Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Publication Date



The quest for teaching a method of data collection in programming experiences was marked with successes and failures. We believe that software development curricula must provide students with knowledge and experience related to the practice of data collection, which will measure the effort put into a software project. By recording their past effort in software projects, students can more accurately estimate the amount of effort and time required to complete a future software project. Students can also learn the amount of effort required to develop “correct” software and begin to estimate the amount of time required, per software phase, to fix errors. This paper recounts the educational challenges that were found in the quest to teach a method of gathering data called Personal Software Process (PSP) in the Computer Science curriculum at Southern Polytechnic State University (SPSU). After faculty training, a plan was devised for incorporation of PSP into the curriculum in stages. These stages began with a Pilot experience in the fall of 2000, a total incorporation in the first programming course in the spring of 2001, and incorporation into the second programming course in the fall of 2001. A method for assessment of this new ingredient was outlined.

This paper shows the progressive venture into this quest and explains the findings and conclusion that were made regarding the data collecting method called PSP in our curriculum. Finally, future plans of incorporating alternative methods and the future of PSP elements into the curriculum with the assessment plans are discussed.


In 2001 ASEE Southeast Section conference proceedings.