ISTQB Software testing definitions

ISTQB stands for International Software Testing Qualifications Board and was founded in November 2002.

The ISTQB is responsible for the international qualification scheme called "ISTQB Certified Tester". The qualifications are based on a syllabus, and there is a hierarchy of qualifications and guidelines for accreditation and examination.

It is the ISTQB's role to support a single, universally accepted, international qualification scheme, aimed at software and system testing professionals, by providing the core syllabi and by setting guidelines for accreditation and examination for national boards.

The following list of definitions was extracted from version 1.3 of the official ISTQB glossary.

Source: http://www.istqb.org/

A
abstract test case: See high level test case.
acceptance: See acceptance testing.
acceptance criteria: The exit criteria that a component or system must satisfy in order to be
accepted by a user, customer, or other authorized entity. [IEEE 610]
acceptance testing: Formal testing with respect to user needs, requirements, and business
processes conducted to determine whether or not a system satisfies the acceptance criteria
and to enable the user, customers or other authorized entity to determine whether or not to
accept the system. [After IEEE 610]
accessibility testing: Testing to determine the ease by which users with disabilities can use a
component or system. [Gerrard]
accuracy: The capability of the software product to provide the right or agreed results or effects
with the needed degree of precision. [ISO 9126] See also functionality testing.
actual outcome: See actual result.
actual result: The behavior produced/observed when a component or system is tested.
ad hoc review: See informal review.
ad hoc testing: Testing carried out informally; no formal test preparation takes place, no
recognized test design technique is used, there are no expectations for results and
arbitrariness guides the test execution activity.
adaptability: The capability of the software product to be adapted for different specified
environments without applying actions or means other than those provided for this purpose
for the software considered. [ISO 9126] See also portability.
agile testing: Testing practice for a project using agile methodologies, such as extreme
programming (XP), treating development as the customer of testing and emphasizing the
test-first design paradigm. See also test driven development.
algorithm test [TMap]: See branch testing.
alpha testing: Simulated or actual operational testing by potential users/customers or an
independent test team at the developers’ site, but outside the development organization.
Alpha testing is often employed for off-the-shelf software as a form of internal acceptance
testing.
analyzability: The capability of the software product to be diagnosed for deficiencies or causes
of failures in the software, or for the parts to be modified to be identified. [ISO 9126] See
also maintainability.
analyzer: See static analyzer.
anomaly: Any condition that deviates from expectation based on requirements specifications,
design documents, user documents, standards, etc. or from someone’s perception or
experience. Anomalies may be found during, but not limited to, reviewing, testing,
analysis, compilation, or use of software products or applicable documentation. [IEEE
1044] See also defect, deviation, error, fault, failure, incident, problem.
arc testing: See branch testing.
attractiveness: The capability of the software product to be attractive to the user. [ISO 9126]
See also usability.
audit: An independent evaluation of software products or processes to ascertain compliance
to standards, guidelines, specifications, and/or procedures based on objective criteria,
including documents that specify:
(1) the form or content of the products to be produced
(2) the process by which the products shall be produced
(3) how compliance to standards or guidelines shall be measured. [IEEE 1028]
audit trail: A path by which the original input to a process (e.g. data) can be traced back
through the process, taking the process output as a starting point. This facilitates defect
analysis and allows a process audit to be carried out. [After TMap]
automated testware: Testware used in automated testing, such as tool scripts.
availability: The degree to which a component or system is operational and accessible when
required for use. Often expressed as a percentage. [IEEE 610]

B
back-to-back testing: Testing in which two or more variants of a component or system are
executed with the same inputs, the outputs compared, and analyzed in cases of
discrepancies. [IEEE 610]
baseline: A specification or software product that has been formally reviewed or agreed upon,
that thereafter serves as the basis for further development, and that can be changed only
through a formal change control process. [After IEEE 610]
basic block: A sequence of one or more consecutive executable statements containing no
branches.
basis test set: A set of test cases derived from the internal structure of a component or
specification to ensure that 100% of a specified coverage criterion will be achieved.
bebugging: See error seeding. [Abbott]
behavior: The response of a component or system to a set of input values and preconditions.
benchmark test: (1) A standard against which measurements or comparisons can be made.
(2) A test that is be used to compare components or systems to each other or to a standard
as in (1). [After IEEE 610]
bespoke software: Software developed specifically for a set of users or customers. The
opposite is off-the-shelf software.
best practice: A superior method or innovative practice that contributes to the improved
performance of an organization under given context, usually recognized as ‘best’ by other
peer organizations.
beta testing: Operational testing by potential and/or existing users/customers at an external
site not otherwise involved with the developers, to determine whether or not a component
or system satisfies the user/customer needs and fits within the business processes. Beta
testing is often employed as a form of external acceptance testing for off-the-shelf software
in order to acquire feedback from the market.
big-bang testing: A type of integration testing in which software elements, hardware
elements, or both are combined all at once into a component or an overall system, rather
than in stages. [After IEEE 610] See also integration testing.
black-box technique: See black box test design technique.
black-box testing: Testing, either functional or non-functional, without reference to the
internal structure of the component or system.
black-box test design technique: Procedure to derive and/or select test cases based on an
analysis of the specification, either functional or non-functional, of a component or system
without reference to its internal structure.
blocked test case: A test case that cannot be executed because the preconditions for its
execution are not fulfilled.
bottom-up testing: An incremental approach to integration testing where the lowest level
components are tested first, and then used to facilitate the testing of higher level
components. This process is repeated until the component at the top of the hierarchy is
tested. See also integration testing.
boundary value: An input value or output value which is on the edge of an equivalence
partition or at the smallest incremental distance on either side of an edge, for example the
minimum or maximum value of a range.
boundary value analysis: A black box test design technique in which test cases are designed
based on boundary values.
boundary value coverage: The percentage of boundary values that have been exercised by a
test suite.
boundary value testing: See boundary value analysis.
branch: A basic block that can be selected for execution based on a program construct in
which one of two or more alternative program paths are available, e.g. case, jump, go to, ifthen-
else.
branch condition: See condition.
branch condition combination coverage: See multiple condition coverage.
branch condition combination testing: See multiple condition testing.
branch condition coverage: See condition coverage.
branch coverage: The percentage of branches that have been exercised by a test suite. 100%
branch coverage implies both 100% decision coverage and 100% statement coverage.
branch testing: A white box test design technique in which test cases are designed to execute
branches.
bug: See defect.
bug: See defect report.
business process-based testing: An approach to testing in which test cases are designed
based on descriptions and/or knowledge of business processes.

