Web Technology @ CCBC

Student driven blog for all things web.

Good testers can make great developers (but great developers are rarely good testers )

Posted by killerkulture on February 5, 2008

I’m a Web Application Quality Assurance Analyst (e-commerce mostly)…which means that I’m responsible for authoring test plans, test cases, testing strategies, identifying risk, finding and tracking defects, and analyzing business requirements and functional specs (which almost always ends up becoming a full blown requirements gathering research project through reverse engineering) for websites.

One task that was recently added to my plate was the duty of training junior developers as website testers before allowing them to delve into coding. This was a great experience because not only did it teach the junior developers how the site functions and how the data is stored, shared, and validated between systems, but most importantly, it taught them how to use the site as an inexperience end user/customer. 3 months later, these junior developers are thinking through every scenario (before coding) that users may encounter, and expanding their duties and mindset beyond just coding the “happy path”. They’re actually much more thorough than the senior developers on the team. Now the managers on the team see the junior developers as extremely valuable resources because of the knowledge and experience they’ve gained by learning (through exploratory and structured testing methods) the ins and out of the web site’s front end, all of the different paths that customers can take, all of the different types of data that customers can input, where/how that data is stored, how the data is validated, communicated, and shared with other systems within the company, business rules, order and fulfillment processes, page structure, asset/content management, and how to think like a customer.

I can’t recommend this enough…improving your testing and QA knowledge will help you tremendously with creating better websites. There are a lot of websites on software testing and QA. Some of these include:

SoftwareTestingHelp.com

http://www.stickyminds.com/

http://www.softwareqatest.com/

http://www.sitepoint.com/article/ultimate-testing-checklist

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One Response to “Good testers can make great developers (but great developers are rarely good testers )”

  1. vjnoone said

    Great insight and I TOTALLY agree. A lot can be learned be learned looking at a project from the inexperienced user side.

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