ISTQB Software Testing Certification: “How-To-Pass” Tips. Foundation Level
If you want to achieve career progress in the field of software testing, you would need to prove that your skills correspond to a certain level. ISTQB Certification demonstrates the achievement of a certain level of knowledge and skills in software testing. It also confirms the ability to apply the methods of testing and quality assessment, allowing getting a high level of software quality.
Other reasons to get ISTQB Certification are as follows:
- You will improve your position on the employment market, increase your chances of better employment or promotion and in general, you will become more and more in demand;
- You expand your knowledge. Having experience in one or two companies, it is impossible to see your profession in all its entirety. If you don’t read your horizons limited to a very small part of reality. Broader knowledge will help you make better decisions and prove your point of view before your bosses and colleagues;
- You will be more creative in solving your day to day tasks to improve your testing process.
There are several well-known and reputable organizations that provide QA specialist’s certification. This article will be dedicated to ISTQB since this organization is the most famous and accessible one due to its lower prices, the possibility of full-time in the home country and the lack of mandatory preliminary training.
ISTQB has three levels:
- Foundation (CTFL)
- Foundation level
- Advanced (CTAL)
- Test Manager
- Test Analyst
- Technical Test Analyst
- Test Management
- Improving the Testing Process
- Test Automation
- Security Testing
In order to pass the exam at the foundation level the requirements as for work experience are not necessary. The advanced level exam requires a practical confirmation of the existing work experience, as well as a foundation level certificate. Expert-level exam in addition requires at least 5 years’ experience as a QA.
Tips to prepare for the ISTQB Certification exam:
- First thing you would need to do is to read Foundation Level Syllabus. That you can find on ISTQB official site our download here.
- Take the information given to you in the materials, such as it is. Most of you already have experience in testing, and you have grown accustomed to a certain terminology that is used where you work. But don’t assume that the information in the book is not correct, just because you have a different experience. The information in the books is often presented as a generalized style. That’s why it is full and true – you just have to be able to understand and compare with their reality;
- As soon as you read the syllabus and the recommend book, called “Foundation of Software Testing: ISTQB Certification”, test your knowledge by means of attempting some ISTQB mock exams from sample papers that you can find in the internet.
- Read the aforementioned book again. Don’t ignore this advice since it is important.
- Use every effort in order to understand all the terms properly! Too many exam questions are built on the knowledge of terms. This is the base, without which it is impossible to pass the exam.
- Write your own list of useful terms and frequently used definitions. Create some cards with all necessary glossary printed on them. Keep them at hand and reread them from time to time;
- Start as soon as possible! information scope is rather big and a week wouldn’t be enough for uptake of the content;
- Try to define how many correct answered you had given in the mock tests. In order to pass the exam, you would need to give at least 26 correct answers out of 40 questions;
- Prepare in groups! You will be able to consult with those who are preparing more carefully. Or, conversely, take the lead and pull others at the same time streamlining their own thoughts. Discuss the material in the context of your experience.
ISTQB study materials
Some materials that can be very helpful in the process of preparation for the exam (they are related to different specializations, so choose whatever you need):
- Advanced Software Testing — Vol. 1: Guide to the ISTQB Advanced Certification as an Advanced Test Analyst (2008)
- Advanced Software Testing — Vol. 2: Guide to the ISTQB Advanced Certification as an Advanced Test Manager (2008)
- Advanced Software Testing — Vol. 3: Guide to the ISTQB Advanced Certification as an Advanced Technical Test Analyst (2011)
- Foundations of Software Testing: ISTQB Certification by Rex Black, Dorothy Graham, Erik Van Veenendaal
- Software Testing: An ISTQB-ISEB Foundation Guide by Peter Morgan, Angelina Samaroo and Brian Hambling
- ISTQB Foundation Exam Preparation Guide — Rex Black