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Reflective Learning


Consider the following scenario: Each month the sales department provides a report on inactive customer accounts to each of its sales representatives. An inactive account is one with no orders for the preceding 6 months. For each of the sales representative’s customer accounts, the report includes the customer’s name, the account ID, the date of the most recent order, and the total dollar amount of that order.

Based on this information, which of the following lists is the best “starter list” of likely entities for the sales department?

  1. Report, Customer Account, and Order
  2. Customer Account, Sales Representative, and Order
  3. Customer Account, Sales Representative, Order, and Total Order Amount
  4. Report, Customer Account, Sales Representative, and Order

You Answered: A
Correct Answer: B

The starter list should include the entities Customer Account, Sales Representative, and Order. From the information provided, we can conclude that data is maintained about each of the three and that there are multiple instances of each.

A report is an instrument for communicating data; it is not an entity. (Only in rare circumstances would a business domain maintain data about each actual report document.)

Total Order Amount is a data element that describes an entity (Order).