In sunny Florence last May, ICSE 2015 saw the birth of JSEET 2015 (http://2015.icse-conferences.org/call-dates/call-for-contributions/jseet), a new Joint Program merging the ICSE Software Engineering Education and Training Track (SEET) and the Conference on Software Engineering Education and Training (CSEE&T) communities. The OU was well represented with two publications from the Computing and Communications department outlining recent innovations in our Software Engineering (SE) offering both at undergraduate and postgraduate levels:
- Michel Wermelinger, Jon Hall, Lucia Rapanotti, Leonor Barroca, Magnus Ramage, and Arosha Bandara. Teaching software systems thinking at the Open University. In Proceedings of the International Conference on Software Engineering (Joint Software Engineering Education and Training track), Florence, Italy, May 2015. IEEE Press.
- Jon Hall and Lucia Rapanotti. Masters-level software engineering education and the enriched student context. In Proceedings of the International Conference on Software Engineering (Joint Software Engineering Education and Training track), Florence, Italy, May 2015. IEEE Press.
Among the things which caught my interest was Barry Boehm and Supannika K. Mobasser’s work on “System Thinking: Educating T-Shaped Software Engineers,” which very much echoed our ethos of educating software engineers to be both technically competent and “prepared to participate in the increasing numbers of projects involving multi-discipline system thinking, and in strong need of software skills.” In fact, there was a distinctive systems flavour across the whole of ICSE, which, I must admit, was a lot less “nerdy” than I remembered from previous editions.
Another highlight was the panel discussion on Industry/University Collaboration in Software Engineering Education led by Nancy R. Mead (CMU), with much comparing of notes and reflecting on our strategies.
Also, for those among us with an interest in coding skills, Judith Bishop (Microsoft Research) presented Code Hunt (https://www.codehunt.com), a gaming platform which “enables players to program against the computer with clues provided as unit tests” and how it has been used to run coding context at scale, something the OU may well have an interest in.
Overall, it was great to see SE education on an equal footing with SE research and practice at ICSE this year and to be able to mingle with people who were equally passionated about both. I can also see so much more of our work being represented at this premier SE conference in the years to come.