Field Validation Table (FVT): A Test Design Technique for Field Validation

Introduction to Field Validation Table (FVT) test design technique:

In this digital world, “QUALITY” is the term that is more widely used in any industry.

Any organization for that matter always thinks and works on how quality can be ensured with their product or how a quality product can be delivered or how the quality of the product can be improvised? No matter whether it’s a customer or an end user or common people, everyone expects quality in whatever they buy.

The prime goal of any organization is to serve the business with good quality. 

How can quality can be ensured? The only answer to this is testing. Testing is the only key factor with which we can ensure quality.

Overview

The success of testing is spread across different phases of Software Test Life Cycle (STLC). But, the most important thing is how effectively test cases are designed to test an application or software?

Field Validation Table

Basically, a test case design or a writing test case itself is an art. Hence, a tester should write the test cases in such a way that, it should be easily understandable by others and also they have to ensure complete or maximum test coverage through their test cases.

Test cases are the ones using which the testers will interact with the application or software to test it. In a broader sense, test cases are the gateway or medium using which an application or software is tested. A better or good test case helps to find the defects lying in the system or software or an application. Hence writing a good or quality test case plays a vital or most prominent role in testing.

This article addresses one of the important test design technique for validating the fields in an application, which in turn helps to design test cases for various scenarios which are the most common ones across all the applications.

The underlying principle or main idea behind this technique is to showcase how it can be used to design or write optimal test cases with maximum test coverage.

Introduction to FVT

Nowadays, delivering quality software is a major challenge and it cannot be compromised at any cost. Dependency over the software is increasing like anything day by day. At the same time quality, functional correctness and reliability of the software are also becoming a matter of concern.

Can the quality of a software be measured?

Yes, testing plays a major role to ensure the quality of a project or application.

How to ensure if test cases provide 100% test coverage?

Before testing an application, a tester should write detailed test cases which should be easily understandable & readable by others. Which means, test cases are the basis of testing, which in turn would help to find the defects lying in the application or system.

This article mainly emphasis on how effectively we can create the test cases using field validation test design technique that too in a short span of time with maximum test coverage. This, in turn, will add value to the project by identifying all the issues during testing.

A technique is a procedure that is used to accomplish specific activity or task. This article describes field validation test design technique which in turn would help to capture the test cases in an effective manner with less or minimal documentation.

What is Field Validation Table (FVT)

  • This is one of the test design technique for validating fields in an application.
  • This technique is mainly used for all kinds of application wherever there is a field validation required.

Generally, each and every field in the application needs to be validated thoroughly to ensure or identify defects which may get unnoticed in the fields. This technique is very much useful in identifying those underlying flaws in the fields.

Sometimes, it may go unnoticed or due to lack of concentration or awareness of the testers some fields in the application may not be completely validated.

It is a natural tendency of any tester that they just validate only the most commonly or frequently used combinations while checking fields in any given application. If they are provided with this FVT then it will easily help them to find out the defects which are present in the fields as well.


Field validation table technique also helps to ensure that, there are no defects present in any field of the application.

Role of a Tester

As a tester, one has to test each and every corner of an application. From the development or developer perspective the defect identified during field validation could be of a less severity and a less priority one, but its the primary duty and responsibility of a tester to report it. After all, for a tester defect means the defect, nothing else.

As field validations are directly related to usability of the application, in case if something is unidentified during System Testing and if it is found during User Acceptance Testing (UAT) then straight away the blame goes to the tester who has tested and provided sign off.

An end user or a customer expects user-friendliness of an application along with its functionality. Even a small usability issue or cosmetic issue in the application or software may dissatisfy or irritate them.

So, a tester should give prime importance for testing each and every field in an application. By making use of Field Validation Table, a tester can test each and every field in the application very well.

Implementation of FVT

#1) Firstly, the standard or generic table needs to be created for different data types as shown below. This is a one-time activity. Consider all valid and invalid inputs.

