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ISTQB-BCS Foundation Certificate

e-testing have been accredited by the BCS to run the Foundation Certificate since 2002 and we are proud of our consistently excellent results. So far in 2017, our delegates have achieved an average exam result of 83% against a pass mark of 65%. In fact, 82% of our delegates passed the exam so far this year (ISTQB published global average is 75%).

Our trainers are experienced testing practitioners with many years of software testing experience to relate to candidates in order to enhance the learning process.

Looking to train four or more delegates? We can run the course at your offices, over three days, or for less experienced groups, over four days – allowing extra time for practical exercises and discussion.

ISTQB-BCS Foundation Certificate

£750 per delegate ex VAT

The course is run over 3 days and includes all course materials. Lunch and refreshments are provided for some onsite courses. Please check course details for further information.

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Who should attend

  • Test Analysts
  • User Acceptance Testers
  • Test Managers
  • Quality Managers
  • Project Managers
  • Those getting started in Software Testing

Exam Details

The examination is carried out at the end of the third day of the course. It is a one hour, closed book, multiple choice exam with a pass mark of 26/40. Successful completion leads to the award of the ISTQB-BCS Foundation Certificate in software testing by the British Computer Society and the ISTQB, an Internationally recognised qualification in software testing.


  • Be aware of techniques and standards for software testing
  • Understand the basic steps of the testing process and understand where testing fits in to each stage of the software development lifecycle (SDLC)
  • Perform effective testing of software based on established methods and techniques
  • Gain a detailed understanding of both functional and non-functional test levels
  • Be able to develop a test plan and other documentation, based on International standards
  • Have an awareness of testing tools and what they can achieve

"I did the ISTQB Software Testing Foundation Course last year – achieving an 86% pass mark. This was in no small way attributable to the teaching received during the course – highly recommended."

Senior Test Analyst, Retail

Course Content & Agenda

The course consists of six modules, spread over three days. The exam is on the final day of the course.

Module 1: Fundamentals of Testing Artboard 1 copy 4

Why is testing necessary?

Defining software errors, defects, and failures

Contexts, causes, and costs

The role of testing in software development

Maintenance and operations

How testing is related to risk and to quality

How to determine how much testing is enough

What is Testing?

a mis-perception -“testing means running a program to see what it does”

Identifying the test activities that precede and follow test execution

Distinguishing static and dynamic testing

Differentiating testing from debugging

The need to ensure that test objectives are relevant to the testing context

General Testing Principles

7 basic principles of good testing

Fundamental Test Process

Essential activities of a fundamental test process:

Planning and control

Analysis and design

Implementation and execution

Evaluating exit criteria and reporting

Test closure activities

Psychology of Testing

The differences between the tester’s and developer’s mindsets

The importance of independence in testing

How independence can be achieved while maintaining good relations

Module 2: Testing Throughout the Lifecycle Artboard 1 copy 4

Software development models

Different ways of relating test activities and work products to development activities and work products

A set of integrated relationships suitable for any life cycle model, based on four “levels” of testing - component testing, integration testing, system testing, and acceptance testing

The principle of “early test design”

Test levels

The major objectives and targets of each of the four test levels

Related development work products (“test basis”)

Types of defect and failure looked for, and likely test personnel

Test types: the targets of testing

Description and comparison of types of test “target” software functions:

“non-functional” characteristics such as performance and usability

Software architecture and other structures such as program code

Change-related testing (confirmation testing and regression testing)

Maintenance testing

The special environment and considerations of post-release (“maintenance”) testing

Impact analysis to establish the need for regression testing

Module 3: Static Techniques Artboard 1 copy 4

Reviews and the test process

Why reviews are beneficial

What can be reviewed

When in the lifecycle should reviews be carried out?

The costs and benefits of reviews

The relationships and differences between static and dynamic techniques

Review process

The phases, roles, and responsibilities of a typical formal review

The differences between informal reviews, walkthroughs, technical reviews, and inspection

The factors for successful performance of reviews

Static analysis by tools

Objectives of static analysis as a form of “automated review”

Comparison withdynamic testing

Typical code-level defects most easily found by static analysis

Typical benefits of static analysis

Module 4: Test Design Techniques Artboard 1 copy 4

Identifying test conditions and designing test cases

The analysis of test conditions from a test basis document

Design of tests to exercise those conditions (“Test Design Specification”)

Implementation of tests via detailed “Test Case Specifications”, “Test Procedure Specifications”, and test execution schedules

Categories of test design technique

Characteristics and differences between specification-based testing, structure-based testing, and experience-based testing

Why both specification-based (black-box) and structure-based (white-box) approaches to test case design are useful

Common techniques for each approach

Specification-based or Black Box techniques

Four black box modelling techniques (equivalence partitioning, boundary value analysis, decision tables, and state-transition testing)

How their degrees of “coverage” may be measured

The concept of use case testing and its benefits

Structure-based or White Box techniques

The concept and importance of statement and decision coverage, including their potential use at all test levels

How to identify test cases based on process flows by using statement testing and decision testing

Experience-based techniques

How to supplement systematic techniques with additional creative test techniques

Error guessing and exploratory testing

Choosing test techniques

How different techniques can be used for different kinds of testing

The importance of choosing the appropriate techniques for particular kinds of problem

Module 5: Test Management Artboard 1 copy 4

Test organisation

The importance of independent testing

The need for good communication between testers and the rest of the organisation

The different roles of “tester” and “test leader” (test manager)

Typical tasks of each of the above

Test planning and estimation

The purpose and content of the Test Plan document according to the ‘Standard for Software Test Documentation’ (IEEE 829).

Two estimation approaches (the metrics-based approach and the expert-based approach)

Concepts of test adequacy criteria (“exit criteria”) for specific test levels

Testing strategies that might be selectively combined into a planned “test approach” for achieving them

Test progress monitoring and control

Monitoring test activities to identify deviations from the Test Plan, so that corrective (“control”) actions may be agreed and undertaken

Common metrics used for monitoring test preparation and execution, such as progress in test case specification, or tests run, passed, and failed

The purpose and content of the Test Summary Report document specified in the ‘Standard for Software Test Documentation’ (IEEE 829).

Configuration management

Why configuration management and change control are necessary, particularly in testing

The configuration items for testing

Risk and testing

The nature of risk

“project risks” versus“product risks”

How risk analysis is used throughout testing to determine what to test

How much to test?

What should be tested first?

Incident management

How to record incidents according to the ‘Standard for Software Test Documentation’ (IEEE 829)

What needs to be tracked

Analysing defect statistics

The difference between severity and priority

Defects versus change requests

Module 6: Tool Support for Testing Artboard 1 copy 4

Types of test tool

Seven categories of software test tools

What can each type do?

Identifying tools that might benefit testers in their testing

Effective use of tools: potential benefits and risks

Potential benefits and risks of test automation

Tool support for testing

Introducing a tool into an organisation

The main principles of introducing a tool into an organization

The goals of a proof-of-concept/piloting phase for tool evaluation

Factors required for good tool support

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