Effective: Early Spring 8-Week 2018/2019

CISS 472: Data Warehousing, Decis Sup Sy

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  Course Description

An investigation of data warehousing, data mining, and decision support systems. Topics include design and architectural issues, cost effectiveness, management concerns, data integrity, deployment, and maintenance issues. 

Prerequisite: CISS 402 or 430

Proctored Exams: Midterm and Final



  • Sharda, R., Delen, D. and Turban, E.. Business Intelligence and Analytics. 10th. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Prentice Hall. 
    • ISBN-978-0-13-305090-5

MBS Information

Textbooks for the course may be ordered from MBS Direct. You can order

For additional information about the bookstore, visit http://www.mbsbooks.com.

  Course Overview

This course is designed to provide you an understanding of how to design, develop, and implement a data warehouse for a decision support system. You will also learn to explain how a data warehouse can be used to support all levels of management when making strategic, tactical. and operational decisions that affect the organization. Each week we'll focus on a different aspect of a data warehouse with virtual tours, class discussion, and other activities that will help you understand the issues and problems encountered in developing and using decision support systems. 

  Technology Requirements

Participation in this course will require the basic technology for all online classes at Columbia College:
  • A computer with reliable Internet access
  • A web browser
  • Acrobat Reader
  • Microsoft Office or another word processor such as Open Office

You can find more details about standard technical requirements for our courses on our site.

  Course Objectives

  • To learn data mining and decision support fundamentals and techniques.
  • To understand data collection, cleaning and aggregation issues.
  • To construct meaningful multi-dimensional models.
  • To investigate data warehousing issues.
  • To utilize a data mining query language.
  • To learn statistical techniques for analyzing data.
  • To utilize decision trees in data analysis.
  • To investigate cluster analysis.

  Measurable Learning Outcomes

  • Characterize a data warehouse.
  • Describe data warehousing architectures.
  • Discuss data clearing and reduction issues.
  • Utilize a data mining query language.
  • Employ statistical measures in data analysis.
  • Explain data mining association rules.
  • Utilize decision tree techniques for data analysis.
  • Perform cluster analysis.


Grading Scale

Grade Points Percent
A 900-1000 90-100%
B 800-899 80-89%
C 700-799 70-79%
D 600-699 60-69%
F 0-599 0-59%

Grade Weights

Assignment Category Points Percent
Discussions 150 15%
Dropbox Assignments 450 45%
Midterm Exam 200 20%
Final Exam 200 20%
Total 1000 100%

  Schedule of Due Dates

Week 1

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 1 10 Friday/Sunday
Discussion 2 10
Dropbox Writing Assignment 1 75 Sunday

Week 2

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 3 10 Friday/Sunday
Discussion 4 10
Dropbox Writing Assignment 2 75 Sunday
Proctor Information N/A

Week 3

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 5 10 Friday/Sunday
Discussion 6 10
Dropbox Writing Assignment 3 75 Sunday

Week 4

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 7 10 Friday/Sunday
Discussion 8 10
Midterm Exam 200 Sunday

Week 5

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 9 10 Friday/Sunday
Discussion 10 10
Dropbox Writing Assignment 4 75 Sunday

Week 6

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 11 10 Friday/Sunday
Discussion 12 10
Dropbox Writing Assignment 5 75 Sunday

Week 7

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 13 10 Friday/Sunday
Discussion 14 10
Dropbox Writing Assignment 6 75 Sunday

Week 8

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 15 10 Friday/Saturday
Final Exam 200 Saturday
Total Points: 1000

  Assignment Overview


The appropriate chapters from the book should be read prior to submitting assignments or participating in discussions. In the Course Content area, you will find many other resources you may want to view before engaging in a discussion.

Discussion Postings

Each should be complete by Friday of the assigned week, and responses to classmates should be posted by Sunday of the assigned week. Discussion participation must address the discussion topic and is worth 10 points for each topic (150 points total). 

Dropbox Writing Assignments

Each week, except weeks 4 and 8, there is a Dropbox assignment. Each Dropbox assignment will require you to do some research online and write a paper based upon what you discover. Grades will be assigned on the basis of accuracy of the information presented.  All Dropbox assignments should be completed in Microsoft Word and submitted to the appropriate Dropbox on the class’s website. Each should be between one and two pages, single spaced, and should include your name. Make sure you read each assignment carefully, as many contain multiple requirements.


The Midterm and Final exams will include multiple choice and short answer questions. Each will be worth 200 points (400 total). Each exam is proctored and should not take longer than 2 hours.

  Course Outline

Click on each week to view details about the activities scheduled for that week.


Chapters 1-2

Discussion 1

Introduce yourself in the Introductions discussion. Include your profession, hobbies, interest in computer systems, and any other information that can help us get to know you. 

