Year of Publication

2009

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Document Type

Dissertation

College

Engineering

Department

Computer Science

First Advisor

Dr. Jane Huffman Hayes

Abstract

A large number of software projects exist and will continue to be developed that have textual requirements and textual design elements where the design elements should fully satisfy the requirements. Current techniques to assess the satisfaction of requirements by corresponding design elements are largely manual processes that lack formal criteria and standard practices. Software projects that require satisfaction assessment are often very large systems containing several hundred requirements and design elements. Often these projects are within a high assurance project domain, where human lives and millions of dollars of funding are at stake. Manual satisfaction assessment is expensive in terms of hours of human effort and project budget. Automated techniques are not currently applied to satisfaction assessment.

This dissertation addresses the problem of automated satisfaction assessment for English, textual documents and the generation of candidate satisfaction assessments that can then be verified by a human analyst with far less effort and time expenditure than is required to produce a manual satisfaction assessment. Validation results to date show that automated satisfaction methods produce candidate satisfaction assessments sufficient to greatly reduce the effort required to assess the satisfaction of textual requirements by textual design elements.

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