CSE3000 Database management and implementation - Semester 2 , 2007

Unit leader :

Samar Zutshi

Lecturer(s) :


  • Samar Zutshi

Tutors(s) :


  • Chengliang Du
  • Samar Zutshi


CSE3000 is an advanced database unit where you will be exposed to the innards of an RDBMS, something you may have thus far been sheltered from.

The "Database design and implementation" actually works on two levels, as you will learn about issues related to designing and building an RDBMS product (like oracle or postgresql) and also about implementing a  DBMS for a specific scenario. The idea is that an understanding of the functioning of RDBMS internals puts you in a better position to design and implement a database for effective utilisation of system resources. It also means that you are in a position to be a part of designing and implementing the next big RDBMS product!

Unit synopsis

This unit is a second unit in databases, and looks at the design and implementation issues of database management systems. Record, file and index structures are dealt with at the basic level. Higher level details of consistency, atomicity and durability are introduced along with modern trends in databases

Learning outcomes

As a result of undertaking this unit, students should

  • be aware of how data is stored and indexed on disks given the architecture of disks and processing requirements

  • understand how a RDBMS processes a query

  • be able to explain how query processing can be done efficiently

  • understand how the requirements of transaction processing are met be an RDBMS

  • be aware of issues related to DB security and disaster recovery

  • have an appreciation for the complexities involved in implementing parallel and distributed databases


For this subject, students are expected to allocate the following amounts of time

  • Attend a two hour lecture
  • Attend a two hour tutorial
  • Spend 1-2 hours on reading and self-study preparing for the lecture and completing tutorial work
  • Spend on average 3-4 hours a week on assessible work, this is an average estimate in the sense that some weeks will require more time than others depending on when submissions are due

Unit relationships


Before attempting this unit you must have satisfactorily completed CSE9002 or CSE2132 or FIT1004 or equivalent. You should have knowledge of relational data model, ER modelling, SQL, relational algebra, normalisation and some programming in  a high-level language involving file I/O. 


CSE3000 is a elective unit in the undergraduate degrees and post graduate diploma as well as MAIT in Information Technology. It is a recommended prerequisite for CSE5200.

Continuous improvement

Monash is committed to ‘Excellence in education' and strives for the highest possible quality in teaching and learning. To monitor how successful we are in providing quality teaching and learning Monash regularly seeks feedback from students, employers and staff. Two of the formal ways that you are invited to provide feedback are through Unit Evaluations and through Monquest Teaching Evaluations.

One of the key formal ways students have to provide feedback is through Unit Evaluation Surveys. It is Monash policy for every unit offered to be evaluated each year. Students are strongly encouraged to complete the surveys as they are an important avenue for students to "have their say". The feedback is anonymous and provides the Faculty with evidence of aspects that students are satisfied and areas for improvement.

Student Evaluations

The Faculty of IT administers the Unit Evaluation surveys online through the my.monash portal, although for some smaller classes there may be alternative evaluations conducted in class.

If you wish to view how previous students rated this unit, please go to http://www.monash.edu.au/unit-evaluation-reports/

Over the past few years the Faculty of Information Technology has made a number of improvements to its courses as a result of unit evaluation feedback. Some of these include systematic analysis and planning of unit improvements, and consistent assignment return guidelines.

Monquest Teaching Evaluation surveys may be used by some of your academic staff this semester. They are administered by the Centre for Higher Education Quality (CHEQ) and may be completed in class with a facilitator or on-line through the my.monash portal. The data provided to lecturers is completely anonymous. Monquest surveys provide academic staff with evidence of the effectiveness of their teaching and identify areas for improvement. Individual Monquest reports are confidential, however, you can see the summary results of Monquest evaluations for 2006 at http://www.adm.monash.edu.au/cheq/evaluations/monquest/profiles/index.html

Improvements to this unit

The lecture slides have been revised to include greater detail and to precipitate discussion.

The implementation assessment may require greater  analysis and  judgement on the part of the student in the application of theory covered.

Instead of embedded SQL in PHP, which was previously the basis of the assignment, we have a phyiscal database design assignment as practical work. This is to allow for greater alignment between the theoretical principles covered and the practical work. 

Unit staff - contact details

Unit leader

Mr Samar Zutshi

Contact hours : Monday 11:00-13:00

Lecturer(s) :

Mr Samar Zutshi

Contact hours : Monday 11:00-13:00

Tutor(s) :

Mr Chengliang Du
Mr Samar Zutshi

Additional communication information

As far as possible, questions regarding the unit content, administration adn delivery  should not be emailed to the lecturer or tutor directly. They should instead be posted to the discussion boards in MUSO. This enables the quickest responses and also brings contentious issues to the attention of other students.

