An Approach to Analyzing and Resolving Problems in the Problem-Driven Requirements Elicitation
Wang Bo, Zhao Haiyan, Zhang Wei, Jin Zhi, and Mei Hong
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Software requirements are stakeholders' expectations for the envisioned software. Researchers propose a problem driven approach to help stakeholders identify the requirements, that is, stakeholders firstly identify the problems of the current software, then find the solutions for the problems, and then elicit requirements based on the solutions. However, stakeholders usually cannot identify objective and consistent solutions, and describe the solutions clearly. Our previous work focuses on the whole process of the problem-driven scenario-based requirements elicitation. In this paper, we enrich our previous work by proposing a collaborative problem analysis and resolution approach, with the purpose of helping stakeholders identify the objective and consistent solutions. The basic idea of the approach is that stakeholders first discuss the understandability, value, and reasons of the problems; then they identify objective solutions through associating reasons to the solutions. To this end, we provide the classifications of problems, a meta-model of problems and collaborative elements, and a collaborative problem analysis process. Moreover, our approach provides mechanisms to help stakeholders handle the interrelated problems, and mechanisms to assess the degree of the collaboration. We have implemented a Web-based tool (i.e., CPART) and used the “University Class System” to conduct case studies, which shows that our approach is useful in practice.