CPTR 349 Database Systems - Syllabus

August 29, 2006


Instructor: Dr. Eileen M. Peluso, D307 Academic Center, Extension 4135


Email: pelusoem@lycoming.edu


Office hours: Posted at http://www.lycoming.edu/~pelusoem.


Objective: This course will provide an in-depth introduction to fundamental database application concepts, including the relational database model, SQL, database application development, and relational database design theory. System-related concepts will be presented, including but not restricted to physical storage issues, concurrency control, and crash recovery.


Text: Ramakrishnan and Gehrke, Database Management Systems, 3rd edition, McGraw Hill, 2003.



          Three mid-term exams: 45% (see attached term planner for dates)

          Comprehensive final: 20%

          Homework assignments: 35%


Grade scale: If you earn the following average, you will receive at least the grade indicated.

          93.0 or above A

          90.0 to 92.99 A-

          87.0 to 89.99 B+

          83.0 to 86.99 B

          80.0 to 82.99 B-

          77.0 to 79.99 C+

          73.0 to 76.99 C

          70.0 to 72.99 C-

          67.0 to 69.99 D+

          63.0 to 66.99 D

          60.0 to 62.99 D-

          59.99 or below F


Attendance Policy:

Students are expected to attend class and lab, and to be on time. Students are allowed 5 absences for the semester, for whatever reason. After the 5th absence, points will be deducted from your semester average as follows: 1 point for the 6th absence, 2 points for the 7th absence, 4 points for the 8th absence, and so on.


Attendance signature sheets will be circulated at the beginning of each class period. It is the student's responsibility to make sure that they have signed the day's attendance sheet. It is also the student's responsibility to obtain details about any missed work, announcements, and any information disseminated during the missed classes.




1.        Students will not be excused from exams unless

          they are ill and have been to the infirmary or have seen a doctor, or

          they have an emergency situation and have received exemption from the dean.

It is wise to contact me before missing an exam. Any tests missed will result in a grade of zero unless arrangements for a make-up are made within 48 hours.


2.        As with other writing assignments, a certain amount of the grading of programming assignments will be subjective. As a matter of principle, if you have a program that works according to the specification given in the assignment handout, it should earn you at least a C-range, but most likely a B-range grade. The difference between a B and an A comes down to documentation, structure, following a certain style of programming, and in some cases how you answer questions associated with the assignment. All of these aspects will be discussed as they come up in the course.


3.        There are no tutors for this course. Students are encouraged to support each other. Discussions with other students about course content and homework assignments are encouraged. In fact, students taking computer science courses will be given priority access to lab A3 from the hours of 7-10 PM on Sunday through Thursday evenings to facilitate this interaction. This support may take the form of discussion of course material, assistance (explanation, debugging, comparison of results, etc.) with homework assignments, and formation of study groups. However academic dishonesty is not allowed. There is a fine line between the two. You are not to work on homework assignments as if they were group assignments. All work must be completed individually. You should never have in your possession or have access to (in paper or electronic form) a copy of someone else's homework assignment. Check if you are not sure that what you are doing is acceptable. As a general rule of thumb: The difference between sharing ideas and plagiarism will be determined by the instructor as follows: if you cannot discuss, expound upon, justify, and modify what you have written, then you have plagiarized.