Fields of Research

To advance the state of the art of software engineering, our research group is active in the following fields of research

Test Languages

A strong focus of our research group is the analysis and improvement of software quality. One pillar of our research in this area is the work on test languages. Prof. Grabowski contributed to the development of the two test languages TTCN-3 and the UML Testing Profile (UTP). We are still active in the maintenance of TTCN-3 and the development of tools for the maintenance of TTCN-3 test suites. Furthermore, we are heavily involved in the development of the Test Description Language (TDL).

Software Engineering and Data Science

Empirical studies are an important aspect of software engineering research. In our research group, we apply data science methods to software engineering problems to improve and empirically assess different parts of the software development life cyle. This includes the development of novel software mining techniques, e.g., for defect prediction, developer-specific models, and simulations of software projects to create decision support systems for project managers. Furthermore, our interest also goes in the other direction: how can we use our software engineering skills to advance data science? We work together with domain researchers to develop data science software that answers their research questions, investigate the replicability of studies, and are interested the quality assurance of data science tools. 

Usability Engineering

One source of information for our software quality assurance methodologies is the actual usage of a software. We record the actions that users perform and derive different types of usage models. With our tool suite AutoQUEST, we use these models to perform an automated usability evaluation of the software. We established this approach for websites and desktop software and currently transfer it to Augmented and Virtual Reality. The intermediate usage models also serve as basis for generating test cases that represent the average system usage. Within the MIDAS European project, we utilized and extended this approach for testing Service Oriented Architectures (SOAs).

Distributed Systems

Clouds are a still growing and changing field of development. In our research, we investigate the interoperability between clouds and other distributed systems and try to analyze how existing applications can be ported to the cloud. This is especially important for scientific applications. Within this area, we put a special focus on model-based cloud deployments.

For Service Level Agreements, an assessments of the reliability of distributed systems is important. However, the complex setups and runtime dynamicity of cloud systems are a challenge when doing these assessments. Therefore, we investigate how we can determine the reliability of a cloud indirectly through the reliability of the services and components it is built upon.


Diverse work of our group takes place in the context of collaborations. Under the umbrella of the Simulation Science Center Clausthal / Göttingen, we advance our software process simulation approaches and contribute to the deployment of simulations in the cloud with a Simulation Platform as a Service (SPaaS) approach. Furthermore, we are active in several Special Task Forces (STF) and in an Industry Specification Group (ISG) at ETSI. Here we contribute to the maintenance of TTCN-3, to the development of TDL, and to the specification of a framework for Augmented Reality applications. In the DFG funded GAIUS project we collaborate with the University of Greifswald on the development of the bioinformatics tool AUGUSTUS. 

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