CMSC 235: Introduction to Databases

Tuesdays and Thursdays, 1:30 - 2:50 pm
Ryerson 251

This document will be updated throughout the quarter. Please, check out the latest version at
Announcements | Course Description | Personnel | Prerequisites | Textbooks | Oracle Info | Office Hours | Grading Policy | Lateness Policy | Collaboration Policy | Schedule | Assignments | Slides | Exams | Resources


Course Description

This course is an introduction to database design and programming. You will learn how to design effectively database applications and the fundamental principles behind good design. You will also learn how to program your databases applications using a commercial database system.


NameRoleOfficeOffice hoursPhoneEmail
Svetlozar NestorovProfessorRyerson 257C3-4pm, Tue & Thu(773)
Xuehai "Sam" ZhangTARyerson 2565-6pm, Mon & Wed(773)
Zhimin XieTARyerson 1665-6pm, Tue & Thu(773)
Matei RipeanuTARyerson 4054:30-5:30pm Mon & 4-5pm Thu


CMSC 117 or equivalent.


The textbook for the course is A First Course in Database Systems by Jeff Ullman and Jennifer Widom.

There is a new edition of this book, that's scheduled to arrive in early October. For the purpose of this class, you can use either (or both) edition. If you decide to wait for the new edition you can checkout the first two chapters online

You may also consider getting a reference book on SQL.

Oracle Info

Office Hours

The office hours for prof. Nestorov are 3-4pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays in Ryerson 257C.

The TA office hours are 5-6pm on Mondays and Wednesdays in Ryerson 256 for Sam and 5-6pm on Tuesdays and Thursdays in Ryerson 166 for Zhimin.

Grading Policy

The grades for the class will be based on your results on the weekly written homework, multipart project, midterm, and final. The approximate weights are:

Lateness policy

You have two 48-hour extensions. Using an extension allows you to turn in your work on Thursday instead of Tuesday. You can use at most one extension before the midterm, and at most one extension after the midterm. No extensions can be used on the homework that will be due the Tuesday (10/30) before the midterm.

Collaboration policy

We encourage you to discuss the course material with you fellow students. However, submitted assignments should be your own work. If you discuss in details specific problems or assignments with other people, please, acknowledge them on the front of the work that you turn in.


This schedule of the lectures and readings is tentative and may change as the class goes on.



Note that the text and figures on some of the slides are off due to problems with the conversion from Powerpoint to PDF.



The textbook homepage has a comprehensive list of relevant resources.
Svetlozar Nestorov
Last modified: Mon Dec 3 17:05:29 CST 2001