Subject Areas Overview

The BICC builds and maintains Purdue’s enterprise data warehouse environments that include data from enterprise systems like Banner and SAP. This includes Data Marts for Human Resources and Finance, and the Student ODS/EDW for Student data. We’re continuing to add new sources of data as well. See our stories and sprints for more information about what we’re working on.

Data Marts and Stars

A data mart is a group of data from a given subject area--for example human resources--specifically structured for access and reporting. It is usually put together into structures called star schemas (or simply stars) which make accessing the data extremely easy and efficient. Each star holds data for a specific subset of the data mart. Some examples from the HR data mart include: Employee Action, Employee Leave, and Payroll Charge.

A star is made up of facts--the numeric values that can be summed, like payroll amounts or hours of leave taken--and dimensions which are used to filter, group, and label the facts such as Employee, Position, Leave Type, Cost Center, etc.

You use a BI tool such as Cognos to access the data mart stars and write queries and reports.


Metadata for Purdue is being housed in the Data Cookbook. In each Subject Area section, you can find the respective section's stars linked to the Data Cookbook.

If a link to a specific star is not available, please check back at a later time as this section is being updated periodically.

Boiler Insight at Purdue

Boiler Insight is the name for the entire suite of Purdue Business Intelligence environments that are supported by the BICC. This includes many of the BI systems that people have been using for some time, such as SAP BW and the Student ODS/EDW, but also includes the data mart environments, such as the HR Data Mart.