Data TypeValid Inputs

Invalid Inputs
Integers or Numbers• Only Numbers
• Less than the limit (N)
• Enter the value within the limit (N + 1)/2
• More than the limit (N + 1)
• Numbers with precision
• Numbers in Exponential Form
• Negative Integers
• Only Alphabets
• Numbers + Alphabets
• Numbers + Special Characters
• Unicode Characters e.g. U+0000, U+0001
String• Only Alphabets
• Only Numbers
• Only Special Characters
• Numbers + Alphabets
• Numbers + Special Characters
• Alphabets + Special Characters
• Less than the limit (N)
• Enter the value within the limit (N + 1)/2
• More than the limit (N + 1)
• Unicode Characters e.g. U+0000, U+0001
Date• Check that whether date picker is present or not
• Check that date field is non editable
• Ensure that, upon right clicking on the date field, paste option should be disabled & copy option should be enabled
• Ensure that, upon clicking on date in the calendar, it should be displayed in the date field
• Select a leap year and verify the days in February month
• Select a non leap year and verify the days in February month
• Ensure that, calendar is having provision to select any year, month (combo box, Drop down list, links etc.)
• Ensure that, clear button is present in the date picker to remove the selected date

Table 1: Standard or generic table for field validation

So, the tester should keep this Field Validation Table or the list of items mentioned in the table in front of them before they proceed to test fields in the application.

This table generally helps when there are several fields present in the page or an application. We are not robots to remember each and everything on top of our mind, so as humans it’s better to keep this table or checklist ready and handy before we start proceeding with the validation of fields in an application.

#2) Application specific table should also be created with the application specific fields and the other columns. This mainly helps to validate each and every field in the application and clearly specifies where the defect lies and on which test data.

Application specific table for field validation

Table 2: Application specific table for field validation           

Benefits of FVT

  • Productivity will be increased.
  • Automation will become easy using this table.
  • Defect leakage can be avoided or prevented by creating this table during the early stages of the project.
  • It is easy to understand.
  • This, in turn, helps for both manual and automation testers.
  • Maximum percentage of test coverage can be ensured using this table.
  • As it acts as an input or reference table, using this test cases can be created to verify and validate the fields in an application.

Conclusion

Field Validation Table (FVT) is a test design technique, which mainly helps for validating fields present in the application. This technique adds value to an application or project and gives very good test coverage for field validation. And this technique easily helps to find defects lying in the system or application.

Using this field validation table, a tester can add value to their work and contribute towards the delivery of quality software by identifying even a small defect in any field of an application.

About the Author:

This article is written by STH team member Mahesh J. He is proficient in software testing and has over 10.5 years of experience in the field of software testing.

Let us know if you have any questions.

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17 comments ↓

#1 Samir Kaneria

Thank you very much.. this is realy usefull for QA. But i have one query. is it work for all forms ??

Can you please provide any example for any complex form. like registration or advance search with To and From date picker etc..

If you provide then it would be very helpful for me.

Thanks in Advance.

#2 Ahmed Fathi Elgaly

Really very good and valuable, also very very simple and effective way to verify all application or software fields.

#3 abenet

hi this abenet I am software professional but I do not get job what do you advice and how can get or any contact or your company is find me or I need your advise
thank you so much your taking time for helping me

#4 abenet

hi this abenet I am softwaretesterprofessional but I do not get job what do you advice and how can get or any contact or your company is find me or I need your advise
thank you so much your taking time for helping me

#5 Omkar Chougule

Helpful…

Thanks for the article…

#6 Tiffany

This is a great article. I will be implementing this on Tuesday at work..excited.

#7 Mahesh Jogur

@Samir – Thank you. Yes, this technique can be used in all the application wherever field validation is required. And we have mentioned about this in “What is Field Validation Table (FVT)” section of the article.

Please refer to valid inputs section for date data type in the standard or generic table for field validation, wherein we have covered most possible scenarios and the same can be used for date field validation.

#8 Mahesh Jogur

@Ahmed Fathi – Thank you for reading it.

#9 Mahesh Jogur

@Omkar – Thank you !!

#10 Mahesh Jogur

@Tiffany – Thank you. Sure, that’s nice to know that you are going to implement it.

#11 Mahesh Jogur

@Abenet – Keep updated yourself with the new technologies and try to learn new testing skills.

#12 Mallikarjun.Gopu

Excellent article and very useful stuff. but

Looks FVT is a branch of BVA and ECP, right ?

#13 Mahesh Jogur

@Mallikarjun – Thank you !!

Basically FVT is one of the test design technique mainly for field validation. Though Some of the points or valid inputs or invalid inputs are common in BVA & ECP, but this FVT is mainly intended for validating fields present in the application. The valid inputs or invalid inputs mentioned w.r.t different data types are just checkpoints which one can consider while validating fields of their application. So, what we have provided here is the standard or generic FVT, but the list may goes on, not just restricted to this. Again it depends on the application.

#14 softwareqa

Thank you! The table is very useful. Great article.

#15 Mahesh Jogur

@softwareqa: Thank you !!

#16 Maruthi

Excellent information. Very handy and easy approach to follow. Well explained.

#17 Mahesh Jogur

@Maruthi: Thank you !!

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