Does the Level of Detail of UML Models Affect the Maintainability of Source Code?

  • Ana M. Fernández-Sáez
  • Marcela Genero
  • Michel R. V. Chaudron
Conference paper
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 7167)


This paper presents an experiment carried out as a pilot study to obtain a first insight into the influence of the quality of UML models on the maintenance of the corresponding source code. The quality of the UML models is assessed by studying the amount of information they contain as measured through a level of detail metric. The experiment was carried out with 11 Computer Science students from the University of Leiden. The results obtained indicate a slight tendency towards obtaining better results when using low level of detail UML models, which contradicts our expectations based on previous research found in literature. Nevertheless, we are conscious that the results should be considered as preliminary results given the low number of subjects that participated in the experiment. Further replications of this experiment are planned with students and professionals in order to obtain more conclusive results.


UML maintenance empirical studies controlled experiment 


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Ana M. Fernández-Sáez
    • 1
  • Marcela Genero
    • 2
  • Michel R. V. Chaudron
    • 3
  1. 1.Alarcos Quality Center, S.L., Department of Technologies and Information SystemsUniversity of Castilla-La ManchaCiudad RealSpain
  2. 2.ALARCOS Research Group, Department of Technologies and Information SystemsUniversity of Castilla-La ManchaCiudad RealSpain
  3. 3.LIACSLeiden UniversityLeidenThe Netherlands

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