MSc Computer Science / MSc Information Science (Data
Friday 19th February 2020
Time and Date:
Wednesday 14th March 2020 by 23.59 GMT
Date by which Work
and Feedback will be returned to Students:
20th April 2020
This coursework accounts for 50% of the total marks for
Electronic Management of Assessment (EMA): Please note your
assignment is to be submitted electronically and it will be submitted online
It is your responsibility to ensure that your
assignment arrives before the submission deadline stated above. See the University
policy on late submission of work.
You are expected to produce a
word-processed answer to this assignment. Please use Arial font and a font size
of 12. For SQL code and output, you can use courier new
font, which preserves SQL format and layout.
are required to use the Harvard Style of referencing and citation. The “Cite
them right” guide is recommended for referencing and citation (Pears
and Shields, 2008) which should be followed throughout your answer
especially Part 3. A good alternative is Northumbria (2018).
Please do not include references to lecture notes.
to Programme Goals and Objectives
This assignment covers the following
learning outcomes for the module:
data modelling concepts, application of database theory, principles for
supporting business and information systems.
/ Professional skills & abilities:
Conceptual data modelling, relational database
design and implementation in SQL & PL/SQL, and object-based databases.
Values Attributes (Global / Cultural awareness, Ethics, Curiosity) (PVA):
Realise the responsibilities
of database designers with respect to professional, legal, security and ethical
You are advised to read the guidance for students regarding assessment
policies. They are available online here.
submission of work
Where coursework is submitted late without approval, after the published
hand-in deadline, the following penalties will apply.
For coursework submitted up to 1 working day (24 hours) after the
published hand-in deadline without approval, 10% of the total marks available for the assessment (i.e.100%) shall be deducted from the assessment
Coursework submitted more than 1 working day (24 hours) after the
published hand-in deadline without approval will be regarded as not having been
completed. A mark of zero will be
awarded for the assessment and the module will be failed, irrespective of
the overall module mark.
These provisions apply to all assessments, including those assessed on a
The full policy can be found here.
Students must retain
an electronic copy of this assignment (including ALL appendices) and it must be
made available within 24hours of them requesting it be submitted.
The Assessment Regulations for Taught Awards
(ARTA) contain the Regulations and procedures applying to cheating,
plagiarism and other forms of academic misconduct.
full policy is available at here
You are reminded that plagiarism, collusion and
other forms of academic misconduct as referred to in the Academic Misconduct
procedure of the assessment regulations, which are taken very seriously. Assignments
in which evidence of plagiarism or other forms of academic misconduct is found
may receive a mark of zero.
Criteria for success:
textual components :
80-100% - The
description will excellently cover all the specific topics requested. The
written work will be fluent, clearly presented and of out-standing quality.
70-79% - The
description will comprehensively cover all the specific topics requested. The
written work will be fluent and clearly presented and of distinctive quality.
60-69% - The
student will show a very good knowledge of the specific topics, with very good
presentation skills and quality.
50-59% - The
student will show an above average knowledge of the specific topics, with above
average presentation skills and quality.
40-49% - There
will be an adequate description of a significant proportion of the topics
requested. There will be no major failures in presentation clarity.
- There will be little or no information conveyed in an intelligible manner on
the specific topics requested.
For ERD, SQL and other database technical
- The students will produce exceptional models (conceptual/logical/physical),
and will demonstrate the use of notation/language, which have outstanding
syntactic accuracy (e.g., adhering to ER modelling standards, error free SQL
code), with exceptional semantic relevance (e.g., are relevant to the
requirements of the particular scenario).
- The students will produce fully complete models (conceptual/ logical/
physical), and will demonstrate the use of notation/language, which have high
syntactic accuracy, with high semantic relevance.
- The students will produce almost complete models (conceptual/ logical/
physical), and will demonstrate the use of notation/language, which have appropriate
syntactic accuracy with reasonably well semantic relevance.
- The students will produce fairly complete models (conceptual/ logical/
physical), and will demonstrate the use of notation/language, which have adequate
syntactic accuracy with reasonable semantic relevance.
- The students will produce models, and will demonstrate the use of notation/language,
which have some syntactic accuracy and semantic relevance.
Less than 40%
- The students will not produce sufficient models, and/or will be unable to
demonstrate the use of notation/language with significant syntactic accuracy
and/or significant semantic relevance.
(2018) Quick guide to Referencing and Plagiarism. Available at: https://cragside.northumbria.ac.uk/Everyone/skillsplus/database_uploads/87.pdf (Last
accessed: 11 September 2019)
R. and Shields, G. (2008) Cite them right: the essential referencing guide.
Newcastle upon Tyne: Pear Tree Books. Available at: http://nuweb2.northumbria.ac.uk/library/skillsplus/loader.html?55388321 (Last accessed:
11 September 2019)
Assessment Background and Scenario
assessment is based on the scenario ‘Academic
Information System (AiS)” of a fictitious university called University of Gharnata. The
university wants to develop an information system to support its academic
activities. The details of the scenario are provided in
1 (50 marks)
is based on the ‘AiS’ scenario as described in the Appendix.
Using a database design approach of your choice, produce a logical design for
the database to support the information system, which is needed at the University
Your answer must consist of ONE of the following:
- An entity-relationship
(ER) diagram (20 marks) and its mapping into a set of relations (10
marks). The ER diagram should show all relevant entity types, relationship
types, attributes, keys, and structural constraints. Note that not all
keys are identified/mentioned in the scenario, so you are required to
identify/devise appropriate keys for all the entity types. Your ER diagram
must not show/include any foreign keys/attributes. As part of the mapping
process, for each relation, you should identify appropriate primary
keys as well as foreign keys (if applicable). Furthermore, you need to
make sure your relations obtained from mapping your ER diagram are in the
3rd normal form.