Teaching and learning method

  • Interactive learning questions can be raised during the lecture at any time by requesting the lecturer's attention by a raised hand and, if necessary, a discreet cough! At times the lecturer may initiate discussion and students are expected to participate. During tutorials, especially, students are requested to respond to attempts to engage them in participation. Difficulties encountered outside of contact hours can be resolved via the discussion boards.
  • Self study a significant component of reading and self study is highly recommended as a lot of the material needs to be digested over a period of time. Students are not expected to accept the material presented without question, self study and reflection are required to appreciate the concepts
  • Problem solving A significant portion of the assessment will require critical thinking, problem solving and some arithmetic. It is imperative to practice these skills by staying up to date with  tutorial work and extra practice if you feel unsure about the material. The lecturer/tutor may be able to provide you with extra practice problems if you feel they are necessary
  • Independent Experimentation (advanced students) You may enjoy the subject more if you are able to install a freely available RDBMS product (oracle, postgresql, mysql) and attempt to install and administer it in your own time. If you are especially keen you can read the documentation and source code for them to connect the principles covered to your specific product

Communication, participation and feedback

Monash aims to provide a learning environment in which students receive a range of ongoing feedback throughout their studies. You will receive feedback on your work and progress in this unit. This may take the form of group feedback, individual feedback, peer feedback, self-comparison, verbal and written feedback, discussions (on line and in class) as well as more formal feedback related to assignment marks and grades. You are encouraged to draw on a variety of feedback to enhance your learning.

It is essential that you take action immediately if you realise that you have a problem that is affecting your study. Semesters are short, so we can help you best if you let us know as soon as problems arise. Regardless of whether the problem is related directly to your progress in the unit, if it is likely to interfere with your progress you should discuss it with your lecturer or a Community Service counsellor as soon as possible.

Questions pertaining to the administration and content of the unit should be raised in the discussion boards in MUSO rather than via direct email to your lecturer or tutor. This will enable prompt responses and also bring contentious issues to the attention of other students.

If you are experiencing personal difficulties, please do discuss them in confidence with your lecturer or a univeristy counsellor as early as possible. Please do not wait until deadlines for assessments have passed to raise such issues, since there are fewer options available to you at that point.

Unit Schedule

Week Topic References/Readings Key dates
1 Introduction Unit Guide  
2 Disks and records Text Ch 8-9 HWA1 spec release
3 Files and indexing Text Ch 9-10  
4 Files and indexing Text Ch 10-11  
5 Oracle Indexing and Tuning Electronic resources, TBA HWA1 due/ HWA2 spec release
6 Query Processing Text Ch 12-13 Implementation spec release
7 Query Processing Text Ch 13-15 Unit test
8 Trans. Processing Text Ch 16-17  
9 Tran. Processing Text Ch 16-17  
10 Security Text Ch 21 HWA2 due
Mid semester break
11 Recovery Text Ch 18  
12 Parallel and Dist. DB Text Ch 22 Implementation due
13 Revision Sample exam, TBA  

Unit Resources

Prescribed text(s) and readings

Raghu Ramakrishnan and Johannes Gehrke,  Database Management Systems, McGraw-Hill, 2003. 0-07-246563-8. Third Edition

Recommended text(s) and readings

Thomas Connolly and Carolyn Begg. Database Systems: A Practical Approach to  Design, Implementation and Management. Addison Wesley. 2002. Third Edition

Required software and/or hardware

Access to an oracle account on a university server and instructions on how to connect to it from the labs will be provided.

Equipment and consumables required or provided

Students studying off-campus are required to have the minimum system configuration specified by the Faculty as a condition of accepting admission, and regular Internet access. On-campus students, and those studying at supported study locations may use the facilities available in the computing labs. Information about computer use for students is available from the ITS Student Resource Guide in the Monash University Handbook. You will need to allocate up to 5 hours per week for use of a computer, including time for acessing materials, self study and attempting assessable work.

Study resources

Study resources we will provide for your study are:

  1. Weekly Lecture slides with pointers to relevant readings.  Available prior to the lecture.
  2. Weekly Tutorial excercises with partial/sample solutions.  Availble 2-3 weeks  after the excercises are meant to be attempted.
  3. Assignment specification.  Available close to completion of coverage of the necessary material in class.
  4. A sample unit test, will be made available closer to the date of the test.
  5. Sample exam, will be made available in the latter half of the teaching period and discussed as part of the revision lecture.
  6. Discussion boards
  7. This unit  guide.

