Learn SQL Performance Tuning in this Free Online Course

July 27, 2020 | 5 minute read
Chris Saxon
Developer Advocate
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SQL is awesome. You tell the database the result you want. And it figures out how to execute it.


If the optimizer decides how to run your query, how do you go about making it faster?!

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Ask many experts and they'll tell you to look at the statement's execution plan. But what is this plan, how do you get it, and how does it help you make your SQL quicker?

Learn How to Make SQL Faster

Oracle Dev Gym introduces Databases for Developers: Performance. This free, 12-part class teaches you the basics of SQL optimization.

In this you'll learn how to get and understand an execution plan to find the slowest parts of your statement. It then shows you how to get better plans by improving the table's statistics and make SQL faster by creating indexes or materialized views.

The course continues with a discussion of how the join algorithms work and specifics for making inserts, updates, and deletes faster. The class finishes with an overview of how to find the slowest SQL statements in your application and a course review.

This class covers these topics:

  1. How to Read an Execution Plan
  2. What are Database Statistics?
  3. How Much Work is My Query Doing?
  4. How to Create Indexes
  5. Why Isn't My Query Using an Index?
  6. How to Summarize Data Fast with Materialized Views
  7. How do Joins Work?
  8. How to Make Inserts, Updates, and Deletes Faster
  9. How to Find Slow SQL
  10. Performance Course Review

Each module starts with a video introducing a performance concept. These informative videos give an overview of the feature. An interactive Live SQL tutorial follows. These flesh out the syntax details and enable you to practice tuning real SQL statements.

To finish each module there is a series of quizzes to check you've understood the concepts.

The best part? This tutorial is 100% FREE and run completely online.

The first module starts on Monday 3rd August. You can register for free now.

Student Feedback

Still not sure?

Thousands of people have taken the SQL beginner's and improver's courses on Oracle Dev Gym, with overwhelmingly positive feedback.

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Here are selected quotes from students from previous Oracle Dev Gym classes:

"The most useful aspect was the possibility to practice the exercises on Oracle Live SQL. That alleviate me to install an Oracle Database on my notebook and jump right away to what matter."

"The combination of videos which were both entertaining & informative, Live SQL examples to work through the topics, and the Quizzes is a winning formula! Being able to try out the topics in an online version of the database and then use the Quizzes to reinforce your understanding of those concepts is really useful."

"Videos are interesting to watch and listen to. They are engaging, diverse and illustrate well the concepts."

"I got a few concepts clarified. Thanks for being precise and concise and the exact documents to be referred as well. You explained well."

"Mix of teaching modes plus quiz. You see and hear, then you read and (in theory) try it, then double check that you got it with a quiz."

"Everything was well explained."

"Great content presented casually but thouroghly"

Frequently Asked Questions

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How much does it cost?

Nothing. Nada. Nil. Zilch. That's right, it's 100% FREE! As is everything else at the Oracle Dev Gym.

What will I learn on this course?

You'll learn the basics of SQL performance tuning:

  • How to get and read an execution plan
  • How to create indexes and materialized views to make SQL faster
  • How to find the slowest SQL statements in your code

What do I get for completing the class?

Once you complete all modules of a class, you can print your class certificate. If your average grade in the class is 90% or higher, you receive a Certificate of Excellence. Otherwise you will get a Certificate of Completion. Either way, congratulations on a job well done!

I missed the start. Can I still join?

Yes! You can join Databases for Developers: Performance at any time

Can I restart the class?

If you want to do a complete restart, simply drop the class and re-register. You can do this by scrolling down to the bottom of the page and clicking on the link provided. If you simply want to retake the quizzes in an individual module or entire class, again, go to the bottom of the page and click on that link.

When does the course end?

The modules have no fixed end date. Once you're registered you can take the class whenever you want

How much time will it take?

We estimate that this will take up to 30 minutes per module.

What if I fall behind?

This is a self-paced course. Once registered, you have lifetime access to these materials to review at any time. So you can complete it at your leisure.

What is the format of this course?

The course is a combination of:

  • Videos designed to teach you database concepts.
  • Coding tutorials for you to practice your skills.
  • Quizzes to deepen your knowledge.

Do I need access to an Oracle Database?

No! This is a fully online course. The materials are designed so you can complete the course without a database.

Are there free resources where can I practice what I've learned?

Yes! Oracle has the following free offerings:

I'm new to SQL. Is this course right for me?

This course assumes a solid understanding of SQL. If you're looking to learn SQL, join Databases for Developers: Foundations or Databases for Developers: Next Level to improve your skills.

I still have unanswered questions. Where can I ask them?

You can reach out to Chris Saxon.

Ready to join? Head to the registration page to sign up!

Chris Saxon

Developer Advocate

Chris Saxon is an Oracle Developer Advocate for SQL. His job is to help you get the best out of the Oracle Database and have fun with SQL!

To help you with this he blogs at All Things SQL. He also creates videos combining SQL and magic on YouTube at the The Magic of SQL.

If you have questions about working with Oracle Database technology, please reach out to him. You can do this via Twitter or on Ask Tom.

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