Volume 11

V11 N1 Pages 4-13

February 2013

Relational Algebra and SQL: Better Together

Kirby McMaster
Fort Lewis College
Durango, CO 81301, USA

Samuel Sambasivam
Azusa Pacific University
Azusa, CA 91702, USA

Steven Hadfield
U.S. Airforce Academy
Colorado Springs, CO 80480, USA

Stuart Wolthuis
Brigham Young University-Hawaii
Laie, HI 96762, USA

Abstract: In this paper, we describe how database instructors can teach Relational Algebra and Structured Query Language together through programming. Students write query programs consisting of sequences of Relational Algebra operations vs. Structured Query Language SELECT statements. The query programs can then be run interactively, allowing students to compare the results of Relational Algebra and equivalent Structured Query Language commands. In this way, students better under-stand both Relational Algebra and Structured Query Language—by writing code and watching it run.

Keywords: Database, query, relational algebra, SQL, structured query language

Download this article: ISEDJ - V11 N1 Page 4.pdf

Recommended Citation: McMaster, K., Sambasivam, S., Hadfield, S., Wolthuis, S. (2013). Relational Algebra and SQL: Better Together. Information Systems Education Journal, 11(1) pp 4-13. http://isedj.org/2013-11/ ISSN: 1545-679X. (A preliminary version appears in The Proceedings of ISECON 2012)