C
Capability Maturity Model (CMM): A five level staged framework that describes the key
elements of an effective software process. The Capability Maturity Model covers bestpractices
for planning, engineering and managing software development and maintenance.
[CMM]
Capability Maturity Model Integration (CMMI): A framework that describes the key
elements of an effective product development and maintenance process. The Capability
Maturity Model Integration covers best-practices for planning, engineering and managing
product development and maintenance. CMMI is the designated successor of the CMM.
[CMMI]
capture/playback tool: A type of test execution tool where inputs are recorded during
manual testing in order to generate automated test scripts that can be executed later (i.e.
replayed). These tools are often used to support automated regression testing.
capture/replay tool: See capture/playback tool.
CASE: Acronym for Computer Aided Software Engineering.
CAST: Acronym for Computer Aided Software Testing. See also test automation.
cause-effect graph: A graphical representation of inputs and/or stimuli (causes) with their
associated outputs (effects), which can be used to design test cases.
cause-effect graphing: A black box test design technique in which test cases are designed
from cause-effect graphs. [BS 7925/2]
cause-effect analysis: See cause-effect graphing.
cause-effect decision table: See decision table.
certification: The process of confirming that a component, system or person complies with
its specified requirements, e.g. by passing an exam.
changeability: The capability of the software product to enable specified modifications to be
implemented. [ISO 9126] See also maintainability.
change control: See configuration control.
change control board: See configuration control board.
checker: See reviewer.
Chow's coverage metrics: See N-switch coverage. [Chow]
classification tree method: A black box test design technique in which test cases, described
by means of a classification tree, are designed to execute combinations of representatives
of input and/or output domains. [Grochtmann]
code: Computer instructions and data definitions expressed in a programming language or in
a form output by an assembler, compiler or other translator. [IEEE 610]
code analyzer: See static code analyzer.
code coverage: An analysis method that determines which parts of the software have been
executed (covered) by the test suite and which parts have not been executed, e.g. statement
coverage, decision coverage or condition coverage.
code-based testing: See white box testing.
co-existence: The capability of the software product to co-exist with other independent
software in a common environment sharing common resources. [ISO 9126] See also
portability.
commercial off-the-shelf software: See off-the-shelf software.
comparator: See test comparator.
compatibility testing: See interoperability testing.
compiler: A software tool that translates programs expressed in a high order language into
their machine language equivalents. [IEEE 610]
complete testing: See exhaustive testing.
completion criteria: See exit criteria.
complexity: The degree to which a component or system has a design and/or internal
structure that is difficult to understand, maintain and verify. See also cyclomatic
complexity.
compliance: The capability of the software product to adhere to standards, conventions or
regulations in laws and similar prescriptions. [ISO 9126]
compliance testing: The process of testing to determine the compliance of the component or
system.
component: A minimal software item that can be tested in isolation.
component integration testing: Testing performed to expose defects in the interfaces and
interaction between integrated components.
component specification: A description of a component’s function in terms of its output
values for specified input values under specified conditions, and required non-functional
behavior (e.g. resource-utilization).
component testing: The testing of individual software components. [After IEEE 610]
compound condition: Two or more single conditions joined by means of a logical operator
(AND, OR or XOR), e.g. ‘A>B AND C>1000’.
concrete test case: See low level test case.
concurrency testing: Testing to determine how the occurrence of two or more activities
within the same interval of time, achieved either by interleaving the activities or by
simultaneous execution, is handled by the component or system. [After IEEE 610]
condition: A logical expression that can be evaluated as True or False, e.g. A>B. See also test
condition.
condition combination coverage: See multiple condition coverage.
condition combination testing: See multiple condition testing.
condition coverage: The percentage of condition outcomes that have been exercised by a test
suite. 100% condition coverage requires each single condition in every decision statement
to be tested as True and False.
condition determination coverage: The percentage of all single condition outcomes that
independently affect a decision outcome that have been exercised by a test case suite.
100% condition determination coverage implies 100% decision condition coverage.
condition determination testing: A white box test design technique in which test cases are
designed to execute single condition outcomes that independently affect a decision
outcome.
condition testing: A white box test design technique in which test cases are designed to
execute condition outcomes.
condition outcome: The evaluation of a condition to True or False.
confidence test: See smoke test.
configuration: The composition of a component or system as defined by the number, nature,
and interconnections of its constituent parts.
configuration auditing: The function to check on the contents of libraries of configuration
items, e.g. for standards compliance. [IEEE 610]
configuration control: An element of configuration management, consisting of the
evaluation, co-ordination, approval or disapproval, and implementation of changes to
configuration items after formal establishment of their configuration identification. [IEEE
610]
configuration control board (CCB): A group of people responsible for evaluating and
approving or disapproving proposed changes to configuration items, and for ensuring
implementation of approved changes. [IEEE 610]
configuration identification: An element of configuration management, consisting of
selecting the configuration items for a system and recording their functional and physical
characteristics in technical documentation. [IEEE 610]
configuration item: An aggregation of hardware, software or both, that is designated for
configuration management and treated as a single entity in the configuration management
process. [IEEE 610]
configuration management: A discipline applying technical and administrative direction and
surveillance to: identify and document the functional and physical characteristics of a
configuration item, control changes to those characteristics, record and report change
processing and implementation status, and verify compliance with specified requirements.
[IEEE 610]
configuration management tool: A tool that provides support for the identification and
control of configuration items, their status over changes and versions, and the release of
baselines consisting of configuration items.
configuration testing: See portability testing.
confirmation testing: See re-testing.
conformance testing: See compliance testing.
consistency: The degree of uniformity, standardization, and freedom from contradiction
among the documents or parts of a component or system. [IEEE 610]
control flow: A sequence of events (paths) in the execution through a component or system.
control flow graph: A sequence of events (paths) in the execution through a component or
system.
control flow path: See path.
conversion testing: Testing of software used to convert data from existing systems for use in
replacement systems.
COTS: Acronym for Commercial Off-The-Shelf software. See off-the-shelf software.
coverage: The degree, expressed as a percentage, to which a specified coverage item has been
exercised by a test suite.
coverage analysis: Measurement of achieved coverage to a specified coverage item during
test execution referring to predetermined criteria to determine whether additional testing is
required and if so, which test cases are needed.
coverage item: An entity or property used as a basis for test coverage, e.g. equivalence
partitions or code statements.
coverage tool: A tool that provides objective measures of what structural elements, e.g.
statements, branches have been exercised by a test suite.
custom software: See bespoke software.
cyclomatic complexity: The number of independent paths through a program. Cyclomatic
complexity is defined as: L – N + 2P, where
- L = the number of edges/links in a graph
- N = the number of nodes in a graph
- P = the number of disconnected parts of the graph (e.g. a called graph and a subroutine)
[After McCabe]
cyclomatic number: See cyclomatic complexity.

