Requirements Engineering Education and Training: Experiences from 20+ years in the Trenches
Many Requirements Engineering academics have encountered challenges in their design and delivery of high quality RE courses. Commercial RE education providers in industry face similar challenge in RE training. It has long been recognised that in RE education and training (REET) we need to combine the human centred tasks of stakeholder engagement, with the technical tasks to model, analyse, specify and validate requirements. Unfortunately, many of these skills cannot be learned by just listening to a lecture, or by performing simple exercises on a computer. The classroom environments have also changed dramatically in recent years as an increasing number of universities offer online courses. In this keynote, Dr Zowghi will share some experiences from her 20+ years journey of designing and teaching requirements engineering courses and her extensive REET collaborations with amazing colleagues. The RE community has developed extensive curriculum plans and has identified skill sets that requirements engineers need to develop. We have also engaged in meaningful discourses about how requirements principles and practices can best be taught and learned in several editions of REET workshop and panel discussions at the RE conference. Dr Zowghi will also present a challenge to the RE community on how to develop innovative and engaging activities to teach the future generation of requirements engineers.
Dr Didar Zowghi is Professor of Software Engineering and currently is Senior Principal Research Scientist in CSIRO’s Data61, and Conjoint Professor at the University of New South Wales (UNSW) in Sydney. She leads the “Diversity and Inclusion in AI” and “Requirements Engineering for Responsible AI” research at Data61. She also leads the National AI Centre’s Think Tank on Diversity and Inclusion in AI. She has previously held many academic leadership positions at the University of Technology Sydney (UTS): Deputy Dean of Graduate Research School , Director of university research centre for Human-Centred Technology Design, Director of Women in Engineering and Information Technology, Head of Department of Software Engineering, and Associate Dean Research. Before joining academia, she worked in software industry in the UK and Australia as a programmer, software engineer, analyst, consultant, and project manager.
Her past research was focused on improving the software development processes and its products. In particular, her research addresses issues in the communication rich, multidisciplinary activities of software development, referred to as Requirements Engineering (RE). She is an expert in the “Evidenced Based” and “Human Centred Design” research paradigms. She has supervised many research students across three universities in Sydney and many others internationally. Much of her research has been funded by the Australian Research Council (ARC) and other Australian government grants.
Professor Zowghi serves on the program committee of many national and international conferences including IEEE International Conference on Requirements Engineering (since 1998). She was its General Chair in 2010, Program Chair in 2015 and Steering Committee Chair (2016-2018) and received Lifetime Service Award in 2019 by IEEE for her leadership in Requirements Engineering research community. She is the recipient of the 2022 IEEE Computer Society TCSE Distinguished Education Award for “outstanding and sustained contribution to the Software Engineering community”. She is Associate Editor of IEEE Software and Requirements Engineering Journal. She has published over 200 research articles in prestigious conferences and journals and has co-authored papers with 90+ different researchers from 30+ countries.