STARCANADA 2018 Tutorial: Exploratory Testing in Practice


Tuesday, October 16, 2018 - 8:30am to 12:00pm

Exploratory Testing in Practice

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Many traditional test teams are augmenting their documented test plans and test cases with a structured, exploratory approach. Teams adopting agile methods are replacing ad-hoc testing with exploratory techniques, allowing all development team members to effectively participate in product testing. Exploratory testing is all about simultaneously learning about the software you are testing while you are designing and executing the tests. It is used by developers for unit testing, independent testing teams for integration or system testing, and by customers implementing acceptance testing of developed or commercial off-the-shelf software packages. In this interactive tutorial, students learn about and practice session-based exploratory testing, a framework to organize testing into a series of time boxed missions or “charters.” In fulfilling a test charter, you use your skills and experience to adapt your testing actions as you learn what the application does. Through this process, one discovery leads to another and another as you explore the software under test. Exploratory testers add permanent value to projects by constructing practical notes, which provide short valuable logs that record what was discovered during each testing session.

Chris Blain
Medidata Solutions, Inc.

Chris Blain has 22 years of experience working in software development on projects ranging from embedded systems to cloud applications. He offers, to students and companies, a powerful mix of real-world experience and the latest research knowledge. He has worked as an engineering manager, test manager, developer, coach, and test architect in a wide variety of domains including developer tools, security, test and measurement, regulated healthcare, real-time systems, and large scale distributed systems. Chris is a former board member of the Pacific Northwest Software Quality Conference and a regular conference speaker and instructor. His main interests are testing, distributed systems, programming languages, and helping teams deliver higher quality software.