Li Cao

Work place: University of West Georgia, Carrollton/Department of Educational Technology and Foundations, GA, USA



Research Interests: Information Systems, Multimedia Information System


Li Cao, Ph.D. Dr. Cao is a Professor of Educational Psychology in the College of Education at the University of West Georgia. He received his doctorate from McGill University. He teaches undergraduate and graduate courses of Educational Psychology, Research Methods, & Program Evaluation for teacher education and UTeach programs. His research focuses on metacognition and self-regulated learning in the traditional face-to-face and e-learning environment. His recent publications include a book on teacher reflection, book chapters on the mixed-method research, and educational technology applications in classroom, and journal articles on teacher game-based learning design, study strategy, help-seeking, student motivation, and self-efficacy. Prior to his appointment at UWG, Dr. Cao taught as an assistant professor at St. Mary's University in Minneapolis, Minnesota, a part-time instructor at McGill University, Canada, and a lecturer of English as Second Language in Chongqing University China.

Author Articles
The Effect of MySQL Workbench in Teaching Entity-Relationship Diagram (ERD) to Relational Schema Mapping

By Li Yang Li Cao

DOI:, Pub. Date: 8 Jul. 2016

While designing a database at the conceptual level using the Entity-Relationship (ER) model is challenging for novices, mapping an Entity-Relationship Diagram (ERD) to a relational schema is not an easy task, either. One of the problems is students’ lack of understanding of the underlying mapping principles. The mental gap between the two models in students also makes it difficult for them to perform the conversion. This paper describes two studies that aimed at helping students fill the gap and improve their ERD-Relational schema mapping performance by the use of a visualization tool, MySQL Workbench. We investigated the effect of using MySQL Workbench in teaching ERD-Relational schema mapping. We identified the pros and cons of using visualization in teaching the topic. Our results show that visualization can increase student interest and engagement, and facilitate students connecting the concepts in the two models. With an instructional delivery method that emphasizes the underlying mapping principles, a visualization tool could help undergraduate students improve their performance on ERD-relational schema mapping and facilitate their understanding of the ER model.

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