Background Behind ER Modeling

by Jorge R
The author of my article explains why ERD and ER models where created. He explains that ERD was a set a tools to assist the developer; in visualizing the interconnected internal workings design of a company. He later explains that object oriented(OO) techniques started to rise with the database world, which was the best option at the time, because it was thought that processing software in OO programming languages could be implemented into databases. The sad reality is that it never caught on, and the popularity of ER modeling rose. ER modeling was developed to include the concepts of inheritance through generalization. That’s when ER modeling became popular, because it was a visual representation of the data that included conceptual model of real world entities and relationships. The benefits in using ER modeling is that it can be interpreted by both database designers and users interpreting the data. Another benefit includes the close relationship from relational database tables, which allows it to easily be implemented into specific DBMDS. He greatly expressed that, “Care must be taken not to include attributes within the entity that actually describes a relationship with another entity or that should be a part of another entity altogether”. This causes confusions for both the database designer and difficulty in creating a model that mirrors the users perception of reality. The irony of ER modeling, is the fact that it was suppose to reduce these issues. The greatest difficulty for a beginner data modeler is to understand these concepts and techniques, even to this day instructors and books are trying to find innovative ways to better explain these concepts.

This is a good article that can give students a background and understanding behind the reasons why ER modeling was created. It can relate to our class to better explain to us how ER modeling works. With a new look and understanding of data modeling can help me understand the ER model relationships made in our class project.

Chilton, M. A., McHaney, R., & Chae, B. (2006). Data modeling education: The changing technology. Journal of Information Systems Education, 17(1), 17-20. Retrieved from


3 thoughts on “Background Behind ER Modeling”

  1. Very nice article! Now I know how ER Model came about. I think sometimes we oversee the information that is necessary to have a basic understand of things. I believe it is necessary to discover how things came in existence. It would give us a better understanding and a whole new way of looking at things. Once again nice article thanks for sharing!! 🙂

  2. Interesting back ground. The article is totally right about how it was created. We’ve discussed some of these concepts in one of my other classes. And yeah, it could be confusing sometimes when your trying to implement it. But I guess we always have to consider the actual business needs.
    Good article!

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