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Three More Accepted Papers for INFO Department Staff

Wednesday, 8 November 2017

Conference: APSEC 2017 (Asia-Pacific Software Engineering Conference), 4th – 8th December, Jiangsu, China

Boundary Spanners in Open Source Software Development: A Study of Python Email Archives

Pankajeshwara N. Sharma, Bastin Tony Roy Savarimuthu, Nigel Stanger

Open source has become a significant movement in software development, enabling the creation of high quality, freely available software by teams of volunteer developers distributed around the world. Popular open source software projects (such as the Python programming language) can attract quite sizeable communities, but most of the development work is usually carried out by a small subset of “core” developers. The stability and longevity of this core developer group are crucial for the success of a project. Earlier research has identified key individuals in open source development projects, but has not considered “boundary spanning” individuals whose responsibilities span different functional areas, e.g., development-centric vs. user-centric activities. In this article, we propose an approach to identify core boundary spanners and their roles within the community, by analysing email communications amongst core developers of the Python programming language. We also propose an approach to identify potential replacements for a community administrator who steps down.

Conference: ICCE2017 - 25th International Conference on Computers in Education : 4th – 8th December, 2017, Christchurch, New Zealand

Title: “Go Kahoot!” Enriching Classroom Engagement, Motivation and Learning Experience with Games

Authors: Sherlock A. Licorish, Jade Li George, Helen. E. Owen, Ben Daniel

Summary: Technology is being increasingly integrated into teaching so as to enhance students’ engagement and motivation. In particular, game-based student response systems can improve students’ learning experience. In this paper we report on the outcomes of employing a game-based student response system called Kahoot! into a university course. In order to examine the efficacy of the system in engaging students during lectures, we conducted semi-structured interviews with them to learn about the extent to which Kahoot! contributed to a positive learning experience. We also explored students’ views about Kahoot!’s influence on classroom dynamics, motivation, and the learning process. Overall findings reveal that the deployment of Kahoot! enriches the quality of student learning in the classroom, with the best influence being reported in classroom dynamics, engagement, motivation, and improved learning experience. We also learned that the use of games in the classroom can largely minimise distracting classroom behaviours and activities, and improve the quality of teaching and learning beyond what is provided in conventional classrooms (e.g., normal PowerPoint slides, and chalk and talk).
This paper has been nominated for the best technical design paper award.

Conference: CITRENZ2017 - 8th Annual conference of Computing and Information Technology Research and Education New Zealand and the 30th Annual Conference of the National Advisory Committee on Computing Qualifications : October, 1st -4th, 2017, Napier, New Zealand

Title: Reflections on the use of Agile practices and associated tools in university settings for an Android project

Authors: Elijah Zolduoarrati, Adriaan Lotter, Kevin Michael, Rohullah Mohammadi, Nick Alessi, Sherlock A. Licorish

Summary: Management of software projects can be improved by using Agile methods such as Scrum. In particular, there is a popular view that such methods, if introduced properly at the university level, could translate into developers who are both highly skilled and satisfied with their chosen career. This paper reflects on the perceived effectiveness of implementing recommended Agile software development practices and tools through the use of Scrum for developing an Android app as part of a university semester-long course. The app captures, stores, uploads, retrieves, shares and manages digital receipts, in overcoming the problems associated with misplacement, storing and organization for manual receipts. Evidence in our reflections demonstrates that implementing Agile software development practices and tools for a university project significantly contribute to project success and quality. Our outcomes provide lessons both for the mentoring of students in the use of Agile practices, and for novice developers using Agile methods in real projects.
This paper received the runner up award for Educational Innovation.