Semantic Web Technologies (HWS 2021)

Since Prof. Paulheim is on a research sabbatical in HWS 2021, this lecture will be held in the following mode:

  • We will provide video recordings of last year's lecture, which replace the regular lectures.
  • There will be exercises, in which you can also ask questions.
  • You are strongly encouraged to watch the lecture video before the corresponding exercise session.
  • There will still be a mandatory project and an exam, with the course grade based solely on the latter.

Course Description

The term “Semantic Web” was coined in 2001 when Tim Berners Lee (the inventor of the World Wide Web) and others presented their vision of an intelligent web in the “Scientific American”. The Semantic Web aims at the development of methods that help to automate the interpretation, aggregation, evaluation and comparison of information on the Web. Ten years later, Google announced their knowledge graph, which has been the most well known application of semantic web technologies and ideas to date.

This course gives an introduction to the technical foundations of Semantic Web Technologies, including knowledge representation and query languages, as well as logical inference. More specifically, it covers the following contents:

  • Vision and Principles of the Semantic Web
  • Representation Languages (XML, RDF, RDF Schema, OWL)
  • Knowledge Modeling: Ontologies, Linked Data, and Knowledge Graphs
  • Logical Reasoning in RDF and OWL
  • Commercial and Open Source Tools and Systems

Exam Review

The exam review for HWS2021 will take place on Thursday, 3 February 2022, starting from 13:00.

You have to register for the exam review by writing a mail to Bianca Lermer until Tuesday, 1 February 2022. We will then allocate a time slot for the review to you.



  • Java or Python programming skills are required to pass this course!
  • Preferably, some experience with software development
  • To pass the course you have to fulfill the following requirements:
    • Pass the final exam (you have to get a 4.0 or better in the exam to pass this course)
    • Successfully work in a group on a project idea (programming!), present the results and write a report
  • The final grade is the grade achieved in the final exam, however, the project is a mandatory requirement to pass the course.



  • Lecture: watch the videos anytime. We recommend watching them before the correspondinge exercise according to the schedule below.
  • Exercise: Friday, 12.00 – 13.30, room WIM-ZOOM-03


In each week, there is a video to watch and an exercise, which will also allow for Q&A.


WeekVideo to watchFriday
06.09.2021Lecture: IntroductionExercise: Introduction
13.09.2021Lecture: RDFExercise: RDF
20.09.2021Lecture: RDFSExercise: RDFS
27.09.2021Lecture: Linked Data, Semantic Web ProgrammingExercise: Linked Data, Semantic Web Programming
04.10.2021Lecture: SPARQLExercise: SPARQL, Kick off Group Projects
11.10.2021Lecture: Knowledge GraphsExercise: Knowledge Graphs
18.10.2021Lecture: OWL Part 1Exercise: OWL Part 1
25.10.2021Lecture: OWL Part 2Exercise: OWL Part 2
01.11.2021Lecture: Ontology EngineeringExercise: Ontology Engineering


Lecture: Data Quality and Interlinking

Exercise: Data Quality and Interlinking

Exercise (19.11.): Solution to Data Quality and Questions

Important dates for the group projects:

  • Sunday, October, 17th, 23:59: Submission of project proposals
  • Friday, December 3rd, 12:00 :  Project presections (Exercise slot)
  • Wednesday, December 8th, 23:59: Submission of final reports
  • Adminstrative Details

    For attending the course, please register for the lecture in Portal 2 (link to lecture and exercise). The course is limited to 30 participants. Course allocation is done in Portal2. There will be no “first come – first serve”. Students in higher semesters will be preferred, equally ranked students will be drawn randomly.

  • Materials and Exercise Sheets


    Videos, slides, and exercise solutions and other additional materials will be made available in the corresponding ILIAS group.

    Literature (suggested reading list):

    • Tim Berners-Lee, James Hendler and Ora Lassila. The Semantic Web. Scientific American, 284 (5), pp. 34-43, 2001
    • Pascal Hitzler, Markus Krötzsch and Sebastian Rudolph. Foundations of Semantic Web Technologies. Chapman & Hall/CRC, 2009
    • Pascal Hitzler, Markus Krötzsch, Sebastian Rudolph and York Sure. Semantic Web: Grundlagen. Springer, 2007 (German)
    • Allemang and Hendler (2008): Semantic Web for the Working Ontologist. Verlag Morgan Kaufmann.
    • Antoniou and van Harmelen (2004): A Semantic Web Primer. MIT Press.
    • Heath and Bizer (2011): Linked Data: Evolving the Web into a Global Data Space. Free online version.
  • Course Evaluations

    Course evaluations from previous semesters: