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Agile Testing: A Practical Guide for Testers and Agile Teams Paperback – January 9, 2009

ISBN-13: 978-0321534460 ISBN-10: 0321534468 Edition: 1st

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Agile Testing: A Practical Guide for Testers and Agile Teams + Essential Scrum: A Practical Guide to the Most Popular Agile Process (Addison-Wesley Signature Series (Cohn)) + User Stories Applied: For Agile Software Development
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 576 pages
  • Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional; 1 edition (January 9, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0321534468
  • ISBN-13: 978-0321534460
  • Product Dimensions: 6.9 x 1.2 x 9.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #50,512 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


“As Agile methods have entered the mainstream, we’ve learned a lot about how the testing discipline fits into Agile projects. Lisa and Janet give us a solid look at what to do, and what to avoid, in Agile testing.”
–Ron Jeffries,

“An excellent introduction to agile and how it affects the software test community!”
–Gerard Meszaros, Agile Practice Lead and Chief Test Strategist at Solution Frameworks, Inc., an agile coaching and lean software development consultancy

“In sports and music, people know the importance of practicing technique until it becomes a part of the way they do things. This book is about some of the most fundamental techniques in software development–how to build quality into code–techniques that should become second nature to every development team. The book provides both broad and in-depth coverage of how to move testing to the front of the development process, along with a liberal sprinkling of real-life examples that bring the book to life.”
–Mary Poppendieck, Author of Lean Software Development and Implementing Lean Software Development

“Refreshingly pragmatic. Chock-full of wisdom. Absent of dogma. This book is a gamechanger. Every software professional should read it.”
–Uncle Bob Martin, Object Mentor, Inc.

“With Agile Testing, Lisa and Janet have used their holistic sensibility of testing to describe a culture shift for testers and teams willing to elevate their test effectiveness. The combination of real-life project experiences and specific techniques provide an excellent way to learn and adapt to continually changing project needs.”
–Adam Geras, M.Sc. Developer-Tester, Ideaca Knowledge Services

“On Agile projects, everyone seems to ask, ‘But, what about testing?’ Is it the development team’s responsibility entirely, the testing team, or a collaborative effort between developers and testers? Or, ‘How much testing should we automate?’ Lisa and Janet have written a book that finally answers these types of questions and more! Whether you’re a tester, developer, or manager, you’ll learn many great examples and stories from the real-world work experiences they’ve shared in this excellent book.”
–Paul Duvall, CTO of Stelligent and co-author of Continuous Integration: Improving Software Quality and Reducing Risk

“Finally a book for testers on Agile teams that acknowledges there is not just one right way! Agile Testing provides comprehensive coverage of the issues testers face when they move to Agile: from tools and metrics to roles and process. Illustrated with numerous stories and examples from many contributors, it gives a clear picture of what successful Agile testers are doing today.”
–Bret Pettichord, Chief Technical Officer of WatirCraft and Lead Developer of Watir

From the Back Cover

Testing is a key component of agile development. The widespread adoption of agile methods has brought the need for effective testing into the limelight, and agile projects have transformed the role of testers. Much of a tester's function, however, remains largely misunderstood. What is the true role of a tester? Do agile teams actually need members with QA backgrounds? What does it really mean to be an “agile tester?

Two of the industry's most experienced agile testing practitioners and consultants, Lisa Crispin and Janet Gregory, have teamed up to bring you the definitive answers to these questions and many others. InAgile Testing,Crispin and Gregory define agile testing and illustrate the tester's role with examples from real agile teams. They teach you how to use the agile testing quadrants to identify what testing is needed, who should do it, and what tools might help. The book chronicles an agile software development iteration from the viewpoint of a tester and explains the seven key success factors
of agile testing.

Readers will come away from this book understanding
  • How to get testers engaged in agile development
  • Where testers and QA managers fit on an agile team
  • What to look for when hiring an agile tester
  • How to transition from a traditional cycle to agile development
  • How to complete testing activities in short iterations
  • How to use tests to successfully guide development
  • How to overcome barriers to test automation
This book is a must for agile testers, agile teams, their managers, and their customers.

