Princeton University
Computer Science Dept.

Computer Science 597D

Principles of Database and Information Systems

Andrea LaPaugh

Fall 2013

General Information | Schedule and Assignments | Project Page | Announcements

OF NOTE:   This course does not assume an undergraduate course in database systems.   Core database material will be covered as part of the discussion of each topic.

Course Summary

The models and computational methods of database and information systems. Emphasizes structured database systems, but also considers systems for semi-structured and unstructured information.  Some specific topics: the relational data model; the XML model; noSQL databases; indexing; distributed storage systems; query construction and evaluation; transactions; information retrieval and search effectiveness.  Includes current research directions and emphasizes interactions with other computer science research areas. 


Knowledge of core undergraduate material in programming, data structures and algorithms.  NO prior course in database systems is necessary.  Cannot receive credit for this course and COS 425.
Undergraduates interested in this course should see Professor LaPaugh.

Administrative Information

Meeting time:  Mon., Wed.  1:30 - 2:50 pm
Meeting place: Room 301, Computer Science Building
Extra meetings: If a class should be canceled, a make-up class will be scheduled during reading period and/or during the semester. Class participants will be consulted before any make-up class time is chosen.  Meeting in reading period may also be necessary for student presentations depending on class size.

Professor: Andrea LaPaugh, 304 CS Building, 258-4568, aslp at,
Office hours:  Wednesdays 3:00-4:30pm

Course secretary: Mitra Kelly, 323 CS building, 258-4562, mkelly at


Required text:

Supplemental reading on reserve at Engineering Library:

Supplemental reading available online:


We will use the Blackboard course Web site for all course announcements and most course materials, including assignments,  pdf versions of readings and pdf versions of any transparencies used in class.  All important course announcements will appear on the  Blackboard course home pageAll materials will be found in the Course Materials area of the Blackboard course site (use left menu)   The Schedule and Assignments page will give all reading and homework assignments.    Schedule changes will be made on the Schedule and Assignments page and announced on Announcements.  Students are responsible for monitoring the Schedule and Assignments page and AnnouncementsSchedule changes will be made on the  Schedule and Assignments page and announced on Announcements.

You are encouraged to use electronic mail to set up appointments, leave messages, and ask quick questions. However, an old fashioned face-to-face meeting is still best for clarifying confusions and other technical discussions.

Work of the Course

The course will have the following graded components:


Each student will do a final project of his or her choosing.  The project should relate some material of the course to the research interests of the student.  This can be done in many ways.  The project must be approved in advance by the course instructor. The project page will provide more information and a list of example projects.
A.S. LaPaugh Wed Sep 11 15:55:20 EDT 2013