George Mason University

Department of Computer Science

INFS 614: Database Management

Fall 2011

Prof. Ami Motro


This graduate course is an introductory course in the area of databases, with a focus on database models and languages. Topics to be covered include: data modeling with the Entity-Relationship model, the relational data model and its formal languages, SQL, and the theory of database design,
Note: the advanced database course INFS-760 : Advanced Database Management, is suggested for students who have completed INFS-614 and are interested in issues of databse systems implementation.

Approximate class schedule
  1. Course administration; Introduction to database management
  2. Conceptual modeling with E-R diagrams
  3. Conceptual modeling with E-R diagrams - advanced concepts
  4. The relational model - formal foundations, from E-R diagrams to relations
  5. The relational model - relational algebra
  6. SQL - Data definition: tables, constraints, assertions, views
  7. SQL - Data update and retrieval: set operations, nesting, aggregation
  8. Mid-term exam
  9. SQL - Advanced concepts: nulls, materialized views, triggers
  10. SQL - Application programming: embedded and dynamic SQL, JDBC and SQLJ
  11. Theory of database design: Functional dependencies and their properties
  12. Theory of database design: Normal forms and decomposition algorithms
  13. Final exam
Time and Place

Tuesday, 4:30-7:10


Dr. Amihai Motro
Office: ENG-4415
Telephone: 703-993-1665
Office hours: Tuesday 7:30-8:30 and Wednesday 5:30-6:30


The four foundation courses of the INFS, SWE and ISA Master's programs:

  1. SWE 510: Object-oriented Programming
  2. INFS 501: Discrete and Logical Structures
  3. INFS 515: Computer Organization
  4. INFS 519: Program Design and Data Structures.
Students from the CS Master's and PhD programs with full degree status (i.e., non-provisional) are waived from these prerequisites. Students from other programs (including provisional or non-degree students) must provide evidence of having taken courses equivalent to these foundation courses.
Prerequisites are strictly enforced!


Two exams (a mid-term and a final) and 5 homework assignments, most requiring computer work.
The final grade would be based on exams (43% + 32%) and homework assignments (25%).


The first book is required, the second is recommended.

  1. Database Systems - An Application-Oriented Approach, Introductory Version, 2nd Edition
    Kifer, Bernstein, and Lewis
    Addison-Wesley/Pearson, 2004
    ISBN-10: 0321228383
    ISBN-13: 9780321268457
  2. Oracle 10g Programming: A Primer
    Addison-Wesley, 2008
    ISBN-10: 0321463048
    ISBN-13: 978-0321463043