I have five tables that are connected with each other using joins:

  • department vs course -- one to many
  • course vs classes -- one to many
  • classes vs section -- many to many

I want to retrieve the sections the belong to a particular course. I have tried inner join to achieve this but I can not get good results, I get all the sections instead.

select sectionname from Section 
inner join Classes on classid=sectionid 
inner join Course on courseid=Classes.fk_course_courseid;

enter image description here

Data contained in the table as shown below. I want to retrieve all the sections the belong to courseid = 1 or department id = 1.

enter image description here

  • Could you please put your table definitions as standard SQL DDL (CREATE TABLE blah (field_1 type_1,...); and your data as standard SQL DML (INSERT INTO blah VALUES (...);). Either provide it here or in the form of a fiddle - that would be great. Help us to help you! :-) My profile has a few articles on how to ask questions here - you might want to look?
    – Vérace
    Commented May 18, 2019 at 12:25
  • Based on the info you've provided, there is no link between Section and Course - there is a link from Section to Department and Course to Department so at best you could get all the sections for all the courses in a given department, but there is no relationship defined for section to course so no way to join and retrieve this information.
    – HandyD
    Commented May 20, 2019 at 1:10
  • yah no link between section and course but the link is through department
    – ahmedshah
    Commented May 20, 2019 at 9:08

2 Answers 2


i think there should be separate table for class,course relation, Class_Course_Mapping

Check this (Untested),

select sectionname,sectionid
from Section
where exists(
SELECT fk_course_courseid 
FROM    course  
       INNER JOIN classes   
              ON courseid = fk_course_courseid 
INNER JOIN classsection 
ON classid = classsection.fk_class_classid                
WHERE  coursename = 'School' and Section.sectionid=classsection.fk_section_sectionid)
SELECT DISTINCT sectionname , 
FROM   section 
       LEFT JOIN classsection 
              ON classsection.fk_section_sectionid = section.sectionid 
       LEFT JOIN classes 
              ON classid = classsection.fk_class_classid 
       LEFT JOIN course 
              ON courseid = fk_course_courseid 
WHERE  coursename = 'School'

i just joined section and classses first and then joined courses to see the department name which sections are belong to which classes and it worked kudos

  • DISTINCT is not a function and doesn't need parentheses. Commented May 22, 2019 at 9:19

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