Paul Gerrard

Paul Gerrard is a consultant, teacher, author, webmaster, developer, tester, conference speaker, rowing coach and a publisher. He has conducted consulting assignments in all aspects of software testing and quality assurance, specialising in test assurance. He has presented keynote talks and tutorials at testing conferences across Europe, the USA, Australia, South Africa and occasionally won awards for them.

Educated at the universities of Oxford and Imperial College London, in 2010, Paul won the Eurostar European Testing Excellence Award and in 2013, won The European Software Testing Awards (TESTA) Lifetime Achievement Award. Paul was the Programme Chair for the EuroSTAR Conference in Dublin in 2014 and is the 20176 Programme Chair for ExpoQA in Madrid.

Paul wrote, with Neil Thompson, “Risk-Based E-Business Testing” and several other Pocketbooks – “The Tester’s Pocketbook”, “The Business Story Pocketbook”, “Lean Python” and “Digital Assurance”.

He is Principal of Gerrard Consulting Limited, Director of TestOpera Limited and is the host of the Assurance Leadership Forum in the UK.
Putting Models at the Heart of Testing

Models exist all around us. To the uninitiated, they appear rather esoteric. In fact, our brain is a fantastic modelling engine—how do you think we move without collision, use language, reason and make sense of our world? We take these remarkable capabilities for granted.

Testers can use models at every level of their work—to simplify the testing problem, to scope our testing tasks, to communicate with stakeholders and peers, to inform our test design/selection decisions, and to measure coverage or progress in our work.

Rather than guessing what to test, models are the basis of effective test design. Paul Gerrard explains how models underpin the common test techniques, why they can be hard to use systematically and how you can model a testing problem to exploit your innate testing super-powers.

All testing is exploratory, all testing is based on models and test design techniques are derived from models

  • Improve your modelling to increase understanding of a problem, improve your testing, its coverage, meaning and value and how you explain testing
  • You use models instinctively all the time – now, use them explicitly: test models can be pictures, lists, tables, check lists – anything that helps us to understand the system or its definition.