D
daily build: a development activity where a complete system is compiled and linked every
day (usually overnight), so that a consistent system is available at any time including all
latest changes.
data definition: An executable statement where a variable is assigned a value.
data driven testing: A scripting technique that stores test input and expected results in a table
or spreadsheet, so that a single control script can execute all of the tests in the table. Data
driven testing is often used to support the application of test execution tools such as
capture/playback tools. [Fewster and Graham] See also keyword driven testing.
data flow: An abstract representation of the sequence and possible changes of the state of
data objects, where the state of an object is any of: creation, usage, or destruction. [Beizer]
data flow analysis: A form of static analysis based on the definition and usage of variables.
data flow coverage: The percentage of definition-use pairs that have been exercised by a test
suite.
data flow testing: A white box test design technique in which test cases are designed to
execute definition and use pairs of variables.
data integrity testing: See database integrity testing.
database integrity testing: Testing the methods and processes used to access and manage the
data(base), to ensure access methods, processes and data rules function as expected and
that during access to the database, data is not corrupted or unexpectedly deleted, updated or
created.
dead code: See unreachable code.
debugger: See debugging tool.
debugging: The process of finding, analyzing and removing the causes of failures in
software.
debugging tool: A tool used by programmers to reproduce failures, investigate the state of
programs and find the corresponding defect. Debuggers enable programmers to execute
programs step by step, to halt a program at any program statement and to set and examine
program variables.
decision: A program point at which the control flow has two or more alternative routes. A
node with two or more links to separate branches.
decision condition coverage: The percentage of all condition outcomes and decision
outcomes that have been exercised by a test suite. 100% decision condition coverage
implies both 100% condition coverage and 100% decision coverage.
decision condition testing: A white box test design technique in which test cases are
designed to execute condition outcomes and decision outcomes.
decision coverage: The percentage of decision outcomes that have been exercised by a test
suite. 100% decision coverage implies both 100% branch coverage and 100% statement
coverage.
decision table: A table showing combinations of inputs and/or stimuli (causes) with their
associated outputs and/or actions (effects), which can be used to design test cases.
decision table testing: A black box test design techniques in which test cases are designed to
execute the combinations of inputs and/or stimuli (causes) shown in a decision table.
[Veenendaal]
decision testing: A white box test design technique in which test cases are designed to
execute decision outcomes.
decision outcome: The result of a decision (which therefore determines the branches to be
taken).
defect: A flaw in a component or system that can cause the component or system to fail to
perform its required function, e.g. an incorrect statement or data definition. A defect, if
encountered during execution, may cause a failure of the component or system.
defect density: The number of defects identified in a component or system divided by the
size of the component or system (expressed in standard measurement terms, e.g. lines-ofcode,
number of classes or function points).
Defect Detection Percentage (DDP): the number of defects found by a test phase, divided by
the number found by that test phase and any other means afterwards.
defect management: The process of recognizing, investigating, taking action and disposing
of defects. It involves recording defects, classifying them and identifying the impact.
[After IEEE 1044]
defect management tool: A tool that facilitates the recording and status tracking of defects.
They often have workflow-oriented facilities to track and control the allocation, correction
and re-testing of defects and provide reporting facilities. See also incident management
tool.
defect masking: An occurrence in which one defect prevents the detection of another. [After
IEEE 610]
defect report: A document reporting on any flaw in a component or system that can cause the
component or system to fail to perform its required function. [After IEEE 829]
defect tracking tool: See defect management tool.
definition-use pair: The association of the definition of a variable with the use of that
variable. Variable uses include computational (e.g. multiplication) or to direct the
execution of a path (“predicate” use).
deliverable: Any (work) product that must be delivered to someone other than the (work)
product’s author.
design-based testing: An approach to testing in which test cases are designed based on the
architecture and/or detailed design of a component or system (e.g. tests of interfaces
between components or systems).
desk checking: Testing of software or specification by manual simulation of its execution.
See also static analysis.
development testing: Formal or informal testing conducted during the implementation of a
component or system, usually in the development environment by developers. [After IEEE
610]
deviation: See incident.
deviation report: See incident report.
dirty testing: See negative testing.
documentation testing: Testing the quality of the documentation, e.g. user guide or
installation guide.
domain: The set from which valid input and/or output values can be selected.
driver: A software component or test tool that replaces a component that takes care of the
control and/or the calling of a component or system. [After TMap]
dynamic analysis: The process of evaluating behavior, e.g. memory performance, CPU
usage, of a system or component during execution. [After IEEE 610]
dynamic analysis tool: A tool that provides run-time information on the state of the software
code. These tools are most commonly used to identify unassigned pointers, check pointer
arithmetic and to monitor the allocation, use and de-allocation of memory and to flag
memory leaks.
dynamic comparison: Comparison of actual and expected results, performed while the
software is being executed, for example by a test execution tool.
dynamic testing: Testing that involves the execution of the software of a component or
system.

E
efficiency: The capability of the software product to provide appropriate performance,
relative to the amount of resources used under stated conditions. [ISO 9126]
efficiency testing: The process of testing to determine the efficiency of a software product.
elementary comparison testing: A black box test design techniques in which test cases are
designed to execute combinations of inputs using the concept of condition determination
coverage. [TMap]
emulator: A device, computer program, or system that accepts the same inputs and produces
the same outputs as a given system. [IEEE 610] See also simulator.
entry criteria: the set of generic and specific conditions for permitting a process to go
forward with a defined task, e.g. test phase. The purpose of entry criteria is to prevent a
task from starting which would entail more (wasted) effort compared to the effort needed
to remove the failed entry criteria. [Gilb and Graham]
entry point: The first executable statement within a component.
equivalence class: See equivalence partition.
equivalence partition: A portion of an input or output domain for which the behavior of a
component or system is assumed to be the same, based on the specification.
equivalence partition coverage: The percentage of equivalence partitions that have been
exercised by a test suite.
equivalence partitioning: A black box test design technique in which test cases are designed
to execute representatives from equivalence partitions. In principle test cases are designed
to cover each partition at least once.
error: A human action that produces an incorrect result. [After IEEE 610]
error guessing: A test design technique where the experience of the tester is used to
anticipate what defects might be present in the component or system under test as a result
of errors made, and to design tests specifically to expose them.
error seeding: The process of intentionally adding known defects to those already in the
component or system for the purpose of monitoring the rate of detection and removal, and
estimating the number of remaining defects. [IEEE 610]
error tolerance: The ability of a system or component to continue normal operation despite
the presence of erroneous inputs. [After IEEE 610].
evaluation: See testing.
exception handling: Behavior of a component or system in response to erroneous input, from
either a human user or from another component or system, or to an internal failure.
executable statement: A statement which, when compiled, is translated into object code, and
which will be executed procedurally when the program is running and may perform an
action on data.
exercised: A program element is said to be exercised by a test case when the input value
causes the execution of that element, such as a statement, decision, or other structural
element.
exhaustive testing: A test approach in which the test suite comprises all combinations of
input values and preconditions.
exit criteria: The set of generic and specific conditions, agreed upon with the stakeholders,
for permitting a process to be officially completed. The purpose of exit criteria is to
prevent a task from being considered completed when there are still outstanding parts of
the task which have not been finished. Exit criteria are used to report against and to plan
when to stop testing. [After Gilb and Graham]
exit point: The last executable statement within a component.
expected outcome: See expected result.
expected result: The behavior predicted by the specification, or another source, of the
component or system under specified conditions.
experienced-based test design technique: Procedure to derive and/or select test cases based
on the tester’s experience, knowledge and intuition.
exploratory testing: An informal test design technique where the tester actively controls the
design of the tests as those tests are performed and uses information gained while testing to
design new and better tests. [After Bach]

