Exercise: Show companions for specific authors' episodes, using a CTE

This exercise is provided to allow potential course delegates to choose the correct Wise Owl Microsoft training course, and may not be reproduced in whole or in part in any format without the prior written consent of Wise Owl.

The answer to the exercise will be included and explained if you attend the Wise Owl course listed below!

Category ==> SQL  (115 exercises)
Topic ==> Derived tables and CTEs  (7 exercises)
Level ==> Relatively easy
Course ==> Advanced SQL
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First (if you haven't already done so) run the script shown above to generate the Doctor Who training database.

The aim of this exercise is to use a CTE (Common Table Expression) to extract data from the database in two passes:

  1. Get a list of all of the episodes written by authors with MP in their names.
  2. Get a list of the companions featuring in these episodes.

You get no points for pointing out that you could do all of this in a single query!

Start by creating a query to show just the episode id numbers for those Doctor Who episodes written by authors with MP as part of their names:

The 4 episodes

This should return 4 episodes (one written by Keith Temple, as it happens, and 3 by Steve Thompson).


Now create a CTE from this, using the standard syntax:

-- previous command must end with a semi-colon (;)

WITH NameForYourCte AS (



-- now use this in a query





-- join this to other tables as normal


Your final query should join to your CTE to show the companions featuring in these episodes (you may need to use the word DISTINCT to avoid some companions' names appearing twice):

The results

The results: 4 companions feature in episodes written by authors whose names contain MP.


Optionally, save your query as If that is not useful.sql, then close it down. 

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