Discussion 2

When you were looking for a college program, somehow you were able to decide on attending Columbia College. Examine your decision making process. What criteria were important? What was your final set of alternatives? How did you decide among them? Share these thoughts as part of discussion 2 and compare them with those of other class members.

Dropbox Writing Assignment 1

Go to the University Network’s Teradata site (http://academicprograms.teradata.com/tun/).  You may want to bookmark that site as we will be going there often. Click on the right where is says Student registration. You will then be asked to enter the password which is UnifiedDataArchitecture. The first time visiting this site, you will need to register. Once registered (its free) you will have access to some very good information. 
The first Dropbox assignment requires you to find and read the Case Study “Harrah’s High Payoff from Customer Information. If you opt not to register on the Teradata site, the case is in the class content area. Answer the following questions about the case:

  1. What information does the data mining generate?
  2. How is this information helpful to management in decision making? (Be specific)
  3. List the types of data that are mined?
  4. Is this a DSS or BI application? Why?

If you experience issues with the teradata website or you have questions, let me know right away.


Chapters 3-4

Discussion 3

What are the security concerns in building a data warehouse?

Discussion 4

What are the best practices in business reporting?

Dropbox Writing Assignment 2

The dropbox assignment for Week 2 can be found on the Class Website under CONTENT.

Proctor Information
Submit your proctor form to the appropriate Dropbox folder by the end of the week. Remember to “Save” the form before placing it in Dropbox. See the Content area for more information.

Chapters 5-6

Discussion 5

What are the main reasons for the recent popularity of data mining?

Discussion 6

Why is using an ANN a promising approach to making money in the stock market? What can it do that other decision support technologies cannot do? How could it fail?

Dropbox Writing Assignment 3

Go to the teradatastudentnetwork.com. Locate and read the Harrah’s case and answer the following questions:

  1. Which of the Harrah’s data applications are most likely implemented using neural networks?
  2. What other applications could Harrah’s develop using the data it is collecting from its customers?
  3. What are some concerns you might have as a customer at this casino? 

Chapters 7-8

Discussion 7

What is sentiment analysis and how does it relate to text mining?

Discussion 8

Discuss the expected benefits of Web structured mining. Provide examples from real world applications that you are familiar with.

Midterm Exam

The midterm exam will be available on the class website on Tuesday of Week 4.  It must be completed by midnight Sunday. The exam will be multiple-choice questions and a study guide can be found in the Content section of the course. All questions will come from the Turban text, chapters 1-8. You must have a proctor to take the exam (See proctor information).  


Chapter 9

Discussion 9

What are the differences between static and dynamic models and how can one evolve into the other?

Discussion 10

What is the difference between an optimistic and a pessimistic approach to decision making under assumed uncertainty?

Dropbox Writing Assignment 4

The dropbox assignment for Week 5 can be found on the Class Website under CONTENT.


Chapters 10-11

Discussion 11

Many computer games can be considered visual simulation. Explain why. 

Discussion 12

What are the differences between forward chaining and backward chaining and describe when each is most appropriate.

Dropbox Writing Assignment 5

Go to palisade.com and examine the capabilities of Evolver. Write a one page summary about your findings.

Course Evaluation
Please evaluate the course. You will have an opportunity to evaluate the course near the end of the session. A link sent to your CougarMail will allow you to access the evaluation. Please note that these evaluations are provided so that I can improve the course, find out what students perceive to be its strengths and weaknesses, and in general assess the success of the course. Please do take the time to fill this out.

Chapters 12-13

Discussion 13

Why is the term knowledge so difficult to define?

Discussion 14

Can machines learn?  Why or why not? Defend your position.

Dropbox Writing Assignment 6

On the internet, go to youtube.com. Search for videos on Big Data computing. Watch at least two and summarize your findings with a one page report. 


Chapter 14

Discussion 15

How could intelligent systems be integrated used in Columbia College’s advising and registration system? Don’t focus on a single issue. What can be done to make the system better for every student? This is your chance to put into use the knowledge you have gained from this course and make Columbia College better.

Final Exam

The final exam will be similar to the midterm.  It will open on Tuesday of Week 8 and must be completed by midnight Saturday. The exam is comprised of multiple- choice questions. The final exam is an individual assignment. Collaboration with other students is strictly prohibited. A study guide will be provided. You must take the exam in a proctored setting (See proctor information).

  Course Policies

Student Conduct

All Columbia College students, whether enrolled in a land-based or online course, are responsible for behaving in a manner consistent with Columbia College's Student Conduct Code and Acceptable Use Policy. Students violating these policies will be referred to the office of Student Affairs and/or the office of Academic Affairs for possible disciplinary action. The Student Code of Conduct and the Computer Use Policy for students can be found in the Columbia College Student Handbook. The Handbook is available online; you can also obtain a copy by calling the Student Affairs office (Campus Life) at 573-875-7400. The teacher maintains the right to manage a positive learning environment, and all students must adhere to the conventions of online etiquette.


