Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Six Steps to Develop a Good Survey

Often, we researchers and scientists have to understand, evaluate, and learn different methods, processes, techniques, technologies, and so on. We discussed previously the importance of empirical studies in the area. On the other hand, another important and probable the most used research method are Surveys.

If you take look, we are often asked to participate in surveys in our life, in different roles such as: electors, consumers, service user, and so on. Doing research, many times we have to design a survey to understand and characterize some particular phenomena. However, in some situations, we forget that there is a bunch of important material about it published in other sciences and, specially, in the software engineering area.

I am designing a survey to characterize the state of reuse measurement based on expert opinion and the series of paper published by Shari Pfleeger and her colleagues were and are being extremely valuable. Thus, if you need to understand, design, construct, and evaluate a survey, I strongly recommending these papers [P1, P2, P3, P4, P5, P6]. These papers gathered experience in the field during the last years and are extremely important for someone interested in this activity.

Regarding to reuse are, I recommend for example two papers in this direction [P1, P2]. The second one presents the state of software reuse in Brazil conducted by RiSE.


Eduardo Almeida said...

In this book (http://www.amazon.com/Guide-Advanced-Empirical-Software-Engineering/dp/184800043X), Barbara Kitchenham and Shari Pfleeger present a chapter (Personal Opinion Surveys) which discusses also this aspect. The chapter is related to their paper series.

Eduardo Almeida said...

Another classic book on the topic:

Eduardo Almeida said...

Guy Kawasaki discussed this topic also in his blog: