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Data and Knowledge Management

Short name: DKM
SITS code: COIY061H7
Credits: 15
Level: 7
Module leader: Richard Brownlow
Lecturer(s): Richard Brownlow

Module outline

This module covers the principles and application of data and knowledge management technologies and languages including SQL. Students study the use of these in leading commercial database management systems as well as emerging approaches to data management.


To study the principles and application of data and knowledge management technology.


  • Database management software: origins and objectives.
  • The relational model: algebraic and logical foundations.
  • Relational algebra and calculus.
  • SQL: data manipulation, host language support for SQL.
  • Transaction management, recovery, concurrency.
  • Relational database theory: dependencies, normal forms.
  • SQL data definition, other features.
  • DBMS architectures and implementations.
  • DBMS storage and indexing.
  • Query optimization.
  • Enhanced database capabilities: procedural extensions to SQL, database triggers, deductive databases.
  • Non-relational DBMS, object databases, NoSQL databases.
  • Distributed databases, architectures, query processing.
  • Databases and the Web, JDBC, alternative persistence frameworks, databases and XML.
  • Database research topics.


No formal prerequisite, but a strong aptitude for programming is essential.

Timetables, locations and term dates

Programme specific timetables are listed in the handbooks available for each programme. Please consult the relevant programme page.

Enrolled students can find their personal teaching timetable and the location of classes on their My Birkbeck profile.


By 2-hour written examination and practical courseworks, weighting 90% and 10% respectively.

Recommended reading

  • Raghu Ramakrishnan and Johannes Gehrke, Database Management Systems Third Edition, McGraw Hill, 2003, ISBN 0072465638
  • Students will also be directed to Web resources on the subject.