Using Equivalence Partitioning to Design Your QA Tests

Sep 4, 2023 | Test Automation Insights

Equivalence Partitioning

One of the most helpful ways to ensure effective test coverage while cutting down on redundancies is equivalence class partitioning. This flexible test design method can be used for a wide range of tests and will keep the scope of your testing in check. We have your guide to equivalence partitioning, boundary value analysis, and how DesignWise software can help with both.

What Is Equivalence Partitioning in Testing?

Equivalence partitioning is a method of dividing up your tests into sections with similar values and then performing a test on each section. This black box testing method eliminates the need to test every potential value, since each test in that specific partition should have the same outcome. This makes sure that you are testing each variation in your software while cutting significant redundancies from your process.

What Is a Boundary Value Analysis?

The main weakness in equivalence partitioning is that it assumes that every test within a partition would produce the same result. Therefore, if there are mistakes within the partition that may have been created by mistaken inputs, they wouldn’t be caught. This is where boundary value analysis comes in. 

Boundary value analysis allows you to target the most risky testing areas within the software to create optimal test coverage. It assumes that the values that are the most likely to have issues are at the edge of each partition. So in addition to the chosen test value under equivalence partition testing, it adds two more tests from the top and bottom values of the partition.

An Example of Equivalence Class Partitioning

One of the best ways to explain equivalence partitioning and boundary value analysis is through an example. Let’s say you’re designing a tool for entering test scores into a teacher’s grading software. The scores are out of 100, and there are letter grades for specific sets of scores. You could say 90–100 is an A, 80–89 is a B, 70–79 is a C, 60–69 is a D, and 0–59 is an E.

Each of those letter grades is a great place to place your partitions. You would want to test one value from each partition to ensure the right letter is assigned. Let’s say you choose 95, 85, 75, 65, and 25. That would fulfill your equivalence class partition tests. 

But we’re also performing boundary value analysis, and that includes testing the top and bottom of each partition. For instance, the boundary values for an A would be 90 and 100, and the boundary values for a B would be 80 and 89. Combined with the equivalence partitioning values we chose earlier (95 and 85), this will give you an excellent overall picture of each partition, and eventually the entire software tool, without having to test all 100 values.

While this example is simply for the point of explanation, you can see how this process could easily scale to much larger values while saving significant time from the text creation and execution phases.

Using DesignWise for Equivalence Partitioning Tests

DesignWise is a test creation software that allows developers to achieve maximum test coverage while eliminating redundant tests. It goes hand in hand with testing methods such as equivalence partitioning and boundary value analysis. One of the best features of DesignWise is the coverage dial, which allows developers to tailor their coverage to each testing phase.

DesignWise software was created to be easy for less experienced testers to use, and has a number of features to help with test design. It allows staff without programming experience to create tests in natural language using the Gherkin format, which empowers teams to use Behavioral Driven Development (BDD). DesignWise’s Gherkin editor features syntax highlighting and autocomplete tools to ensure that effective tests are being created.

Verified surveys completed by third-party researcher TechValidate show that our software has helped developers save 50% more time during test design and 30% more time during test execution.

Ranorex Studio

DesignWise is even more powerful when it’s paired with Ranorex Studio. This software has a suite of test automation tools that save developers significant time during the test execution phase. It is used with black box testing techniques such as equivalence partitioning, as well as cross-browser, functional, and regression testing. Ranorex enables testing on all popular web browsers, desktops, and mobile devices using both emulation and real devices.

Ranorex Features

  • Record and replay tools
  • Machine-trained object detection
  • Test report generation
  • Testing healing
  • Video reporting of test execution
  • PDF validation
  • Built-in integrations
  • Flexible API tools

Start a Free Trial Today

Ready to start building equivalence partition tests for your software? Start a free trial of DesignWise today to see how it is easy to start creating effective tests.

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