ICSE decided in 2015 to have a journal-first track in which they chose papers from the past year in either TOSEM or TSE that were not previously presented in a conference setting. Our paper was selected as one of these presentations, and this is that presentation. The abstract of the paper follows:
Software systems are increasingly regulated. Software engineers therefore must determine which requirements have met or exceeded their legal obligations and which requirements have not. Requirements that have met or exceeded their legal obligations are legally implementation ready, whereas requirements that have not met or exceeded their legal obligations need further refinement. In this paper, we examine how software engineers make these determinations using a multi-case study with three cases. Each case involves assessment of requirements for an electronic health record system that must comply with the U.S. Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and is measured against the evaluations of HIPAA compliance subject matter experts. Our first case examines how individual graduate-level software engineering students assess whether the requirements met or exceeded their HIPAA obligations. Our second case replicates the findings from our first case using a different set of participants. Our third case examines how graduate-level software engineering students assess requirements using the Wideband Delphi approach to deriving consensus in groups. Our findings suggest that the average graduate-level software engineering student is ill-prepared to write legally compliant software with any confidence and that domain experts are an absolute necessity.