Effects of Sketching on Program Comprehension



Sketching is an important means of communication in software engineering practice. Further, sketching supports problem-solving and understanding. Yet, there is little research investigating the use of sketches. We want to contribute a better understanding of sketching, in particular its use during program comprehension. To this end, we conduct a controlled experiment to investigate the effectiveness and efficiency of program comprehension with the support of sketches as well as what sketches are used in what way. This experiment will be realized with participants of the 17th International Conference on Agile Processes in Software Engineering (XP 2016). Beside running this experiment, we will interview software practitioners on how and why they use sketches.

Experiment and Interviews @ XP 2016

Everyone interested either in participating in the sketching experiment or in an interview about their sketching practice should write an email to researchsbaltescom.

Both the experiment as well as the interviews take place in the Lessel room in St. Leonards Hall.

For updates on the study, you can follow s_baltes on Twitter.


Sebastian Baltes, Stefan Wagner: Effects of Sketching on Program Comprehension (Research Plan). In: Proceedings of the 17th International Conference on Agile Processes in Software Engineering and Extreme Programming (XP'16).

Sebastian Baltes and Stephan Diehl: Sketches and Diagrams in Practice. In: Proceedings of the 22nd ACM SIGSOFT International Symposium on Foundations of Software Engineering (FSE'14).

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