An Extended Replication of an Experiment for Assessing Methods for Software Requirements Inspections
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We have performed an extended replication of the Porter-Votta-Basili experiment comparing the Scenario method and the Checklist method for inspecting requirements specifications using identical instruments. The experiment has been conducted in our educational context represented by a more general definition of a defect compared to the original defect list. Our study involving 24 undergraduate students manipulated three independent variables: detection method, requirements specification, and the order of the inspections. The dependent variable measured is the defect detection rate. We found the requirements specification inspected and not the detection method to be the most probable explanation for the variance in defect detection rate. This suggests that it is important to gather knowledge of how a requirements specification can convey an understandable view of the product and to adapt inspection methods accordingly. Contrary to the original experiment, we can not significantly support the superiority of the Scenario method. This is in accordance with a replication conducted by Fusaro, Lanubile and Visaggio, and might be explained by the lack of individual defect detection skill of our less experienced subjects.
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