module specification

CC5051 - Databases (2022/23)

Module specification Module approved to run in 2022/23
Module title Databases
Module level Intermediate (05)
Credit rating for module 15
School School of Computing and Digital Media
Total study hours 150
45 hours Scheduled learning & teaching activities
69 hours Guided independent study
36 hours Assessment Preparation / Delivery
Assessment components
Type Weighting Qualifying mark Description
Coursework 50%   Case study - design and implementation (1000 words + a combination of 20 entities/relationships/queries)
In-Course Test 50%   In-Class Test (2 Hours)
Running in 2022/23

(Please note that module timeslots are subject to change)
Period Campus Day Time Module Leader
Autumn semester North Wednesday Morning

Module summary

Introduces techniques for analysing, designing and implementing database systems. An understanding of data modelling and design concepts is provided and database programming language skills are taught. The practical aspect of developing database systems is emphasised and use is made of a widely-used commercial database system (e.g. Oracle) for this purpose. 

The module will enable students to give an introduction to the issues governing the design and implementation of database systems. Theoretical aspects of designing sound database systems, as well as the practical aspects of implementing such systems are presented. This therefore allows students to understand, and put into practice, the techniques available for analysing, designing and developing database systems.

Prior learning requirements

Successful completion of Level 4 or equivalent


The main areas of the module syllabus include:

Databases and Database Management Systems: architectural framework, data independence. LO5
Data analysis and modelling: conceptual data model notation, Entity-Relationship modelling, normalisation theory. LO1, LO2, LO3
Database models: historical background, hierarchical, network, relational models. LO3, LO5
Relational database theory: the model and its terminology, primary/foreign keys, integrity constraints, logical schema transformation. LO2, LO3
Relational Database languages: querying, insertion, deletion, update, views and reporting with SQL. LO4, LO5
Relational Algebra: algebraic operations, reference to SQL. LO4, LO5
Case study: practical application of database design and implementation. LO1, LO2, LO3, LO4

Balance of independent study and scheduled teaching activity

Topics will be introduced through the medium of formal lectures, supported by tutorial and workshop sessions, and blended learning as follows:
- Lecture (1 hour / week): Introduction of the major topics identified in the syllabus, plus for practical exercises, directed reading and other further study
- Tutorial/ Workshop (2 hour / week): Consolidating understanding of topics introduced in the lecture via class and group discussions, informal presentations and other activities in the tutorial sessions. Data analytic skills will be further developed through lab-based workshops.
- Blended learning: Using the University’s VLE and online tools to deliver content, assessment and feedback, to encourage active learning, and to enhance student engagement and learning experience.
Students will be expected and encouraged to produce reflective commentaries and an action plan for personal development on the learning activities and tasks that they carry out to complete their work, e.g. in the form of an assessed section of their coursework report.

Learning and teaching




Learning outcomes

On successful completion of this module, the student will be able to:
LO1: Produce an Entity-Relationship model from a realistic problem specification
LO2: Use formal design techniques (e.g. normalisation) to produce a database schema
LO3: Design and implement a database system from a conceptual data model
LO4: Manipulate and extract data stored in a database using relational algebra and SQL
LO5: Discuss the relative merits of the relational environment

Assessment strategy

The assessment method consists of two components: an in-class test (2 hours) and one individual coursework.
The assessment strategy for this module represents the duality of the learning process for this subject. Students need to be assessed on their ability to absorb and apply theoretical material such as design notation and modelling. Additionally, students need to be assessed on their ability to demonstrate practical proficiency of a popular DBMS environment. The learning outcomes encompass both theoretical and practical aspects and the assessment strategy needs to reflect both these elements.
The assessment strategy ensures that students can demonstrate practical knowledge [LO3, LO4] which they will have acquired during the workshop sessions, with the use of a practical coursework element. The assessment strategy also allows students to demonstrate their knowledge of theoretical aspects [LO1, LO2, LO5]of the subject area, such as relational algebra, with the use of an unseen examination.


Where possible, the most current version of reading materials is used during the delivery of this module.  Comprehensive reading lists are provided to students in their handbooks.  Reading Lists will be updated annually.


Core Text:
• Connolly, T., Begg, C., Database Systems– A Practical Approach to Design, Implementation, and Management (6th ed.), Pearson, 2014.

Other Texts:
• Elmasri, R., Navathe, S., Fundamentals of Database Systems (7th ed.) Pearson, 2016.
• Kroenke, D. & Auer, D. Database Concepts (5th Ed.), Pearson, 2011.
• Hoffer, J. A., Venkataraman, R. & Topi, H. Modern Database Management (10th Ed.) Pearson, 2011.
• Earp, R. & Bagui, S. Learning SQL A Step-by-Step Guide using Oracle, Jones and Bartlett Publishers, 2008.

• ACM Transactions on Database Systems (TODS), ACM New York, NY, USA. ISSN:0362-5915.
• The Computer Journal of the British Computer Society, ISSN 1460-2067 (Electronic); Publisher: Oxford: Oxford Journals, Oxford, UK : Oxford University Press.
• SQL Quick Reference -
• Oracle Library-
Electronic Databases (available from the University Library)
• ACM Digital Library
• IEEE Xplore/IET Digital Library