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A Comparison of Requirements Specification Methods from a Software Architecture Perspective

Technical Report
In this report, five methods for the elicitation and expression of requirements are evaluated with respect to their ability to capture architecturally significant requirements.
Publisher

Software Engineering Institute

CMU/SEI Report Number
CMU/SEI-2006-TR-013
DOI (Digital Object Identifier)
10.1184/R1/6571622.v1

Abstract

One of the key challenges to producing high-quality software architecture is identifying and understanding the software's architecturally significant requirements. These requirements are the ones that have the most far-reaching effect on the architecture. In this report, five methods for the elicitation and expression of requirements are evaluated with respect to their ability to capture architecturally significant requirements. The methods evaluated are requirements specification using natural language, use case analysis, the Quality Attribute Workshop (developed by the Carnegie Mellon Software Engineering Institute), global analysis, and an approach developed by Fergus O'Brien. These methods were chosen because they are in widespread use or emphasize the capture of architecturally significant requirements. 

Three problems must be solved to systematically transform business and mission goals into architecturally significant requirements: (1) the requirements must be expressed in a form that provides the information necessary for design; (2) the elicitation of the requirements must capture architecturally significant requirements; and (3) the business and mission goals must provide systematic input for the elicitation process. The primary finding from the evaluation of these methods is that there are promising solutions to the first two problems. However, there is no method for systematically considering the business and mission goals in the requirements elicitation.

Cite This Technical Report

Bass, L., Bergey, J., Clements, P., Merson, P., Ozkaya, I., & Sangwan, R. (2006, August 1). A Comparison of Requirements Specification Methods from a Software Architecture Perspective. (Technical Report CMU/SEI-2006-TR-013). Retrieved May 26, 2024, from https://doi.org/10.1184/R1/6571622.v1.

@techreport{bass_2006,
author={Bass, Len and Bergey, John and Clements, Paul and Merson, Paulo and Ozkaya, Ipek and Sangwan, Raghvinder},
title={A Comparison of Requirements Specification Methods from a Software Architecture Perspective},
month={Aug},
year={2006},
number={CMU/SEI-2006-TR-013},
howpublished={Carnegie Mellon University, Software Engineering Institute's Digital Library},
url={https://doi.org/10.1184/R1/6571622.v1},
note={Accessed: 2024-May-26}
}

Bass, Len, John Bergey, Paul Clements, Paulo Merson, Ipek Ozkaya, and Raghvinder Sangwan. "A Comparison of Requirements Specification Methods from a Software Architecture Perspective." (CMU/SEI-2006-TR-013). Carnegie Mellon University, Software Engineering Institute's Digital Library. Software Engineering Institute, August 1, 2006. https://doi.org/10.1184/R1/6571622.v1.

L. Bass, J. Bergey, P. Clements, P. Merson, I. Ozkaya, and R. Sangwan, "A Comparison of Requirements Specification Methods from a Software Architecture Perspective," Carnegie Mellon University, Software Engineering Institute's Digital Library. Software Engineering Institute, Technical Report CMU/SEI-2006-TR-013, 1-Aug-2006 [Online]. Available: https://doi.org/10.1184/R1/6571622.v1. [Accessed: 26-May-2024].

Bass, Len, John Bergey, Paul Clements, Paulo Merson, Ipek Ozkaya, and Raghvinder Sangwan. "A Comparison of Requirements Specification Methods from a Software Architecture Perspective." (Technical Report CMU/SEI-2006-TR-013). Carnegie Mellon University, Software Engineering Institute's Digital Library, Software Engineering Institute, 1 Aug. 2006. https://doi.org/10.1184/R1/6571622.v1. Accessed 26 May. 2024.

Bass, Len; Bergey, John; Clements, Paul; Merson, Paulo; Ozkaya, Ipek; & Sangwan, Raghvinder. A Comparison of Requirements Specification Methods from a Software Architecture Perspective. CMU/SEI-2006-TR-013. Software Engineering Institute. 2006. https://doi.org/10.1184/R1/6571622.v1