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Customer Reviews

It was easy to read and very practical.
This book has helped me transition from traditional "Waterfall Development" to a highly successful Agile team.
Nic Simac
All in all, this book is exactly the kind of book that was needed.
Bas Vodde

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

78 of 83 people found the following review helpful By Paulo Sergio Medeiros on April 24, 2010
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I think this book is a little overhyped. Don't get me wrong. The book offers many interesting insights and experience reports about how testing can be organized by an agile team. However, in my opinion, much of them are "common sense" or were already explored in other sources (as some reviewers stated: "more about agile than agile testing"). For example, suggestions like "begin with the happy path", "put test stories on your backlog to make the test activities visible", "when working with legacy systems, create tests for the new features and, then, treat the old code in small steps" and "i (the tester) used to put candies on my table to attract programmers" are all interesting. But, at least for me, that wasn't *ONLY* what I was expecting for. Also, is that really new to someone that has experience with test or software? Another example of my expectations was about the beginning with test automation chapter. I really liked to be alerted to evaluate the ROI of what needs to be automated, but where are the details of inserting these activities in a team? What are the steps?

As a practical guide I was really expecting to see *DETAILED* examples of software testing in an agile context, distilled in steps or recommendations for its application in other contexts. I wouldn't be bothered if these examples weren't directly applicable to my context, but at least I would know how decisions were made and how they worked out. Overall, I was expecting much more technical content and even without all this the book managed to have 576 pages. Ok, again, maybe it was just my wrong expectations, but be advised to what you will get. If you are new to Agile you can read this book. Also, even if you are experienced, but want to refresh some good "common sense" practices it's a good read too. Otherwise, don't create many expectations as I did.
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38 of 41 people found the following review helpful By Bas Vodde on January 7, 2009
Format: Paperback
"Agile Testing" is an excellent and must-needed book related to testing in agile product development. Much has been written about test-driven development on unit level, however, little has been written on higher level testing and the role of testers and test departments in Agile development. This book changes that!

The book consists of 6 parts. The first part if an introduction, the last part is a summary. The introduction starts with a short explanation of agile testing and then followed by the ten principles of an Agile Tester. One of the key messages in this book is "the whole team approach", meaning that testing should be within the team and should not just be "the testers job". Anyone in the team can test, however, teams will probably still benefit from having a test specialist of a test expert. This mindset is one of the key thoughts the book repeats over and over again. In the last chapter, the authors summarize their thoughts with the seven key success factors for testing. Again, "the whole team approach" is #1. The agile testing mindset -- the proactive, creative cooperative mindset as opposed to a quality policy mindset -- is the second success factor.

The second part of the book describes organizational challenges. In my opinion, this part was perhaps the most needed. In many organizations testers struggle to find their role on agile product development. The chapter relate to cultural change, team logistics and transitioning typical processes. I thought the chapters were enlightening. Parts I liked were the discussion about the change in role for QA managers and especially the experience that, without proper coaching, a lot of traditional testing people might simply flee your agile development effort.
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15 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Amazon Customer on February 5, 2009
Format: Paperback
I'm a QA Manager in a department of 30 testers, most of whom have spent their entire careers on traditional SDLC "waterfall" projects. One of my, perhaps unenviable, tasks is to help transition these folks onto newly formed Agile teams. While I've had success, I wish I had this book sooner!

Crispin and Gregory have created a practical and very readable reference that shines a light on the roles of testers, and testing management -- areas that are often neglected in most of the work that I've found. Perhaps most importantly, they address the fear and apprehension that testers feel when faced with the prospect of joining an Agile team -- the same emotions I've seen (and felt) time and time again.

There's an appropriate mix of high level concepts and low level specifics. The book starts with discussions of principles and mindsets and moves on, in the later chapters to discuss such things as specific techniques of test automation. All along there are anecdotes from interviews with real agile teams and quoted articles from testing luminaries such as Brian Marick, Michael Bolten, et. al.

I've already begun to incorporate much of the material in these books into my own writings and presentations and it's certainly gratifying to see some of my own ideas mirrored. I now have solid references to back them up! I highly recommend this book for testers and testing managers who are planning to start on Agile projects, or who have years of experience on them. There's surely something in this book that will influence you.
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