Experimental software engineering

Experimental software engineering

Experimental software engineering is a sub-domain of software engineering focusing on experiments on software systems (software products, processes, and resources). It is interested in devising experiments on software, in collecting data from these experiments, and in devising laws and theories from this data. Proponents of experimental software engineering advocate that experimentation is an important method in contributing to accumulation of knowledge in software engineering.

Empirical software engineering is a related concept, sometimes used synonymously with experimental software engineering. Empirical software engineering is a field of research that emphasizes the use of empirical studies of all kinds to accumulate knowledge. Methods used include experiments, variety of case studies, surveys, and statistical analyses.


The scientific method suggests a cycle of observations, laws, and theories to advance science. Experimental software engineering applies this method to software.


Research Labs

There are a number of labs at Universities, research institutes, and in industry that specialise in empirical software engineering, these include:
* [http://isern.iese.de/ International Software Engineering Research Network (ISERN)]
* [http://www.iese.fraunhofer.de/fhg/iese/ Fraunhofer Institute for Experimental Software Engineering (IESE)]
* Sheffield Software Engineering Observatory


* Barry Boehm, Hans Dieter Rombach, and Marvin V. Zelkowitz (eds.), " [http://www.springer.com/sgw/cda/frontpage/0,11855,4-40007-22-51432795-0,00.html Foundations of Empirical Software Engineering — The Legacy of Victor R. Basili] ", Springer-Verlag, 2005, ISBN 3-540-24547-2.
* H. Dieter Rombach, Victor R. Basili and Richard W. Selby (eds.), " [Experimental Software Engineering Issues: Critical Assessment and Future Directions] ", Springer-Verlag, 1993, ISBN 3-540-57092-6.

*Basili, V.; Rombach, D.; Schneider, K.; Kitchenham, B.; Pfahl, D.; Selby, R. (Eds.)," [http://www.springer.com/computer/programming/book/978-3-540-71300-5 Empirical Software Engineering Issues. Critical Assessment and Future Directions] ", Springer-Verlag, 2007, ISBN: 978-3-540-71300-5.

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