All the items above will be available via MUSO. 

Very important: The sample test/exam are just that, samples. They reflect the number and type of questions you will encounter as well as the structure of the test/exam. The exact same questions will not appear on the actual test/exam! 

Library access

The Monash University Library site contains details about borrowing rights and catalogue searching. To learn more about the library and the various resources available, please go to http://www.lib.monash.edu.au.  Be sure to obtain a copy of the Library Guide, and if necessary, the instructions for remote access from the library website.

The library has several copies of the text and reference books. There should be a copy of the text book on reserve that you can peruse for a short while. A few copies will also be available for short term loan. A copy of the older, 2nd edition of the textbook is also available, which can be referred to if other copies are unavailable. Electronic resources for the 2nd edition of the textbook (still useful) are available, see http://tinyurl.com/3yduwb

Monash University Studies Online (MUSO)

All unit and lecture materials are available through the MUSO (Monash University Studies Online) site. You can access this site by going to:

  1. a) http://muso.monash.edu.au or
  2. b) via the portal (http://my.monash.edu.au).

Click on the My Units tab, then the Monash University Studies Online hyperlink

In order for your MUSO unit(s) to function correctly, certain programs may need to be installed such as Java version 1.4.2. This can easily be done by going to http://www.monash.edu.au/muso/support/students/downloadables-student.html to update the relevant software.

You can contact the MUSO helpdesk by: Phone: (+61 3) 9903-1268 or 9903-2764

Operational hours (Monday - Thursday) - local time

Australia: 8 am to 10 pm (8pm Non Teaching period)

Malaysia: 6 am to 8 pm (6 pm Non Teaching period)

South Africa: 11pm to 1pm (11 am Non Teaching period)

Operational hours (Friday) - local time

Australia: 8 am to 8 pm

Malaysia: 6 am to 6 pm

South Africa: 11pm to 11 am

Operational hours (Saturday-Sunday) - local time (Teaching and Exam Period Only)

Australia: 1 pm to 5 pm

Malaysia: 11 am to 3 pm

South Africa: 4 am to 8 am

Further information can be obtained from the MUSO support site: http://www.monash.edu.au/muso/support/index.html


Unit assessment policy

To pass the subject you must

  • score at least 40% across the non-exam component of the assessment and
  • score at least 45% on the exam and
  • score at least 50% overall. 

Assignment tasks

  • Assignment Task
    Title :
    Homework Assignment 1 (HWA1)
    Description :

    Students will be given a series of excercises to attempt. You will be required to submit your solutions. The excercises will be based on the types of questions covered in the tutorials. The specification will be made available in week 2 and will cover materials from weeks 2-4 inclusive and will be due on Friday of week 5.

    Weighting :
    Criteria for assessment :
    Due date :
    Friday, 17th August 2007
  • Assignment Task
    Title :
    Midterm test
    Description :
    Students will be required to take a test that will be run either in the lecture or the tutorial (depending on final student numbers and seating capacities). The test will cover material covered in weeks 1-6 inclusive. A sample exam and hints on exam technique will be discussed in the week 6 lecture.
    Weighting :
    Criteria for assessment :
    Due date :
    Week 7
  • Assignment Task
    Title :
    Homework Assignment 2 (HWA2)
    Description :
    Similar to HWA1. The spec will be released in week 5, the material covered will include weeks 5-9 (inclusive) and the submission is due on Friday of week 10.
    Weighting :
    Criteria for assessment :
    Due date :
    Friday, 21st September 2007
  • Assignment Task
    Title :
    Implementation Assignment (ImpA)
    Description :

    Students will be required to study a given scenario and implement the corresponding schema in Oracle. You will have to make physical database design decisions and justify your decisions in a written explanation.

    The scenario and complete assignment specification will be available in week 6. Your submission is due by Friday of week 12.

    Weighting :
    Criteria for assessment :
    Due date :
    Friday, 12th October


  • Examination
    Weighting :
    Length :
    2 hours
    Type ( open/closed book ) :
    closed book

Assignment submission

This will be specified along with the specification. Generally hardcopy of homework need to be submitted to boxes, and the programming assignment will have to be provided on an electronic medium.

Assignment coversheets

These can be obtained online and must be attached to all hard copy submissions.

University and Faculty policy on assessment

Due dates and extensions

The due dates for the submission of assignments are given in the previous section. Please make every effort to submit work by the due dates. It is your responsibility to structure your study program around assignment deadlines, family, work and other commitments. Factors such as normal work pressures, vacations, etc. are seldom regarded as appropriate reasons for granting extensions. Students are advised to NOT assume that granting of an extension is a matter of course.

