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Learn relational databases with online courses and programs

Explore these courses and tutorials to learn about relational databases online. Begin the journey to becoming a database developer.

What is a relational database?

A relational database uses tables to organize data with columns and rows. Each row has a unique identifier, also known as a primary key, that allows data in the row to be quickly accessed and modified. Data from different tables can be associated via a second unique identifier, also known as a foreign key, such as a customer or an account number.Footnote 1 The relational database type was created in 1970 by Edgar Codd at IBM’s San Jose Research Lab. The programming language used in conjunction with relational databases is called Structured Query Language (SQL), and the database management system is called a relational database management system (RDBMS).Footnote 2

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What does a course in database development cover?

Taking a relational databases course can be useful for individuals who plan to pursue jobs in data analytics, data management, big data, web application development, and much more. Beyond learning the basics of the SQL language and foundational database concepts, it’s important to gain an understanding of efficient relational database design, the concept of data independence, data normalization, and the role of the RDBMS in the application stack.

There are many database products that implement the relational database model. Some common database services that professionals working in database development use include MySQL, which is often used in WordPress, Oracle, IBM Db2, and PostgreSLQ. 

Database developers may also work with a non-relational database model. NoSQL datasets do not rely on tables with relationships to store information. Examples of non-relational databases include Redis, JanusGraph, and MongoDB.

 Jobs in database development and management

Building a foundational knowledge of relational data can open doors to a wide range of job opportunities. Individuals interested in database development and management may consider taking a database development course or completing a bachelor’s degree or master’s degree in a related field.  

The convergence of big data and the Internet of Things (IoT) has led to an exponential increase in the amount of data being managed. There are a variety of careers that involve relational data, including database administrators and database developers. Other relevant job titles include database manager, database analyst, data engineer, database architect, and SQL developer. Footnote 3,Footnote 4

How to become a database developer online

Database developers can learn through an analytics boot camp or earn a bachelor’s degree in computer science, data science, or a related field and later decide to complete a master’s degree in data science program, depending on their occupational goals. Aspiring database developers may also sharpen their skills through a relational databases course online. Core topics covered in relational databases training may include information technology, software engineering, and programming. In addition to building an understanding of relational data languages like SQL, it can be helpful to have strong analytical and problem-solving skills and an attention to detail.Footnote 5 In this type of role, finding innovative ways to create data solutions is the goal. Having a well-rounded background may help professionals excel in their roles.

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