How Gherkin Testing Can Help Your QA Team Collaborate

Aug 12, 2023 | Programming, Test Automation Insights

Gherkin Testing

If you’re looking for a way to remove the silos dividing up your QA staff and increase collaboration, the Gherkin language is a great choice. It enables less experienced employees to participate in more of the testing process and allows experienced developers to spend their time on more challenging tasks.

When you use Gherkin with test design software like DesignWise, you’ll empower your employees to work together more effectively, build tests faster, and fix more bugs before launch.

What Is Gherkin Language?

Gherkin is a software language made to be simple and easy to read for people who aren’t experienced coders. While Gherkin is formatted with a specific syntax, it does so with basic English.

Who Uses the Gherkin Format to Build Tests?

Gherkin is built into the open-source testing software Cucumber, which has expanded its popularity. It is often used for behavior-driven development (BDD) workflows because it enables more stakeholders to participate in the development process. Developers often use Gherkin to write specifications for software features, user stories, and acceptance criteria.

Let’s Look at a Gherkin Language Example

C++

One of the best ways to understand why Gherkin test cases are so much easier to work with is to compare Gherkin to other programming languages. Below is a simple test for adding items to an online shopping cart written in C++.

#include <catch.hpp> // Include the Catch2 header

class ShoppingCart {

public:

void addItem(const std::string& item) {

// Implement adding an item to the cart

}

void removeItem(const std::string& item) {

// Implement removing an item from the cart

}

int getItemCount() const {

// Return the count of items in the cart

return 0;

}

double getTotal() const {

// Return the total price of items in the cart

return 0.0;

}

};

TEST_CASE(“Adding items to the shopping cart”) {

ShoppingCart cart;

cart.addItem(“Laptop”);

REQUIRE(cart.getItemCount() == 1);

REQUIRE(cart.getTotal() == Approx(1000.0)); // Assume laptop price is $1000

}

TEST_CASE(“Removing items from the shopping cart”) {

ShoppingCart cart;

cart.addItem(“Laptop”);

cart.removeItem(“Laptop”);

REQUIRE(cart.getItemCount() == 0);

REQUIRE(cart.getTotal() == Approx(0.0));

}

Gherkin

If you have a basic understanding of C++, you should be able to work with the above code without an issue. But if you don’t, that can be almost impossible to read and work with. Below is the same test written in simple language, using the Gherkin format.

Feature: Shopping Cart

As a customer

I want to add and remove items from my shopping cart

So that I can manage my purchases

Scenario: Adding items to the shopping cart

Given the customer has a shopping cart

And there is a “Laptop” available for purchase

When the customer adds the “Laptop” to the cart

Then the cart should contain 1 item

And the cart total should reflect the price of the “Laptop”

Scenario: Removing items from the shopping cart

Given the customer has a shopping cart with the “Laptop” in it

When the customer removes the “Laptop” from the cart

Then the cart should be empty

And the cart total should be $0

How to Write Gherkin Test Cases

Looking at the example above, we can understand some of the keys to writing Gherkin test cases. First, you’ll need to understand the feature or functionality of your test, which is the initial section of our scenario. The test is looking at the feature of adding and removing items from the online shopping cart in order to make purchases. Once you’ve outlined a feature, you’ll need to create a scenario for the test using the “given-when-then” format. Given the customer has a shopping cart, when they add an item, then it will need to appear in the cart.

The key to Gherkin testing is to keep the information clear and concise. You don’t need to add any unnecessary details, and you should ensure the test is separated from other functions that might muddy the results. It can take a bit of practice, but your employees can start writing in Gherkin in a lot less time than it would take them to learn a new programming language.

Gherkin Testing with DesignWise

DesignWise has a number of unique features built for empowering less experienced staff members to create Gherkin tests and easily edit them. The built-in Gherkin editor includes autocomplete features and syntax highlighting to make sure that your Gherkin test cases are valid. It also allows users to create new scenarios and outlines for each expected outcome or application flow.

DesignWise also has additional features to help improve collaboration within your QA team. Its optimization algorithm allows users to create the right amount of tests to ensure full test coverage without running any unnecessary and time-wasting tests.

Implementing Gherkin Tests with Ranorex

Once you have your tests created with DesignWise, you can seamlessly transition to Ranorex Studio to implement them. Ranorex is an automated testing software that can quickly put Gherkin test cases built with DesignWise into action. It has a full suite of powerful features and works with a wide range of devices, operating systems, and web browsers. With Ranorex, experienced coders can record their test creation for less experienced developers to play back while developing more tests.

Start a Free Trial of DesignWise

Ready to start creating simple-language software tests in the Gherkin format? Start a free trial of DesignWise to easily design and calibrate tests for your project.

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