Technical Report 2010-012

A Student Perspective on Software Development and Maintenance

Jonas Boustedt

March 2010


How do Computer Science students view Software Development and Software Maintenance? To answer this question, a Phenomenographic perspective was chosen, and 20 Swedish students at four universities were interviewed.

The interviews were analyzed to find in which different ways the informants, on collective level, see the phenomena of interest. The resulting outcome spaces show that software development is described in a number of qualitatively different ways reaching from problem solving, design and deliver, design for the future and then a more comprehensive view that includes users, customers, budget and other aspects. Software maintenance is described as correcting bugs, making additions, adapting to new requirements from the surroundings, and something that is a natural part of the job.

Finally, conclusions from the results and additional observations are discussed in terms of their implications for teaching, and some suggestions for practical use are given.

Available as PDF (198 kB, no cover)

Download BibTeX entry.