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What are the 7 Principles of Software Testing?

Last updated on Jul 13,2020 8.1K Views

A Data Science Enthusiast with in-hand skills in programming languages such as... A Data Science Enthusiast with in-hand skills in programming languages such as Java & Python.

Today’s world of technology is completely dominated by machines, and their behavior is controlled by the software powering it. Software testing provides the solution to all our worries about machines behaving the exact way we want them to. The Principles of Software Testing will provide you in-depth knowledge about why testing is important in the following sequence :

What is Software Testing?

Software Testing is a process of evaluating the functionality of a software application to find any software bugs. It checks whether the developed software met the specified requirements and identifies any defect in the software in order to produce a quality product.

Software testing -principles of software testing- edureka

Software Testing also verifies and validates a software product. It checks whether the software product:

  • Meets the business and technical requirements that guided its design and development
  • Works as per the requirement
  • Can be implemented with the same characteristics


    Why do we need Software Testing?

    The software application’s success rate controls the growth of our business. It plays an important role in the development of software applications and products.

    We need software testing for the following reasons:

    cost effective - principles of software testing - edureka

    Cost-Effective – Testing your project on time can save money in the long run. Software development consists of many stages and if bugs are caught in the earlier stages it costs much less to fix them.

    security - principles of software testing - edureka


    Security – This is the most sensitive and vulnerable part of software testing. Users are always looking for trusted products that they can rely on. It helps in removing problems and risks beforehand.


    product quality - principles of software testing - edureka

    Product Quality – In order to make your product vision come to life, it has to work as planned. It is important to follow the product requirements & performance because it helps you get the required end results.



    Customer Satisfaction – The ultimate goal for a product owner is to give the best customer satisfaction.  The software should be tested in order to bring the best user experience possible.

    These were some of the benefits of Software Testing. Now let’s move ahead and have a look at the different principles of Software Testing.


    Principles of Software Testing

    There are seven fundamental testing principles which help the testing teams to utilize their time and effort and make the testing process an effective one. What are the basic principles of Software Testing? Let’s have a look:

    1. Testing shows presence of defects

    Testing an application is important to know whether any error or defect exists. The objective is to find more and more hidden defects using different techniques and methods. Testing helps you reveal undiscovered defects and if no defects are found then it does not mean that the software is defect-free.

    For example, an application might seem to be error-free after going through different stages of testing. But during the production in the environment, the user may come across any defect which did not occur during the testing.

    2. Exhaustive testing is not possible 

    It is difficult to test all the functionalities with valid and invalid combinations of input data during actual testing. Therefore, testing of a few combinations is done based on priority using different techniques. Exhaustive testing will take unlimited efforts and most of those efforts are ineffective. Also, the project timelines would not allow testing of so many combinations.

    For example, If you have an input field which accepts alphabets, special characters, and numbers from 0 to 1000 only, it would have numerous combinations for testing. It is not possible to test all combinations for each input type.

    3. Early testing

    Testers get involved in the early stage to find defects during the requirement analysis phase. The cost involved in fixing such defects is very less when compared to those that are found during the later stages of testing.

    Testing needs to be performed on requirement documents, specification or any other type of document so that if requirements are incorrectly defined then it can be fixed immediately rather than fixing them in the development phase.

    4. Defect clustering

    During testing, it is observed that most of the defects found are related to a small number of modules. There might be multiple reasons for this like the modules may be complex, coding related to such modules may be complicated, etc.

    This is the Pareto Principle of software testing where you can detect 80% of the problems in 20% of the modules.

    5. Pesticide paradox

    Pesticide Paradox principle states that if you execute the same set of test cases again and again over the period of time then these set of tests cannot identify new defects in the system.

    In order to overcome this Pesticide Paradox, you need to review and revise the set of test cases regularly. If required a new set of test cases can be added and the existing test cases can be deleted if they are not able to find any more defects from the system.

    6. Testing is context-dependent

    There are various domains available in the market and each domain has a number of applications. For each domain, their applications have different requirements, functions, different testing purpose, risk, techniques, etc. Different domains are tested differently and thus, the testing is purely based on the context of the domain or application.

    For Example, testing a banking application is different than testing any e-commerce or advertising application. The risk associated with each type of application is different. So, you should not use the same method, technique, and testing type to test different applications.

    7. Absence of errors fallacy

    If the software is tested fully and no defects are found before release, then you can consider the software to be 99% defect-free. But if the software is tested against wrong requirements, finding defects and fixing them on time would not help as testing is performed on wrong requirements. This would not comply with the user needs.

    For Example, suppose you are testing an application related to an e-commerce site and the requirements against “Shopping Cart or Shopping Basket” functionality is wrongly interpreted and tested. Here, finding more defects would not help you in moving the application into the next phase or in the production environment.

    These were the 7 important principles of Software Testing.

    Now with this, we come to an end to this “Principles of Software Testing” blog. I Hope you guys enjoyed this article and understood what are the different principles and their importance. 

    Now that you have understood testing, check out the Software Testing Fundamentals Course by Edureka. This course is designed to introduce you to the complete software testing life-cycle. You will be learning different levels of testing, test environment setup, test case design technique, test data creation, test execution, bug reporting, CI/CD pipeline in DevOps, and other essential concepts of software testing. Got a question for us? Please mention it in the comments section of “Principles of Software Testing” and we will get back to you.


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