F
fail: A test is deemed to fail if its actual result does not match its expected result.
failure: Deviation of the component or system from its expected delivery, service or result.
[After Fenton]
failure mode: The physical or functional manifestation of a failure. For example, a system in
failure mode may be characterized by slow operation, incorrect outputs, or complete
termination of execution. [IEEE 610]
Failure Mode and Effect Analysis (FMEA): A systematic approach to risk identification
and analysis of identifying possible modes of failure and attempting to prevent their
occurrence.
failure rate: The ratio of the number of failures of a given category to a given unit of
measure, e.g. failures per unit of time, failures per number of transactions, failures per
number of computer runs. [IEEE 610]
fault: See defect.
fault density: See defect density.
Fault Detection Percentage (FDP): See Defect Detection Percentage (DDP).
fault masking: See defect masking.
fault tolerance: The capability of the software product to maintain a specified level of
performance in cases of software faults (defects) or of infringement of its specified
interface. [ISO 9126] See also reliability.
fault tree analysis: A method used to analyze the causes of faults (defects).
feasible path: A path for which a set of input values and preconditions exists which causes it
to be executed.
feature: An attribute of a component or system specified or implied by requirements
documentation (for example reliability, usability or design constraints). [After IEEE 1008]
field testing: See beta testing.
finite state machine: A computational model consisting of a finite number of states and
transitions between those states, possibly with accompanying actions. [IEEE 610]
finite state testing: See state transition testing.
formal review: A review characterized by documented procedures and requirements, e.g.
inspection.
frozen test basis: A test basis document that can only be amended by a formal change control
process. See also baseline.
Function Point Analysis (FPA): Method aiming to measure the size of the functionality of
an information system. The measurement is independent of the technology. This
measurement may be used as a basis for the measurement of productivity, the estimation of
the needed resources, and project control.
functional integration: An integration approach that combines the components or systems
for the purpose of getting a basic functionality working early. See also integration testing.
functional requirement: A requirement that specifies a function that a component or system
must perform. [IEEE 610]
functional test design technique: Procedure to derive and/or select test cases based on an
analysis of the specification of the functionality of a component or system without
reference to its internal structure. See also black box test design technique.
functional testing: Testing based on an analysis of the specification of the functionality of a
component or system. See also black box testing.
functionality: The capability of the software product to provide functions which meet stated
and implied needs when the software is used under specified conditions. [ISO 9126]
functionality testing: The process of testing to determine the functionality of a software
product.

G
glass box testing: See white box testing.

H
heuristic evaluation: A static usability test technique to determine the compliance of a user
interface with recognized usability principles (the so-called “heuristics”).
high level test case: A test case without concrete (implementation level) values for input data
and expected results. Logical operators are used; instances of the actual values are not yet
defined and/or available. See also low level test case.
horizontal traceability: The tracing of requirements for a test level through the layers of test
documentation (e.g. test plan, test design specification, test case specification and test
procedure specification or test script).

I
impact analysis: The assessment of change to the layers of development documentation, test
documentation and components, in order to implement a given change to specified
requirements.
incident: Any event occurring that requires investigation. [After IEEE 1008]
incident logging: Recording the details of any incident that occurred, e.g. during testing.
incident management: The process of recognizing, investigating, taking action and disposing
of incidents. It involves logging incidents, classifying them and identifying the impact.
[After IEEE 1044]
incident management tool: A tool that facilitates the recording and status tracking of
incidents. They often have workflow-oriented facilities to track and control the allocation,
correction and re-testing of incidents and provide reporting facilities. See also defect
management tool.
incident report: A document reporting on any event that occurred, e.g. during the testing,
which requires investigation. [After IEEE 829]
incremental development model: A development life cycle where a project is broken into a
series of increments, each of which delivers a portion of the functionality in the overall
project requirements. The requirements are prioritized and delivered in priority order in the
appropriate increment. In some (but not all) versions of this life cycle model, each
subproject follows a ‘mini V-model’ with its own design, coding and testing phases.
incremental testing: Testing where components or systems are integrated and tested one or
some at a time, until all the components or systems are integrated and tested.
independence: Separation of responsibilities, which encourages the accomplishment of
objective testing. [After DO-178b]
infeasible path: A path that cannot be exercised by any set of possible input values.
informal review: A review not based on a formal (documented) procedure.
input: A variable (whether stored within a component or outside) that is read by a
component.
input domain: The set from which valid input values can be selected. See also domain.
input value: An instance of an input. See also input.
inspection: A type of peer review that relies on visual examination of documents to detect
defects, e.g. violations of development standards and non-conformance to higher level
documentation. The most formal review technique and therefore always based on a
documented procedure. [After IEEE 610, IEEE 1028] See also peer review.
inspection leader: See moderator.
inspector: See reviewer.
installability: The capability of the software product to be installed in a specified
environment [ISO 9126]. See also portability.
installability testing: The process of testing the installability of a software product. See also
portability testing.
installation guide: Supplied instructions on any suitable media, which guides the installer
through the installation process. This may be a manual guide, step-by-step procedure,
installation wizard, or any other similar process description.
installation wizard: Supplied software on any suitable media, which leads the installer
through the installation process. It normally runs the installation process, provides
feedback on installation results, and prompts for options.
instrumentation: The insertion of additional code into the program in order to collect
information about program behavior during execution, e.g. for measuring code coverage.
instrumenter: A software tool used to carry out instrumentation.
intake test: A special instance of a smoke test to decide if the component or system is ready
for detailed and further testing. An intake test is typically carried out at the start of the test
execution phase. See also smoke test.
integration: The process of combining components or systems into larger assemblies.
integration testing: Testing performed to expose defects in the interfaces and in the
interactions between integrated components or systems. See also component integration
testing, system integration testing.
integration testing in the large: See system integration testing.
integration testing in the small: See component integration testing.
interface testing: An integration test type that is concerned with testing the interfaces
between components or systems.
interoperability: The capability of the software product to interact with one or more
specified components or systems. [After ISO 9126] See also functionality.
interoperability testing: The process of testing to determine the interoperability of a
software product. See also functionality testing.
invalid testing: Testing using input values that should be rejected by the component or
system. See also error tolerance.
isolation testing: Testing of individual components in isolation from surrounding
components, with surrounding components being simulated by stubs and drivers, if needed.
item transmittal report: See release note.
iterative development model: A development life cycle where a project is broken into a
usually large number of iterations. An iteration is a complete development loop resulting in
a release (internal or external) of an executable product, a subset of the final product under
development, which grows from iteration to iteration to become the final product.

K
key performance indicator: See performance indicator.
keyword driven testing: A scripting technique that uses data files to contain not only test
data and expected results, but also keywords related to the application being tested. The
keywords are interpreted by special supporting scripts that are called by the control script
for the test. See also data driven testing.

L
LCSAJ: A Linear Code Sequence And Jump, consisting of the following three items
(conventionally identified by line numbers in a source code listing): the start of the linear
sequence of executable statements, the end of the linear sequence, and the target line to
which control flow is transferred at the end of the linear sequence.
LCSAJ coverage: The percentage of LCSAJs of a component that have been exercised by a
test suite. 100% LCSAJ coverage implies 100% decision coverage.
LCSAJ testing: A white box test design technique in which test cases are designed to execute
LCSAJs.
learnability: The capability of the software product to enable the user to learn its application.
[ISO 9126] See also usability.
level test plan: A test plan that typically addresses one test level. See also test plan.
link testing: See component integration testing.
load testing: A test type concerned with measuring the behavior of a component or system
with increasing load, e.g. number of parallel users and/or numbers of transactions to
determine what load can be handled by the component or system. See also stress testing.
logic-coverage testing: See white box testing. [Myers]
logic-driven testing: See white box testing.
logical test case: See high level test case.
low level test case: A test case with concrete (implementation level) values for input data and
expected results. Logical operators from high level test cases are replaced by actual values
that correspond to the objectives of the logical operators. See also high level test case.

