Effective: Late Fall 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 CISS 430

Proctored Exams: Midterm and Final


As part of TruitionSM, students will receive their course materials automatically as described below.


  •  Sharda, R., Delen, D., & Turban, E. (2015). Business Intelligence and Analytics: Systems for Decision Support (10). Boston: Pearson.  eText

Bookstore Information

Visit https://www.ccis.edu/bookstore.aspx for details.

eText Information

If a course uses an eText, (see Textbook information above) the book will be available directly in Desire2Learn (D2L) and through the VitalSource eText reader the Friday before the session begins, if registered for courses prior to that date.  Students will have a VitalSource account created for them using their CougarMail email address. Upon first login to VitalSource, students may need to verify their account and update their VitalSource password.  More information about how to use the VitalSource platform, including offline access to eTexts, can be found in D2L.  Students that would like to order an optional print-on-demand copy of eligible eTexts can do so through the VitalSource bookshelf at an additional cost.  Once orders are placed, it can take approximately five to seven business days for students to receive their print-on-demand books.

Physical Course Materials Information

Students enrolled in courses that require physical materials will receive these materials automatically at the address on file with Columbia College.  Delivery date of physical materials is dependent on registration date and shipping location.  Please refer to confirmation emails sent from Ed Map for more details on shipping status.

Returns: Students who drop a course with physical course materials will be responsible for returning those items to Ed Map within 30 days of receipt of the order.  More specific information on how to do so will be included in the package received from Ed Map.  See here for Ed Map's return policy. Failure to return physical items from a dropped course will result in a charge to the student account for all unreturned items.

Note: Students who opt-out of having their books provided as part of TruitionSM are responsible for purchasing their own course materials.

  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 Learning Outcomes

  1. Demonstrate an understanding of data warehousing and its relationship to decision-making.
  2. Demonstrate an understanding of the main concepts underlying data warehouse design and implementation, data quality, and retrieval and analysis of data.
  3. Construct meaningful multi-dimensional models.
  4. Utilize a data mining query language.
  5. Apply statistical techniques for analyzing data.


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 450 45%
Midterm Exam 200 20%
Final Exam 200 20%
Total 1000 100%

  Schedule of Due Dates

Week 1

Assignment Points Due
Introduction Discussion -- Friday/Sunday
Discussion 1 10
Dropbox 1 75 Sunday

Week 2

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

Week 3

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 4 10 Friday/Sunday
Discussion 5 10
Dropbox 3 75 Sunday

Week 4

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 6 10 Friday/Sunday
Discussion 7 10
Midterm Exam 200 Sunday

Week 5

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 8 10 Friday/Sunday
Discussion 9 10
Dropbox 4 75 Sunday

Week 6

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

Week 7

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 12 10 Friday/Sunday
Discussion 13 10
Dropbox 6 75 Sunday

Week 8

Assignment Points Due
Discussion 14 20 Friday/Saturday
Final Exam 200 Saturday
Total Points: 1000

  Assignment Overview


For this course, you'll have two discussions each week, except for Week 8. In Week 1, there is an Introduction Discussion and a regular discussion. Discussions are worth 10 points each, except for Week 8 which is worth 20 points.

Discussions will open on Monday and close on Sunday, except for Week 8 which ends on Saturday. Your initial post for each discussion is due by Friday at 11:59 pm Central Time (CT). You must make at least one response for each discussion by Sunday at 11:59 pm CT of that same week, expect in Week 8 when it is due by Saturday at 11:59 pm CT. You must contribute to each discussion in a timely and effective manner. Your posts should fully address and develop all aspects of the topic and include references from the text and other reputable resources as support. All discussions post must be coherent, descriptive, and worth reading.


