Neil MacDonald


Applied Database Administration and Design, Associate Certificate (in-progress)

British Columbia Institute of Technology

I began this program in January 2017. Click on the course name to read a brief description.

COMP2256: Introduction to Visual Analytics with Tableau

Description: This course focuses on the principles of presenting large data sets visually

Skills Learned:

  • Using Tableau software
  • Interpreting and presenting data visually
  • Visual analytics best practices
  • Creating interactive dashboards
COMP3838: Data Warehouse Foundations for Business Intelligence

Description: This course focuses on business intelligence, data modeling, and lifecycle for a typical data warehouse.

Skills Learned:

  • ETL (Extract, Transform, and Load) systems
  • Dimensional modeling
  • Business intelligence
COMP3839: Data Quality Improvement

Description: This course focuses on issues surrounding data quality.

Skills Learned:

  • Applying a DQ framework
  • Analyzing a data set for anomalies
  • Statistical analysis of a data set
  • DQ best practices
COMP4677: Microsoft SQL Server Administration

Description: THis course focuses on installing, configuring, and maintaining MS SQL Server 2016 databases

Skills Learned:

  • Physical database design
  • Installation and configuration
  • Security
  • Maintenance

Applied Web Development with Distinction, Associate Certificate

British Columbia Institute of Technology

These courses were completed between January 2015 and July 2016. Click on the course name to read a brief description.

COMP1011: UX/UI Development

Description: This course takes a hands-on approach to user experience, user interface, and information architecture. The agile method of development is used throughout the course.

Skills Learned:

  • Agile development
  • Scrums & scrum masters
  • UX/UI design techniques
  • High fidelity mobile design
COMP1288: IT Project Management

Description: This course explores both agile and waterfall methods of project management and requires the planning of an entire project from start to finish.

Skills Learned:

  • Defining stakeholders
  • Scope definition
  • Risk assessment
  • Scheduling
  • Budgeting
  • Communication strategies
COMP1630: Relational Database Design and SQL

Description: This course covers data modeling for Relational Database Management Systems (RDBMS) and building databases with SQL.

Skills Learned:

  • Entity Relationship Modeling
  • Normalization
  • Unified Modeling Language
  • SQL coding
COMP1911: Introduction to JavaScript and JQuery

Description: This course explores Document Object Model (DOM) manipulation and JavaScript programming for responsive web design.

Skills Learned:

  • Event handling
  • Form validation
  • Animation
COMP1920: Introduction to PHP

Description: This course is an introduction to PHP programming.

Skills Learned:

  • AJAX requests
  • Regular expressions
  • Validation
  • Cookies
  • Establishing MySQL database connections with PHP
COMP1950: Web Development and Design 2

Description: This is an in-depth course on HTML5 and CSS3.

Skills Learned:

  • HTML5 & CSS3
  • JavaScript & jQuery
  • SSI (Server Side Includes)
  • CMS (Content Management Systems)
COMP1956: Creating Web Graphics 1

Description: This is an introduction to Photoshop for web design.

Skills Learned:

  • Image Editing
  • Image gallery creation
  • Website prototyping
COMP2053: XML for Web Development

Description: This course focuses on XML for web development and data modeling.

Skills Learned:

  • XML syntax
  • DTD validation
  • XML data modeling
COMP2831: Business Analysis and Systems Design

Description: This is a systems analysis course for software projects.

Skills Learned:

  • SDLC (Software Development Life Cycle)
  • UML (Unified Modeling Language)
  • Project management
  • Agile and scrum methodologies
COMP2920: Server-side Web Scripting with PHP 2

Description: This is a continuation of COMP1920 which focuses on object-oriented programming (OOP) to build CMSs and web apps using PHP and MySQL.

Skills Learned:

  • OOP
  • OAuth
  • JSON
  • APIs
  • Zend Framework with MySQL databases

Master of Library and Information Studies

School of Library, Archival, and Information Studies

These courses were completed between September 2008 and April 2010. Click on the course name to read a brief description.

LIBR500: Foundations of Information Technology

Description: This course focuses on information technology and its use in libraries and information-based organizations.

LIBR501: Foundations of Information-based Organizations

Description: This course provides an overview of the various types of information-based organizations (private, public, and academic) in which librarians may work and the duties they are expected to perform.

LIBR502: Foundations of Bibliographic Control

Description: This course offers an introduction to the principles of information organization.

Skills Learned:

  • Controlled vocabularies for information systems
  • Authority control
  • Catalogues and cataloguing
  • Resource description
  • Encoding description
  • Interpreting documents for their significant characteristics
  • Subject languages
  • Classificatory structures
  • Metadata for resource discovery
LIBR503: Foundations of Information Sources and Services

Description: This course focuses on providing research and reference services in public and academic library environments.

Skills Learned:

  • The reference process
  • Assess user information needs
  • Formulate search strategies
  • The main types/categories of information resources
  • Clearly annotate selective items from the literature
LIBR504: Management of Information Organizations

Description: This course focuses on the issues and skills required to manage an information organization, including financial and security planning, disaster preparation, and change management.

Skills Learned:

  • Strategic planning within an information organization
  • Manage group situations, i.e. task forces, board of governors
  • Handle personnel problems
LIBR505: Research Methods

Description: This course focuses on the theory and practice of quantitative and qualitative research methods and their applications in information based environments.

Skills Learned:

  • Prepare a detailed research plan
  • Quantitative and qualitative research
  • Observational research
  • Ethical issues relevant to conducting research
LIBR511: Cataloguing and Classification

Description: This course focuses on the principles, methods, and standards of cataloguing.

Skills Learned:

  • Bibliographic records using AACRII
  • Bibliographic records using MARC
LIBR512: Indexing

Description: This course focuses on the knowledge, theory, and practice of indexing printed documents, physical objects, and electronic resources.

Skills Learned:

  • Controlled vocabulary indexing language
  • Index a web site using HTML
  • NaturalĀ language indexing
  • Thesaurus, back-of-the-book and WWW indexing software
LIBR516: Information Asset Management

Description: This course focuses on the theory and practice of records management in various types of organizations, to identify all documents and records in all formats within an organization and develop a records management system which will ensure the continued operation of the organization in the event of a disruption to normal operations.

Skills Learned:

  • Information audit of an organization
  • Devising a coding system for a document/records management system
  • Devising a retention schedule
  • Establishing on-site and off-site storage
  • Understanding of legal, regulatory, and technological issues currently affecting the practice of records management
  • Assessing threats to an organization's information security and devise backup and safety protocols
LIBR554: Database Design

Description: The focus of this course is on the design and creation of databases.

Skills Learned:

  • Database concepts and terminology
  • Assessing information needs within an organization
  • Specifying user and organizational requirements
  • ERD diagrams
  • Microsoft Access
LIBR555: Information Design I: Systems

Description: This course focuses on information architecture with an emphasis on user-centered design.

Skills Learned:

  • Assess the design of objects and information systems
  • Personas
  • User needs assessments
  • Task analyses
  • Low-fidelity and high-fidelity prototypes
LIBR557: Information Retrieval Concepts and Practice

Description: This course focuses on understanding the structure, design, and variety of information retrieval systems and how to conduct efficient searches. The course also covers current research trends in the area of information retrieval.

Skills Learned:

  • Formulate searches using a variety of search languages and techniques
  • Various search engines
LIBR559a: Understanding Information Users in Diverse Environments

Description: This course deals with how individuals seek and use information, with an emphasis on human computer interaction.

Skills Learned:

  • How individuals perceive, value, and relate to information based on demographics
  • Practical application of theory
  • Original research on the information needs or behaviour of a chosen group
LIBR559f: Introduction to Web Page Design Using Dreamweaver

Description: The course explores web design with the latest WYSIWYG software.

Skills Learned:

  • Design, build, and mount a website using Adobe Dreamweaver.
LIBR559i: Topics in Computer-Based Information Systems: Metadata and Content Management Systems for Digital Collections

Description: This course deals with the use of metadata to manage digital collections.

Skills Learned:

  • Major metadata standards
  • Selecting appropriate metadata standards for the creation of a defined digital collection
  • Creating a digital collection using open source collections management software and metadata standards
  • Information architecture with regard to digital collections management
LIBR559j: Topics in Computer-Based Information Systems: Technologies and Techniques for Digital Collection Building

Description: This course focuses on the software standards, hardware, and techniques used in creating a digital collection from analogue sources.

Skills Learned:

  • Appropriate file formats and hardware for digitizing material
  • Design workflows for a digitization project.
LIBR580: Collection Management and Development

Description: This course focuses on the issues involved in selecting, creating, and managing print, electronic, audio, and visual collections for various user groups.

Skills Learned:

  • User needs assessments with regard to collection development
  • Evaluating vendors and vendor services
  • Budgeting for a collection
  • Weeding a collection
  • Current methods of electronic document delivery, intellectual freedom, and copyright concerns with regard to collection management
LIBR594: Directed Study

Description: This course focuses on the elements required in the design and implementation of an online catalogue and website for a private library.

Skills Learned:

  • Open source integrated library systems and content management systems
  • Customizing an open source ILS and CMS to the needs of a specific library catalogue
  • Design a web interface for a private library

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