Self-Admitted Technical Debt (SATD) is when developers intentionally choose to take short-cuts, non-optimal solutions (e.g. temporary fix or rush code development) that negatively contribute to long-term source-code quality in order to achieve short-term goals such as product deadline. Several studies have successfully identified SATD through the source-comments, classified them into five types (design debt, defect debt, documentation debt, requirement debt, and test debt) based on how they negatively affect different parts of the source-code and proposed a tool that automatically detects SATD using the source comments as input. However, few papers deeply investigate the types of SATD and their effects on the software projects. In this paper, we introduce a new type of SATD - we call it API debt - that is related to core API or third-party libraries. In addition, we quantify the amount of API-debt that are found in our selected data-sets, why it is introduced and finally measuring the amount of API-debt removal.

Library of Congress Subject Headings

Software failures--Research; Application program interfaces (Computer software)--Quality control; Software engineering--Management; Software documentation

Publication Date


Document Type


Student Type


Degree Name

Software Engineering (MS)

Department, Program, or Center

Software Engineering (GCCIS)


Mohamed Wiem Mkaouer

Advisor/Committee Member

Christian Newman

Advisor/Committee Member

Yasmin El-Glaly


RIT – Main Campus

Plan Codes