April 26-27, 2018. 9:30AM-4:30PM


McGill University, Stewart-Biology. Room S3/4.

Workshop content

Database management systems (DBMS) provide a very powerful way to organize data, perform complex queries and interact with other tools for graphics, statistical analysis or dynamic web applications. MySQL and PostgreSQL are popular free, open-source DBMS and are used by thousands of companies and individuals worldwide. This two-day workshop, offered in English, will provide a short description of what DBMS can do and how full fledged DBMS such as PostgreSQL compare with software like MS Excel or MS Access for storing and querying scientific data. Topics that will be covered during the workshop include:

Day 1

  • When to (not to) use a DBMS
  • Concepts of database management and organization
  • How to organize biodiversity data in databases
  • Installation of PostgreSQL
  • Importing data into PostgreSQL
  • Basics of the SQL language
  • More advanced SQL functions
  • Connecting LibreOffice Base with PostgreSQL
  • Creating forms in LibreOffice Base
  • Interacting between PostgreSQL and other programs such as R.

Day 2

  • Creating forms with LibreOffice Base
  • Quick intro to form creation in MS Access
  • Creating online web forms with HTML/PHP and PostgreSQL

The workshop will focus on hands-on learning through exercises with an example database related to biodiversity science. Short presentations will be given by the lecturer to introduce each section. Participants are expected to bring their own laptops to the workshop and to install PostgreSQL on their computers. Detailed instructions will be given to the participants one week prior to the workshop.

For any questions, please contact Guillaume Larocque (


This workshop is FREE for QCBS members, both students and researchers. Non-QCBS members will be charged 100$+tx (students and NGOs) or 150$+tx (others) to attend the workshop, payable on line by credit card prior to the workshop. Registration of non-QCBS members might be restricted depending on the number of registrants. Participants are not expected to have any prior knowledge of database management or computer programming.


Please register using the form below: (for the workshop in French, click here).