Syllabus for ITS-130

Database Fundamentals


Database Fundamentals examines the fundamental concepts and applications of database systems. Topics include relational database components, database queries, structured query language (SQL), the database life cycle, logical database design using normalization, physical database design, data and process modeling, online transaction processing (OLTP), online analytical processing (OLAP), and extensible markup language (XML). The course explores security concepts and controls to protect databases against cyberattacks.



After completing this course, you should be able to:

CO1        Describe the structure, purpose, and relationships of core database components.

CO2        Compare and contrast current database design models.

CO3        Use relational data modeling tools to design and develop logical database objects.

CO4        Use Structured Query Language (SQL) code to develop and implement database objects and to

             manipulate data.

CO5        Develop SQL code to implement database security policies.


The following uCertify course will serve as your virtual textbook for the course:


Database Fundamentals is a three-credit, online course, consisting of six modules. Modules include an overview, topics, learning objectives, study materials, and activities. Module titles are listed below.


For your formal work in the course, you are required to participate in online discussion forums, complete uCertify activities (quizzes and exercises), complete written assignments, complete lab assignments, take a proctored midterm examination, and complete a final project. See below for details.

Consult the Course Calendar for due dates.

uCertify Assignments

In completing your coursework, you will be using parts of the uCertify course; access to the uCertify course is found through the link located in the top section of the ITS-130 course website. In addition to studying one or more lessons each week (completing the flashcards, in-lesson quiz items, and exercises), you are required to submit the results of all lesson quizzes to your mentor for grading.

Lesson Quizzes

Each uCertify lesson includes a lesson quiz. Access the quiz by going to the uCertify Table of Contents and selecting “Quizzes” for that lesson. To receive credit for the quiz, you must score 100% on the quiz when taken in Test mode. You may initially take the quiz in Learn or Review mode, but to receive credit for this activity, you must ultimately score 100% on the quiz when taken in Test mode.

Lesson quizzes are formative activities. You may take them as many times as necessary. At the end of the test, once you have achieved a score of 100%, share your results by downloading the PDF file and submitting it to the mentor using the appropriate assignment link in Moodle.

Discussion Forums

Introduction to Databases has six graded online discussions. There is also an ungraded but required Introductions Forum in Module 1.

Communication with the mentor and among fellow students is a critical component of online learning. Participation in online discussions involves two distinct activities: an initial response to a discussion question and at least two subsequent comments on a classmate's response. Meaningful participation is relevant to the content, adds value, and advances the discussion. Comments such as "I agree" and "ditto" are not considered value-adding participation. Therefore, when you agree or disagree with a classmate, the reading, or your mentor, state and support your agreement or disagreement.

You will be evaluated on the quality and quantity of your participation, including your use of relevant course information and your awareness of and responses to the postings of your classmates. Remember, these are discussions. Responses and comments should be properly proofread and edited, professional, and respectful.

Written Assignments

You are required to complete three written assignments. The written assignments are on a variety of topics associated with the course modules.

Lab Assignments

You are required to complete two lab assignments. If possible, the database created in the lab assignments should be created on one of the major cloud platforms (AWS/Azure/Google Cloud) using a free student account. Most of the course material is SQL Server specific, so other products will use slightly different SQL syntax. Otherwise, you may utilize any database tool available such as OpenOffice Base, MySQL, or Microsoft SQL Server Express.

Refer to these helpful links below:

Download SQL Server Express 

Student/Educational Microsoft Azure Account 

Microsoft Azure SQL Server Quick Start 

SQL Server Tutorials

OpenOffice (Free Download) 

MySQL Install for Windows 

Midterm Examination

You are required to complete a midterm examination. For a list of key concepts that may appear on your exam, refer to the exam study guide available in the Examinations section of the course website.

The midterm is a closed-book, proctored online exam. It is two hours long and covers material from Modules 1 through 3 of the course. It contains multiple-choice and short-essay questions.

For the midterm, you are required to use the University's Online Proctor Service (OPS). Please refer to the Examinations and Proctors section of the Online Student Handbook (see General Information area of the course website) for further information about scheduling and taking online exams and for all exam policies and procedures. You are strongly advised to schedule your exam within the first week of the semester.

Statement about Cheating

You are on your honor not to cheat during the exam. Cheating means:

If there is evidence that you have cheated or plagiarized in your exam, the exam will be declared invalid, and you will fail the course.