Each week, except for Weeks 4 and 8, there is a dropbox assignment worth 75 points. Read the directions for each assignment carefully and thoroughly, so you make sure that your work answers all questions and meet the requirements of the task. You must use Microsoft Word or other word processing software and save assignments in a .doc, .docx. or .rtf format. Assignments are due to the appropriate dropbox by 11:59 p.m. CT, Sunday of the assigned week. No specific writing style is required. Make sure to include your name, date, and title in each assignment.

  • Dropboxes 1, 2, 3, 5, and 6 each require a one to two page, single-spaced report.
  • Dropbox 2 requires the use of Tableau, a free software program, to develop business intelligence.
  • Dropbox 4 involves data analysis of three Excel worksheets.


In this course, you will have a proctored midterm and final exam. Both exams are worth 200 points. You will have only one attempt on each exam and a two-hour time limit. Each exam contains a combination of 50 MC and short answer questions. The midterm exam covers Chapters 1-8 and the final exam covers Chapters 9-14.

  • The midterm exam opens at 12:01 a.m. CT on Tuesday of Week 4 and is due by 11:59 p.m. CT on Sunday of the same week.
  • The final exam opens at 12:01 a.m. CT on Tuesday of Week 8 and is due by 11:59 p.m. CT on Saturday of the same week.

You must submit your Proctor Information form to the Proctor Information Dropbox by 11:59 p.m. CT, Sunday in Week 2. You will find the form and additional information about Proctoring  in the Content area of the course.

  Course Outline

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

  • Chapter 1
  • Chapter 2
Introduction Discussion

Introduce yourself and be sure to include your current job position and any personal information that you are willing to share to help us know you better.

Discussion 1

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 your decision-making process. Your initial post should reference concepts from the readings. In your response posts, compare and contrast your processes with your classmates.

Dropbox 1

Go to the Teradata University Network (TUN) website, the link and registration information are provided in the Content area of the course.

Enter the TUN website and select “cases, projects and assignments.” Read the Case Study "Harrah's High Payoff from Customer Information." Answer the following questions in a one-two page, single spaced report about the case:

  • What information does the data mining generate?
  • How is this information helpful to management in decision making?
  • List the types of data that are mined
  • 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.

  • Chapter 3
  • Chapter 4
Discussion 2

Think about what you have learned and what you know regarding data warehouses. What are the security concerns in building a data warehouse? Find an example where security concerns were not addressed. Explain why the example failed to address security concerns and suggest possible fixes or other options. Discuss best practices in this area.

Discussion 3

What are a few of the best practices in business reporting? Pick one and explain it. Why did you pick this practice? Are there any practices you may struggle with or that you may see as a strength you have? Explain.

Dropbox 2

Use Tableau Public (link provide in Content area of the course) and your Olympic data set (downloaded from the website) to create a dashboard of your choosing. The dashboard should contain at least three data elements. Once you have completed your dashboard, take a screen shot and place in a document. Below the image, write a one to two page single-spaced report explaining your dashboard and what you think of Tableau.

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.
  • Chapter 5
  • Chapter 6
Discussion 4

What are the main reasons for the recent popularity of data mining? Explain. What should an organization consider before making the decision to purchase data mining software? Please support your post with data from white papers or other publications.

Discussion 5

Explain the difference between a training set and a testing set. Why do we need to differentiate them? Can the same set be used for both purposes? Why or why not? Provide examples in your explanations.

Dropbox 3

Go to the TUN website again. Locate and read the Harrah’s case "Harrah's High Payoff from Customer Information" and answer the following questions:

  • Which of Harrah’s data applications are most likely implemented using neural networks? Why do you think it uses a neural network?
  • What other applications could Harrah’s develop using the data it is collecting from its customers?
  • What are some concerns you might have as a customer at this casino?
  • Chapter 7
  • Chapter 8
Discussion 6

List and discuss three prominent application areas for text mining. What is a common theme among the three application areas you chose? Explain. Identify an organization or business that is using one of the areas and explain how they have implemented text mining. Was the implementation successful? Why or why not?

