Software Quality Journal

, Volume 7, Issue 1, pp 35–50 | Cite as

A new reusability metric for object-oriented software

  • Judith Barnard


Software reuse is big business. Managers of software houses know that reuse can bring financial rewards to their company, so long as effective reuse procedures are in place. Many companies are now starting their own reuse libraries. However, how can they decide what constitutes a resusable component? How can they measure the potential reusability of a component? And what guidelines can developers take to ensure they are developing reusable software? Through surveys and experiments, this paper identifies the factors relating to the reusability of code and presents a reusability metric for object-oriented software, suggesting that this could be used by software houses in their reuse programmes.

reuse reusability object-oriented metrics 


Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.


  1. 1.
    C. Terry and D. Dikel. Reuse library standards aid users in setting up organisational reuse programs, Embedded Systems Programming Product News, 1996.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    T. Korson and J.D. McGregor. Technical criteria for the specification and evaluation of object-oriented libraries, Software Engineering Journal, 7(2) (1992) 85–92.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    J.S. Poulin. Measuring software reusability, Proceedings of the Third International Conference on Reuse, November 1994.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    J.S. Poulin. The search for a general reusability metric, Proceedings of the Workshop on Reuse and the NASA Software Strategic Plan, Fairfax, VA, 24–27 September 1996.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    A. Wirfs-Brock and B. Wilkerson. Variables limit reusability, Journal of Object-Oriented Programming, May/June (1989).Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    G. Caldiera and V.R. Basili. Identifying and qualifying reusable software components, IEEE Computer, 24 (2) (1991) 61–70.Google Scholar
  7. 7.
    J. Barnard. Discussion and survey of reusability metrics. Report Reference REUSABILITY-1 for the MOOD Project, Department of Computer Science, University of Warwick, Coventry, UK (1997).Google Scholar
  8. 8.
    S. Chidamber and C. Kemerer. A metrics suite for object-oriented design. IEEE Transactions on Software Engineering, 20 (6) (1994) 476–493.Google Scholar
  9. 9.
    R. Prieto-Diaz and P. Freeman. Classifying software for reusability, IEEE Software, January 1987.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    R.W. Selby. Quantitative studies of software reuse, in Software Reusability, Volume II, T.J. Biggerstaff and A.J. Perlis (eds) (Addison-Wesley, Reading MA, 1989).Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Kluwer Academic Publishers 1998

Authors and Affiliations

  • Judith Barnard
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of ComputingThe Open UniversityMilton KeynesUK

Personalised recommendations