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Department of Computer Science and Technology



Course pages 2023–24


Assessed Exercises

There are two Assessed Exercises. To make it clear that everybody must submit only their own work, tasks for each candidate are slightly different from each other. Therefore, make sure you use your own worksheet or starter pack. A generic pack is also available for supervisors to look at.

Submission deadlines:

  1. Exersise One: Thu 16 Nov 23 - Noon
  2. Exerise Two: Thu 23 Nov 23 - Noon

As well as the two Exercises, there are two optional Help-and-Tick sessions, but submission is normally via email. Much of the assessment of email submissions is automated, but there is a human element too, so do not rely on receiving feedback within two working days of submission.

The first Exercise uses SQLITE3 and the second uses TinyDB. For the first Exercise, you are expected to have learned the basic SQL from the tutorial linked below. It contains examinable material. For the second Exercise you will need a small amount of experience with Python.

For your worksheet please go to the following web page and then add your own crsid to the end of the URL: Exercise Worksheets. See clarifications1.txt.

The second Assessed Exercise individual work sheets are now available and should be accessible in the same way as the first one, just above. Older notice: To prepare for the second tick, please start here: warm up briefing.
Clarifications: 'Composed-for' is not the same as 'wrote'; these refer to writing the music and the screenplay respectively. For compatibility with the automarker, please format your output as a table or list with one record/entry per line: those submitting json records will experience longer response times. Two people had no subjects listed for the doc3 exercise, sorry; if you are one of these, your sheet has now been updated.

Help-and-Tick session times: These will be in the Intel Lab starting at 3:00pm on Tuesday 14th and 21st of November 2023 and last 90 minutes or longer if necessary. Demonstrators will be available to help with Assessed Exercises problems. Attendance is not necessary.


A percentaage of candidates will be randomly called for viva. These will be via zoom over the Michaelmas break or at the start of the Lent Term. The viva is a formal part of the Tripos assessment. It should last just a few minutes.

Primary Materials

  • Lecture Notes PDF. Erratum: I have now removed the 'non-examinable' remark from the slide about transaction abort because it is implementation details that are in Ib, not the concept.

  • James Sharkey has written three tutorials for you to follow and learn in your own time (especially the first one):

    1. Relational DBMS Tutorial HERE.

    2. Document DBMS Tutorial HERE.

    3. Graph DBMS Tutorial HERE.

    Many thanks to James Sharkey of the Computer Lab for preparing the tutorials this year.

    -- As well as everything in the lecture notes (unless specifically marked non-examinable), you are expected to thorougly know the contents of the Relational Tutorial for Tripos examination purposes in Summer 2024.
    -- You will need knowledge from the Relational and Document Tutorials to complete the two Assessed Exercises.
    -- Understanding the principle differences between the three forms is part of the course syllabus and so Tripos questions will lightly touch on the contents of the Document and Graph Tutorials.

  • Here are the IMDB snapshots you should be working with

  • Learners' Guide and FAQ: Learners Guide

Supervision Materials

Secondary Materials

Differences From Last Year

The course is very much the same as last year, except that SQLite and TinyDB are the recommended databases for the two Assessed Exercises.

Last year’s course materials are still available.