SketchUML: A TabletPC-based eLearning Tool for the UML Syntax

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Focus Group Session

Our focus group session at SUNY Oswego, conducted in collaboration with faculty and staff of SUNY Oswego, resulted in some positive feedback as well as some steps to take towards improvement of SketchUML. We were successful in gaining knowledge about SketchUML that we as designers may not have seen. Given the opportunity to sit with faculty and staff we were able to accommodate the user in their learning and use of the product. After completing the focus group session we designed a strategy to improve SketchUML with students through usability testing. It is our vision that the focus group findings will help aid in the improvement of SketchUML and make it a very useful and usable product.

Below you can find a list of example comments that emerged from the Focus Group Session. These issues are addressed in current and future development.

  • Export the class diagram to framework source code like Java, C++, or C#
  • Reverse engineer source code into a UML class diagram, for example import a file or package
  • Add more UML features, for example visibility symbols like:
    • '+' public class
    • '-' private class
    • '#'protected class
    • '~' package
  • Allow users to add an 'interface' class
  • Implement inheritance assumptions (dotted lines)
  • Auto capitalize classes
  • Auto lower case attributes and operations
  • Simple connector should to be a syntactical UML association upon creation
  • Optimize screen space for diagram layout, for example add a scroll pane
  • Add a layout algorithm with undo feature to unclutter diagrams
  • Provide more feedback to indicate which mode SketchUML is currently in: student vs. teacher mode