Impact of the use of industrial modelling tools on modelling education
Paper in proceedings, 2016

It has been stated that industrial-grade modelling tools are unsuitable for teaching modelling. We assume, however, that the experiences of the teachers and the students is strongly connected to the support available. In this paper, we present our experience with a university course on software modelling. In the first year of the course, we used a commercial modelling tool, in the second year the open-source alternative Papyrus. Our quantitative analysis shows that the industrial-grade modelling tools with all their complexity did not have a negative impact on the students' experience of modelling. We analyse why our experience differs from published accounts and conclude that the availability of a tool champion and tailored instruction material is key. From this, we derive lessons learned and give recommendations on how to successfully use industrial-strength modelling tools in the classroom.

Open Source


Modelling Education


Grischa Liebel

Chalmers, Computer Science and Engineering (Chalmers), Software Engineering (Chalmers)

Rogardt Heldal

Chalmers, Computer Science and Engineering (Chalmers), Software Engineering (Chalmers)

Jan-Philipp Steghöfer

University of Gothenburg

29th IEEE Conference on Software Engineering Education and Training, CSEEandT 2016; Dallas; United States; 5 April 2016 through 6 April 2016


Subject Categories

Software Engineering





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