M
maintenance: Modification of a software product after delivery to correct defects, to improve
performance or other attributes, or to adapt the product to a modified environment. [IEEE
1219]
maintenance testing: Testing the changes to an operational system or the impact of a
changed environment to an operational system.
maintainability: The ease with which a software product can be modified to correct defects,
modified to meet new requirements, modified to make future maintenance easier, or
adapted to a changed environment. [ISO 9126]
maintainability testing: The process of testing to determine the maintainability of a software
product.
management review: A systematic evaluation of software acquisition, supply, development,
operation, or maintenance process, performed by or on behalf of management that
monitors progress, determines the status of plans and schedules, confirms requirements and
their system allocation, or evaluates the effectiveness of management approaches to
achieve fitness for purpose. [After IEEE 610, IEEE 1028]
master test plan: A test plan that typically addresses multiple test levels. See also test plan.
maturity: (1) The capability of an organization with respect to the effectiveness and
efficiency of its processes and work practices. See also Capability Maturity Model, Test
Maturity Model. (2) The capability of the software product to avoid failure as a result of
defects in the software. [ISO 9126] See also reliability.
measure: The number or category assigned to an attribute of an entity by making a
measurement. [ISO 14598]
measurement: The process of assigning a number or category to an entity to describe an
attribute of that entity. [ISO 14598]
measurement scale: A scale that constrains the type of data analysis that can be performed
on it. [ISO 14598]
memory leak: A defect in a program's dynamic store allocation logic that causes it to fail to
reclaim memory after it has finished using it, eventually causing the program to fail due to
lack of memory.
metric: A measurement scale and the method used for measurement. [ISO 14598]
migration testing: See conversion testing.
milestone: A point in time in a project at which defined (intermediate) deliverables and
results should be ready.
mistake: See error.
moderator: The leader and main person responsible for an inspection or other review
process.
modified condition decision coverage: See condition determination coverage.
modified condition decision testing: See condition determination coverage testing.
modified multiple condition coverage: See condition determination coverage.
modified multiple condition testing: See condition determination coverage testing.
module: See component.
module testing: See component testing.
monitor: A software tool or hardware device that runs concurrently with the component or
system under test and supervises, records and/or analyses the behavior of the component or
system. [After IEEE 610]
monitoring tool: See monitor.
multiple condition: See compound condition.
multiple condition coverage: The percentage of combinations of all single condition
outcomes within one statement that have been exercised by a test suite. 100% multiple
condition coverage implies 100% condition determination coverage.
multiple condition testing: A white box test design technique in which test cases are
designed to execute combinations of single condition outcomes (within one statement).
mutation analysis: A method to determine test suite thoroughness by measuring the extent to
which a test suite can discriminate the program from slight variants (mutants) of the
program.
mutation testing: See back-to-back testing.

N
N-switch coverage: The percentage of sequences of N+1 transitions that have been exercised
by a test suite. [Chow]
N-switch testing: A form of state transition testing in which test cases are designed to execute
all valid sequences of N+1 transitions. [Chow] See also state transition testing.
negative testing: Tests aimed at showing that a component or system does not work.
Negative testing is related to the testers’ attitude rather than a specific test approach or test
design technique, e.g. testing with invalid input values or exceptions. [After Beizer].
non-conformity: Non fulfillment of a specified requirement. [ISO 9000]
non-functional requirement: A requirement that does not relate to functionality, but to
attributes such as reliability, efficiency, usability, maintainability and portability.
non-functional testing: Testing the attributes of a component or system that do not relate to
functionality, e.g. reliability, efficiency, usability, maintainability and portability.
non-functional test design techniques: Procedure to derive and/or select test cases for nonfunctional
testing based on an analysis of the specification of a component or system
without reference to its internal structure. See also black box test design technique.

O
off-the-shelf software: A software product that is developed for the general market, i.e. for a
large number of customers, and that is delivered to many customers in identical format.
operability: The capability of the software product to enable the user to operate and control it.
[ISO 9126] See also usability.
operational environment: Hardware and software products installed at users’ or customers’
sites where the component or system under test will be used. The software may include
operating systems, database management systems, and other applications.
operational profile testing: Statistical testing using a model of system operations (short
duration tasks) and their probability of typical use. [Musa]
operational testing: Testing conducted to evaluate a component or system in its operational
environment. [IEEE 610]
oracle: See test oracle.
outcome: See result.
output: A variable (whether stored within a component or outside) that is written by a
component.
output domain: The set from which valid output values can be selected. See also domain.
output value: An instance of an output. See also output.

P
pair programming: A software development approach whereby lines of code (production
and/or test) of a component are written by two programmers sitting at a single computer.
This implicitly means ongoing real-time code reviews are performed.
pair testing: Two persons, e.g. two testers, a developer and a tester, or an end-user and a
tester, working together to find defects. Typically, they share one computer and trade
control of it while testing.
partition testing: See equivalence partitioning. [Beizer]
pass: A test is deemed to pass if its actual result matches its expected result.
pass/fail criteria: Decision rules used to determine whether a test item (function) or feature
has passed or failed a test. [IEEE 829]
path: A sequence of events, e.g. executable statements, of a component or system from an
entry point to an exit point.
path coverage: The percentage of paths that have been exercised by a test suite. 100% path
coverage implies 100% LCSAJ coverage.
path sensitizing: Choosing a set of input values to force the execution of a given path.
path testing: A white box test design technique in which test cases are designed to execute
paths.
peer review: A review of a software work product by colleagues of the producer of the
product for the purpose of identifying defects and improvements. Examples are inspection,
technical review and walkthrough.
performance: The degree to which a system or component accomplishes its designated
functions within given constraints regarding processing time and throughput rate. [After
IEEE 610] See also efficiency.
performance indicator: A high level metric of effectiveness and/or efficiency used to guide
and control progressive development, e.g. lead-time slip for software development.
[CMMI]
performance testing: The process of testing to determine the performance of a software
product. See also efficiency testing.
performance testing tool: A tool to support performance testing and that usually has two
main facilities: load generation and test transaction measurement. Load generation can
simulate either multiple users or high volumes of input data. During execution, response
time measurements are taken from selected transactions and these are logged. Performance
testing tools normally provide reports based on test logs and graphs of load against
response times.
phase test plan: A test plan that typically addresses one test phase. See also test plan.
portability: The ease with which the software product can be transferred from one hardware
or software environment to another. [ISO 9126]
portability testing: The process of testing to determine the portability of a software product.
postcondition: Environmental and state conditions that must be fulfilled after the execution
of a test or test procedure.
post-execution comparison: Comparison of actual and expected results, performed after the
software has finished running.
precondition: Environmental and state conditions that must be fulfilled before the component
or system can be executed with a particular test or test procedure.
predicted outcome: See expected result.
pretest: See intake test.
priority: The level of (business) importance assigned to an item, e.g. defect.
probe effect: The effect on the component or system by the measurement instrument when
the component or system is being measured, e.g. by a performance testing tool or monitor.
For example performance may be slightly worse when performance testing tools are being
used.
problem: See defect.
problem management: See defect management.
problem report: See defect report.
process: A set of interrelated activities, which transform inputs into outputs. [ISO 12207]
process cycle test: A black box test design technique in which test cases are designed to
execute business procedures and processes. [TMap]
product risk: A risk directly related to the test object. See also risk.
project: A project is a unique set of coordinated and controlled activities with start and finish
dates undertaken to achieve an objective conforming to specific requirements, including
the constraints of time, cost and resources. [ISO 9000]
project risk: A risk related to management and control of the (test) project. See also risk.
program instrumenter: See instrumenter.
program testing: See component testing.
project test plan: See master test plan.
pseudo-random: A series which appears to be random but is in fact generated according to
some prearranged sequence.

