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Comments on 'A Critical Look'
July/August 1991 (vol. 8 no. 4)
pp. 42-46

It is maintained that the article by T. Bollinger and C. McGowan, entitled 'A critical look at software capability evaluation', see ibid., p.25-41 (1991), contains a serious flaw. The article argues that the process-maturity grading system used by the Software Engineering Institute (SEI) is unfair and provides too narrow a basis for evaluating software organizations. The present authors point out that SEI instructs Software Capability Evaluation (SCE) auditors not to base their compact-award recommendations on maturity grades for software vendors. Other common misconceptions about the SEI assessment method communicated by the article are addressed. They fall into six categories: SCE's purpose, especially in relation to process assessment; how the SCE method works in practice; the statistical methods used to determine levels; the ongoing process of refining the method; the maturity framework; and the coverage of technology issues.

Index Terms:
software grading methods; process-maturity grading system; Software Engineering Institute; SEI; Software Capability Evaluation; software vendors; DP industry; software reliability
Citation:
Watts S. Humphrey, Bill Curtis, "Comments on 'A Critical Look'," IEEE Software, vol. 8, no. 4, pp. 42-46, July-Aug. 1991, doi:10.1109/52.300033
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