First International Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement (ESEM 2007) (2007)
Sept. 20, 2007 to Sept. 21, 2007
DOI Bookmark: http://doi.ieeecomputersociety.org/10.1109/ESEM.2007.56
Juha Itkonen , Helsinki University of Technology, Finland
Mika V. Mantyla , Helsinki University of Technology, Finland
Casper Lassenius , Helsinki University of Technology, Finland
This paper presents a controlled experiment comparing the defect detection efficiency of exploratory testing (ET) and test case based testing (TCT). While traditional testing literature emphasizes test cases, ET stresses the individual tester?s skills during test execution and does not rely upon predesigned test cases. In the experiment, 79 advanced software engineering students performed manual functional testing on an open-source application with actual and seeded defects. Each student participated in two 90-minute controlled sessions, using ET in one and TCT in the other. We found no significant differences in defect detection efficiency between TCT and ET. The distributions of detected defects did not differ significantly regarding technical type, detection difficulty, or severity. However, TCT produced significantly more false defect reports than ET. Surprisingly, our results show no benefit of using predesigned test cases in terms of defect detection efficiency, emphasizing the need for further studies of manual testing.
C. Lassenius, J. Itkonen and M. V. Mantyla, "Defect Detection Efficiency: Test Case Based vs. Exploratory Testing," 2007 First International Symposium on Empirical Software Engineering and Measurement(ESEM), Madrid, 2007, pp. 61-70.