F28DM Database Management Systems

Dr Alasdair GrayDr Phil BartieTalal ShaikhAbdullah Almasri

Course co-ordinator(s): Dr Alasdair Gray (Edinburgh), Dr Phil Bartie (Edinburgh), Talal Shaikh (Dubai), Abdullah Almasri (Malaysia).


  • To familiarise students with the principles of database management systems, to enable them to design and implement databases for specific applications and to integrate databases with application programs.

Detailed Information

Course Description: Link to Official Course Descriptor.

Pre-requisite course(s): F27WD Web Design and Databases .

Location: ALP, Dubai, Edinburgh, Malaysia.

Semester: 2.


  • Database Design: data requirements, entity relationship diagrams, relational data model, integrity constraints, key constraints, types, integrity maintenance
  • Relational Queries: SQL, Boolean combinations of queries, aggregation, duplicate elimination, nested queries, negation, views, insertions, deletions, updates, command level interfaces, integration with programming application
  • Query execution and optimisation: data storage principles, file organisation, indexing, indexes in commercial DBMSs, relational algebra, query execution plans, cost estimation of plans, interpretation of plans, physical database design
  • Concurrency: transactions, schedules, serialisability, concurrency control protocols, locking, two-phase-locking, time stamp based concurrency control.
  • Emerging Database Trends: data warehousing, distributed databases, and alternative database models such as XML, document, object, and graph stores

Learning Outcomes: Subject Mastery

Understanding, Knowledge and Cognitive Skills Scholarship, Enquiry and Research (Research-Informed Learning)

  • Broad knowledge and understanding of the concepts and formalisms of database design
  • Detailed knowledge of the building blocks and meaning of relational database queries
  • Critical understanding of the principles of query evaluation and concurrency control underlying database applications
  • Practice in the collection of data requirements and the design of conceptual database schemas
  • Evaluation of emerging database trends and ability to understand their benefits

Learning Outcomes: Personal Abilities

Industrial, Commercial & Professional Practice Autonomy, Accountability & Working with Others Communication, Numeracy & ICT

  • Practice in working on a development project in┬ásmall groups (PDP)
  • Practice in defining the subject and scope of a development project (PDP)
  • Deconstructing a problem and synthesizing a solution (PDP)
  • Time management (PDP).

Assessment Methods: Due to covid, assessment methods for Academic Year 2021/22 may vary from those noted on the official course descriptor. Please see:
- Maths (F1) Course Weightings 2021/22
- Computer Science (F2) Course Weightings 2021/22
- AMS (F7) Course Weightings 2021/22

SCQF Level: 8.

Credits: 15.