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Study-Unit Description
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TITLE Advanced Databases - Data Models and Database Languages

LEVEL 05 - Postgraduate Modular Diploma or Degree Course


DEPARTMENT Computer Information Systems

DESCRIPTION This unit focuses on current research topics in databases and data modelling. Considering the shortcomings of the relational model, this study-unit also investigates emerging and alternative data models and techniques which can be used to satisfy different needs in different application development contexts. For example many new applications mostly based on the relational model now have spatial data and functionality.

This study-unit will cover various data models including, object-oriented, semi-structured, spatial and the dimensional data model amongst others. A detailed analysis will be given together with practical examples which will highlight each data model's advantages as well as possible shortcomings in different situations.

For each data model the discussion will also address respective standards for the model's definition as well as for data access and management (e.g. SQL III)

Study-unit Aims:

- At the end of the course the student will be well equipped to make better decisions regarding the choice of a data model and its corresponding technologies when facing new projects in different contexts;
- This unit aims at providing a deeper and wider understanding of emerging data models and corresponding programming languages interface;
- The unit also aims at promoting further appreciation of quality historical data. Modelling techniques together with relevant design patterns will help the students create and manage strategic data warehouses.

Learning Outcomes:

1. Knowledge & Understanding:
By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- Knowledge of the main components of various data modelling techniques;
- Assess the work required to design, integrate and visualize data coming from different sources;
- Understand the differences between the different data modelling techniques;
- Verifying and validating of a data model design in any given IS scenario;
- Appreciate data quality and identify data providence;
- Make reflection and self-assessment of their phase of study.

2. Skills:
By the end of the study-unit the student will be able to:

- Understand requirements to develop such systems;
- Design and develop systems based on emerging data models (e.g. Object Oriented and dimensional amongst others) applicable to the system's domain (e.g. scientific, tactical and strategic);
- Query and manage data in different data models using the respective languages (e.g. SQLIII);
- Develop artefacts using tools provided by suppliers reflecting the underlying data model chosen for the current context.

Main Text/s and any supplementary readings:

- Fundamentals of Database Systems, Ramez Elmasri, Shamkant Navathe, pp.1200, Addison Wesley, 6 edition, 2010, ISBN-13: 978-0136086208.
- Advanced Database Systems, Carlo Zaniolo , Stefano Ceri, Christos Faloutsos , Richard T. Snodgrass, V.S. Subrahmanian, and Roberto Zicari , pp. 576, Morgan Kaufmann, 1997, ISBN-13: 978-1558604438.
- Foundations of Databases: The Logical Level, Serge Abiteboul , Richard Hull, and Victor Vianu, pp. 685, Addison Wesley, 1994, ISBN-13:978-0201537710.
- Readings in Database Systems, Joseph M. Hellerstein (Editor), and Michael Stonebraker (Editor), pp. 877, The MIT Press, 4 edition, 2005, ISBN-13: 978-0262693141.
- Transaction Processing: Concepts and Techniques, Jim Gray, and Andreas Reuter, pp. 1070, Morgan Kaufmann, 1992, ISBN-13: 978-1558601901.
- Data Mining: Concepts and Techniques, Jiawei Han, and Micheline Kamber, pp. 800, Morgan Kaufmann, 2nd edition, 2005, ISBN-13:978-1558609013.
- DW 2.0: The Architecture for the Next Generation of Data Warehousing, William H. Inmon, Derek Strauss, and Genia Neushloss, pp. 400, Morgan Kaufmann, 2008, ISBN-13: 978-0123743190

A number of academic and most cited papers are to be forwarded to candidates.
Also the department has a number of installed DBMS and their respective system manuals which are available to the unit’s candidates.


STUDY-UNIT TYPE Lecture, Independent Study & Tutorial

Assessment Component/s Resit Availability Weighting
Assignment Yes 15%
Examination (3 Hours) Yes 85%


The University makes every effort to ensure that the published Courses Plans, Programmes of Study and Study-Unit information are complete and up-to-date at the time of publication. The University reserves the right to make changes in case errors are detected after publication.
The availability of optional units may be subject to timetabling constraints.
Units not attracting a sufficient number of registrations may be withdrawn without notice.
It should be noted that all the information in the study-unit description above applies to the academic year 2017/8, if study-unit is available during this academic year, and may be subject to change in subsequent years.
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