Tuesday, 25 March 2014

Mind Maps and Test Activities

In my previous post, I have described about mind Map and its usefulness. In this article I intend to discuss about how we can make use of Mind Map in our test activities. We can leverage the benefits that the Mind Maps offer, in many of our test phases like test planning, Test design, Problem solving,  developing tour during exploratory testing etc.

Plan your test using Mind Map

Test Planning is a phase when you plan your entire test activities for a particular release or a particular year/period. This is usually a large document in black and white. The Mind maps and its visual appearance can be put to use here. The whole planning activities can be depicted or drawn in a single sheet which increases the legibility of the entire document over the conventional approach.

Test design using Mind Map

The advantage of designing tests using mind maps is that the entire feature/functionality that has to be tested can be represented visually thereby giving insight into the various interconnections and hence giving rise to more test ideas.

Mind Map aids Problem Solving

Trouble shooting and problem solving have always been one of the major activities during the test lifecycle. One always does a brain storming session or discussions to analyze a given problem and then find a solution for it. In a conventional approach the brainstorming sessions and the results derived out of it are not structured and hence difficult to document. If you use a mind map during this process, you can structure out the ideas that come from the discussion even without losing the essence of brainstorming process. This document can be used for reference in the future also.

Gaining insight on complex subjects

Understanding and testing integrated scenarios and complex subjects are always a challenge especially during integration testing. Depict them using Mind map – give them a visual feel – and make your testing easy. It goes beyond saying that you can understand things more easily in pictorial form than in writing. Such mind map documents can be created for KT reference also.

Develop tours during exploratory testing from Mind Maps

Exploratory tests are talk of the town now. We understand the scenario and figure out which tour suits the best for it. If you have a Mind Map in place for a particular scenario, it would be easy for you to find out which is the best tour you can use for it.

To make it practical let me put all what I have said in a Mind map so that you can see for yourself.


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