The symposium will feature the following tutorials designed to be accessible to anyone in the general software engineering community.
An Introduction to Search Based Software Engineering
Mark Harman, University College London, UK
Abstract: This talk will provide a brief introduction to the field of Search Based Software Engineering (SBSE) to (re)establish the context in which we are working in this symposium. There is a paper in the proceedings of the symposium this year, entitled "Ten Years of Search Based Software Engineering: A Bibliometric Analysis" by Fabrício Freitas and Jerffeson Souza. This means that there will be no need for me to survey the history of the subject in this talk. Rather, I will provide a very brief introduction to the field of SBSE, summarising some of its advantages and motivations, explaining why software is the ideal engineering material for optimisation algorithms and how SBSE can serve to (re)unify apparently unconnected areas of Software Engineering.
Conducting and Analyzing Empirical Studies in Search-Based Software Engineering
Lionel Briand, Simula Research Labs, Norway
Abstract: Search-Based Software Engineering (SBSE) has shown itself to be a promising and practical approach to address many long-standing software engineering problems (e.g., test case generation, automatic bug fixing, release planning). They must, however, be carefully evaluated through empirical studies, for example in terms of cost-effectiveness and scalability. Indeed, in most cases, there exist alternatives to solutions based on search, and a careful comparison is typically needed in order to better understand under which conditions each technique can be expected to perform best. However, because search algorithms are randomized (e.g., metaheuristic search) and many contextual factors can affect their outcome, designing, running, and analyzing such empirical studies is fraught with issues and potential threats to validity. This tutorial aims at providing a number of introductory and fundamental principles to guide the design, execution, and analysis of empirical studies in SBSE. Though such principles will in many cases apply to contexts other than SBSE, the tutorial will target issues that are specific to that realm of research and use representative examples from its literature.