How to write good test cases?

In this tutorial, we will learn – how to write good test cases? Before starting with the best practices for test case writing, I would request you to check our articles – What is a test case? and Test Case Template (Xls). These tutorials will help you with the basics of test cases.

First let’s find why test cases are important.

Basically, a test case is a set of conditions for evaluating a software product to determine its compliance with the business requirements. Having an ill-formed test case can lead to severe defect leakage. This can cost both time and money. So, writing effective test cases is the utmost requirement for the success of any software product.

How to write good test cases?

Best Practices for Test Case Writing

  1. Test design technique
    Follow a test design technique best suited for your organization or project-specific needs like – boundary value analysis, equivalence class partitioning, etc. This ensures that well-researched standards and practices are implemented during test case creation.

  2. Clear and concise tests
    The test case summary, description, test steps, expected results, etc should be written in a clear and concise way. These should be easily understandable by the different stakeholders in testing.

  3. Uniform nomenclature
    In order to maintain consistency across the different test cases, we should follow a uniform nomenclature and set of standards, while writing the test cases.

  4. Fundamental/Atomic Test cases
    Create test cases as fundamental as possible. So, a test case should only test a single unit of functionality without merging or overlapping multiple testable parts.

  5. Leave no scope of ambiguity
    Write test cases with a clear set of instructions. For example – instead of writing “Open homepage”, write – “Open homepage – http://www.{homepageURL}.com in the browser and press enter”.

  6. No Assumptions
    While writing test cases do not assume any functionality, pre-requisite, or state of the application. Instead, map the test cases to the required documents like – SRS, Use-case documents, etc.

  7. Avoid redundancy
    Don’t repeat the test cases, this leads to wastage of both time and resources. This can be achieved by well planned and categorized test cases.

  8. Traceable tests
    Use a traceability matrix to ensure that 100% of the application’s feature in the scope of testing is covered in the test cases.

  9. Ensure to cover the different aspects of the software
    Ensure that apart from the functionality, the different aspects of the software are tested like performance, usability, robustness, etc are covered in the test case by creating performance test cases and benchmarks, usability test cases, negative test cases, etc.

  10. Test data
    The test data used in testing should be as diverse and as close to real-time usage as possible. Having diverse test data can more reliable test cases.

This completes our article on – How to write good test cases? Let us know in comments in case of any query or suggestion.


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