QA Plan > Test Suite > Test Case Format

Process impact: This reference page documents the format of test cases and gives tips on writing test cases. You can copy and paste the sample test case into your test-cases.html file. This file itself should not be edited to hold specific test cases.

This test case format is suitable for manual system test cases.

The test cases should be written in enough detail that they could be given to a new team member who would be able to quickly start to carry out the tests and find defects.

unique-test-case-id: Test Case Title

Purpose: Short sentence or two about the aspect of the system is being tested. If this gets too long, break the test case up or put more information into the feature descriptions.
Prereq: Assumptions that must be met before the test case can be run. E.g., "logged in", "guest login allowed", "user testuser exists".
Test Data: List of variables and their possible values used in the test case. You can list specific values or describe value ranges. The test case should be performed once for each combination of values. These values are written in set notation, one per line. E.g.:
loginID = {Valid loginID, invalid loginID, valid email, invalid email, empty}
password = {valid, invalid, empty}
Steps: Steps to carry out the test. See step formating rules below.
  1. visit LoginPage
  2. enter userID
  3. enter password
  4. click login
  5. see the terms of use page
  6. click agree radio button at page bottom
  7. click submit button
  8. see PersonalPage
  9. verify that welcome message is correct username
Notes and Questions:
  • NOTE

Format of test steps

Each step can be written very tersely using the following keywords:

login [as ROLE-OR-USER]
Log into the system with a given user or a user of the given type. Usually only stated explicitly when the test case depends on the permissions of a particular role or involves a workflow between different users.
Visit a page or screen. For web applications, LOCATION may be a hyperlink. The location should be a well-known starting point (e.g., the Login screen), drilling down to specific pages should be part of the test.
Fill in a named form field. VALUE can be a literal value or the name of a variable defined in the "Test Data" section. The FIELD-NAME itself can be a variable name when the UI field for that value is clear from context, e.g., "enter password".
enter FIELDS
Fill in all fields in a form when their values are clear from context or when their specific values are not important in this test case.
Follow a labeled link or press a button. The screen location can be a predefined panel name or English phrase. Predefined panel names are based on GUI class names, master template names, or titles of boxes on the page.
Press a named button. This step should always be followed by a "see" step to check the results.
The tester should see the named GUI screen or web page. The general correctness of the page should be testable based on the feature description.
The tester should see that the condition has been satisfied. This type of step usually follows a "see" step at the end of the test case.
verify CONTENT [is VALUE]
The tester should see the named content on the current page, the correct values should be clear from the test data, or given explicitly. This type of step usually follows a "see" step at the end of the test case.
This is like a subroutine call. The tester should perform all the steps of the named test case and then continue on to the next step of this test case.

Every test case must include a verify step at the end so that the expected output is very clear. A test case can have multiple verify steps in the middle or at the end. Having multiple verify steps can be useful if you want a smaller number of long tests rather than a large number of short tests.

Further Information

For more information on advice, see:

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Copyright © 2003-2004 Jason Robbins. All rights reserved. License terms. Retain this copyright statement whenever this file is used as a template.