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Empirical Software Engineering: a short course (2 full days)
(Invited Lecture)

By: Fernando Brito e Abreu

Experimental Software Engineering is a sub-domain of Software Engineering focusing on the validation of research claims, by following the scientific method, which is used by scientists in many other knowledge areas. The scientific method presumes that scientific knowledge is predictive (i.e. cause and effect relationships can be identified). When applicable, this method is an important approach for PhD work validation, since it is much sounder than the “plain vanilla” proofs of concept, which are often found in dissertations.

After a brief overview of the several research approaches, we will progress in this course following through a series of steps that correspond to the application of the scientific method: observation, hypotheses formulation, experimental design, data collection, data analysis, identification of validity threats and results packaging). Observation allows raising hypotheses on cause-effect relationships, which then guide the design of experiments where collected data are used to test hypotheses statistically. Conclusions drawn are then discussed to outline their validity. Some hands-on exercises will be proposed to attendees, namely regarding the data collection and analysis steps.


Date: 5 Feb 2013

Location/Event: Programa Doutoral em Engenharia Informática (PRODEI)

url: http://www.fe.up.pt/prodei

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