Breaking Down Relational Databases{1}

by Evin C
The article I have chosen is a peer reviewed article from Kansas State University about how students conceptualize entity relationships. This article explains in depth how entity relationship design can vary from student to student and not one individual way is correct. It goes on to explain and give examples of how the way we perceive these relationships can ultimately affect our work beyond college. Depending on how specific we are with these relational entities or how general we are can show if we will miss important concepts within a business that will affect efficiency. Examples are given from using associative entities in a business to applying an ERD to relational model. Michael Chilton uses this article to explain how us as students need to be aware of the environment we are working in as well as the situation at hand because there is no one way to create an entity relationship. As a student we have to thrive to understand the basic concepts and use them to our advantage in the real world.

I really enjoyed this article, while it is lengthy, it is definitely worth the read. Coming from someone who understands the skills students have and how to apply them, this article is helpful in learning just how specific some business can be and even how your skills are going to be ever-changing. Take a look at the various examples Chilton gives and how they are applied to a basic business problem.

Our work in class is just the beginnings of entity relationships and I have been very interested to see how we apply this out of class. Seeing the example situations and businesses in this article has been enlightening and given me perspective on how different this field is. Moving through the next couple weeks I hope to find out more about practical business applications and improving our skills all-around.


Chilton, M. A. (2006). Data modeling using entity relationship diagrams: A step-wise method. Journal of Information Systems Education, 17(4), 385-394. Retrieved from