Cloud Computing Assignments for B-School Students

What's common to B-school students of Vinod Gupta School of Management (VGSoM), IIT Kharagpur and those in Lundquist College of Business (LCB), University of Oregon? Well, both have professors who are not only well-versed in the latest web technologies but also involve their students hands-on with these technologies.

1. VGSoM, IIT Kharagpur

We have featured Professor Prithwis Mukerjee of VGSoM before as a Zoho power user. Prof Mukerjee continues to getting himself accustomed to the latest tech trends. He uses

Facebook's discussion board to full effect in communicating with his students. One of his latest assignments to his students - make a short movie and upload to YouTube or create a mini ERP system in Zoho Creator. His problem statement for the Order-to-Cash ERP app:

The Order-to-Cash process begins with the arrival ( and recording ) of

an order for a specified product from an approved customer. The order

can ONLY be accepted if a sufficient inventory exists of the product.

After the order is accepted, it is fulfilled at some point of time when

an invoice has to be generated. Generation of the invoice also creates a

Accounts Receivable entry and sets the order status to delivered.

Subsequently a payment is received, the invoice is marked paid, the AR

entry is marked paid and credit entry is made in the cash ledger.

11 student groups made the Zoho Creator app and I was honored when the Professor asked me to judge the apps made by his students and award them marks :) The related

discussion thread in Facebook.

Prof. Mukerjee blogged about it too.

2. LCB, Univ of Oregon

Associate Professor of Decision Sciences, Michael Pangburn, teaches Business Information Systems (DSC340) at LCB, UofO. And he not only uses

his blog to communicate with his students but also makes each of his students create one - their blog roll. His

notes page for the course DSC340. And one of his

home work assignments to his students:

Assignment Description

  • Download a copy of

    this Excel file.

    This “Presidents.xls” spreadsheet file contains 4 database tables: (i)

    president (a list of presidents), (ii) party (a list of parties), (iii)

    state (a list of states), and (iv) priorPosition (a list of prior

    positions that presidents have held).

  • Go to, a free

    online database service, and login (either create a new account or login

    using the Google, Facebook, or Yahoo! login options).  Create a new

    (initially blank) database and then your

    1st database task

    is to use the “Import .XLS” feature to

    import, one at a time, each of the four worksheets

    within the Presidents.xls workbook–each worksheet will become a distinct table in your database.

  • After the importing of those four tables, your

    2nd task

    with the database is to create a 5th table to capture the Many-to-Many

    relationship between the two tables you imported that correspond to the

    two worksheets: ‘president’ and ‘priorPositions.’  To create a table,

    click the

    New–>New Table

    drop-down menu option and create

    the new table using “Design View.”  In design view, you simply type in

    the column names you want; double-click on the default data type to

    change it. 

    You need to figure out what columns should be in this table that should connect presidents to positions.

    Save the table with the name ‘PresPositions’ and then add 3-4 rows of

    true data

    (use Wikipedia or other information source) to this table, connecting a few presidents to their

    actual past positions

    .  After adding your data, be sure to

    click the Save button

    to save the data.

  • After creating the Many-to-Many bridge table, your

    3rd task

    with the database is to

    write the following query

    Show presidents’ first and last names, their political party name, birth state name, and their prior position title(s).

    This requires that you join the 5 tables in the database, so you need

    to specify the 4 joining conditions that connect those tables to each


    The query results will only show those presidents for

    whom you provided past-positions data in the 2nd step above, which is

    expected (and it’s fine).

    Note: to access the SQL interface in Zoho, click the

    New–>New Query Table

    drop-down menu option.

It was nice to see him use Zoho Analytics for teaching SQL query functions and joining of two tables. I mailed him thanking him for using Zoho and he promptly replied back asking a couple of questions about entering data and embedding options in Zoho Analytics.

Great to see Zoho and other current technologies being used in classrooms. If you are a student or instructor using such technologies in your courses, please do share your views in the comments.


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