CSE Speaker Series – Milagre Coates

On Friday, November 30 at 3:00 pm in Jones Annex 101, Milagre Coates will give a talk on “Database Design in the Real World: my summer job with the New Mexico Higher Ed. Department”.


This past summer I was given the unique opportunity to work with the New Mexico Higher Education Department to help them build a database for the new Common Course Numbering System (CCNS). The CCNS aims to standardize course numbering for secondary education institutions across New Mexico, so Calculus 2 or Chemistry 1 will have the same course number everywhere from Tech to Western to UNM.  I was involved with the project for about 2 1/2 months during which time I gained experience not only in relational database theory and design, but also working with clients on a small-scale project. One of the most challenging aspects of the project was the amount of effort I spent trying to clean up and organize the provided data so it could be input into the database. This was made especially challenging because I was usually working with an incomplete data set and needed to match up any of my design decisions to the client’s needs and expectations. Toward the end of the project I passed along my designs and code to an Oracle DBA (Database Administrator) who focused more on the front-end/user interface portion of the database. The completed project can be found at http://ccns.hed.state.nm.us/.