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Automatic Software Bug Detection and Fixing by Learning from Large Code Examples

PGR-P-450

Key facts

Type of research degree
PhD
Application deadline
Ongoing deadline
Country eligibility
International (open to all nationalities, including the UK)
Funding
Competition funded
Source of funding
University of Leeds
Supervisors
Dr Zheng Wang
<h2 class="heading hide-accessible">Summary</h2>

You are invited to apply for a PhD to start in around October 2020. If your application is successful you will join the Distributed Systems and Services research group at the School of Computing at the University of Leeds under the supervision of Dr Zheng Wang. This project seeks to build the first system to automatically detect and fix software bugs by learning from massive code examples. It will do so by combining natural language processing and compiler-based code analysis technologies to first extract the past development knowledge by mining open-sourced projects, and then use the learned knowledge to automatically detect and repair bugs for new programs. This project will create new methods, analyses, techniques and tools for an exciting vision that software development is highly automated. If successful, this project can free millions of software developers from the time-consuming, error-prone process of software debugging in the long-term.

<h2 class="heading hide-accessible">Full description</h2>

<p>Software defects (or bugs) are a serious problem. Due to the drastic efforts involved in this process, countless software applications are shipped with many known and unknown bugs, which can crash critical computing systems or expose serious security vulnerabilities. As we are increasingly relying on computing systems, there is a critical need to find a better way to tackle software bugs.</p> <p>&nbsp;</p> <p>This project seeks to build the first system to automatically detect and fix software bugs by learning from massive code examples. It will do so by combining natural language processing and compiler-based code analysis technologies to first extract the past development knowledge by mining open-sourced projects, and then use the learned knowledge to automatically detect and repair bugs for new programs. This project will create new methods, analyses, techniques and tools for an exciting vision that software development is highly automated. If successful, this project can free millions of software developers from the time-consuming, error-prone process of software debugging in the long-term.</p>

<h2 class="heading">How to apply</h2>

<p>Formal applications for research degree study should be made online through the&nbsp;<a href="http://www.leeds.ac.uk/rsa/prospective_students/apply/I_want_to_apply.html">University&#39;s website</a>. Please state clearly in the research information section&nbsp;that the research degree you wish to be considered for is &lsquo;Automatic Software Bug Detection and Fixing by Learning from Large Code Examples&rsquo; as well as&nbsp;<a href="https://eps.leeds.ac.uk/computing/staff/6452/dr-zheng-wang">Dr Zheng Wang</a> as your proposed supervisor.</p> <p>If English is not your first language, you must provide evidence that you meet the University&#39;s minimum English language requirements (below).</p> <p><em>We welcome applications from all suitably-qualified candidates, but UK black and minority ethnic (BME) researchers are currently under-represented in our Postgraduate Research community, and we would therefore particularly encourage applications from UK BME candidates. All scholarships will be awarded on the basis of merit.</em></p>

<h2 class="heading heading--sm">Entry requirements</h2>

Applicants to research degree programmes should normally have at least a first class or an upper second class British Bachelors Honours degree (or equivalent) in an appropriate discipline. The criteria for entry for some research degrees may be higher, for example, several faculties, also require a Masters degree. Applicants are advised to check with the relevant School prior to making an application. Applicants who are uncertain about the requirements for a particular research degree are advised to contact the School or Graduate School prior to making an application.

<h2 class="heading heading--sm">English language requirements</h2>

The minimum English language entry requirement for research postgraduate research study is an IELTS of 6.0 overall with at least 5.5 in each component (reading, writing, listening and speaking) or equivalent. The test must be dated within two years of the start date of the course in order to be valid. Some schools and faculties have a higher requirement.

<h2 class="heading">Funding on offer</h2>

<p>Self-Funding Students or;</p> <p><br /> Funding Eligibility<br /> UK/EU &ndash; Leeds Doctoral Scholarship Award, School of Computing&nbsp;Scholarship award, each paying Academic Fees and Maintenance matching EPSRC rate of &pound;15,009 per year for 3 years. &nbsp;Alumni Bursary for University of Leeds graduates offering 10% discount on Academic Fees.</p> <p>International Students &ndash; China Scholarship Council-University of Leeds Scholarship Award, School of Computing&nbsp;Scholarship award, each paying Academic Fees for 3 years, Commonwealth Scholarship. &nbsp;Alumni Bursary for University of Leeds graduates offering 10% discount on Academic Fees.</p>

<h2 class="heading">Contact details</h2>

<p>For further information please contact Doctoral College Admissions by&nbsp;email:&nbsp;<a href="mailto:EMAIL@leeds.ac.uk">p</a><a href="mailto:phd@engineering.leeds.ac.uk">hd@engineering.leeds.ac.uk</a>&nbsp;or by&nbsp;telephone: +44 (0)113 343 5057.</p>


<h3 class="heading heading--sm">Linked funding opportunities</h3>
<h3 class="heading heading--sm">Linked research areas</h3>