Re: SQL Proficiency test

From: Yakov Vasylchenko <>
Date: Thu, 10 Apr 2014 10:58:00 +0300
Message-ID: <>

Good undertaking!

The one online resource that taught me to think the SQL way was the
It has a plenitude of mind-bending quizzes, and you can compete with other players for the higher ranks.

Yakov Vasylchenko.

2014-04-09 13:17 GMT+03:00 St├ęphane Faroult <>:

> Folks,
> I'm more and more involved in database education, and one of the things
> I feel much concerned by is the correct assessment of what people learn and
> of their ability with SQL. It's easy to build a MOOC with a video watched
> by 5,000 people, much less easy to grade 5,000 papers (going to have 150 to
> grade before one month ...). I have a very limited confidence in multiple
> choice questions as an assessment tool, and I have tried to do something
> better. So far, what I have found best on the web is what Gordon Russell
> did at; I have read his papers with Andrew Cummings,
> and I think one can improve on what they have done. If I expect a query to
> be select a, b from t where cond, I don't want to count select b, a from t
> where cond order by c as wrong to take just a simple example.
> I have been therefore standing on the shoulders of Russell and Cummings. I
> am checking a lot of things (even whether people are cheating), but not
> that the text of the submitted query exactly matches my solution.
> I also want to put people in realistic conditions, where you don't have
> everything wrong because of a tpyo, where you can try queries, check
> results against data, and only submit when you think it's correct. I don't
> want people to be stressed by time because I teach my students to build
> their queries bit by bit, layer by layer.
> I have a working prototype and I found nothing better to validate my
> algorithms than to publish a kind of game, an "SQL Challenge" at
> It's not something as
> complicated as the SQL competitions organized by the NoCOUG :-). There are
> three levels, the queries to write in the two first levels are pretty
> straightforward (but for a few banana skins), the last level is a bit
> tougher. If some of you want to play with it, I'd greatly appreciate
> feedback (off-list), especially about grading as it's the main purpose.
> Some of you might also find this useful for technical interviews, and
> checking that an applicant's claims are matching his or her abilities.
> Sample database and questions could be easily changed on a regular basis,
> the most difficult is finding suitable ideas ...
> Now, integrating all this into Blackboard/Moodle/... will be another fun
> part.
> Hope that some of you will enjoy it ...
> --
> St├ęphane Faroult
> RoughSea Ltd <>
> Konagora <>
> RoughSea Channel on Youtube <>
> Author, SQL Success<>,
> The Art of SQL<>,
> Refactoring SQL Applications<>

Received on Thu Apr 10 2014 - 09:58:00 CEST

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