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Teaching Software Engineering Bottom Up

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Conference

2004 Annual Conference

Location

Salt Lake City, Utah

Publication Date

June 20, 2004

Start Date

June 20, 2004

End Date

June 23, 2004

ISSN

2153-5965

Conference Session

Pre-College and ECE Education

Page Count

9

Page Numbers

9.1196.1 - 9.1196.9

Permanent URL

https://peer.asee.org/13199

Download Count

14

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Paper Authors

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Richard Stirewalt

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Abstract
NOTE: The first page of text has been automatically extracted and included below in lieu of an abstract

Session Number: 3532

Teaching Software Engineering Bottom Up

R. E. K. Stirewalt

Software Engineering and Network Systems Laboratory Department of Computer Science and Engineering Michigan State University East Lansing, Michigan 48840 e-mail: stire@cse.msu.edu

Abstract

A typical CS curriculum contains a course on software engineering, which introduces principles and heuristic methods for designing large software systems subject to desirable properties, such as maintainability and extensibility. The nature of this body of knowledge suggests that the best method for teaching it is to use the elaboration theory of instruction. Applying this theory to software engineering requires a complete inversion in the traditional coverage of topics. We developed a new course, CSE 370, which incorporates this "bottom up" coverage. Using this method, we are able to instill a higher level of cognitive ability in software-engineering methods than we were able to achieve using the old method.

Analysis

System Design

Detailed Design

Implementation

Figure 1. Traditional (waterfall) model of software development.

1 Introduction

A typical computer science curriculum contains a junior-level course on software engineering, which develops principles and heuristic methods for designing large software systems. At many universities, this course is organized around an idealized model of the software lifecycle1, which comprises a linear sequence of discrete phases (Figure 1). This paper argues that such an organization is pedagogically flawed if the

Proceedings of the 2004 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2004, American Society for Engineering Education

Stirewalt, R. (2004, June), Teaching Software Engineering Bottom Up Paper presented at 2004 Annual Conference, Salt Lake City, Utah. https://peer.asee.org/13199

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