Duke University – Managing Big Data with MySQL
About this Course
This course is an introduction to how to use relational databases in business analysis. You will learn how relational databases work, and how to use entity-relationship diagrams to display the structure of the data held within them. This knowledge will help you understand how data needs to be collected in business contexts, and help you identify features you want to consider if you are involved in implementing new data collection efforts. You will also learn how to execute the most useful query and table aggregation statements for business analysts, and practice using them with real databases. No more waiting 48 hours for someone else in the company to provide data to you – you will be able to get the data by yourself!
By the end of this course, you will have a clear understanding of how relational databases work, and have a portfolio of queries you can show potential employers. Businesses are collecting increasing amounts of information with the hope that data will yield novel insights into how to improve businesses. Analysts that understand how to access this data – this means you! – will have a strong competitive advantage in this data-smitten business world.
Skills you will gain
Week 1: About this Specialization and Course
The Coursera Specialization, “Managing Big Data with MySQL” is about how ‘Big Data’ interacts with business, and how to use data analytics to create value for businesses. This specialization consists of four courses and a final Capstone Project, where you will apply your skills to a real-world business process. You will learn to perform sophisticated data-analysis functions using powerful software tools such as Microsoft Excel, Tableau, and MySQL. To learn more about the specialization, please review the first lesson below, “Specialization Introduction: Excel to MySQL: Analytic Techniques for Business.” In this fourth course of this specialization, “Managing Big Data with MySQL” you will learn how relational databases work and how they are used in business analysis. Specifically, you will: (1) Describe the structure of relational databases; (2) Interpret and create entity-relationship diagrams and relational schemas that describe the contents of specific databases; (3) Write queries that retrieve and sort data that meet specific criteria, and retrieve such data from real MySQL and Teradata business databases that contain over 1 million rows of data; (4) Execute practices that limit the impact of your queries on other coworkers; (5) Summarize rows of data using aggregate functions, and segment aggregations according to specified variables; (6) Combine and manipulate data from multiple tables across a database; (7) Retrieve records and compute calculations that are dependent on dynamic data features; (8) Translate data analysis questions into SQL queries that accommodate the types of anomalies found in real data sets. By the end of this course, you will have a clear understanding of how relational databases work and have a portfolio of queries you can show potential employers. Businesses are collecting increasing amounts of information with the hope that data will yield novel insights into how to improve businesses. Analysts that understand how to access this data – this means you! – will have a strong competitive advantage in this data-smitten business world. To get started with this course, you can begin with, “Introduction to Managing Big Data with MySQL.” Please take some time to not only watch the videos, but also read through the course overview as there is extremely important course information in the overview.
Understanding Relational Databases
Welcome to week 1! This week you will learn how relational databases are organized, and practice making and interpreting Entity Relationship (ER) diagrams and relational schemas that describe the structure of data stored in a database. By the end of the week, you will be able to: (1) Describe the fundamental principles of relational database design (2) Interpret Entity Relationship (ER) diagrams and Entity Relationship (ER) schemas, and (3) Create your own ER diagrams and relational schemas using a software tool called ERDPlus that you will use to aid your query-writing later in the course. This week’s exercises are donated from a well-known Database Systems textbook, and will help you deepen and strengthen your understanding of how relational databases are organized. This deeper understanding will help you navigate complicated business databases, and allow you to write more efficient queries. At the conclusion of the week, you will test your understanding of database design principles by completing the Week 1 graded quiz. To get started, please begin with the video “Problems with Having a Lot of Data Used by a Lot of People.” As always, if you have any questions, post them to the Discussions. I hope you enjoy this week’s materials!
Week 2: Queries to Extract Data from Single Tables
Welcome to week 2! This week, you will start interacting with business databases. You will write SQL queries that query data from two real companies. One data set, donated from a local start-up in Durham, North Carolina called Dognition, is a MySQL database containing tables of over 1 million rows. The other data set, donated from a national US department store chain called Dillard’s, is a Teradata database containing tables with over a hundred million rows. By the end of the week, you will be able to:1. Use two different database user interfaces2. Write queries to verify and describe all the contents of the Dognition MySQL database and the Dillard’s Teradata database3. Retrieve data that meet specific criteria in a socially-responsible using SELECT, FROM, WHERE, LIMIT, and TOP clauses, and4. Format the data you retrieve using aliases, DISTINCT clauses, and ORDER BY clauses.Make sure to watch the instructional videos about how to use the database interfaces we have established for this course, and complete both the MySQL and the Teradata exercises. At the end of the week, you will test your understanding of the SQL syntax introduced this week by completing the Week 2 graded quiz.To get started, please begin with the video “Introduction to Week 2.” As always, if you have any questions, post them to the Discussions. Enjoy this week’s materials!
Week 3: Queries to Summarize Groups of Data from Multiple Tables
Welcome to week 3! This week, we are going to learn the SQL syntax that allows you to segment your data into separate categories and segment. We are also going to learn how to combine data stored in separate tables. By the end of the week, you will be able to: (1) Summarize values across entire columns, and break those summaries up according to specific variables or values in others columns using GROUP BY and HAVING clauses (2) Combine information from multiple tables using inner and outer joins (3) Use strategies to manage joins between tables with duplicate rows, many-to-many relationships, and atypical configurations (4) Practice one of the slightly more challenging use cases of aggregation functions, and (5) Work with the Dognition database to learn more about how MySQL handles mismatched aggregation levels. Make sure to watch the videos about joins, and complete both the MySQL and the Teradata exercises. At the end of the week, you will test your understanding of the SQL syntax introduced this week by completing the Week 3 graded quiz. We strongly encourage you to use the course Discussions to help each other with questions. To get started, please begin with the video ‘Welcome to Week 3.’ I hope you enjoy this week’s materials!
Week 4: Queries to Address More Detailed Business Questions
Welcome to week 4, the final week of Managing Big Data with MySQL! This week you will practice integrating the SQL syntax you’ve learn so far into queries that address analysis questions typical of those you will complete as a business data analyst. By the end of the week, you will be able to: (1) Design and execute subqueries (2) Introduce logical conditions into your queries using IF and CASE statements (3) Implement analyses that accommodate missing data or data mistakes, and (4) Write complex queries that incorporate many tables and clauses. By the end of this week you will feel confident claiming that you know how to write SQL queries to create business value. Due to the extensive nature of the queries we will practice this week, we have put the graded quiz that tests your understanding of the SQL strategies you will practice in its own week rather than including it in this week’s materials. Make sure to complete both the MySQL exercises and the Teradata exercises, and we strongly encourage you to use the course Discussions to help each other with questions. To get started, please begin with the video ‘Welcome to Week 4.’ I hope you enjoy this week’s materials!
Week 5: Strengthen and Test Your Understanding
This week contains the final ungraded Teradata exercises, and the final graded quiz for the course. The exercises are intended to hone and build your understanding of the last important concepts in the course, and lead directly to the quiz so be sure to do both!