COP 5725 Principles of Database Management Systems [Spring 2015]


The homepage is always under construction. Check the course description and syllabus below to decide if this course suits you. 

[January 12th, 2015]  Course materials (lecture notes, references and assignments) will be posted in Moodle.

[January 12th, 2015]  Notes on the class

  • No late homeworks will be accepted, and no make-up for the midterm and final examinations will be given.
  • All online students must come on Campus to take midterm and final examinations.
  • Each student should complete his/her homework and project assignments independently.
  • Online students should watch all the lecture videos.
  • Academic misconduct will not be tolerated by the University, nor will it be tolerated in the classroom.


Dr. Tao Li, Professor
School of Computing and Information Sciences
Florida International University

Office: ECS 365
Email: taoli AT
Office Hours: Tuesday and Thursday 2:30pm-4:00pm or by appointment



Meeting Time and Location

Online.  Wednesday/Saturday

Course Description

This course is intended to give students a solid background in database management systems, particularly relational database management systems. Such systems will be examined from two perspectives: that of a database system user, and that of a database system implementor. First, we will look at the basic structure and capabilities of a database system, and we will examine the process of designing a database and using a database system. Second, we will look inside a database system to see how it is implemented. 

This is a graduate level course that introduces the principles of database management systems. After the students successfully finish this course, they should have a better understanding on different aspects of a database management system. They should also be familiar with relational model, SQL, storage and indexing, query evaluation, transaction management, and some selected topics.

Tentative Course Topics (Subject to revision)

  • Database Design
  • Relational Model
  • Relational Algebra and Calculus
  • SQL
  • Indexing and Storage
  • Query Evaluation and Optimization

Tentative Lecture Schedule

[January 12th, 2015]  Course materials (lecture notes, references and assignments) will be posted in Moodle.

Date Topic References Assignment
1/14/2015 General Introduction Chapter 1 Read Chapter 1
1/17/2015 DBMS Introduction and Database Design
  1. Chapter 2
  2. Introduction to Database Management Systems by Philip Greenspun
1. Read the References
2. Written Exercies: 1.4, 1.6 and 1.9  (This homework will not be collected or graded.  You are strongly encouraged to carefully do every assigned problem on your own.)   
1/21/2015 The Database Design Chapter 2  
1/24/2015 The Database Design II
  1. Chapter 2
  2. Quiz 1
1. Written Exercises: Exercise 2.4, 2.6, 2.7   (You are requried to type up your solution).  
1/31/2015 The Relational Model Chapter 3 Written Exercises: Exercise 3.8, 3.14, and 3.15
2/4/2015  The Relational Model II Chapter 3  
2/7/2015 Relational Algebra & Calculus Chapter 4  
2/11/2015 Relational Algebra & Calculus II Chapter 4  
2/14/2015 Relational Calculus Chapter 4  
2/18/2015 Overview of Final Projects in Fall 2012    
2/21/2015 SQL I Chapter 5  
2/25/2015 SQL II Chapter 5  
2/28/2015 SQL III and Database Normalization Chpater 5 and Chapter 19  
3/4/2015 Database Normalization Chapter 19  
3/7/2015 Database Normalization Chapter 19  
3/11/2015 Database Normalization Capter 19
3/15/2015 Database Normalization Chapter 19
3/18/2015 Midterm Overview (Video)
3/21/2015 Midterm Exam    
3/25/2015 Overview of Storage and Indexing Chapter 8  
3/28/2015 Overview of Storage and Indexing Chapter 8  
4/1/2015 Overview of Storage and Indexing / Storing Data Chapter 8 / Chapter 9
4/4/2015 Storing Data Chapter 9
4/8/2015 Tree-based Indexing Chapter 10
4/11/2015 Hash-based Indexing Chapter 11  
4/15/2015 Hash-based Indexing Chapter 11  
4/18/2015 Query Evaluation Chapter 12  
4/22/2015 Query Evaluation Chapter 12  
5/2/2015 Final Exam    



COP4540. Basically students are expected to have a computer science/systems background that includes basic data structures and to be comfortable programming in C/C++. Students will be expected to learn to use computing tools independently.

Format and Grading

The course assignments include homeworks and implementation projects. The homeworks are mainly used to test conceptual knowledge and to help you in the exams, while the projects will focus on practical skills and what it takes to implement a DBMS.  The final grades will be calculated as follows:

Midterm Exam 30%
Final Exam 30%
Final Project 25%
Homework Assignments 15%

Policies on Assignments and Exams

All project deliverables and assignments should be submitted before midnight on the due date. The only excuse for missing an exam is verifiable cases of illness and emergencies and religious holidays. Please check the dates for exams and inform me at the earliest of any conflict due to the above-mentioned reasons.

Textbooks and References


  • Raghu Ramakrishnan and Johannes Gehrke. Database Management Systems. Third Edition, McGraw Hill, 2003. ISBN: 0-07-246563-8. Links to Textbook Homepage .


  • Ramez Elmasri and Shamkant B. Navathe.  Fundamentals of Database Systems. Sixth Edition, Addison-Wesley, 2010. ISBN 0-321-12226-7.
  • Abraham Silberschatz, Henry F. Korth and S. Sudarshan. Database System Concepts . Sixth Edition. McGraw Hill, 2010. 

Other Resources

Code of Academic Integrity:

University Policies:

For academic misconduct, sexual harassment, religious holydays, and information on services for students with disabilities, see :

2015 Tao Li. All rights reserved. last Updated: