Test Design

Test Design

Test design is the activity that defines “how” something is to be tested. It involves the identification of test cases by the stepwise elaboration of the identified test conditions or test basis using test techniques identified in the test strategy and/or the test plan.

Depending on the approaches being used for test monitoring, test control, and traceability, test cases are directly related (or indirectly related via the test conditions) to the test basis and defined objectives. These objectives include strategic objectives, test objectives, and other project or stakeholder criteria for success.

Test design for a given test level is performed once test conditions are identified and enough information is available to enable the production of either low or high-level test cases, according to the employed approach to test design. For higher levels of testing, it is more likely that test design is a separate activity following earlier test analysis. For lower levels of testing, it is likely that test analysis and design are conducted as an integrated activity.

It is also likely that some tasks that normally occur during test implementation are integrated into the test design process when using an iterative approach to building the tests required for execution; e.g., the creation of test data. In fact, this approach can optimize the coverage of test conditions, either creating low-level or high-level test cases in the process.