Q
quality: The degree to which a component, system or process meets specified requirements
and/or user/customer needs and expectations. [After IEEE 610]
quality assurance: Part of quality management focused on providing confidence that quality
requirements will be fulfilled. [ISO 9000]
quality attribute: A feature or characteristic that affects an item’s quality. [IEEE 610]
quality characteristic: See quality attribute.
quality management: Coordinated activities to direct and control an organization with regard
to quality. Direction and control with regard to quality generally includes the establishment
of the quality policy and quality objectives, quality planning, quality control, quality
assurance and quality improvement. [ISO 9000]

R
random testing: A black box test design technique where test cases are selected, possibly
using a pseudo-random generation algorithm, to match an operational profile. This
technique can be used for testing non-functional attributes such as reliability and
performance.
recorder: See scribe.
record/playback tool: See capture/playback tool.
recoverability: The capability of the software product to re-establish a specified level of
performance and recover the data directly affected in case of failure. [ISO 9126] See also
reliability.
recoverability testing: The process of testing to determine the recoverability of a software
product. See also reliability testing.
recovery testing: See recoverability testing.
regression testing: Testing of a previously tested program following modification to ensure
that defects have not been introduced or uncovered in unchanged areas of the software, as a
result of the changes made. It is performed when the software or its environment is
changed.
regulation testing: See compliance testing.
release note: A document identifying test items, their configuration, current status and other
delivery information delivered by development to testing, and possibly other stakeholders,
at the start of a test execution phase. [After IEEE 829]
reliability: The ability of the software product to perform its required functions under stated
conditions for a specified period of time, or for a specified number of operations. [ISO
9126]
reliability testing: The process of testing to determine the reliability of a software product.
replaceability: The capability of the software product to be used in place of another specified
software product for the same purpose in the same environment. [ISO 9126] See also
portability.
requirement: A condition or capability needed by a user to solve a problem or achieve an
objective that must be met or possessed by a system or system component to satisfy a
contract, standard, specification, or other formally imposed document. [After IEEE 610]
requirements-based testing: An approach to testing in which test cases are designed based
on test objectives and test conditions derived from requirements, e.g. tests that exercise
specific functions or probe non-functional attributes such as reliability or usability.
requirements management tool: A tool that supports the recording of requirements,
requirements attributes (e.g. priority, knowledge responsible) and annotation, and
facilitates traceability through layers of requirements and requirements change
management. Some requirements management tools also provide facilities for static
analysis, such as consistency checking and violations to pre-defined requirements rules.
requirements phase: The period of time in the software life cycle during which the
requirements for a software product are defined and documented. [IEEE 610]
25
resource utilization: The capability of the software product to use appropriate amounts and
types of resources, for example the amounts of main and secondary memory used by the
program and the sizes of required temporary or overflow files, when the software performs
its function under stated conditions. [After ISO 9126] See also efficiency.
resource utilization testing: The process of testing to determine the resource-utilization of a
software product. See also efficiency testing.
result: The consequence/outcome of the execution of a test. It includes outputs to screens,
changes to data, reports, and communication messages sent out. See also actual result,
expected result.
resumption criteria: The testing activities that must be repeated when testing is re-started
after a suspension. [After IEEE 829]
re-testing: Testing that runs test cases that failed the last time they were run, in order to
verify the success of corrective actions.
review: An evaluation of a product or project status to ascertain discrepancies from planned
results and to recommend improvements. Examples include management review, informal
review, technical review, inspection, and walkthrough. [After IEEE 1028]
reviewer: The person involved in the review that identifies and describes anomalies in the
product or project under review. Reviewers can be chosen to represent different viewpoints
and roles in the review process.
review tool: A tool that provides support to the review process. Typical features include
review planning and tracking support, communication support, collaborative reviews and a
repository for collecting and reporting of metrics.
risk: A factor that could result in future negative consequences; usually expressed as impact
and likelihood.
risk analysis: The process of assessing identified risks to estimate their impact and
probability of occurrence (likelihood).
risk-based testing: Testing oriented towards exploring and providing information about
product risks. [After Gerrard]
risk control: The process through which decisions are reached and protective measures are
implemented for reducing risks to, or maintaining risks within, specified levels.
risk identification: The process of identifying risks using techniques such as brainstorming,
checklists and failure history.
risk management: Systematic application of procedures and practices to the tasks of
identifying, analyzing, prioritizing, and controlling risk.
risk mitigation: See risk control.
robustness: The degree to which a component or system can function correctly in the
presence of invalid inputs or stressful environmental conditions. [IEEE 610] See also
error-tolerance, fault-tolerance.
robustness testing: Testing to determine the robustness of the software product.
root cause: An underlying factor that caused a non-conformance and possibly should be
permanently eliminated through process improvement.

