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The effects of test driven development on software productivity and software quality

Ünlü, Cumhur
In the 1990s, software projects became larger in size and more complicated in structure. The traditional development processes were not able to answer the needs of these growing projects. Comprehensive documentation in traditional methodologies made processes slow and discouraged the developers. Testing, after all code is written, was time consuming, too costly and made error correction and debugging much harder. Fixing the code at the end of the project also affects the internal quality of the software. Agile software development processes evolved to bring quick solutions to these existing problems of the projects. Test Driven Development (TDD) is a technique, used in many agile methodologies, that suggests minimizing documentation, writing automated tests before implementing the code and frequently run tests to get immediate feedback. The aim is to increase software productivity by shortening error correction duration and increase software quality by providing rapid feedback to the developer. In this thesis work, a software project is developed with TDD and compared with a control project developed using traditional development techniques in terms of software productivity and software quality. In addition, TDD project is compared with an early work in terms of product quality. The benefits and the challenges of TDD are also investigated during the whole process.