December 16, 2012
Microsoft Access Exercise
Microsoft Access provides many functions for end users. While working in IT Support, many different situations may present from customers phoning in and requesting information or assistance. Following are three different situations that may be presented at a support desk. First, we will examine a veterinarian who wants to use Microsoft® Access® for his business, and has some questions regarding the functions of Access. Second, a man created a database to inventory his customers’ past due accounts to ensure that he receives payment. Third, a user has been using a Microsoft® Access® database and queries to track her commemorative plate collection. She recently discovered each plate has a serial number, and after adding the serial number to the database, her queries did not function the same. In the first situation, a veterinarian has experienced tremendous growth within his business. All animal records are shelved in folders and are sorted alphabetically by the owner’s name. He is ready to rid himself of the time and space these files take and has inquired about Microsoft® Access®. He wants to know about the key functions of using Microsoft® Access® and how a table, query, primary key, and a report are important to his database needs. Some of the key functions of using Microsoft Access are tables, queries, records, relationships, and reports (Shelly, Cashman, & Vermaat, 2007). The records for each animal can be stored in a database. A database is files in which you store data and include all the major key functions related to the stored data; including functions you define to automate the use of your data (Shelly, Cashman, & Vermaat, 2007). When creating the database for the veterinarian business in Microsoft Access, the database needs to contain at least one table and can contain many different tables. According to Shelly, Cashman, and Vermaat (2007), “Each table needs to contain one or more fields. A field is a column of data (similar to a column in an Excel worksheet). For each table, one field is typically identified as the primary key (although a compound primary key is possible). A primary key must be a unique identifier and can't be empty or null. Within each table, there may be one or more records. Related fields in separate tables can be connected via a relationship”. Furthermore, these key functions are important to analyze data. Access is a good choice when you have to track and record data regularly, and then display, export, or print subsets of that data (office.microsoft.com). Access provides more structure for your data; for example, you can control what types of data can be entered, what values can be entered, and you can specify how data in one table is related to data in other tables. This structure helps you ensure that only the correct types of data are entered (office.microsoft.com).
In the second situation, the customer has created a database to inventory his customers’ past due accounts to ensure that he receives payment. He has created two tables: one for customer demographics, and the other for the type of service rendered. When he creates a report, the customers’ demographics are all that show and not the amount that is past due.
The first step in diagnosing this issue is to make sure the relationship between the two tables is setup correctly. If the relationship is not setup correctly, the next step is to give the user step by step instructions. A relationship helps you combine data from two different tables. Each relationship consists of fields in two tables, with data that corresponds. For example, you might have a Customer ID field in a Customer table and in an Amount owed table. Each record in the Amount owed table has a Customer ID that corresponds to a record in the Customer table with the same CustomerID. In a regular Access database, you create a table...