The success of having software
programmers work in pairs greatly depends on the ability level of those
individual programmers, two UT Arlington College of Business professors have
written in a recently released paper.
The paper also concluded that
using design patterns can greatly improve the quality of software programs and
the productivity of programmers.
Radha Mahapatra and Sridhar Nerur, professor and associate professor in the Information Systems and Operations Management
Department of the College of Business, published a paper on software programming aids in MIS Quarterly this month.
Professor Radha Mahapatra and Associate
Professor Sridhar Nerur, both in the Information Systems and Operations
Management Department of the College of Business, recently published “Distributed
Cognition in Software Design: An Experimental Investigation of the Role of
Design Patterns and Collaboration” in the prestigious MIS Quarterly.
MIS Quarterly is the premier
academic journal in the information systems discipline.
Rachel Croson, UT Arlington
College of Business dean, said that MIS Quarterly is an elite publication,
which speaks to the quality and importance of this work.
“This research draws from
insights and techniques in organizational behavior and applies them to
programming,” Croson said. “Their results suggest how firms could greatly speed
up software programming without sacrificing quality.”
In recent times, paired
development has gained considerable traction among software developers.
However, Mahapatra and Nerur conclusions on using paired development were
“We concluded that programmers working
in pairs helps the software design process many times,” Mahapatra said.
“However, for the very top echelon of programmers, working alone yields the
Mahapatra and Nerur co-authored
the paper with George Mangalaraj, a UT Arlington doctoral graduate and
currently an associate professor of Information Systems at Western Illinois
University, and Ken Price, a professor emeritus in the UT Arlington College of
Business Management Department.
The other major conclusion of
the paper was that relying on the use of design patterns improves positive
outcomes in software design. Design patterns help software developers create
superior quality software at less time.
“Software design is a very labor
and knowledge intensive endeavor. About two out of three new software projects
are deemed unsuccessful, according to an industry report,” Nerur said. “What
we’ve demonstrated through a controlled experiment is that relying on design
patterns can help programmers be more successful.”
The researchers said many
software design companies are constantly seeking ways to improve productivity
and quality. They said companies who can save a small percentage of time and
personnel expense in avoiding bad code early in the process could yield big
results down the road.
The University of Texas at
Arlington is a comprehensive research institution and the second largest
institution in The University of Texas System. The Chronicle of Higher
Education ranked UT Arlington as the seventh fastest-growing public
research university in 2013. U.S. News & World Report ranks
UT Arlington fifth in the nation for undergraduate diversity. Visit www.uta.edu to learn more. Follow
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