Commonly used words and their definitions in Quality Assurance!

Quality Assurance is not very complicated by any means given you understand the basics.  Here are some basic and most common words along with their definitions to help you get a better understanding of what QA is all about.  Hope this is helpful 🙂  

1)What is quality? 
Quality software is software that is reasonably bug-free, delivered on time and within budget, meets requirements and expectations and is maintainable. However, quality is a subjective term. Quality depends on who the customer is and their overall influence in the scheme of things. Customers of a software development project include end-users, customer acceptance test engineers, testers, customer contract officers, customer management, the development organization’s management, test engineers, testers, salespeople, software engineers, stockholders and accountants. Each type of customer will have his or her own take on quality. The accounting department might define quality in terms of profits, while an end-user might define quality as user friendly and bug free. 

2) What is a Test Suite and a Test Script?
The most common term for a collection of test cases is a test suite. The test suite often also contains more detailed instructions or goals for each collection of test cases. It contains a section where the tester identifies the system configuration used during testing. A group of test cases may also contain prerequisite states or steps, and descriptions of the following tests.
Most commonly, test scripts are the code that is used by the automated tools to carry out the tests.

3) What is a Test Plan?
Collections of test cases are sometimes incorrectly termed a test plan. They may also be called a test script, or even a test scenario however, a test plan is the approach that is used to test the system, not the individual tests.

4)What is a Test Scenario?
A test scenario is a test based on a hypothetical story used to help the tester think through a complex problem or system. It can be as simple as a diagram for a testing environment or it could be a written out description. The ideal scenario has five key characteristics. It is 
(a) a story that is 
(b) motivating, 
(c) credible, 
(d) complex, and 
(e) easy to evaluate. 
They are usually different from test cases in that test cases are single steps and scenarios cover a number of steps. Test suites and scenarios can be used for complete system tests.

5)What is a Test Case?
A test case is usually a single step, and its expected result, along with various additional pieces of information. It can also be a series of steps but with one expected result or expected outcome. The additional fields are a test case ID, test step or order of execution number, related requirement(s), test category, author, and check boxes for whether the test is automatable and has been automated along with the status. Larger test cases may also contain prerequisite states or steps, and descriptions. A test case also contains a place for the actual result. These steps can be stored
in a word document, spreadsheet, database or other common repository. In a database system, you can also have a place to be able to see past test results and who generated the results and the system configuration used to generate those results.  These past results would usually be stored in a separate table.

6)What is an inspection?
An inspection is a formal meeting, more formalized than a walkthrough and typically consists of 3-10 people including a moderator, reader (the author of whatever is being reviewed) and a recorder (to make notes in the document). The subject of the inspection is typically a document, such as a requirements document or a test plan. The purpose of an inspection is to find problems and see what is missing, not to fix anything. The result of the meeting should be documented in a written report. Attendees should prepare for this type of meeting by reading through the document, before the meeting starts; most problems are found during this preparation. Preparation for inspections is difficult, but is one of the most cost-effective methods of ensuring quality, since bug prevention is more cost effective than bug detection. 

7)What is verification? 
Verification ensures the product is designed to deliver all functionality to the customer; it typically involves reviews and meetings to evaluate documents, plans, code, requirements and specifications; this can be done with checklists, issues lists, walkthroughs and inspection meetings. You can learn to do verification, with little or no outside help.  

8)What is validation? 
Validation ensures that functionality, as defined in requirements, is the intended behavior of the product; validation typically involves actual testing and takes place after verifications are completed. 

9)What is a walkthrough? 
A walkthrough is an informal meeting for evaluation or informational purposes. A walkthrough is also a process at an abstract level. It’s the process of inspecting software code by following paths through the code (as determined by input conditions and choices made along the way). The purpose of code walkthroughs is to ensure the code fits the purpose. Walkthroughs also offer opportunities to assess an individual’s or team’s competency. 

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