Creating test specifications

The testers specify the necessary tests for the test units in the test plan. A test unit is a collection of processes, transactions and/or functions that are tested collectively. Depending on the test type and test technique selected for the test unit, this activity may consist of anything from the creation of a checklist to the design and specification of test cases according to a test design technique or to the design of a test with other techniques.

With iterative or agile system development, the test basis is often not 100% complete at the start of the iteration, but is completed during the iteration. It is advisable to carry out a minimal testability review with each addition to the test basis before specifying tests based on the addition.

Test design techniques

Test design techniques are employed in the creation of the test cases. They enable the testers to derive test cases that achieve a particular coverage from a test basis in a clear, transferable and reproducible manner. A test case consists of a description of the initial situation, the test action and the predicted result. The specifying of test cases according to a test design technique follows the following general steps:
  • Identifying test situations
  • Creating logical test cases
  • Creating physical test cases
  • Establishing the starting point
  • Creating the test script

Method of operation

The test plan needs to be created by the test coordinator roll before the tester can start creating test specifications.
testcenter.png Available test plans.

The tester knows by looking at the ‘test task work items’ assigned to him for what piece of functionality he needs to create test cases. As described in Specify tests and starting points where test task work items are connected linked with user stories.


The test can view his test task work items in different places, he can use the web access tool, the test manager tool (see description and image below), a team explorer enabeld tool or the project dashboard where he got his own customizable environment with project information.

Physical test cases.

!!placeholder logical test cases also can be filled in mtlm but…. but or is a test case logical till you add the data to it, or are activity diagrams test cases

The tester creates the physical test cases in Microsoft Test and Lab Manager.

After selecting the project plan he is going to work on (see images above “Available test plans”) the test start creating test suites and corresponding test cases. Within Microsoft Test and Lab Manager he can still have an easy look at the work items assigned to him, by selecting the menu “track” he can select a query .

With in the plan menu the test can add the test suites and test cases. How to organize the test cases over test suites and requirements can be found in the topic test case management.
creat suite.png
Create a test case in the new test case form. In the “Assigned To”field the tester who is going to execute this test is selected. Most often this isn’t known by the tester who creates the test case, the test coordinator does know this. So, the test case should be assigned to the test coordinator roll. He distributes all the test cases to the different testers.

A test case can have different States, selected in the “State” field. The different states are; Design, Ready and Closed. The state of a test case in  the specification phase and in the plan modus of Test and Lab Manager is always “Design”. In the execution phase / test modus the other two can be selected.

new test case.png
The priority ---- placeholder hier kan iets met kubus of met risk based in gebracht worden, ook test case manangement

Automation field ---- alle high prio tests wil je eigenlijk automatiseren, zie test case management

Area and Iteration are classifications for the functionality that is tested.

Starting points.

To be able to execute a test case, an initial situation is necessary. Initial situations often contain the same data for several test cases. Such data are therefore included in a so-called starting point for the entire test and not separated for each test case.

These so called starting points can be created during the creation of the test script. While adding steps to the script parameters an be added with values for that steps. It isn’t possible to create a shared repository of parameter values.

Testing in a Product Iteration

Last edited Nov 6, 2009 at 12:46 PM by ClemensReijnen, version 6


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