While Software Testing may seem like a simple and easy job, it requires a lot of attention and focus. As a craft, it requires constant skill development and practice.
We sometimes overlook a basic scenario or use case when focusing on the critical ones. I had experienced times when we had to test and publish a report within 1-2 days for an entire application/module. When testing in a time-bound environment, it can be challenging to prioritize and plan what to focus on. Cheatsheets could be extremely helpful during such times.
Testing Cheatsheets are handy notes that assist us in testing in a shorter amount of time and give us confidence in areas/possibilities we may not have contemplated otherwise.
“Good Testing involves balancing the need to mitigate risk against the risk of trying to gather too much information” – Jerry Weinberg.
Cheat sheets help us gather the right information and guide our testing with keywords/guidewords, helping us make decisions and draw conclusions about the product. Following are some of the ones I have used when needed so far and have found them to be extremely helpful. For any beginner or experienced Tester, knowing and using these cheat sheets could save a lot of time and effort and test smartly.
Thinking and Questioning
In our role as testers, it is extremely important that we understand the product very well. In order to accomplish this efficiently, we must constantly question the product. When put on the spot, how many questions can we really think of? What if we could have cheat sheets that can help us with this?
- Context-free questions by Michael Bolton has a list of questions that you can ask, and finding the answers to these questions will lead us to understand the product and uncover critical information that can help us guide our testing further.
- The Ultimate Cheat sheet for Critical Thinking also has some important questions to ask whenever we are taking up something new. The answers to these critical questions help us learn more about the product and, in a way, improve our testing.
Testing is a creative activity that requires us to constantly put our brains to work and think of ways to test the product. Developing ideas requires continuous cognitive reflection on the idea's development, feasibility, and use in the context in which it is being considered. Cognitive activities such as these require a lot of effort and brain activity. We can't always tell if we have adequately considered something, even after spending a lot of time on it. Wouldn't it be great if we could have a cheat sheet to help us out with Test ideas?
37 sources for Test Ideas by Rikard Edgren, Martin Jansson, and Henrik Emilsson is a cheat sheet with 37 sources through which we can think and generate test ideas, find relevant information about the product, and assess any threats to the quality of the product.
In order to accomplish our testing objectives, we develop a test strategy that describes our testing approach, the types of tests to be performed, the product under test, and the underlying risks.It is extremely important to build the right test strategy in order to determine how our testing will progress and how we will be able to meet our testing goals.
The Heuristic Test Strategy Model by James Bach is a cheat sheet for developing test strategies. It consists of some guidewords that help us to build our own strategy as per the context of our product.
We have been testing Web Applications for a while now. We might as well be very confident about it. But given a time-boxed environment to test, wouldn’t it feel great to go through these cheatsheets and run a few tests mentioned in them to discover new information from the product?
- Test Heuristics Cheatsheet by Elizabeth Hendrikson, James Lyndsay, and Dale Emery has keywords to guide our tests and find relevant information about the product.
- 36days of Web Testing by Rob Lambert is another web testing cheat sheet with ideas, how to test, and references to the tools as well. This is a pretty handy cheat sheet to quickly run through when performing Web Testing.
The above two are my personal favorites that I refer to and quickly run through when testing any Web application
Every application today is available on multiple platforms, mobile being one of them. If you’re new to mobile testing or you are an experienced professional in times of uncertainty, refer to the Mobile Testing cheat sheet by Daniel Knott. This cheat sheet has the keywords to guide and help us deeply understand the core areas to test for any mobile application.
In this vast world of Software testing, so many proven mnemonics are available as per the context. But as the nature of humans, we might try, but it is difficult to remember all of them.
Testing Mnemonics cheat sheet has a collection of all these useful testing mnemonics available in one place. These mnemonics cover the various functions that we software Testers do and have shortcuts for most of those functions.
These are some of the cheat sheets that help me with my testing on a daily basis, and I feel could be helpful to anyone interested in testing/pursuing testing. Not only in daily work, but some of these have also helped me in competitions and challenges as well. The profitability of time and effort that we can gain using these cheatsheets can be utilized for a more productive task at hand. Hope these cheat sheets will be helpful to all the testers reading this blog.
Let us know your thoughts and other cheatsheets that you use and can be added to the list.