Software Engineering Education

Project Description

The goal of this work is to improve the state of software engineering education. The main focus of my work in this area has been to evaluate the use of different types of educational methods. Previous work has included studying the effects that the use of pair-programming in introductory CS courses has on the retention of those students, especially females and minorities.

Research Findings

As part of this project, we have developed a checklist that can be used by software engineering researchers and educators to help them plan an empirical study with students (ESWS) in the classroom. This work is currently under review for publication. Please contact me if you would like further details.

Items to Consider when Designing and Conducting an ESWS

Before the Class Begins



Ensure adequate integration of the study into the course topics.



Integrate the study timeline with the course schedule.



Reuse artifacts and tools as appropriate.



Write up a protocol and have it reviewed.

As Soon as the Class Begins



Obtain subjects’ permission for their participation in the study.



Set subject expectations.

When the Study Begins



Document information about the experimental context in detail.



Implement policies for controlling/monitoring the experimental variables.

When the Study is Completed



Plan follow-up activities.



Build or update a lab package.


(Note: Blue = Journal; Red = Refereed Conference; Green = Workshop/Tech Report)



A portion of this work was funded as a Shillig Special Teaching Grant from Mississippi State University.

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Last Updated on April 16, 2009 by Jeffrey Carver