Management information systems revision question and answer

CPA-Quantitative-Analysis-Section-4 BLOCK RELEASE

a) Due to complexity of information systems development, a number of tools and methodologies have been used to resolve this complexity. Some of such tools and methodologies include Computer Aided Software Engineering (CASE) and Prototyping.

Required:
Identify those aspects of information systems development life cycle for which these tools or
techniques are available illustrating their application in each case.
b) Examine the role of a database administrator in an organisation.
ANSWER
a) Aspects of information system development life cycle for which CASE and prototyping tools and techniques are available and their application in each case.
Computer Aided Software Engineering (CASE) tools refers to a set of programs used to automate thus improve system development enabling analysts and designers to integrate and analyse documentation of several analysts and programmers who may be working on different phases of the system. They ensure accuracy, consistency and speed.

A prototype refers to a model of all or part of a system built to show uses how a system will appear. The process of creating a prototype is called prototyping and helps in capturing users‘ requirements faster at a lower cost.

The following aspects of system development life cycle can be performed using the above tools and methodologies:
i) Capturing user requirements during the design stage. This can be done using a prototype to determine actual user needs.
ii) Creation of design diagrams during the procedure design stage. CASE tools called analyst work benches can be used to produce flow charts and data flow diagrams in the system design stage.
iii) Checking adherence to design standards can be achieved through the use of CASE tools such as analysts work benches programs.

iv) They can be used in calculating the time frames or duration to system completion. This can be achieved using programs such as integrated program system environment to carry out such the Critical Path Analysis (CPA) or the Program Evaluation Review Techniques (PERT) during initial development stage.
v) The tools can also support separate or individual phases of the system development cycle. This can be achieved through the use of stand-alone CASE tools.
vi) Automation of some of the processes of system development involved in turning system specifications into a working program. Such include generation of codes and diagnostic aids. This can be achieved use of CASE tools such as the programmers work benches.

a) Role of database administrator
□ To maintain the database. The database administrator is responsible for making additions deleting information and ensuring that there is no duplication of data.
□ Maintaining the data dictionary. A data dictionary is an index of data held in a database which can be used in the maintenance and access of the database. It contains a pool of information concerning a database.
□ Helping users to overcome the problems that they may encounter when using the database.
□ Resolving conflicts between users and the technical people.
□ Overseeing the database security.
□ Evaluating the Database Management System (DBMS) performance so as to determine whether it meets the organisation‘s needs.
□ Enhancing backing up of data and making sure that data recovery is in place.
□ Ensuring compliance with the rules and regulations, for example, statutory legislation i.e.
Data Protection Act.

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