POLICY: This is a letter grade class an A=90-100%, B=80-89%, C=70-79%, D=60-69%, F=59% or less or W=Official Withdrawal if done before the withdrawal deadline. There is no curve in this grading scale. Your grade will be based 40% on class participation and discussion, 30% on your assignments, and 30% on the major project. All assignments are due by the beginning of the next class.

ATTENDANCE POLICY: The instructor must agree in advance to any excused absences unless there are strong extenuating circumstances. Three (3) unexcused absences can result in a failing grade, in an on-line class an absence is one week when you do not participate in class or contact the instructor.

OTHER POLICIES: Plagiarism and other forms of academic dishonesty will not be tolerated and can result in a failing grade. The student conduct policy stated in the current GBC Catalog will be enforced. This syllabus is not a contract and is subject to reasonable changes as the class proceeds.


You should read and be prepared to discuss each week's topics at the beginning of each week. There will be significant hands on experiences relating to a number of these lessons.

Topics & readings by week and lesson:
Week 1: Intro to SQL & SQL syntax
and start your project
Chapters 1-2
Week 2: Using SQL to work with data Chapter 3
Week 3: Query optimization Chapter 4
Week 4: Intro to SQL programming Chapter 5
Week 5: MySQL programming with PHP Chapter 8
Week 6: Intro to SQL administration Chapter 9
Week 7: SQL directory & data structures Chapter 10
Week 8: General SQL administration Chapter 11
Week 9: SQL and data security Chapter 12
Week 10: Database backups, replications, & maintenance Chapter 13
Week 11: Various hands-on exercises handouts
Week 12: Various hands-on exercises handouts
Week 13: Work on major project  
Week 14: Work on major project  
Week 15: Complete major project  
Week 16: Project presentations Final project review

CIT 480 - SQL Database Design & Implementation
website copyright © 2008 by Ed Nickel
last updated March, 2008
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