CS 6400: Database Systems Concepts and Design

Course Creator and Instructor

Leo Mark
Leo Mark
Creator, Instructor


I believe in learning-by-example and learning-by-doing. This course presents an example of applying a database application development methodology to a major real-world project. All the database concepts, techniques and tools that are needed to develop a database application from scratch are introduced along the way when they are needed. In parallel - slightly delayed - learners in the course will apply the database application development methodology, the techniques, and the tools to their own major class team project. In addition to the development methodology, techniques and tools learned in this course will include the Extended Entity Relationship Model, the Relational Model, Relational algebra, calculus and SQL, database normalization, efficiency and indexing. Finally, techniques and tools for metadata management and archival will be presented.


Learners should be familiar with at least one scripting or programming language, e.g. PHP, Python, Java. Some familiarity with software engineering concepts would be helpful. Flexibility to work remotely with team members.


  • Major team project with several deliverables
  • Assignments
  • Proctored midterm and final exams
  • Participation in online forums

You will receive all assignments and projects through T-Square, and each entry will show a due date. Please be sure to complete all assignments and projects by their due date. You will also receive grades and information on how much each graded item counts toward the overall grade for the course through T-Square.

We will be using Piazza as a forum. Please submit all of your course-related questions through Piazza. Please also make sure to read all Piazza postings, or you may miss important information about the course.

Required Text

Elmasri & Navathe: Fundamentals of Database Systems. 7th Edition. Pearson 2016. Additional course material will be available online.

Minimum Technical Requirements

  • Browser and connection speed: An up-to-date version of Google Chrome or Firefox is strongly recommended. 2+ Mbps is recommended.
  • Operating System: -Windows XP or higher with latest updates. -Mac OS X 10.6 or higher with latest updates. -Linux - Any recent distribution will work so long as you can install Python and OpenCV

Other Info

Additional Course Information

Additional information about the course, including office hours, late-assignment policy, and team work, will be posted by the instructor on Piazza on or before the first day of class.

Academic Honesty

All Georgia Tech students are expected to uphold the Georgia Tech Academic Honor Code.