MySQL and PHP CIS159/CIT32

Welcome to the MySQL and PHP class, CIT32. This class will cover the design and development of a database using MySQL and the the open source programming language PHP that is frequently used with MySQL.  Students will write programs for the web that stand alone and that use the MySQL database.  This is a programming course and a database course with implementation on the web.

If you are taking this as a Web based course it is extremely important that you either own a computer or have daily access to a computer. For students taking the course over the Web, the computer is your only source for information and the way you will communicate with the instructor. If you do not have a computer available and you are not comfortable working on the Web, you should be taking this course using the classroom option (see below).

The Web site:

The Web site that you are currently visiting will contain all information for this course. It is a resource for students in the classroom and the method of delivery for students taking the course over the Web. The class notes, sample code, as well as PowerPoint presentations of the material are posted. There are two books, one to teach and the other is a resource. Since this is going to be your profession, buying a variety of books as resources is extremely valuable and I strongly recommend you do so. Tutorials on the Web can also be used as a resource for learning.
Topics being covered and assignments are posted on the weekly schedule. This is the main structure behind the course and you should check it several times a week for new postings. I frequently update the site four or five times a week, so be sure to check it on a regular basis. Note: Assignments will not be handed out in class; they are available on the Web.

The site for CIS159/CIT32 has a blog where I can post information that is important and you can post information or questions. Other students can respond to your postings as well as myself.

I have moved part of my site to a new domain address and made other structural changes. If you find something that does not connect, please let me know about the bad link so I can correct it. Hopefully everything will go smoothly, but perfection I do not expect!

 The way this course works:

Students taking this course have three options:

  1. They may choose to take it as a traditional classroom/lecture course and attend all or at least most classes
  2. They may take the class entirely over the Web meaning that they will get notes and sample code over the Web and they will communicate with me mainly through the board room for general interest questions and e-mail for specific questions.
  3. Students can blend the two approaches described above. If they have questions about the material, if they are confused about a specific topic, or if they just feel like attending class they are welcome to do so. If it is inconvenient to attend class or they feel that they understand the material and don't need the classroom activity, they can work through the Web site.


All students taking the course must have an e-mail address and they must let me know the address during the first week of classes. The school provides an email which you can use.

Students taking the course over the Web must communicate with me at least once a week via e-mail just to let me know they are still there!

For everyone in the class: If you miss more than two classes in a row, please send me an e-mail letting me know that you to still exist!

For in class students and Web students, assignments should be turned in the same or following week. Projects have a specified due date that should be met. I accept late assignments with no individual penalty or point loss. The problem is that there is a lot of work and if you get behind you risk completing the course. In addition, 10% of your grade is based on participation, quality of work, getting things in on time etc., so chronic lateness will affect your grade.

Students should send me assignments via email. I suggest that you send me your assignments at two email addresses to provide yourself with backup.  The addresses will be provided in class or via email for distance learning students. If there is a problem they pass the assignment in at the end of a class or they may put them under my door or in my mailbox. I strongly prefer to get assignments passed in via email. Students should pass in only one assignment per email. The assignment name should be on the subject line. If you have questions or need help, send a separate email with either the word question or help in the subject. I respond first to those emails and file the assignments to be corrected when I have accumulated a group. On most assignments, if you get a bad grade you can either resubmit or do a make-up. If I have heavily corrected the assignment and the answers are there, needless to say you cannot resubmit. Make-up assignments will be posted upon request, if appropriate. Class and student examples are frequently shared and analyzed.


If you need help, see me or email me and we will figure out the best response. Better to see as soon as you see signs of a problem! You can send me drafts of assignments with particular questions over e-mail and I will respond as soon as possible. With rare exception I check my Web site every day and on days when I am not at BCC, I usually check it multiple times (that means Wednesday and over the weekend). I am willing to set up review sessions or question and answer sessions for in class students, Web students or both. Questions and answers can also be done on the blog with other students.

Service Learning:

Service Learning Project Opportunity: Students with a strong mastery of LOGO/Alice are invited to participate in a Service Learning project for extra credit. Bristol Community College defines service learning as: "Service-learning is an unpaid, credit-bearing, course-specific educational experience for which students participate in a quality service-learning experience that does the following: meets actual community needs and requires reflection on the service activity that furthers the understanding of course content, broadens the appreciation of the discipline, and enhances the sense of civic responsibility." You would do this special project, including the reflection activity, as extra credit. It will involve preparing a project, working with students from the Kuss Middle School or Morton Middle School and then reflecting on the project. I want you to think about whether LOGO is a good way to introduce middle school students to logic, programming and computers and the ways that BCC could set up and administer a project on a long term basis with young students using LOGO to create an interest in the computing field. Your response should be sent to me via email. Your work in service learning will be noted on your academic transcript.