When beginning a Software Testing project, several documents must be prepared as part of the process. These documents include a Test Plan, Test Scenarios and Test Cases.
It can be difficult to start these documents from scratch each time that you begin a new software testing project. Knowing where to begin is one of the greatest challenges in writing these plans. Using a template that has a detailed outline of required information can assist in this process.
Creating a Test Plan
A Software Test Plan (STP) documents the requirements that will be used to verify that a product or system meets its design specifications and other requirements.
The STP prescribes the objectives, approach, resources and schedule of all testing activities. The plan must identify the items to be tested, the features to be tested, the types of testing to be performed, the personnel responsible for testing, the resources and schedule required to complete testing, and the risks associated with the plan. The Test Plan should also discuss any deliverables for testing, including references to test scenarios.
A test plan is usually prepared by a team lead or test engineer, with significant input from developers.
Creating a Test Scenario
A Scenario, also known as a Test Condition or Test Possibility, identifies the functionality to be tested. A Scenario includes a set of test cases to ensure that the business process flows are tested from end to end. They may be independent tests, or a series of succeeding tests, each dependent on the output of the previous one. Any connection to the test plan should be referenced in the test scenario.
Creating a Test Case
A test case is a set of conditions or variables from which a software tester will determine whether an application, software system or a feature is working as it was intended. It may take many test cases to determine that a software program or system has been sufficiently scrutinized before released. Test cases are often referred to as test scripts after being written and collected into test suites.
The characteristics of a good test case are:
- Accurate: Expressly articulates the purpose.
- Economical: No unnecessary steps or words.
- Traceable: Capable of being traced to requirements.
- Repeatable: Can be used to perform the test as many times as necessary.
- Reusable: Can be reused if necessary.
- Independent: Each test case should be executable in any order, without any dependency on other test cases.
- Concise: The description of a test case should be simple and clear. A tester should be able to understand it by reading it once.
- Before writing any test cases, one should concentrate on the various scenarios which the product will face at a customer’s site.
- Because plans, scenarios and cases form the base for future test cases and testing, you should designate sufficient writing time, followed by a thorough review process.
- Scenarios should be brief and succinct. The purpose of a test scenario is not to provide details, but to convey a specific idea about testing a particular case.