Applied Exploratory Testing

27 April

In June we launch a brand new program - Applied Exploratory Testing.  We talk with Practice Lead, Toby Thompson about the course.


1. How has this course changed?

The course is a lot more practical – the hands on element is a really important factor because while you’re performing activities you can ask questions and learn from the instructor. We decided to change the flow as well – from working out what everyone thinks Exploratory Testing is to slowly building on that baseline knowledge with a heap of techniques and tools which we experiment with throughout the course.  This culminates in putting all of the learning together in the final few practical exercises. So it will be high intensity all the way through, we want participants to keep wanting more – it’s like a page turner of a book – and not one that fizzles at the end.


2. Why have we made these changes?

We have kept the best bits from the old course and incorporated even better bits from our imagination and experience. It’s a course I’ve wanted to write for ages – the lecturing is minimal – anything we think you can easily look up and research has been collated and we will provide a link for all participants to download a repository that contains interesting articles, blogs, tools and the like – it’s a really comprehensive library of information. It allows us to focus on the practical elements of the course which is where the magic happens.


3. What skills can you expect to develop from completing this course?

The key outcomes are to improve one’s exploring, thinking, critiquing, modelling, and questioning capabilities, and to help people add value to their projects in any context with any software development lifecycle (and at any stage during that lifecycle). I’ve already seen improvements in my own thinking from the development of the course.


4. Why is exploratory testing so important?

It’s a big question. It is not a haphazard, slapdash approach – there’s a lot of structure and forethought and risk analysis involved. The systems we are building are not that straightforward, they’re often complex and interdependent with a host of other systems, with an infinite number of permutations and potential failure modes. It makes sense that we enhance our brainpower to best deal with the complexity – this course is more about enhancing that brainpower in order to perform the best possible testing in the given time.


5. How will the course benefit you?

Participants can benefit from learning to structure their thinking and test idea generation skills by using a number of frameworks, techniques and tools that can be instantly put into practice. These tools allow testers to add value in any context – for example, during the static testing of a specification document, during the elaboration of a story, during experiments, when there is limited time and documentation, and during test execution.