Programmers' performance on structured versus nonstructured function definitions

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Berg van den, K.G. and Broek van den, P.M. (1996) Programmers' performance on structured versus nonstructured function definitions. Information and Software Technology, 38 (7). pp. 477-491. ISSN 0950-5849

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Abstract:A control-flow model for functional programs is used in an experimental comparison of the performance of programmers on structured versus nonstructured Miranda function definitions. The performance is taken as a measure of the comprehensibility of functional programs. The experimental set-up is similar to the Scanlan study (1989). However, in the present study, a two-factor repeated measures design is used in the statistical analysis. The control-flow model appears to be useful in the shaping of the experiment. A significantly better performance has been found for structured function definitions on both dependent variables: the time needed to answer questions about the function definitions and the proportion correct answers. Moreover, for structured function definitions, a counter-intuitive result has been obtained: there are significantly fewer errors in larger definitions than in smaller ones.
Item Type:Article
Copyright:© 1996 Elsevier Science
Faculty:
Electrical Engineering, Mathematics and Computer Science (EEMCS)
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Link to this item:http://purl.utwente.nl/publications/57290
Official URL:http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/0950-5849(95)01085-8
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