RST Explored

This unique class introduces Rapid Software Testing, which is a context-driven methodology for testing any product that includes or involves software. Through hands-on activities and interactive discussion, we challenge assumptions and expose common misconceptions about software testing. Then we show you powerful new ways to think, to apply heuristic models, and to test responsibly and systematically, so that you focus on business risk and do the right kinds of deep testing that your project needs.

RST Explored is the latest version of the original three-day class formerly called “Rapid Software Testing.” We teach it in a classroom setting over three days. We also teach it online in a four-day format, consisting of three 90-minute webinars per day.

RSTE Goals
  • Apart from introducing the RST methodology, this class focuses on how to test a product when you have to test it right now, under conditions of uncertainty, in a way that stands up to scrutiny. It’s about how to find important bugs before it’s too late.
  • A secondary goal is to help you think and talk like a testing expert, so that you can proceed with confidence and gain the credibility you need.
Who Should Take This Training

Rapid Software Testing Explored is for you if you take testing seriously and want to have pride in your work:

  • If you are new to testing, we will introduce you to professional testing and provide exercises that help you develop you natural testing talents.
  • If you are an experienced tester, we will help you put words to the tacit skills you have gained over time and provide exercises that help you refine them. You will appreciate that RST is a practitioner-centered methodology– you are in control.
  • If you are a technical tester, you will learn how your technical knowledge and ability to write code can supercharge the testing process.
  • If you are a developer who does some testing, your deep knowledge of product internals is both a crucial resource and a potential liability. You’ll learn how to improve the intrinsic testability of the product and how to manage your biases.
  • If you manage people who test, you have the power to steer them and create an environment to help them do their most effective work. You will learn what good testing looks like, how to judge the progress of testing, and how to set high, yet reasonable expectations for the testing process.
  • If you are a domain expert who does some testing, we will help you apply your deep knowledge of how the product is used and who uses it. You’ll learn how to find better bugs during acceptance testing—and help others do it too.
  • If you work with people who test, you will gain an appreciation for the challenges of testing, discover how you can support the testing process, and learn what good testing can do for you.
Main Topics Covered

RSTE is taught Socratically, with exercises, discussions and illustrations of the RST methodology. Class discussions and debate address students’ questions and specific needs. We all learn from the unique perspective that each student brings to the class. We’ll cover:

  • What Rapid Software Testing is and how it relates to software development
  • How mental models and critical thinking form the basis of all testing
  • Dealing with overwhelming complexity or confusion
  • Recognizing problems despite ambiguous or missing specifications
  • Surveying a product to prepare for deep testing
  • Designing tests: heuristics, risks, procedures, coverage, oracles
  • Using tools to help magnify and manage testing
  • Deciding when you’ve tested enough
  • Analyzing test results and report evidence in a compelling way
  • Applying the Heuristic Test Strategy Model and many other specific heuristics for testing
What Topics are Available

In addition to the central topics of RSTE, we also have a great deal of material on these topics, which may be covered on request:

  • Testability advocacy
  • Bug reporting and advocacy
  • Concise test documentation
  • Session-based test management
  • Ways to evaluate testing
  • How to talk to management about testing
  • Test coaching and facilitation
  • Testing in a regulatory environment
  • Testing in production
  • Test data generation and combinatorial testing
Classroom or Online?

The classroom version takes place during standard workday hours over the course of three days. We can teach anywhere that has good wifi and a projector.

Rapid Software Testing Explored is now also available online:

  • Live. The online class is always taught live, because the instructor to responds to student questions and challenges.
  • Timing.The online class takes place over four days, typically via Zoom. We do three 90-minute webinars each day, with 30-minute breaks between them, covering 5.5 hours total time daily. These can be time shifted to better accommodate certain parts of the world. If necessary, the online class can be arranged over non-consecutive days.
  • Recording. For public classes, we don’t allow recording. For a private class we allow recording for internal use only.
  • Interactivity. Interaction is an important part of the class. So, in addition to allowing students to self-unmute to respond to the instructor, we also run a MatterMost chat server during the class. This facilitates conversation among students, as well as with the instructor (publicly or privately). It also helps us share documents, links, etc. We encourage students to activate their webcams, but that is not a requirement.

How RSTE Compares To Our Other Classes

  • Rapid Software Testing Applied (RSTA) focuses less on the explaining and demonstrating the concepts and skills of RST, and more on practicing the core elements of it. RSTA includes long exercises where you will test part of a real product, followed by debriefings. The class is taught in an online format (nine webinars over three days) or in a classroom 2-day or 3-day format. RSTE is not a prerequisite for RSTA. In fact, the two classes can be taken in either order.
  • Rapid Software Testing Managed (RSTM) is a class for managers and other leaders who seek to apply Rapid Software Testing methodology or are otherwise working to improve testing on an organizational level. RSTE should be taken first to get the most out of RSTM.
  • Rapid Software Testing Coached (RSTC) is a class for test leads, coaches, and managers who guide testing without necessarily doing it themselves. Since RSTC is based on the Rapid Software Testing methodology, RSTE should be taken first to get the most out of RSTC.

What Students Should Bring
Bring a laptop that connects to the Internet. You will be testing.

Download a two-page PDF of the RST Explored course description