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Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Steps to become a better software tester - can do these over a period of time - Part 8

In previous posts (How to improve your software testing skills), I have been talking about what are some of the properties that can make you a better tester. Some of these attributes can take some time to acquire, and some of them can happen fairly easily, as long as you are convinced that this is the right thing to do. Here are some more tips that you can implement for making yourself a better tester:
- Learn how to break your application into smaller modules / components. It is always easy to test components, write test cases for them, and so on. A good tester is able to review software applications under testing, and figure out how to break these applications into smaller discrete components for which individual test plans can be written, and even specific testing done for them.
- If you have limited time, then ensure that you write test cases that first describe the functionality that is supposed to work, and then you put the time on writing test cases that cover the functionality where the system is not supposed to work (for example, conditions where very high values are entered, or negative values, and so on). The same logic needs to be put in for the testing where there is time limitations. Typically, it is expected that a system will work for both negative and positive values that are entered, so enough time needs to be entered for the complete set of testing to happen. However, if there needs to be a priority in terms of how much time should be set aside for testing of positive and negative values, then testing needs to be focused on the positive values and then the negative values.
If you do reach a situation where you have to prioritize between testing for positive and negative values, then make sure that you have made your opinion known and your management knows about the amount of testing that is done, and the risks inherent with a reduced amount of testing.

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