Testing means learning by trial and error. Testers check new apps and put programs through their paces. They check all developed functions in a planned, systematic and controlled way. Testers do not only test what a user would do generally, but also what a user might do “wrong”. A lot of creativity is necessary as well as a deep understanding of the material. The meaning of “material” is very complex. Some tests have a lot to deal with, let’s say solid material – for example, the buttons on a new handheld. For others (with upward tendency) there is less to touch. For testing it‘s necessary to have abstract materials, tools, programs and a great deal of analytic thinking. Testers have to know much about IT, in the best case different script and programming languages. And last but not least, the tester is a kind of broker of information. He connects two completely different worlds – a human and a machine, a developer and a user. In other words, he is a translator and interface at the same time. He needs a big chunk of communication skills.
Don’t worry, most testers are no superhumans – maybe some, but not all of them for sure. Testing may not be just a question of intelligence. It has to be repeatable and learnable. That‘s one of the big tasks of the International Software Testing Qualifications Board, in short ISTQB. The board is kind of community defined by common interests who develops a step-by-step upskilling program for testers. Basics are taught at the foundation level, specialized knowledge at the Advanced Level and for experts there is the Expert Level.
The Advanced Level is designed especially for testers who want to specialize in a certain field. In the core stream, they can upskill themselves to test managers, test analysts and technical test analysts. In addition, there is a specialization in the field of agile processes compiled by Security Tester and Test Automation Engineer. In the graphic below, the Advanced Level is symbolized by the darker shaded areas.
The ISTQB Certified Tester Advanced Level (CTAL) is based on the ISTQB Certified Tester Foundation Level (CTFL). Candidates have to verify the successful completion of the CTFL. The five Core and Specialist Advanced levels cover different specializations. Test Managers deepen their skills in planning, implementation and evaluation. Test Analysts learn techniques for analyzing test processes, new skills in management, and quality criteria for software. The Technical Test Analysts are provided with an optimum set of tools and techniques for testing a case in their segment/area. As regards the Security Testers, they improve their skills in all matters relating to software security. And Test Automation Engineers acquire further knowledge in test development and automation. The certification CTAL Test Manager is the basis for the two Expert Levels.
Six reasons to get certified
Proof of world-wide accepted knowledge
Knowledge of standards in software testing
Stable quality of services
Similar ways of working and thinking as well as solutions in international teams
A common glossary of technical terms
Exams by an independent certification body, such as iSQI GmbH
Certification for career planning
Certification is a powerful way for employers to verify skills during the recruitment process. Candidates can prove their knowledge and skills in a topic with an ISTQB certificate. In this way, employers recognize the candidate with the right skill set. They can assess the future performance of the candidate and plan accordingly the assignment for the company or for projects.
The exam preparation for Foundation Level (CTFL) and Advanced Level (CTAL) can be carried out during courses provided by accredited training providers or through self-study. For Expert Level (CTEL) exam, participation in a training course is compulsory.
How to book an exam
If you want to take an exam, please contact iSQI GmbH directly. We are independent and licensed by ISTQB.
The iSQI guarantee a fair and a constantly high quality of exams and evaluation. The institute works internationally and runs ISTQB certifications in almost all countries of the world. Besides, candidates can attend public examinations in the offices of the iSQI or book a computer-based exam at any Pearson VUE test center. Additionally, iSQI offers public exam sessions together with partners (boards, training providers) on site.
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