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Learner Reviews & Feedback for SQL for Data Science by University of California, Davis

14,588 ratings

About the Course

As data collection has increased exponentially, so has the need for people skilled at using and interacting with data; to be able to think critically, and provide insights to make better decisions and optimize their businesses. This is a data scientist, “part mathematician, part computer scientist, and part trend spotter” (SAS Institute, Inc.). According to Glassdoor, being a data scientist is the best job in America; with a median base salary of $110,000 and thousands of job openings at a time. The skills necessary to be a good data scientist include being able to retrieve and work with data, and to do that you need to be well versed in SQL, the standard language for communicating with database systems. This course is designed to give you a primer in the fundamentals of SQL and working with data so that you can begin analyzing it for data science purposes. You will begin to ask the right questions and come up with good answers to deliver valuable insights for your organization. This course starts with the basics and assumes you do not have any knowledge or skills in SQL. It will build on that foundation and gradually have you write both simple and complex queries to help you select data from tables. You'll start to work with different types of data like strings and numbers and discuss methods to filter and pare down your results. You will create new tables and be able to move data into them. You will learn common operators and how to combine the data. You will use case statements and concepts like data governance and profiling. You will discuss topics on data, and practice using real-world programming assignments. You will interpret the structure, meaning, and relationships in source data and use SQL as a professional to shape your data for targeted analysis purposes. Although we do not have any specific prerequisites or software requirements to take this course, a simple text editor is recommended for the final project. So what are you waiting for? This is your first step in landing a job in the best occupation in the US and soon the world!...

Top reviews


Aug 22, 2021

I thought this course was great! Great introduction to Relational Databases and SQLite. Highly reccomend for anyone new to SQL, Databases, or someone looking to get started with a data science career.


Oct 5, 2022

Amazing course for beginners! The entire course is well structured and has good hands-on assignments. SQL is extremely essential for Database management and fun learning so please do try this one out!

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1 - 25 of 3,839 Reviews for SQL for Data Science

By lkflrs

Apr 30, 2019

I come from a background of teaching for 18 years, and not in SQL. My biggest criticism for this course is the lack of preparation for the culminating activities. The course saves all the challenging work for the last 2% of the course. Even that would be okay, if you were prepared via practice early on for the rigor at the end. All the assistants and fellow students try their best to help each other in the forums without cheating, but it shouldn't be this way. If so many students are needing so much help in the final part of the course, then that speaks to ineffective and inadequate instruction early in the course.

Teaching is not just knowing the material or being engaging. The real work of an instructor is to create instruction that builds students' knowledge and prepares them for tasks in a logical, methodical progression. This course was like playing on the monkey bars and some light tumbling for 90% of the time, then suddenly being asked to stick a landing in the Olympics off the uneven bars. I exaggerate to make the point of my frustration.

By Laura W

Apr 30, 2019

Instructor seems not to have written or read the script prior to recording - stumbling over her words is distracting and reduces learner comprehension. No way to practice coding with feedback in the module. Practice exercises at the end of the module include no feedback, hints, or examples - it may as well be a test. I stopped after two weeks - I was wasting my time.

By Leo U

Nov 25, 2018

Great for complete beginners.

+) Video tutorials + coding practices in controlled, sandbox environment.

+) No need to install anything. You can complete everything in browser view.

-) Quiz and exam questions are poorly written; they are unclear and unhelpful.

-) Quizzes and exercises are also far an few between. You need more frequent exercises.

-) Nobody will answer your questions. But that's ok. You will still learn the fundamental concepts and you will pass the test.

Overall, this course is good as a very first step in a safe and clean environment. If you want something in a more real environment (say, integrate with Python), you will need to take another course.

By Luca T

Mar 18, 2019

The videos contain the material necessary to get a basic understanding for relational databases and sql.

I ended up skipping a lot of parts in the videos because of the extremely slow pace. The lectures also feel very scripted as well as awkward and were not very enjoyable to watch.

The tests were mostly ok, sometimes the tasks were not possible to be solved with the knowledge learned or with the very limited sql-version available (sqlite). It sometimes felt like the creators did not solve them before submitting.