Discussion 7

Explain the relationship among data mining, text mining, and web mining. Use example situations in your explanation. What would you expect to accomplish using each? What type of metrics would you use to evaluate the performance of each? Provide examples.

Midterm Exam

The proctored Midterm exam covers chapters 1-8.  You have two hours and 1 attempt.

  • Chapter 9
Discussion 8

Explain how a decision tree works using an example. Are they always effective? Explain your answer. How can they solve complex problems? Provide an example that illustrates solving a complex problem with a decision tree.

Discussion 9

Compare and contrast what-if analysis and goal seeking using examples. When is one more effective than the other? Provide an example. What happens when there are multiple goals? Explain.

Dropbox 4

Explore three different business models, what-if analysis, sensitivity analysis, and a goal seeking exercise using Excel. Full directions for this assignment are provided in the Course. You will upload a completed Excel Spreadsheet to the dropbox.

  • Chapter 10
  • Chapter 11
Discussion 10

When it comes to problem-solving, simulation and optimization have advantages and disadvantages.

  • When would simulation be advantageous? Provide an example.
  • When would optimization be advantageous? Provide an example.
  • Under what situation would you want to implement both? Explain.
Discussion 11

What types of mistakes might an Expert System make and why? Why is it easier to correct mistakes in an Expert System than in conventional computer programs? Provide an example as part of your explanation.

Dropbox 5

Go to Palisade.com and examine the capabilities of Evolver. Write a one to two 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.
  • Chapter 12
  • Chapter 13
Discussion 12

As we talk about knowledge management, look around your own community for an organization or company that is using knowledge management. Explain how it’s being implemented within the organization. Share how they are being successful and any suggestions you would give to management to improve their implementation.

Discussion 13

How might Big Data be used to solve a problem in your own community? Provide an example of either a real-world application or one you might propose. Explain the analytics possible, etc. and how it has or will work. Then consider if Big Data will ever be replaced by something else? If so, what do you think it will be? Explain.

Dropbox 6

Search for videos on Big Data computing. Watch at least two and summarize your findings with a one to two page report.

  • Chapter 14
Discussion 14

How could intelligent systems be integrated into 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? Explain. What ethical or legal issues should be considered during the integration?

This is your chance to put into use the knowledge you have gained from this course and make Columbia College better.

Final Exam

The proctored Final exam covers chapters 9-14. You'll have two hours and 1 attempt to complete the exam.

  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.

Plagiarism and Academic Integrity

Academic integrity is a cumulative process that begins with the first college learning opportunity. Students are responsible for knowing the Academic Integrity policy and procedures and may not use ignorance of either as an excuse for academic misconduct. Columbia College recognizes that the vast majority of students at Columbia College maintain high ethical academic standards; however, failure to abide by the prohibitions listed herein is considered academic misconduct and may result in disciplinary action, a failing grade on the assignment, and/or a grade of "F" for the course.

Additionally, 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

Columbia College is committed to creating a learning environment that meets the needs of its diverse student body. If you anticipate or experience any barriers to learning, communicate your concerns with the instructor. In addition to speaking with the instructor, the following resources are available to ensure an opportunity to learn in an inclusive environment that values mutual respect.

  • For students with disabilities/conditions who are experiencing barriers to learning or assessment, contact the Student Accessibility Resources office at (573) 875-7626 or sar@ccis.edu to discuss a range of options to removing barriers in the course, including accommodations.
  • For students who are experiencing conflict which is impacting their educational environment, contact the Office of Student Conduct at studentconduct@ccis.edu or (573) 875-7877.
  • For students who have concerns related to discrimination or harassment based on sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, pregnancy or parental status, please contact the Title IX Office at titleixcoordinator@ccis.edu. More information can be found at http://www.ccis.edu/policies/notice-of-non-discrimination-and-equal-opportunity.aspx

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 Technology Solutions Center, or the D2L Helpdesk for assistance. If you have technical problems with the VitalSource eText reader, please contact VitalSource. 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.