Procedural Language/Structured Query Language (PL/SQL)
Last Updated: April 26, 2013
Definition - What does Procedural Language/Structured Query Language (PL/SQL) mean?
Procedural language/structured query language (PL/SQL) is Oracle’s implementation of a structured query language (SQL) programming language extension. PL/SQL is a powerful tool that combines SQL’s querying ability with the added bonus of programming features.
Techopedia explains Procedural Language/Structured Query Language (PL/SQL)
Beginning with Oracle7 in the early 1990s, Oracle first developed and offered PL/SQL. Since that time, PL/SQL has been included wherever SQL is offered. A separate Oracle PL/SQL engine inside the software is used to process the PL/SQL code.
Like SQL, PL/SQL follows a strict syntax-controlling structure. The PL/SQL code block consists of three main sections:
Declaration (optional): Declaration section introduction keyword is DECLARE.
Execution (mandatory): Main execution section introduction keyword is BEGIN.
Exception (optional): Exception handling section introduction keyword is EXCEPTION.
Thus, the layout appearance is structured as follows:
Objects created only by using PL/SQL, rather than purely SQL, include functions, packages and procedures. However, most applications that run SQL code also support PL/SQL. Thus, database administrators and developers rarely separate SQL and PL/SQL code.