The final assignement is quite the mess. A lot of repetitive work, sometimes the questions plainly dont make a lot of sense. Eg: Is there a correlation between factor a and b? Show by looking at top 10 results for a... not very statistically meaningful!

By Marwan D

May 16, 2019

The lectures are littered with sloppy errors that haven't been fixed or acknowledged even after multiple people have pointed them out more than a year ago. Some of these errors seriously impede understanding and progress.

The narration is awkward and appears to have been written by someone other than the narrator.

Some of the assignment questions are terribly worded and mentors have provided inconsistent clarification on how to deal with some of these cases.

Many legitimate concerns that have been raised in the forums have not even been acknowledged let alone addressed by staff/mentors.

Nevertheless, the course at the very least does provide a reasonable structure, and the graded quizzes/assignment motivate students to achieve a certain level of mastery.

By André A

Apr 30, 2019

I dislike being negative about courses, but I really struggled on this one. The lecture videos felt disconnected from the coursework, and it was often unclear what the lectures were supposed to be teaching me. There was very little detail in the lectures themselves, but rather vague bulletpointed lists that the lecturer just read out verbatim.

The assignments were too few and far between, and I seldom got the opportunity to try out the techniques that were mentioned in the lecturers for days or weeks, so when I did I often didn't understand what I was being tested on. In many cases, I found I had to read up on W3 Schools instead to find the correct clauses and syntax. Despite the supposed focus on SQLite, I don't feel we covered using SQLite in enough detail for me to say I would feel familiar with it vs any other environment.

The forums were a long list of questions from confused students with little useful feedback, and the final assignment had questions that couldn't be answered literally, which made the peer-reviewed nature of the marking unpredictable.

I can't recommend this course as it currently stands.

By Yifan Z

Dec 6, 2018

She's a horrible teacher as of explaining code. For the most time, she only shows the input and never mentions the output. And if you google it, most of the codes are from templates online that are not very illustrative. Also, many of the questions in quiz are irrelevant to what she taught, or the things she spent a lot of time on never appeared in the quiz. Terrible experience with this instructor.

By Finn O

Apr 6, 2019

Poorly designed quiz and final project questions combined with a SQL interface which cannot use some of the commands introduced in the lessons leads to tedious parsing of the questions. But it is short and there appears to be enough students to make the peer review of the final project possible in April 2019. Not recommended.

By Chris S

Jan 30, 2018

There is virtually no assistance from staff regarding the numerous clarifications necessary to even understand the last assignment (peer-review), and I'm pretty sure we didn't go over correlation and/or regression in the course, let alone hypothesis testing.

I'm pretty sure I won't be able to finish the course at all considering the plethora of uncorrected problems plaguing the course. I recommend that this class be evaluated for quality assurance.

I am not the only student experiencing problems with this assignment. The forums for week 4 are teeming with unanswered questions regarding the assignment and its unclarity.

I recommend contacting UCD and telling them that they really need to solve the problems with the class.



By Chutian Z

Jan 17, 2019

Pretty decent introductory course to SQL.

Pros: Quiz and coding assignments are good, overall speaking.

Cons: (1) The instructor usually spends lots of time laying out the learning objective and the background info. (2) Too few examples. (3) Too few coding tests. Ideally, put one quick test after each video for students to get their hands dirty as soon as possible rather than wait till the end of the module. (4) Provide summary pdfs which summarizes the syntax the module covers. (5) Provide answers to the coding questions.

By Tyler G

Feb 4, 2020

Poorly-taught, poorly-presented. Course materials had too many grammar mistakes and typos; lesson content insufficiently practiced in assignments, some not used at all; subject matter often barely explained, and no consideration given for complexity of topics--all described at same pace, with same scant amount of examples; production rushed and lazy: instructor clearly filmed lectures without sufficient practice--frequent verbal gaffes that could/should have been edited out or avoided in multiple takes.

By Gary B

Nov 15, 2018

This is not a course. It is a presentation of material. The version of SQLite that is provided does not support the important and flexible functions that SQLite normally supports.

The material covered is very very very basic.

I do not recommend this course as there are more efficient methods of getting an introduction to SQL.

By Felipe F

Jan 13, 2021

This course most definitely needs a revamp and an update on videos, content, exercises as well as more clearly stating what is expected from students. Honestly, I don't think the true grading is a one star, it would probably be between 2.5 and 3, but I believe that at this point if we don't give a terrible rating back, neither Coursera nor UC Davis and the faculty/staff serving this course will take action to improve it. There is a lot to be criticized/updated.

I strongly recommend you read other reviews, going back to as long as 2 to 3 years in the past where these flaws are clearly outlined and appointed by former students, and yet in Jan 2021 they are all still there. In summary:

-videos are of hardly any help. The instructor (clearly a knowledgeable person) is hindered by having to read from a teleprompter. The text given to her is not what she would've said spontaneously, so more often that not we see her get caught between what she is thinking versus what she is reading to speak, and this causes confusion during explanation of some hard to grasp moments.

-slides are static and don't provide any significant help in making the hard content really easier to understand. In a course aiming at teaching a code language, we need dynamic video content, seeing the queries being written and the resulting output, and a demonstration of how a change in parameters results in a change of the output.

-the sandbox environment for practice is extremely limited and gets in the way of allowing naive students to really understand some of the dat structure in the background.

-the gap between theory and practice is gigantic, and the code assignments at the end of each module are light years away from what was taught. This is particularly painful with the last peer reviewed assignment, which would require at least one additional full week of time after the end of the 4 modules to give students a chance to understand the data, work with it and craft their answers.

If you take this course, you will end up learning useful SQL content, but this will be at the cost of several additional hours spent googling results and support everywhere on the web. If googling was going to be our primary source of learning anyway, then what is the point of having the course in the first place? People enroll in course because they expect that the instructor, lessons and exercises will steer and help them through the initial learning before they are ready to move on their own, and this is exactly where this course fails. I came to the course already knowing other programming languages and with a good database and data background, so I could "brute force my way through googling", but I can only imagine what other less prepared students could feel. Your money is probably best spent elsewhere if you want to learn SQL (or even no money at all in some good websites on the net).

By Conor M

Jul 9, 2019

Course was informative and a decent foundation, but the lecture delivery was incredibly frustrating. Some concepts were explained very poorly, and I'll have to supplement how parts of the basics are used (e.g. Views, Self Joins, Having, European Date treatment). Often the lecturer tripped over sentences inserting phrases that made no sense, couldn't read words on the screen correctly etc. Also, needed FAR more examples for a couple of the more involved commands. Syntax of code writing changed mid lecture series for one of the weeks, and the practice questions in W2 had completely inconsistent code with what was provided in lectures. This course has potential, but the delivery must be *vastly* improved

By Jan-Michael P

Apr 6, 2020

This course has really helped with optimizing queries that I work with everyday, enhancing my understanding of RDBMS, joins, analyzing and structuring exactly what you need and yielding those results.

By Miguel M

Mar 31, 2019

many of the quiz problems are poorly constructed! We are told after the fact "ohh... we forgot to tell you the value is a string, so you need to fix that field before attempting the min/max we are asking for." Design a better course!!!! Going to EdX SQL class instead which uses the DataCamp back end!

By Andrea L

Aug 22, 2020

A comprehensive course that covers major aspects of query building and retrieval in a management system. The topics were delivered well and the materials/assignments were relevant for skill-building.

By veronica g

Feb 19, 2018

The course is basically theoretical. There is not any practice during the course except for the quizes and the final project. I had to complement the theory I learned here with another online course that focuses on the practice.

Also, some questions of the final project were not clear enough, while reviewing I found out that people understood different things.


Jul 18, 2020

best course for learning SQL for beginners.I learned so much from this course.the speaking language is also simple ..So i Recommended this course for beginners who's 2nd or third language is English.