Final Project

The final project brings together the theoretical knowledge gained from the coursework with the practical knowledge gained through the labs. By applying the concepts learned to a real-life database, you will gain insight into the actual tasks performed by database designers and administrators. The final project contains a lab assignment and a research report. If possible, the database created in the lab assignment could be created on one of the major cloud platforms (AWS/Azure/Google Cloud) using a free student account. Otherwise, you may utilize any database tool available such as OpenOffice Base, MySQL, or Microsoft Access.

Be sure to reference the Final Project area of the course website for full requirements and details. Consult the Course Calendar for due dates.


Your grade in the course will be determined as follows:

All activities will receive a numerical grade of 0–100. You will receive a score of 0 for any work not submitted. Your final grade in the course will be a letter grade. Letter grade equivalents for numerical grades are as follows:






























Below 60

To receive credit for the course, you must earn a letter grade of C or better (for an area of study course) or D or better (for a course not in your area of study), based on the weighted average of all assigned course work (e.g., exams, assignments, discussion postings, etc.).


First Steps to Success

To succeed in this course, take the following first steps:

Study Tips

Consider the following study tips for success:


Thomas Edison State University is committed to maintaining academic quality, excellence, and honesty. The University expects all members of its community to share the commitment to academic integrity, an essential component of a quality academic experience.

Students at Thomas Edison State University are expected to exhibit the highest level of academic citizenship. In particular, students are expected to read and follow all policies, procedures, and program information guidelines contained in publications; pursue their learning goals with honesty and integrity; demonstrate that they are progressing satisfactorily and in a timely fashion by meeting course deadlines and following outlined procedures; observe a code of mutual respect in dealing with mentors, staff, and other students; behave in a manner consistent with the standards and codes of the profession in which they are practicing; keep official records updated regarding changes in name, address, telephone number, or e-mail address; and meet financial obligations in a timely manner. Students not practicing good academic citizenship may be subject to disciplinary action including suspension, dismissal, or financial holds on records.

All members of the University community are responsible for reviewing the Academic Code of Conduct Policy in the University Catalog and online at

Academic Dishonesty

Thomas Edison State University expects all of its students to approach their education with academic integrity—the pursuit of scholarly activity free from fraud and deception. All mentors and administrative staff members at the University insist on strict standards of academic honesty in all courses. Academic dishonesty undermines this objective. Academic dishonesty can take the following forms:


Thomas Edison State University is committed to helping students understand the seriousness of plagiarism, which is defined as using the work and ideas of others without proper citation. The University takes a strong stance against plagiarism, and students found to be plagiarizing are subject to discipline under the academic code of conduct policy.

If you copy phrases, sentences, paragraphs, or whole documents word-for-word—or if you paraphrase by changing a word here and there—without identifying the author, or without identifying it as a direct quote, then you are plagiarizing. Please keep in mind that this type of identification applies to Internet sources as well as to print-based sources. Copying and pasting from the Internet, without using quotation marks and without acknowledging sources, constitutes plagiarism. (For information about how to cite Internet sources, see Online Student Handbook > Academic Standards > Citing Sources.)

Accidentally copying the words and ideas of another writer does not excuse the charge of plagiarism. It is easy to jot down notes and ideas from many sources and then write your own paper without knowing which words are your own and which are someone else’s. It is more difficult to keep track of each and every source. However, the conscientious writer who wishes to avoid plagiarizing never fails to keep careful track of sources.

Always be aware that if you write without acknowledging the sources of your ideas, you run the risk of being charged with plagiarism.

Clearly, plagiarism, no matter the degree of intent to deceive, defeats the purpose of education. If you plagiarize deliberately, you are not educating yourself, and you are wasting your time on courses meant to improve your skills. If you plagiarize through carelessness, you are deceiving yourself.

For examples of unintentional plagiarism, advice on when to quote and when to paraphrase, and information about writing assistance and originality report checking, click the links provided below.

Examples of Unintentional Plagiarism

When to Quote and When to Paraphrase

Writing Assistance at Smarthinking

Originality Report Checking at Turnitin

Disciplinary Process for Plagiarism

Acts of both intentional and unintentional plagiarism violate the Academic Code of Conduct.

If an incident of plagiarism is an isolated minor oversight or an obvious result of ignorance of proper citation requirements, the mentor may handle the matter as a learning exercise. Appropriate consequences may include the completion of tutorials, assignment rewrites, or any other reasonable learning tool in addition to a lower grade for the assignment or course. The mentor will notify the student and appropriate dean of the consequence by e-mail.

If the plagiarism appears intentional and/or is more than an isolated incident, the mentor will refer the matter to the appropriate dean, who will gather information about the violation(s) from the mentor and student, as necessary. The dean will review the matter and notify the student in writing of the specifics of the charge and the sanction to be imposed.

Possible sanctions include:

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