Oslo XP Meetup Message Board › Participate in Pair Programming Research

Participate in Pair Programming Research

A former member
Post #: 1
Hi there,

most of you probably know about Pair Programming, and hopefully some of you also put it in practice. And if you do, you probably had both some good and some bad experiences, which maybe even led you to love it or to abandon it altogether.

Despite being the subject of academic research for many years, there is still no conclusive answer to the question how Pair Programming actually works -- let alone whether (or under which circumstances) it is "better" than Solo Programming.

I am a researcher, and I want to answer these questions. In particular, I am interested in the knowledge transfer aspect of Pair Programming. Some teams use Pair Programming especially to speed up new team members, or to
hand-over a piece of code to a colleague. You might have noticed that you were able to solve tasks pairwise that neither of you would have been able to solve individually -- at least not that efficiently.

These are the things I am interested in. I want to understand how this works, how these positive effects emerge, and, eventually, how this can be taught to other developers.

Why am I telling you this? Because I do not want to let students solve some artificial tasks in a computer lab. Rather, I would like to study how the actual work is done, i.e. I want to see how you are working on tasks you chose yourself, at a time and with a partner of your choice.
Don't worry, all of this is strictly confidential, and I am not interested in source code, but in the process of Pair Programming itself. The research process does not take more than a few minutes from your time, and I'm offering you a reflective discussion the day after the PP session (like a Retrospective in Scrum, but only for the two of you and scoped to one PP session).

So, if you are doing Pair Programming at least occasionally (e.g. one session per week), or if you want to (re-)introduce it and have scientific back-up for this, please contact me -- the same holds if have you any questions, of course. I am currently staying in Oslo, at the Simula Research Laboratory, so we can also meet in person if you want discuss some details.

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