DM Review thanks Deborah Henderson for contributing this first DAMA column. Look for future online columns from DAMA the fourth week of each month.

The DAMA International (DAMAI) Foundation, through its office of Education and the Curriculum Committee, is in the third year of a multiyear initiative to support the educators of data management professionals by creating a framework for teaching data management principles and practices in post-secondary institutions.

Graphically, the DAMAI Curriculum Framework can be represented as a series of related areas as shown in Figure 1.

Figure 1: The DAMAI Curriculum Framework

The scope of the project this year was to publicize, promote and gain feedback on the framework document. This framework recommends topics and core competencies for data resource management (DRM) practices, provides guidelines for teaching DRM in academic degree programs and offers some career ladders and other professionally oriented information. This framework may be used by guidance counselors, college faculty, employers or other professionals to advise students and others interested in the data management field. It is applicable to the needs of all levels of post-secondary education in North America, from two-year colleges through graduate school programs. The core topics also encompass those competency areas included in the certification exams for DRM professionals sponsored by DAMAI and given through the Institute for Certification of Computing Professionals (ICCP).

The framework also shows the role of a data management body of knowledge (DMBOK) that can serve as background material for certification and course reference. The DMBOK is supported by references to seminal texts in the field and can be a very useful addition to the texts required for many of the course topics in the curriculum framework.

The DAMAI DRM curriculum framework consists of the following main sections:

  • Primary data management concepts and history,
  • Overview of data management education,
  • The value of data management,
  • Employment/market,
  • Relationship to other IS curricula,
  • Certification,
  • Topics and topic clusters,
  • Careers in data management,
  • List of education delivery channels based on the North American model,
  • Clustering of topics to be delivered for courses and
  • Cross-reference matrices to aid in the development of a curriculum.

This curriculum development is a continuous process. DAMAI and the education committee are interested in hearing from data management professionals and educators in DRM about topics or delivery channels and welcome their input on the flexibility of this curriculum framework.
The curriculum framework was presented at:

  • DAMA International Conference in Beverly Hills in May 2004.
  • AMCIS Conference in New York in August 2004.
  • DAMA International Conference in Orlando 2005.
  • AMCIS Conference in Omaha, Nebraska, 2005 (referenced only).
  • ISECON in Columbus, Ohio, 2005.

The Curriculum Framework received the ISECON Award for Meritorious Writing 2005. The IS2002 Committee Standard for teaching IS in North America plans to work with the DAMAI Curriculum Committee to incorporate many parts of the DRM Curriculum Framework into IS2005. DAMAI's Curriculum Committee also plans to pursue accreditation of the Curriculum Framework with ABET and CSAB (Computer Science Accrediting Board).
The curriculum framework is available for download at http://www.dama.org and is available free of charge. Comments and constructive suggestions for enhancement are encouraged.

Join your data management professional peers at the 18th annual DAMA International Symposium April 23-27 in Denver. For more information, visit www.wilshireconferences.com/MD2006/index.htm.

Deborah Henderson is the vice president of education and chair of the curriculum committee for DAMA International Foundation. She can be reached at vp_education@dama.org.

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