MSAI 317: Data Management and Information Processing

Quarter Offered

None ;


Data models and database design. Modeling the real world: structures, constraints, and operations. The entity relationship to data modeling (including network hierarchical and object-oriented), emphasis on the relational model. Use of existing database systems for the implementation of information systems. 

COURSE INSTRUCTOR: Dr. Stephen Tarzia (



COURSE GOALS: This course is an introduction to the use of database systems for the implementation of information systems. In this course, you will become acquainted with various data models and see what goes into database design. The first half of the course will largely be devoted to understanding the data models that are commonly used in designing databases. The second half of the course will be spent putting these ideas together and demonstrate their usage when implementing a particular information system. This course will include homework assignments, projects (large-scale database design and SQL queries), in-class quizzes, a midterm exam, and a final exam.


  • The Worlds of Database Systems – Introduction and Motivation;
  • The Entity/Relationship Data Model;
  • The Relational Data Model;
  • Quality of Database Design and Normal Forms;
  • Relational Algebra, Relational Calculus and SQL;
  • Other “Potpourri” topics: other data models; www and databases; indexing; transactions and OLAP;

HOMEWORK ASSIGNMENTS and PROJECTS: Approximate load is 1 assignment every 1.5 weeks.


  • Homework assignments: 10%
  • Projects: 25%
  • Quizzes: 20%
  • One midterm exam 20%
  • One final exam 25%

COURSE OUTCOMES: When a student completes this course, s/he should be able to:

  • Develop a formal Entity-Relationship (ER) Model for the information-management needs of a particular enterprise;
  • Develop a Relational Database model/schema that will correctly represent the ER model and, furthermore, improve the quality of the design by applying the normalization techniques.
  • Implement the above in an existing Database Management System and be able to pose various queries to a given database instance.
  • Discuss various issues (e.g., Integrity Constraints and Views management) of interest with the programmers and Database Administrators in a more qualified manner than an “ordinary” domain-expert.