By Mugdha h

Jun 27, 2020

This is such an important course yet there is no adequate room for practice. The lectures are pretty straight forward with very minimal examples. The quizzes are like diving into the lake learning how to swim from YouTube. Just like showing us in the class that two plus two is four then asking us to calculate the mass of the sun in the exam. What is the point of doing the course and learn most of the materials and get fluent from numerous other sites by myself? This course needs immense improvements. It did waste a lot of time for me given I have done numerous courses on this platform. I would suggest the other learners to refrain from enrolling in this course until University of California, Davis makes necessary amendments for this course with proper guidance and materials. Even if you do get enrolled, learn how to swim from YouTube and practice swimming on the floor beforehand. Best of luck.

By Avinash M

Jul 17, 2019

This course is designed with beginners in mind, and it is an excellent introduction to SQL. I intend to further my knowledge of SQL after taking this course. The instructor did a terrific job.

By Manas S

Mar 11, 2019

Great course i had a very good learning experience from this course and what i was expecting from this course i got that knowledge and i am very happy to take this course. thank you so much.

By Vishal G

Jul 1, 2020

Well crafted course for a beginner. You dont need any prior knowledge of programming or other languages like C. The course pushes you to read about SQL from other sources as well. The quizzes are also designed well for enhanced learning. The final assignment was also interesting as it requires you to work like a data scientist, design your own problem and solve it. Final word: Go for this course if you're looking for a basic introduction to SQL.

By Andres H

Dec 24, 2018

Well the examples were very accurate for the course. I liked the final assessment specially it was a very good practice

By Melissa P

Aug 19, 2021

This was the first Coursera course I took, and it'll probably be the last. I did learn some SQL basics, but there are a lot of issues with this course.

-My biggest problem with this course (and Coursera) is plagiarism. You're randomly assigned to grade 3 peers' final assignments. I graded the first and second assignments, and on the third realized that it was an exact duplicate of the first. I reported the third for plagiarism, but I couldn't go back and report the first one, so that person just got a good grade for a 100% plagiarized assignment. If I hadn't been randomly assigned those two people, I wouldn't have known the assignments were copied. Coursera clearly doesn't have even the most basic automatic plagiarism checker set up, which would've caught exact duplicates. If the only way to identify and report plagiarism is for a student to get randomly assigned 2-3 assignments that happened to be duplicates, realize it, and report it, there's a major problem. This completely devalues the certificate.

Now on to other issues:

-As other reviewers have mentioned, the final assignment is a big jump from the work up to that point, and there aren't enough smaller assignments to test out skills. Lots of things that are mentioned in the lectures aren't included in the assignments, so you don't get to practice.

-There are a ton of posts in the discussion forums mentioning various problems with course material, like typos or confusingly worded assignments--these posts go back as far as 4 years, and the same problems are still in the materials. Even easy fixes like typos in assignments haven't been addressed.

-The moderators/course assistants/Coursera staff sometimes reply to questions in the forum, but it's rare, and the posts they reply to seem random. The forums are also flooded with 4+ years of sometimes pointless posts, so it's basically impossible to find anything relevant to whatever question you have.

-Many of the (automatically graded) assignments don't have examples of the correct code in the feedback, so if you get something wrong, you'll have no idea what you should be doing instead. The lectures don't come close to providing enough information to complete assignments, either.

-The rubric for the peer-graded final assignment is a mess. On some questions, the grader is asked if the code "looks correct." Well, maybe? I know that there are usually multiple ways to get an answer with coding, but there aren't any examples of what a correct answer looks like. If I got one of the questions wrong, there would be no feedback to help me figure out where I went wrong. Some questions have the option to give a grade of zero if the person left the question blank, but not all--so you could leave a question completely blank and still get points because there's no other option.

-One of the questions on the final assignment asks students to look at two columns of data and report whether they think there's a correlation. You can't do that. It's a ridiculous question. Especially because you can only see 10 rows of data at a time. And the course designer knows that, because the rubric says you get full points for attempting to answer the question--"It doesn't matter whether the interpretation appears to make sense based on the data or not." Why does this question even exist?

I had some other issues, but this has been a lot of typing and I'm pretty sure I'm yelling into the void anyway. TL;DR: don't take this course, and it's probably a good idea to avoid Coursera generally.