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Learn NoSQL with online courses

Build your database management skills today with online NoSQL courses from leaders in the field of data science and technology.

What is NoSQL?

NoSQL databases are non-relational data management systems built around flexible schemas, large data volume, low latency, and specific data models.¹

While relational database management systems, such as MySQL and PostgreSQL, organize and maintain structured data, they are resource intensive and difficult to scale because they have to maintain the relationships as data is added.²

NoSQL databases help solve these problems. Non-relational data management systems can scale vertically, similar to relational databases. However, they can also scale horizontally. This means that NoSQL can add more machines or servers to the database to handle increased load.

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Explore NoSQL course curriculum

NoSQL is a skill that may come up in developer interviews because it is popular and created with software developers in mind. The combination of flexible schemas, horizontal scaling, and fast queries make non-relational database management a useful skill.³

There are multiple data models available in NoSQL: key-value, document, graph, and column-based. These determine how the data is stored. For example, in key-value data models, the “key” is a unique pointer that directs the computer to a piece of information, the “value.”⁴ Meanwhile, document models store data in JSON-type objects. Some examples of available NoSQL databases include MongoDB, CouchDB, and Apache Cassandra.

Building and navigating NoSQL databases are a crucial skill in a world of big data. They are a high-performance storage option for unstructured data, while relational datasets are helpful for tabular data. As data storage costs increased in the early 2000s, NoSQL emerged as a cost-efficient option for developers.

Online, free NoSQL courses can help individuals gain the skills needed to build, manage, and scale non-relational data management systems. A NoSQL curriculum provides learners with technical, hands-on knowledge of datasets and Database-as-a-Service (DaaS) options.

Many free NoSQL course curricula will cover the following topics:

  • NoSQL background: To understand the foundations of NoSQL, students should learn the motivation for non-relational databases, key characteristics of different databases, and benefits.

  • Data models: The four kinds of data models in NoSQL databases are key-value, document, graph, and column-based. Students should understand the differences between them, what kind of data works best for each model, and how to work with each type.

  • Database architecture: There are a few different databases available for developers and they share features, but they also have their differences. Students should understand how MongoDB, Cassandra, and IBM Cloudant vary.

  • Database management: Basic data management includes understanding how to create databases, and query, modify, and aggregate data.

NoSQL tutorials can also teach individuals how to integrate datasets into enterprise solutions. Many cloud computing and SaaS companies have their own NoSQL databases that make these integrations easier.

For example, DynamoDB can be used in tandem with AWS to create scalable web applications.⁵ Azure, Microsoft’s cloud computing system, works with CosmoDB to apply graph database training and the MongoDB API.⁶

Non-relational datasets are a big part of the next wave of data management and understanding the use cases of SQL and NoSQL can help your organization efficiently store and retrieve data with few obstacles. 

As more unstructured data is used to make company decisions, this could be a vital skill set for future data scientists and developers. Semi-structured and unstructured data have their own needs and NoSQL can handle those data models efficiently.

Discover NoSQL jobs

NoSQL is a versatile and flexible database solution that can be a requested skill in job postings, particularly for positions that involve large amounts of database management. Some common jobs that may require NoSQL knowledge include:

  • Database engineer

  • Big data engineer

  • Data analyst

  • Database developer

  • Software developer/engineer

  • Databases solutions architect

Some shared responsibilities listed in these job postings include:

  • Build, support, and maintain database infrastructure

  • Develop and document database deployment strategies

  • Assist stakeholders with database technology

  • Develop scripts to automate database maintenance

  • Benchmark and analyze database offerings

Most of these jobs require a bachelor’s degree in a related field, such as computer science. Some professionals may also pursue a boot camp that covers a broad range of material, including NoSQL. More senior roles might ask for an advanced degree, such as a master’s degree in data science. 

How to become a NoSQL developer online

To become a qualified and skilled NoSQL developer, individuals will likely need to obtain a broad set of technical skills while also specializing in database knowledge. For those interested in pursuing NoSQL training, consider obtaining some of the following skills or experience:

  • Formal education. Many developer positions ask applicants to have a bachelor’s degree in a related field, such as computer or data science. Applicants who are interested in more senior positions or switch industries might also consider a master’s in data science.  

  • Familiarity with popular NoSQL databases. There are different NoSQL databases available, such as MongoDB, Apache Cassandra, CouchDB, and more. Highly qualified applicants may need to be prepared to work in whichever system the employer is already using.

  • Database fundamentals. Consider studying database terminology and functionality, such as data storage, data modeling, and data access patterns.