Extensions to submission deadlines will only be granted in extreme circumstances such as a severe medical condition to the point of incapacitation. All requests for extensions must be made at least two days before the assignment is due and accompanied by documentation such as a letter from your doctor or counsellor.

Late assignment

Assignment submissions are due on Fridays. Assignments received after the nominated time on Friday will incur a 10% penalty. Assignment submission is not monitored on weekends and any assignment received by 9am on the Monday after the submission will incur a 20% penalty. Further penalties of 10% per day or part thereof apply for later submissions.

Return dates

Students can expect assignments to be returned within two weeks of the submission date or after receipt, whichever is later.

Assessment for the unit as a whole is in accordance with the provisions of the Monash University Education Policy at: http://www.adm.monash.edu.au/unisec/academicpolicies/policy/assessment.html

Every effort will be made to return your submission with feeback that explains your result within two to three weeks of submission.  

Plagiarism, cheating and collusion

Plagiarism and cheating are regarded as very serious offences. In cases where cheating  has been confirmed, students have been severely penalised, from losing all marks for an assignment, to facing disciplinary action at the Faculty level. While we would wish that all our students adhere to sound ethical conduct and honesty, I will ask you to acquaint yourself with Student Rights and Responsibilities (http://www.infotech.monash.edu.au/about/committees-groups/facboard/policies/studrights.html) and the Faculty regulations that apply to students detected cheating as these will be applied in all detected cases.

In this University, cheating means seeking to obtain an unfair advantage in any examination or any other written or practical work to be submitted or completed by a student for assessment. It includes the use, or attempted use, of any means to gain an unfair advantage for any assessable work in the unit, where the means is contrary to the instructions for such work. 

When you submit an individual assessment item, such as a program, a report, an essay, assignment or other piece of work, under your name you are understood to be stating that this is your own work. If a submission is identical with, or similar to, someone else's work, an assumption of cheating may arise. If you are planning on working with another student, it is acceptable to undertake research together, and discuss problems, but it is not acceptable to jointly develop or share solutions unless this is specified by your lecturer. 

Intentionally providing students with your solutions to assignments is classified as "assisting to cheat" and students who do this may be subject to disciplinary action. You should take reasonable care that your solution is not accidentally or deliberately obtained by other students. For example, do not leave copies of your work in progress on the hard drives of shared computers, and do not show your work to other students. If you believe this may have happened, please be sure to contact your lecturer as soon as possible.

Cheating also includes taking into an examination any material contrary to the regulations, including any bilingual dictionary, whether or not with the intention of using it to obtain an advantage.

Plagiarism involves the false representation of another person's ideas, or findings, as your own by either copying material or paraphrasing without citing sources. It is both professional and ethical to reference clearly the ideas and information that you have used from another writer. If the source is not identified, then you have plagiarised work of the other author. Plagiarism is a form of dishonesty that is insulting to the reader and grossly unfair to your student colleagues.

Register of counselling about plagiarism

The university requires faculties to keep a simple and confidential register to record counselling to students about plagiarism (e.g. warnings). The register is accessible to Associate Deans Teaching (or nominees) and, where requested, students concerned have access to their own details in the register. The register is to serve as a record of counselling about the nature of plagiarism, not as a record of allegations; and no provision of appeals in relation to the register is necessary or applicable.

Non-discriminatory language

The Faculty of Information Technology is committed to the use of non-discriminatory language in all forms of communication. Discriminatory language is that which refers in abusive terms to gender, race, age, sexual orientation, citizenship or nationality, ethnic or language background, physical or mental ability, or political or religious views, or which stereotypes groups in an adverse manner. This is not meant to preclude or inhibit legitimate academic debate on any issue; however, the language used in such debate should be non-discriminatory and sensitive to these matters. It is important to avoid the use of discriminatory language in your communications and written work. The most common form of discriminatory language in academic work tends to be in the area of gender inclusiveness. You are, therefore, requested to check for this and to ensure your work and communications are non-discriminatory in all respects.

Students with disabilities

Students with disabilities that may disadvantage them in assessment should seek advice from one of the following before completing assessment tasks and examinations:

Deferred assessment and special consideration

Deferred assessment (not to be confused with an extension for submission of an assignment) may be granted in cases of extenuating personal circumstances such as serious personal illness or bereavement. Special consideration in the awarding of grades is also possible in some circumstances. Information and forms for Special Consideration and deferred assessment applications are available at http://www.monash.edu.au/exams/special-consideration.html. Contact the Faculty's Student Services staff at your campus for further information and advice.