COMS W4111.001-Introduction to Databases
Spring 2016

Tuesdays and Thursdays, 2:40-3:55 p.m.
501 Northwest Corner Building

Collaboration and Academic Honesty | Homework and Project Policies | Contests and Rewards |
CourseWorks and Piazza Discussion Board | Announcements | Schedule and Lecture Notes |
Homework | Project 1: Part 1 (Grading), Part 2 (Grading), Part 3 (Grading) | Project 2 | Midterm Grading

Course Description: You will learn what a database system is, how you can design databases effectively and in a principled manner, and how you can develop applications using databases. The course will focus on relational and object-relational databases.
Prerequisites:
  • COMS W3134, W3136, or W3137 (equivalent courses taken elsewhere are acceptable as well) and
  • Fluency in Java (see note below on programming and nonprogramming options for projects, though).

You need to get permission from the instructor if you do not have these prerequisites. This course is intended for both Computer Science majors as well as non-majors.

Topics: The fundamentals of database design and application development using databases: entity-relationship modeling, logical design of relational databases, relational data definition and manipulation languages, SQL; object-relational databases; query processing; physical database tuning; transaction processing.
Textbook: Raghu Ramakrishnan, Johannes Gehrke: Database Management Systems, 3rd edition, McGraw-Hill, 2002. ISBN: 0072465638. (Available from the Book Culture bookstore, located at 536 W. 112th St., between Broadway and Amsterdam Ave. Also on reserve in the Science and Engineering Library.)
Grades:
  • 15% homework assignments (4, all equally weighted)
  • 20% projects (2): Project 1 is worth 15% of the course grade, while Project 2 is worth 5% of the course grade. Note: for the projects, students can choose between a programming option (to be done in Python) and a nonprogramming option
  • 25% midterm (closed book): Thu Mar 10, in class
  • 40% final (closed book): Thu May 12, 1:10-4:00 p.m.
Instructor:  Prof. Luis Gravano
Office: 706 Schapiro CEPSR
Office Hours:
  • Mondays, 9:30-11:30 a.m.
  • By appointment by email
Telephone: 1-212-939-7064
Email: gravano@cs.columbia.edu
Instructional Assistants Office Hours Location Email
Sania Arif
Wednesdays, 10:30 a.m.-12:30 n.
TA/CA Room sa3311@columbia.edu
Terra Blevins
Mondays, 1-3 p.m.
(starting on February 8)
TA/CA Room tlb2145@columbia.edu
Akshaan Kakar
Wednesdays, 12 n.-2 p.m.
TA/CA Room ak3808@columbia.edu
Jincheng Li
Tuesdays, 4-6 p.m.
TA/CA Room jl4569@columbia.edu
Gaurav Ragtah
Tuesdays, 12 n.-2 p.m.
TA/CA Room gr2511@columbia.edu
Jiayu Song
Tuesdays, 10 a.m.-12 n.
TA/CA Room js4755@columbia.edu
Chen Yu
Fridays, 9:30-11:30 a.m.
TA/CA Room cy2415@columbia.edu

Google Calendar with office hours (you need to be logged in with your @columbia.edu address).


Luis Gravano
gravano@cs.columbia.edu