Understanding the impact of assumptions on experimental validity

J. Carver, J. VanVoorhis, V. Basili
2004 Proceedings. 2004 International Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering, 2004. ISESE '04.  
Empirical studies are used frequently in software engineering as a method for studying and understanding software engineering techniques and methods. When conducting studies, researchers make assumptions about three objects, people, processes and products. Researchers usually focus their study on only one of those objects. But, regardless of which type of object is chosen as the focus of the study, researchers make assumptions about all three objects. The impact of those assumptions on
more » ... mptions on experimental validity varies depending on the focus of the study. In this paper, we discuss the various types of assumptions that researchers make. We relate those assumptions back to some concepts from social science research. We then use the results of a people-focused study to illustrate the impact of the assumptions on the results of that study.
doi:10.1109/isese.2004.1334912 fatcat:2u7zwft25nb6rcizohdfpl37wa