S
safety: The capability of the software product to achieve acceptable levels of risk of harm to
people, business, software, property or the environment in a specified context of use. [ISO
9126]
safety testing: Testing to determine the safety of a software product.
sanity test: See smoke test.
scalability: The capability of the software product to be upgraded to accommodate increased
loads. [After Gerrard]
scalability testing: Testing to determine the scalability of the software product.
scenario testing: See use case testing.
scribe: The person who records each defect mentioned and any suggestions for process
improvement during a review meeting, on a logging form. The scribe has to ensure that the
logging form is readable and understandable.
scripting language: A programming language in which executable test scripts are written,
used by a test execution tool (e.g. a capture/playback tool).
security: Attributes of software products that bear on its ability to prevent unauthorized
access, whether accidental or deliberate, to programs and data. [ISO 9126] See also
functionality.
security testing: Testing to determine the security of the software product. See also
functionality testing.
security testing tool: A tool that provides support for testing security characteristics and
vulnerabilities.
security tool: A tool that supports operational security.
serviceability testing: See maintainability testing.
severity: The degree of impact that a defect has on the development or operation of a
component or system. [After IEEE 610]
simulation: The representation of selected behavioral characteristics of one physical or
abstract system by another system. [ISO 2382/1]
simulator: A device, computer program or system used during testing, which behaves or
operates like a given system when provided with a set of controlled inputs. [After IEEE
610, DO178b] See also emulator.
site acceptance testing: Acceptance testing by users/customers at their site, to determine
whether or not a component or system satisfies the user/customer needs and fits within the
business processes, normally including hardware as well as software.
smoke test: A subset of all defined/planned test cases that cover the main functionality of a
component or system, to ascertaining that the most crucial functions of a program work,
but not bothering with finer details. A daily build and smoke test is among industry best
practices. See also intake test.
software: Computer programs, procedures, and possibly associated documentation and data
pertaining to the operation of a computer system [IEEE 610]
software feature: See feature.
software quality: The totality of functionality and features of a software product that bear on
its ability to satisfy stated or implied needs. [After ISO 9126]
software quality characteristic: See quality attribute.
software test incident: See incident.
software test incident report: See incident report.
Software Usability Measurement Inventory (SUMI): A questionnaire based usability test
technique to evaluate the usability, e.g. user-satisfaction, of a component or system.
[Veenendaal]
source statement: See statement.
specification: A document that specifies, ideally in a complete, precise and verifiable manner,
the requirements, design, behavior, or other characteristics of a component or system, and,
often, the procedures for determining whether these provisions have been satisfied. [After
IEEE 610]
specification-based testing: See black box testing.
specification-based test design technique: See black box test design technique.
specified input: An input for which the specification predicts a result.
stability: The capability of the software product to avoid unexpected effects from modifications
in the software. [ISO 9126] See also maintainability.
standard software: See off-the-shelf software.
standards testing: See compliance testing.
state diagram: A diagram that depicts the states that a component or system can assume, and
shows the events or circumstances that cause and/or result from a change from one state to
another. [IEEE 610]
state table: A grid showing the resulting transitions for each state combined with each
possible event, showing both valid and invalid transitions.
state transition: A transition between two states of a component or system.
state transition testing: A black box test design technique in which test cases are designed to
execute valid and invalid state transitions. See also N-switch testing.
statement: An entity in a programming language, which is typically the smallest indivisible
unit of execution.
statement coverage: The percentage of executable statements that have been exercised by a
test suite.
statement testing: A white box test design technique in which test cases are designed to
execute statements.
static analysis: Analysis of software artifacts, e.g. requirements or code, carried out without
execution of these software artifacts.
static analysis tool: See static analyzer.
static analyzer: A tool that carries out static analysis.
static code analysis: Analysis of source code carried out without execution of that software.
static code analyzer: A tool that carries out static code analysis. The tool checks source code,
for certain properties such as conformance to coding standards, quality metrics or data flow
anomalies.
static testing: Testing of a component or system at specification or implementation level
without execution of that software, e.g. reviews or static code analysis.
statistical testing: A test design technique in which a model of the statistical distribution of
the input is used to construct representative test cases. See also operational profile testing.
status accounting: An element of configuration management, consisting of the recording and
reporting of information needed to manage a configuration effectively. This information
includes a listing of the approved configuration identification, the status of proposed
changes to the configuration, and the implementation status of the approved changes.
[IEEE 610]
storage: See resource utilization.
storage testing: See resource utilization testing.
stress testing: Testing conducted to evaluate a system or component at or beyond the limits
of its specified requirements. [IEEE 610] See also load testing.
structure-based techniques: See white box test design technique.
structural coverage: Coverage measures based on the internal structure of a component or
system.
structural test design technique: See white box test design technique.
structural testing: See white box testing.
structured walkthrough: See walkthrough.
stub: A skeletal or special-purpose implementation of a software component, used to develop
or test a component that calls or is otherwise dependent on it. It replaces a called
component. [After IEEE 610]
subpath: A sequence of executable statements within a component.
suitability: The capability of the software product to provide an appropriate set of functions
for specified tasks and user objectives. [ISO 9126] See also functionality.
suspension criteria: The criteria used to (temporarily) stop all or a portion of the testing
activities on the test items. [After IEEE 829]
syntax testing: A black box test design technique in which test cases are designed based upon
the definition of the input domain and/or output domain.
system: A collection of components organized to accomplish a specific function or set of
functions. [IEEE 610]
system integration testing: Testing the integration of systems and packages; testing
interfaces to external organizations (e.g. Electronic Data Interchange, Internet).
system testing: The process of testing an integrated system to verify that it meets specified
requirements. [Hetzel]

