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How do I create a risk-based testing model that focuses more coverage on higher priority areas?

Introducing and explaining the “Mixed-Strength Testing” feature.

DesignWise allows you to adjust testing coverage to focus more thorough coverage on selected, high-priority areas

One straightforward risk-based testing technique (at the value level) is to simply enter a specific value multiple times in the “Inputs” screen. Entering “Male, Male, Female, Male” as Values, for example, would result in “Male” appearing three times as often as “Female.”

A more powerful risk-based testing strategy (at the parameter level) is generating Multi-Strength test sets, as described in the following example. This feature can be helpful to use in many (if not most) of the models you will create.

Let’s set the context and the problem we’re trying to address

We have a mission-critical application that includes several large changes in this release. We’ve filled in parameters for our System Under Test, and we see that a 2-way solution based on our variation ideas would require 87 scenarios.

Curious to see how many tests would be needed for a more thorough test model? Generate a set of 3-way tests! Unfortunately, this more-thorough solution requires almost 5 times as many tests. Ugh! We don’t have time all of those!

Determine what Values we want to devote more thorough testing

What we want to do now is to generate a set of scenarios that will focus extra coverage on the high-priority parameters below, while maintaining pairwise coverage for every Value in our model. Creating a “Mixed-strength” model will allow us to do exactly that!

Select “Mixed-strength interactions” from the drop down list on the “Scenarios” screen

Next, identify at least 3 Parameters which you would like to receive extra thorough coverage. Click on “Reapply” to generate a new set of scenarios

Another way to look at the set of Risk-Based Scenarios that we have just created is to imagine temporarily removing everything from our model except for the Values from the high priority Parameters…

  • 3 values for “User Type”
  • 6 values for “Customer Authorization Limit”
  • 14 values for “Transaction Exchange”

Simple math tells us that to test every possible combination involving all of the 3 sets of high priority Values requires 3×6×14 = 252 tests.

In addition to achieving comprehensive 3-way coverage of the high priority Values we identified, the 252 Mixed-strength scenarios we created ALSO made sure that we tested every single pair of Values together in at least one test case



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