Test Design Specification

If test engineers are going to insist on designs from developers, then we can be no less strict with ourselves. The TDS should be the first place a new tester on the project can go for an overview of a test package. If you have more than one test package, then you need a TDS for each one.

The ANSI/IEEE standard 829-1983 describes every kind of test documentation that you could ever want to create. Using the whole standard is almost certainly overkill for anything but a safety-critical application, but every Quality Engineer should read the 829 standard once in their life.

IEEE publishes collections of their standards. I've found the Software Engineering (ISBN 1-55937-442-X) collection to be very helpful as a reference. You probably won't use it very often, but the standards are handy to have around when you're starting a new project, just to get some ideas. One copy for the group library is a Good Thing (tm).

A TDS should include:


Copyright 1998 Anne Powell

last update 3/8/98