- A set
of normalised relations (10 marks) obtained through normalisation process
(20 marks) instead of ER modelling. You should make clear how the
normalisation process has been carried out, and the reasoning employed, in
particular quoting/providing evidence (series of steps) to support the
decisions made and how your relations have been derived. Each relation in
your answer should be in the 3rd normal form.
Based on your logical design from Part 1 (A) and the information available in
the scenario, produce an SQL script file using Oracle 11g/12c.
Your submission must
- An SQL script file containing appropriate SQL DDL (e.g.,
CREATE TABLE, ALTER TABLE, etc.) statements for creating all the relations
from Part 1 (A). 16 marks
- The output from running the script file in a live Oracle 11g/12c session (e.g., using SPOOL, copy
and paste, screenshots, etc.). 4 marks
- You should use relational features
from the SQL92 standard in Oracle 11g/12c
for constructing your data structures / tables, including appropriate
primary and foreign keys.
- You should aim for a high degree of reliability in the
data with use of as many constraints as possible, e.g., check constraints
on various columns (e.g., particular format of primary key values,
positive physical values as described in week 4 lecture slides on
2 (30 marks)
is based on your answer / solution to Part 1, i.e., design and implementation
of the database for the ‘AiS’ scenario.
Populate the database with some data (e.g., data similar to the courses and
modules you study, and other relevant information within Northumbria
Answer the following queries (retrievals) using SQL and relational algebra.
names of students, details of the course they study, details of the module they
have studied and their marks for all postgraduate students.
details of all people of ‘AiS’ (students and academic staff), e.g., their
names, their home addresses and name of the department where they work or
Your submission must
- Relational Algebra expressions (6 marks in total)
- An SQL script file containing appropriate SQL DML (e.g.,
INSERT) statements for populating the tables you have created in Part 1
(B). 8 marks
- An SQL script file containing SQL retrieval (e.g., SELECT)
statements for Part 2 (B). 10 marks
- An output file for running each of above the script files in a live Oracle
11g/12c session (e.g., using SPOOL, etc.). 2 marks for the insertions, 2
marks for each of the SQL retrieval output, hence a total of 6 marks for
- A total of 30 marks (6 + 8 + 10 + 6 = 30)
3 (20 marks)
Consider the ‘AiS’
scenario in the Appendix. Produce a report for the Rector of the University of Gharnata
elaborating on professional, legal, ethical and security issues that need to be
considered and make recommendations that you think are appropriate for ‘AiS’.
report should be concise and comprehensive and in the region of 800-900 words.
You should use Harvard style of citation and referencing by following the
guidelines in Pears and Shields (2008).
(B) Compare and contrast
different approaches to database design (e.g., entity relationship modelling,
normalisation, etc.) and briefly justify the approach you have used for
answering Part 1 (A).
report should be concise and comprehensive and in the region of 600-700 words.
You should consult a range of literature (e.g., database text books, journal
and conference articles, and quality websites). Again you should use Harvard
style of citation and referencing by following the guidelines in Pears
and Shields (2008).
should hand in your answer for this assignment as a single word processed
document electronically on the ELP. A sample assignment template file will be
uploaded on the ELP near the submission deadline.
‘Academic Information System (AiS)” Scenario
The scenario described here is that of a fictitious
university called University of Gharnata. The university wants to
develop an information system to support its academic activities.
The university has several academic departments. Each
department provides one or more academic courses. Each course is composed of
several modules, where a module may be part of more than one course. A student
enrolls on a course and every year takes a specified number of modules. Note
that several students are usually registered for a course. Every student is
assigned a tutor at the start of the course, who is a faculty member (e.g.,
lecturer) in the department providing the course. A faculty member works for a
department and usually teaches on several modules. Each module has a module
tutor who is also a faculty member. A faculty member may be tutor for several
department is chaired by a professor, who is a faculty member and works for the
same department. It is important that the system makes a note of when a
professor became the chair of a department. The details of a department include
its name, a primary location / address where its main building is located, a
secondary address where it may provide its services when needed, telephone and
fax numbers, etc.
course is assigned a course leader (a faculty member), who manages the
day-to-day issues of the course. Details of a course include a name, whether it
is undergraduate/postgraduate/research course, standard duration of the course
in months and the number of credit hours to complete to pass the course.
each module, the system needs to store its details (e.g., title, number of
credit hours, level (1, 2, 3, M, R), etc). For each student who is doing a
module, the system needs to record marks.
each student, the system needs to store details like name (first, middle,
last), term address (street, city, region, postal code, etc), home address, telephone
numbers, email address, date of birth, gender, and details of next-of-kin
(e.g., name, address, relationship, telephone numbers). The system needs to
record whether a student is from the UK, EU, Commonwealth or other.
faculty member is assigned a line manager, who is also a faculty member and
works in the same department. Details of a faculty member include name, home
address, office location and room number, telephone extension, email address,
home and mobile phone numbers, data of birth, gender, next-of-kin details, date
joined the university, salary, and details of qualifications. When a faculty
member is assigned to teach on a module, the system needs to record how many
hours a week he/she is expected to be teaching on that module.