Your grade will be based in large part on the originality of your ideas and your written presentation of these ideas. Presenting the words, ideas, or expression of another in any form as your own is plagiarism. Students who fail to properly give credit for information contained in their written work (papers, journals, exams, etc.) are violating the intellectual property rights of the original author. For proper citation of the original authors, you should reference the appropriate publication manual for your degree program or course (APA, MLA, etc.). Violations are taken seriously in higher education and may result in a failing grade on the assignment, a grade of "F" for the course, or dismissal from the College.

Collaboration conducted between students without prior permission from the instructor is considered plagiarism and will be treated as such. Spouses and roommates taking the same course should be particularly careful.

All required papers may be submitted for textual similarity review to Turnitin.com for the detection of plagiarism. All submitted papers may be included in the Turnitin.com reference database for the purpose of detecting plagiarism. This service is subject to the Terms and Conditions of Use posted on the Turnitin.com site.


There will be no discrimination on the basis of sex, race, color, national origin, sexual orientation, religion, ideology, political affiliation, veteran status, age, physical handicap, or marital status.

Student Accessibility Resources

Students with documented disabilities who may need academic services for this course are required to register with the office of Student Accessibility Resources. Until the student has been cleared through this office, accommodations do not have to be granted. If you are a student who has a documented disability, it is important for you to read the entire syllabus as soon as possible. The structure or the content of the course may make an accommodation not feasible. Student Accessibility Resources is located in Student Affairs in AHSC 215 and can be reached by phone at (573) 875-7626 or email at sar@ccis.edu.

Online Participation

You are expected to read the assigned texts and participate in the discussions and other course activities each week. Assignments should be posted by the due dates stated on the grading schedule in your syllabus. If an emergency arises that prevents you from participating in class, please let your instructor know as soon as possible.

Attendance Policy

Attendance for a week will be counted as having submitted any assigned activity for which points are earned. Attendance for the week is based upon the date work is submitted. A class week is defined as the period of time between Monday and Sunday (except for week 8, when the work and the course will end on Saturday at midnight.) The course and system deadlines are based on the Central Time Zone.

Cougar Email

All students are provided a CougarMail account when they enroll in classes at Columbia College. You are responsible for monitoring email from that account for important messages from the College and from your instructor. You may forward your Cougar email account to another account; however, the College cannot be held responsible for breaches in security or service interruptions with other email providers.

Students should use email for private messages to the instructor and other students. The class discussions are for public messages so the class members can each see what others have to say about any given topic and respond.

Late Assignment Policy

An online class requires regular participation and a commitment to your instructor and your classmates to regularly engage in the reading, discussion and writing assignments. Although most of the online communication for this course is asynchronous, you must be able to commit to the schedule of work for the class for the next eight weeks. You must keep up with the schedule of reading and writing to successfully complete the class.

No late discussion posts will be accepted.

Late submissions to a dropbox assignment will receive a 10-point reduction per day late. An assignment that is seven days late will receive no points.

Taking the midterm or final exam late is not allowed (unless there are extenuating circumstances as approved by the instructor.)

Course Evaluation

You will have an opportunity to evaluate the course near the end of the session. A link will be sent to your CougarMail that will allow you to access the evaluation. Be assured that the evaluations are anonymous and that your instructor will not be able to see them until after final grades are submitted.

Proctor Policy

Students taking courses that require proctored exams must submit their completed proctor request forms to their instructors by the end of the second week of the session. Proctors located at Columbia College campuses are automatically approved. The use of ProctorU services is also automatically approved. The instructor of each course will consider any other choice of proctor for approval or denial. Additional proctor choices the instructor will consider include: public librarians, high school or college instructors, high school or college counseling services, commanding officers, education service officers, and other proctoring services. Personal friends, family members, athletic coaches and direct supervisors are not acceptable.

  Additional Resources

Orientation for New Students

This course is offered online, using course management software provided by Desire2Learn and Columbia College. The course user guide provides details about taking an online course at Columbia College. You may also want to visit the course demonstration to view a sample course before this one opens.

Technical Support

If you have problems accessing the course or posting your assignments, contact your instructor, the Columbia College Helpdesk, or the D2L Helpdesk for assistance. Contact information is also available within the online course environment.

Online Tutoring

Smarthinking is a free online tutoring service available to all Columbia College students. Smarthinking provides real-time online tutoring and homework help for Math, English, and Writing. Smarthinking also provides access to live tutorials in writing and math, as well as a full range of study resources, including writing manuals, sample problems, and study skills manuals. You can access the service from wherever you have a connection to the Internet. I encourage you to take advantage of this free service provided by the college.

Access Smarthinking through CougarTrack under Students -> Academics -> Academic Resources.