Course Description

BCS Intermediate Certificate

The British computer Society (BCS) Intermediate certificate (previously ISEB) is the next level of competency in software testing after the ISTQB Foundation level certification.

It takes the concepts and techniques learned at ISTQB Foundation level one step further, with more emphasis on developing analytical thinking around software testing, using scenarios and practical exercises throughout the course.

The BCS Intermediate Certificate in software testing course is priced at £825 per delegate excluding VAT. This includes the BCS examination fee, all course materials, lunch and refreshments.

Courses can be arranged at your offices for group bookings of 4 or more delegates, these can be run on the normal four day basis or for less experienced groups, over five days – allowing extra time for practical exercises and discussion. Contact us for full details or a quote.


Who Should Attend
Candidates who hold the ISTQB-BCS Certified Tester : Foundation Level certificate and ideally have at least 18 months experience in Software Testing. We recommend delegates re-familiarise themselves with the Foundation level material before attending this course. The syllabus is intended for anyone involved in software testing, particularly; testers, test analysts, test engineers, test consultants, test managers, user acceptance testers and software developers.

Course Design
The course is made up of 5 modules including; testing fundamentals, reviews, testing and risk, test management and test analysis.

Module 1 : Review of the Foundation Certificate / Testing Fundamentals

Review of the Foundation Syllabus
Recalls the main principles and themes from the Foundation syllabus, all of which are considered part of the required knowledge for this level of certification.

Application Domains
Introduces the concept of “application domains” as platforms for the testing and use of software applications, and describes similarities and differences between typical examples.  Identifies and explains testing challenges associated with these application domains, so that candidates can analyse situations to determine the testing challenges present.

Testing in the Software Lifecycle
Elaborates on the coverage of software life cycles in the Foundation syllabus to provide a more detailed coverage, including identification of other processes with which testing interfaces during development. Describes the testing challenges associated with various sequential and iterative life cycle models, and explains how these challenges can be met.

The Fundamental Test Process
Recalls the fundamental test process and explains how it may be deployed in different situations and within different life cycle models.

Module 2 : Reviews

The Principles of Reviews
Recalls the basic review process defined in the Foundation syllabus, relating it to that defined by IEEE Std 1028, recalling that reviews may come in a variety of forms and have different objectives, and emphasizing the value of using source documents in reviews. Recalls different roles that may be defined for a particular review, and describes possible outcomes from a review.

Types of Review
Provides further detail on informal reviews, walkthroughs, technical reviews, and inspections, and augments them with management reviews from IEEE Std 1028.

Using Different Review Types
Describes how more than one type of review could be used, and the relationship of reviews to dynamic testing, so that candidates can analyse organisations and situations to identify the most appropriate choice of review type(s).

Performing a Formal Review
Provides practical experience in conducting a formal review. Candidates analyse the effectiveness of the review performed and assess the potential effectiveness of other forms of review in a similar situation.

Module 3 : Testing and Risk

Introduction to Risk and Risk-Based Testing
Recalls the nature of product risk and project risk and their effects. Explains how risks can interact with other risks, and describes typical risks associated with given application domains.

Risk Management
Describes the core activities of risk management: risk identification, risk analysis, and risk mitigation. Explains the importance of achieving maximum stakeholder involvement in these activities, and the relationship between risk and testing.

Product Risk Identification and Analysis
Identifies typical product risks as the basis of testing, so that candidates can analyse a situation and recognise risks within that scenario.

Module 4 : Test Management

Test Policy, Test Strategy, Test Plans
Explains the hierarchy of test management levels and their associated documentation, describing the role and purpose of each document in the test management hierarchy, so that candidates can analyse a suite of documentation to determine its effectiveness in defining policy, strategy and plans.

Entry and Exit Criteria
Explain the significance of objective entry and exit criteria for test levels, giving examples of suitable test entry and exit criteria and explaining possible alternative courses of action when test entry and exit criteria are not met. Candidates will analyse testing situations to select appropriate test entry and exit criteria.

Estimating Techniques
Explains the nature and importance of estimation applied to testing, different methods for estimating time and effort required to design, document, schedule and execute tests, and the value of using more than one method. Explains the difference between an estimate and a target, and why more than one cycle or iteration of test execution should be estimated. Candidates will analyse a situation to determine the best estimating approach and make estimates of test effort and duration.

Test Monitoring
Describes how testing may be monitored, giving examples of typical measures of test progress and test quality. Identifies the content of test summary reports appropriate to a range of stakeholders and at different stages of the test process and at different points in the life cycle.

Incident Management Process
Describes alternative processes for reporting, tracking, and analysing incidents to ensure that remedial action is effective. Candidates will analyse a simple incident management process to identify possible improvements.

Module 5 : Test Analysis

Fundamentals of Test Analysis
Defines the test analysis function, recalling the basic relationships between test basis, test condition, test design, test case and test procedure (manual test script).

Test Environment Requirements
Identifies and explains the principles behind determination of test environment needs for executing tests. Candidates will analyse a situation to identify test environment requirements.

Selection of Techniques
Explores alternative approaches to testing, including fundamental differences between static and dynamic testing and between scripted and unscripted testing, and describes strengths, weaknesses and  appropriate uses of each. Describes categories of test techniques available to testers, and possible criteria for selecting test design techniques. Explains pitfalls as well as benefits of deploying test design techniques. Candidates will analyse a practical testing situation and select appropriate test design techniques.

Coverage Measures
Reviews the concept of coverage and identifies and defines various coverage measures. Explains the importance of defining what coverage measures mean in a practical situation. Candidates will analyse a practical testing situation and select appropriate coverage measures.

The Exam
The examination is 1 hour long, with 25 multiple choice questions. This will take place in the afternoon of day 4. Additional time is available when English is not the first language. The pass mark is 60%.

There is no homework on this course, however, nightly revision at home is recommended in order to be successful. Sample papers and questions to check progress are given throughout the course.