Database Systems – CSCI 3410

Fall 2020

Clément Aubert

January 7, 2021

Quick Facts



This is Database Systems – CSCI 3410 - 20444 - A, an undergraduate semester class of 3.000 credits, whose pre-requisite is a minimum grade of C in CSCI 3400. We will not be using an hybrid course model, the class will be fully face-to-face, but we will enforce the University’s regulations on social distancing and face covering. We will be primarily using my own set of lecture notes, that you can download for off-line consulting in multiple formats. You will need a computer with admin rights to install (free) software such as MySQL or a virtual machine.

Course Description

This course offers an introduction to database systems as a key concept in information management. The course covers logical and physical database organization, data models, file structures, indexing, hashing, query optimization, and design issues. This course will cover the design and implementation of databases.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this class, the student will:

Planned Course Schedule

The week starts on Monday. You can also consult the usual schedule in the lecture notes.

Week Date Note Topic
1 08/10 - Syllabus, Introduction
2 08/17 - The Relational Model
3 08/24 08/26 : Quiz -
4 08/31 - SQL
5 09/07 09/07: Labor Day, 09/09: Project -
6 09/14 09/16: Exam Review Session
7 09/21 - Entity-Relationship Model
8 09/28 09/30: Quiz, 10/01: Midterm E.R.-to-Relational Models Mapping
9 10/05 - Guidelines and Normal Form
10 10/12 - Unified Modeling Language Diagram
11 10/19 10/21: Quiz Introduction to Data Programming Using Java
12 10/26 - -
13 11/02 11/04: Exam Review Session
14 11/09 - Introduction to NoSQL
15 11/16 11/18: Project -
16 11/23 11/23–27: Thanksgiving -
17 11/30 12/8 (2–4pm): Final -


Students will be evaluated using four different types of evaluation:

  1. Homework assignments will be given during the course of the semester: they are not expected to be handed back, and won’t be graded, but quizzes with questions taken or inspired from those assignments will be given. Those quizzes are closed book and timed (± 10 min.).

  2. Projects will be carried at home.

  3. There will be in-class exams, held during the regular class periods.

  4. The final exam will take place during the exam period.

Refer to the planned schedule for precise dates, and to Brightspace/D2L to get your current grades. Exams yearbooks can be found in the lecture notes: they give a good indication of how you will be evaluated.

Your grade will be computed as follows:

Quizzes (×3) 10%
Project (×2) 10%
In-class Exams (×2) 40%
Final Exam 40%

using the following course grade scale:

Below 65 65–70 70–79 80–89 90–100

Refer to the Course Requirements for information about late or missed evaluations.

Format, Teaching Philosophy & Requirements

Format and Procedures

Lectures are devoted to general explanations of the concepts and ideas underlying the topic at stake. All practical work, coding, programming, testing, etc. will be carried at home or in the lab portion if there is one.

Homework assignments will assist the students in making sure they understand classes expectations and the content of the lecture, as well as to practice their coding and problem-solving skills. The progression of the students will be regularly tested and assessed through quizzes and exams. Active and relevant participation during the lectures is appreciated.

Teaching Philosophy

It is our mutual interest for you to succeed: I love to share knowledge and to expand it by helping students, and students want to gain a useful and agreeable experience that will prove valuable in their future endeavors. To this end, here is:

What I’m expecting from you

  • Check periodically your email account and read the email I send.
  • Read this entire syllabus carefully.
  • Participate actively in all class discussions.
  • Do the homework wisely: read your notes before starting the homework assignment, make sure you understand it completely before considering it done.
  • Come prepared and on time to classes, exams and quizzes.

What you should expect from me:

  • Clear and accessible lectures.
  • Fair and impartial grading.
  • Availability, during office hours, by appointment, and by email.
  • Open hear to your suggestions to improve this class.
  • Commitment to the principles of universal design.
  • Dedication to your success!

You can have a look at my Quick Reflexion on Course Evaluations, that contains my previous student evaluations, and at my “Definitive” Study Guide.

Course Requirements

In case of conflict, the proper etiquette is to reach out to me, and if no solution can be found, then we should turn to our undegraduate study director Anthony Lawrence or to the dean of Student Life to help as an ombudsman.

Practical Information

Lab Space

For this class, you will need to access a computer. You can either:

If you need room to engage in a synchronous class, you can go to

Getting Help

I should be your first point of contact for any question regarding the content of this class, but many other resources are available:

ACM Club

The Augusta University chapter of the A.C.M is one of the university’s best resources for Computer Science, Information Technology and Cyber Security students. It provides a platform to network with other students in similar majors; presenting countless opportunities to expand not only the people you know, but also a fantastic place to learn and ask questions. Because of Covid-19, we will only be holding meetings virtually in our Discord server. If you are interested in joining these meetings, or you have any questions about Computer Science or Cyber Security, feel free to join through our link.


The University has implemented specific requirements to minimize exposure to COVID-19 and support the safety of all during the pandemic. These requirements apply to all persons on campus (faculty, staff, students, and visitors). These requirements are subject to change. Visit and for the latest details.

Face Coverings

All persons must wear an appropriate face covering while inside campus facilities/buildings, including classrooms, regardless of the size of the space. The face covering must fit closely and fully cover the nose and mouth. Such coverings must be used in addition to—not as a substitute for—social distancing. If a medical condition prevents you from wearing a face covering, you may provide documentation to request an accommodation through Testing and Disability Services (706-737-1469 or ), and must show proof of the accommodation when asked.

Social Distancing

All persons must maintain at least six (6) feet of separation from others. This distance should be maintained at all times and in all spaces, indoors or out, including classrooms, except where closer proximity is brief and logistically unavoidable (e.g. elevators, hallways). Keep your distance, do not gather in groups, and avoid crowded spaces. Sit only in designated areas in classrooms or similar spaces, and do not move seats or desks in classrooms or common spaces.

Proper Hygiene

All persons should wash hands thoroughly and often with soap and water (for at least 20 seconds) or hand sanitizer (containing at least 60% ethanol or 70% isopropanol). Avoid direct contact with high touch surfaces (doorknobs, light switches, campus equipment, devices, vending machines, etc.) and avoid sharing devices, books, pens, or other learning aids with others.

Personal Disinfection Supplies

All persons are responsible for disinfecting their own workspaces before and after use, including desktops, seats, and any shared equipment. Students, faculty, and staff are responsible for providing their own supplies for this purpose. Used supplies should be disposed of properly.

If you notice an empty hand sanitizer dispenser, or a missing disinfectant spray bottles, you can call 706-721-5024 to replace COVID prevention items.

COVID-19 Reporting

Your role is critical to protect the safety of our entire AU family. Any student who is exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 may be required to leave class and seek medical attention at Student Health Services (at 706-721-3448) immediately. Do not come on to campus if you have any symptoms of COVID-19.

Where to Go for More Information About COVID-19?