T
technical review: A peer group discussion activity that focuses on achieving consensus on
the technical approach to be taken. [Gilb and Graham, IEEE 1028] See also peer review.
test: A set of one or more test cases [IEEE 829]
test approach: The implementation of the test strategy for a specific project. It typically
includes the decisions made that follow based on the (test) project’s goal and the risk
assessment carried out, starting points regarding the test process, the test design techniques
to be applied, exit criteria and test types to be performed.
test automation: The use of software to perform or support test activities, e.g. test
management, test design, test execution and results checking.
test basis: All documents from which the requirements of a component or system can be
inferred. The documentation on which the test cases are based. If a document can be
amended only by way of formal amendment procedure, then the test basis is called a frozen
test basis. [After TMap]
test bed: See test environment.
test case: A set of input values, execution preconditions, expected results and execution
postconditions, developed for a particular objective or test condition, such as to exercise a
particular program path or to verify compliance with a specific requirement. [After IEEE
610]
test case design technique: See test design technique.
test case specification: A document specifying a set of test cases (objective, inputs, test
actions, expected results, and execution preconditions) for a test item. [After IEEE 829]
test case suite: See test suite.
test charter: A statement of test objectives, and possibly test ideas on how to test. Test
charters are for example often used in exploratory testing. See also exploratory testing.
test closure: During the test closure phase of a test process data is collected from completed
activities to consolidate experience, testware, facts and numbers. The test closure phase
consists of finalizing and archiving the testware and evaluating the test process, including
preparation of a test evaluation report. See also test process.
test comparator: A test tool to perform automated test comparison.
test comparison: The process of identifying differences between the actual results produced
by the component or system under test and the expected results for a test. Test comparison
can be performed during test execution (dynamic comparison) or after test execution.
test completion criteria: See exit criteria.
test condition: An item or event of a component or system that could be verified by one or
more test cases, e.g. a function, transaction, feature, quality attribute, or structural element.
test control: A test management task that deals with developing and applying a set of
corrective actions to get a test project on track when monitoring shows a deviation from
what was planned. See also test management.
test coverage: See coverage.
test cycle: Execution of the test process against a single identifiable release of the test object.
test data: Data that exists (for example, in a database) before a test is executed, and that
affects or is affected by the component or system under test.
test data preparation tool: A type of test tool that enables data to be selected from existing
databases or created, generated, manipulated and edited for use in testing.
test design: See test design specification.
test design specification: A document specifying the test conditions (coverage items) for a
test item, the detailed test approach and identifying the associated high level test cases.
[After IEEE 829]
test design technique: Procedure used to derive and/or select test cases.
test design tool: A tool that supports the test design activity by generating test inputs from a
specification that may be held in a CASE tool repository, e.g. requirements management
tool, from specified test conditions held in the tool itself, or from code.
test driver: See driver.
test driven development: A way of developing software where the test cases are developed,
and often automated, before the software is developed to run those test cases.
test environment: An environment containing hardware, instrumentation, simulators,
software tools, and other support elements needed to conduct a test. [After IEEE 610]
test evaluation report: A document produced at the end of the test process summarizing all
testing activities and results. It also contains an evaluation of the test process and lessons
learned.
test execution: The process of running a test on the component or system under test,
producing actual result(s).
test execution automation: The use of software, e.g. capture/playback tools, to control the
execution of tests, the comparison of actual results to expected results, the setting up of test
preconditions, and other test control and reporting functions.
test execution phase: The period of time in a software development life cycle during which
the components of a software product are executed, and the software product is evaluated
to determine whether or not requirements have been satisfied. [IEEE 610]
test execution schedule: A scheme for the execution of test procedures. The test procedures
are included in the test execution schedule in their context and in the order in which they
are to be executed.
test execution technique: The method used to perform the actual test execution, either
manually or automated.
test execution tool: A type of test tool that is able to execute other software using an
automated test script, e.g. capture/playback. [Fewster and Graham]
test fail: See fail.
test generator: See test data preparation tool.
test leader: See test manager.
test harness: A test environment comprised of stubs and drivers needed to execute a test.
test incident: See incident.
test incident report: See incident report.
test infrastructure: The organizational artifacts needed to perform testing, consisting of test
environments, test tools, office environment and procedures.
test input: The data received from an external source by the test object during test execution.
The external source can be hardware, software or human.
test item: The individual element to be tested. There usually is one test object and many test
items. See also test object.
test item transmittal report: See release note.
test leader: See test manager.
test level: A group of test activities that are organized and managed together. A test level is
linked to the responsibilities in a project. Examples of test levels are component test,
integration test, system test and acceptance test. [After TMap]
test log: A chronological record of relevant details about the execution of tests. [IEEE 829]
test logging: The process of recording information about tests executed into a test log.
test manager: The person responsible for project management of testing activities and
resources, and evaluation of a test object. The individual who directs, controls, administers,
plans and regulates the evaluation of a test object.
test management: The planning, estimating, monitoring and control of test activities,
typically carried out by a test manager.
test management tool: A tool that provides support to the test management and control part
of a test process. It often has several capabilities, such as testware management, scheduling
of tests, the logging of results, progress tracking, incident management and test reporting.
Test Maturity Model (TMM): A five level staged framework for test process improvement,
related to the Capability Maturity Model (CMM) that describes the key elements of an
effective test process.
test monitoring: A test management task that deals with the activities related to periodically
checking the status of a test project. Reports are prepared that compare the actuals to that
which was planned. See also test management.
test object: The component or system to be tested. See also test item.
test objective: A reason or purpose for designing and executing a test.
test oracle: A source to determine expected results to compare with the actual result of the
software under test. An oracle may be the existing system (for a benchmark), a user
manual, or an individual’s specialized knowledge, but should not be the code. [After
Adrion]
test outcome: See result.
test pass: See pass.
test performance indicator: A high level metric of effectiveness and/or efficiency used to
guide and control progressive test development, e.g. Defect Detection Percentage (DDP).
test phase: A distinct set of test activities collected into a manageable phase of a project, e.g.
the execution activities of a test level. [After Gerrard]
test plan: A document describing the scope, approach, resources and schedule of intended
test activities. It identifies amongst others test items, the features to be tested, the testing
tasks, who will do each task, degree of tester independence, the test environment, the test
design techniques and entry and exit criteria to be used, and the rationale for their choice,
and any risks requiring contingency planning. It is a record of the test planning process.
[After IEEE 829]
test planning: The activity of establishing or updating a test plan.
test policy: A high level document describing the principles, approach and major objectives
of the organization regarding testing.
Test Point Analysis (TPA): A formula based test estimation method based on function point
analysis. [TMap]
test procedure: See test procedure specification.
test procedure specification: A document specifying a sequence of actions for the execution
of a test. Also known as test script or manual test script. [After IEEE 829]
test process: The fundamental test process comprises planning, specification, execution,
recording, checking for completion and test closure activities. [After BS 7925/2]
Test Process Improvement (TPI): A continuous framework for test process improvement
that describes the key elements of an effective test process, especially targeted at system
testing and acceptance testing.
test record: See test log.
test recording: See test logging.
test reproduceability: An attribute of a test indicating whether the same results are produced
each time the test is executed.
test report: See test summary report.
test requirement: See test condition.
test run: Execution of a test on a specific version of the test object.
test run log: See test log.
test result: See result.
test scenario: See test procedure specification.
test script: Commonly used to refer to a test procedure specification, especially an automated
one.
test set: See test suite.
test situation: See test condition.
test specification: A document that consists of a test design specification, test case
specification and/or test procedure specification.
test specification technique: See test design technique.
test stage: See test level.
test strategy: A high-level description of the test levels to be performed and the testing within
those levels for an organization or programme (one or more projects).
test suite: A set of several test cases for a component or system under test, where the post
condition of one test is often used as the precondition for the next one.
test summary report: A document summarizing testing activities and results. It also contains
an evaluation of the corresponding test items against exit criteria. [After IEEE 829]
test target: A set of exit criteria.
test technique: See test design technique.
test tool: A software product that supports one or more test activities, such as planning and
control, specification, building initial files and data, test execution and test analysis.
[TMap] See also CAST.
test type: A group of test activities aimed at testing a component or system focused on a
specific test objective, i.e. functional test, usability test, regression test etc. A test type may
take place on one or more test levels or test phases. [After TMap]
testability: The capability of the software product to enable modified software to be tested.
[ISO 9126] See also maintainability.
testability review: A detailed check of the test basis to determine whether the test basis is at
an adequate quality level to act as an input document for the test process. [After TMap]
testable requirements: The degree to which a requirement is stated in terms that permit
establishment of test designs (and subsequently test cases) and execution of tests to
determine whether the requirements have been met. [After IEEE 610]
tester: A skilled professional who is involved in the testing of a component or system.
testing: The process consisting of all life cycle activities, both static and dynamic, concerned
with planning, preparation and evaluation of software products and related work products
to determine that they satisfy specified requirements, to demonstrate that they are fit for
purpose and to detect defects.
testware: Artifacts produced during the test process required to plan, design, and execute
tests, such as documentation, scripts, inputs, expected results, set-up and clear-up
procedures, files, databases, environment, and any additional software or utilities used in
testing. [After Fewster and Graham]
thread testing: A version of component integration testing where the progressive integration
of components follows the implementation of subsets of the requirements, as opposed to
the integration of components by levels of a hierarchy.
time behavior: See performance.
top-down testing: An incremental approach to integration testing where the component at the
top of the component hierarchy is tested first, with lower level components being simulated
by stubs. Tested components are then used to test lower level components. The process is
repeated until the lowest level components have been tested. See also integration testing.
traceability: The ability to identify related items in documentation and software, such as
requirements with associated tests. See also horizontal traceability, vertical traceability.

U
understandability: The capability of the software product to enable the user to understand
whether the software is suitable, and how it can be used for particular tasks and conditions of
use. [ISO 9126] See also usability.
unit: See component.
unit testing: See component testing.
unreachable code: Code that cannot be reached and therefore is impossible to execute.
usability: The capability of the software to be understood, learned, used and attractive to the
user when used under specified conditions. [ISO 9126]
34
usability testing: Testing to determine the extent to which the software product is
understood, easy to learn, easy to operate and attractive to the users under specified
conditions. [After ISO 9126]
use case: A sequence of transactions in a dialogue between a user and the system with a
tangible result.
use case testing: A black box test design technique in which test cases are designed to
execute user scenarios.
user acceptance testing: See acceptance testing.
user scenario testing: See use case testing.
user test: A test whereby real-life users are involved to evaluate the usability of a component
or system.

V
V-model: A framework to describe the software development life cycle activities from
requirements specification to maintenance. The V-model illustrates how testing activities
can be integrated into each phase of the software development life cycle.
validation: Confirmation by examination and through provision of objective evidence that
the requirements for a specific intended use or application have been fulfilled. [ISO 9000]
variable: An element of storage in a computer that is accessible by a software program by
referring to it by a name.
verification: Confirmation by examination and through provision of objective evidence that
specified requirements have been fulfilled. [ISO 9000]
vertical traceability: The tracing of requirements through the layers of development
documentation to components.
version control: See configuration control.
volume testing: Testing where the system is subjected to large volumes of data. See also
resource-utilization testing.

W
walkthrough: A step-by-step presentation by the author of a document in order to gather
information and to establish a common understanding of its content. [Freedman and
Weinberg, IEEE 1028] See also peer review.
white-box test design technique: Procedure to derive and/or select test cases based on an
analysis of the internal structure of a component or system.
white-box testing: Testing based on an analysis of the internal structure of the component or
system.
Wide Band Delphi: An expert based test estimation technique that aims at making an
accurate estimation using the collective wisdom of the team members.

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