ALl Classes + Events
Data Science

Introduction to Databases

Are you a(n):

  • Full Stack Developer who is finding it harder and harder to meet all the data requirements of your project using you from your favorite framework’s out-of-the-box capabilities?
  • Business Analyst who is tired of having to go through the IT department every time you want to create a new type of report?
  • Entrepreneur or senior manager who wants to put your organization on a sound data foundation?

Or are you just generally curious about the best ways to view, analyze, and work with data to get stuff done? If so, this workshop is for you!

The Introduction to Databases workshop explores common methods used to work with data, including hierarchical and object models of data as well as spreadsheets.  We’ll look at when these approaches work well and when they break down.We will introduce the relational model of data, and contrast the relational model with other approaches.  We’ll learn how to build a simple but realistic database using the relational model, beginning with logical modeling and continuing with physical implementation in a relational database management system. In the second week of the class, we will  learn how to query and update our relational database using the industry-standard Structured Query Language (SQL). We’ll examine best practices in database management, including relational, non-relational, and hybrid approaches to data management.

We will take a hands-on approach throughout, using a hypothetical e-commerce startup as the basis of most of our in-class examples.  Course participants will also have the opportunity to design, populate and query databases in support of their own projects.


At the end of this workshop, students will be able to:

  • Understand the fundamentals of  the relational data model and how it differs from other methods of managing data
  • Understand the importance of data normalization — and when NOT to normalize
  • Use entity-relationship modeling to build a logical database schema
  • Build a physical database schema using SQL Data Definition Language
  • Use foreign keys to enforce data integrity
  • Identify methods for loading data into a database
  • Query a database using SQL SELECT statements
  • Use joins to create queries that span multiple tablees
  • Manipulate data using SQL UPDATE and DELETE statements
  • Understand what people mean by NoSQL, and when to consider using it


Some familiarity with spreadsheets is helpful, especially for course participants who come from a business background rather than a software development background.  Prior programming experience is NOT required.

What to bring

A laptop running a relatively current version of OS X, Windows or Linux. Course exercises will use SQLite, a simple, free, and powerful relational database management system that can be installed on any of the above platforms.  (SQLite runs on Android and iOS  as well but these platforms are NOT recommended for this class.)  Note that installing SQLite on a laptop will require security permissions. If you are using a work laptop please check with your administrator.


This workshop will be held at Betamore’s City Garage campus at 101 W. Dickman Street, Baltimore, MD 21230. Parking is available onsite.


If you are looking for additional information on workshop details, please email


 Register Here

  • date_range
    Mon, Apr 30th – 9th

    6:00pm – 9:00pm

    Photo of Doug Lay
    Doug Lay

    Chief Technology Officer at

    Doug Lay is the Chief Technology Officer at, the most highly customizable meal planning application on the Internet.  DinnerTime was a 2014 finalist in the DBED InvestMaryland challenge.  Prior to joining DinnerTime, Doug was Director of Web Technology at the highly-trafficked Web site.  Doug has a Master of Library Science degree from the University of Maryland and a Master of Computer Science degree from Johns Hopkins University.  During the rare times that Doug isn’t working or exploring the Internet, he enjoys hiking, cooking, banging on the drums and listening to every kind of music under the sun.

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