The course at a glance

We are offering this Foundations course because we recognize the importance of education in testing and the value of being able to readily apply what you learn.

Altom, in collaboration with Kaner, Fiedler & Associates, LLC, is offering a new generation of public BBST® courses, starting with the BBST® Foundations in Software Testing course.

This first course in the series is aimed at presenting essential terminology and considering some critical challenges in software testing. You will refresh your learning skills and apply those to working effectively online.

Once you register for the course, we will provide you the BBST workbook, “Foundations of Software Testing” in electronic format. The workbook includes the content in the slides, as well as additional exercises and revisions of some of the sections.

Course Details:

Fully Online

3 weeks of classes

1 week for exam

Registration 2017

Spring 2017

February 26 – March 25


Ru Cindrea

Zoltán Molnár

Price: $690 Registration closed

Class ended

Summer 2017

May 14 – June 10


Alexandra Casapu

Ru Cindrea

Cem Kaner

Price: $690 Registration closed

Class has started

Fall 2017

August 20 – September 16


Cem Kaner

Alexandra Casapu

Ru Cindrea

Price: $690 Add to cart

Winter 2017

November 12 – December 9


Alexandra Casapu

Ru Cindrea


Price: $690 Add to cart

Why you should join

Learn in-depth

BBST® Foundations offers the most eye-opening and in-depth foundations to testing.

Improve in your work

We aim at giving you practical ideas you can apply, as well as raising your motivation to new heights. It’s a great opportunity to power up your testing passion!

Study at a Convenient time

Taking a course online allows you to participate without being out of the office for days at a time.

Experience a customized learning process

You get tailored individual feedback from your instructors and you have the opportunity to interact directly with them to share your ideas and interests.

Be part of a community

You will get to test and work on different assignments with your student peers, as well as become part of the larger BBST® students group.

More info

The course includes video lectures, quizzes, homework of various kinds, and a final exam. All of the homework, and the exam, are reviewed by instructors, and individual or class-wide feedback is provided.

We have strict deadlines in the course to keep you on track and synchronized with your classmates so feedback from peers is available for everyone. Each week has two deadlines: Wednesday night at midnight and Saturday at midnight. Not in our time zone? That’s no problem at all. Your Canvas classroom calendar will convert the time zones for you.

Don’t let the name “Foundations” fool you. The course is not designed exclusively for the beginning tester. It provides deep insight into core concepts and common challenges in testing. Even if you are an experienced tester, you will discover there are valuable things to take away from this course. The course is called “Foundations” because it is a prerequisite for all later Black Box Software Testing courses. After you successfully complete this course, you are eligible to take other courses in the BBST series: Bug Advocacy and Test Design.

This is your first course in the BBST® series, and perhaps your first online course. This leads us to mixed objectives. In essence, our goal is to prepare you for the later courses in the series. That includes both foundational content and skills for succeeding in courses of this type.

After this course, you should:

Be familiar with basic terminology and how it will be used in the BBST® courses (Understand)

Be aware of honest and rational controversy over definitions of common concepts and terms in the field (Understand)

Understand there are legitimately different missions for a testing effort. Understand the argument that selection of mission depends on contextual factors. Able to evaluate relatively simple situations that exhibit strongly different contexts in terms of their implication for testing strategies (Understand, Simple evaluation)

Understand the concept of oracles well enough to apply multiple oracle heuristics to your own work and explain what you are doing and why (Understand and apply)

Understand that complete testing is impossible. Improve ability to estimate and explain the size of a testing problem (Understand, Rudimentary application)

Familiarize yourself with the concept of measurement dysfunction (Understand)

Improve your ability to adjust your focus from narrow technical problems (such as analysis of a single function or parameter) through broader, context-rich problems (Analyze)

Improve online study skills, such as learning more from video lectures and associated readings (Apply)

Improve online course participation skills, including online discussion and working together online in groups (Apply)

Increase your comfort with formative assessment (assessment done to help students take their own inventory, think and learn rather than to pass or fail the students) (Apply)

There is no typical background that you need in order to benefit from the course. We have had both university students who were relatively unfamiliar with testing, and working professionals with several years of experience in testing.

Also, this course is not strictly targeted at testers. Managers and programmers who are interested in testing will find the course helpful by getting new insights into the testing process and skills that support it.

For a great learning experience, we encourage you to bring along your curiosity, be open to learning, and generous with sharing your thoughts and experiences.

As Cem Kaner defines it, interactive grading is “a technique that requires the student to participate in the grading of their work”. This provides an opportunity for the students to better demonstrate what they understood from the course material, and to get helpful feedback directly from the instructor on what to improve and how.

We think that interactive grading encapsulates the essence of formative assessment, by focusing on the learning experience of the student, not on the grade. For more info on interactive grading, please read Cem Kaner’s post here.

For this course, you will use multiple resources to study:

the video lectures and slides

the workbook in electronic format

the required and recommended readings

The assignments are based on all these resources. This means that you will need to use them all in your learning in order to successfully accomplish the tasks for the course.


BBST Foundations Instructors

Cem Kaner

Cem Kaner

BBST Instructor and Content owner
Cem Kaner is a Professor of Software Engineering at Florida Institute of Technology. He teaches and does research in software engineering, primarily software testing, software metrics, and computer law & ethics.

His career is centered around a consistent theme: enhancing the satisfaction and safety of software customers, users, and developers.

Alexandra Casapu

BBST Foundations instructor
Alexandra Casapu is a software tester. The environment she works in has facilitated her learning on the importance of context in testing, the exploratory approach, and caring a great deal about improving her testing skills.

Her focus on her current project is on achieving a balance between working on understanding the users and their needs, while collaborating effectively with the technical team.

Ru Cindrea

BBST Foundations instructor
Ru Cindrea is a senior test consultant and managing partner at Altom Consulting, focusing on test management and mobile software testing.

With over 10 years of experience, she believes all testing is exploratory and she is currently working with the Finnish testing community on building a strong group of testing professionals.

Gabriel Dobritescu

Gabriel Dobritescu

BBST Foundations instructor

Gabriel Dobritescu has been a software tester for over 10 years working in a variety of testing roles across a number of different industries. He believes that testers should be professional learners, relentless in their quest to improve their testing skills and in their effort to add more value to the company they work for and to the customers they serve.

Lately he has been focusing on better understanding how people learn, how the brain works and how we can become better at teaching testing to other people


BBST Foundations instructor
Lalit is a passionate context-driven tester from India, currently working in Germany. He is chief editor and co-founder of popular testing magazine “Tea-time with Testers”. Lalit’s specialties are his test management and coaching skills. He has taught over 20 full-day RST classes at Barclays and regularly assists James Bach in his RSTA online class.

Lalit feels that his connect with the testing community and passion for continuous development of the software testing field help him contribute best in organisations he works for. Lalit is a conference speaker and has conducted public workshops on exploratory testing.


BBST Foundations Instructor
Zoltán Molnár has more than 17 years of testing experience in different roles, mostly in the telecommunications area.
He enjoys the intellectual richness behind context-driven testing and fully agrees with that testing is not merely a mechanical, technical work, but a complex, cognitive process that is fairly affected by social sciences.


BBST Foundations Instructor

Oana Casapu has been working as a tester, test manager and project manager on a variety of projects for over 10 years.
Her focus lately has been on contributing to the testing community. Together with her fellow testers, she organizes the monthly meetups in Cluj-Napoca and facilitates the events for the Tabara de Testare community.



BBST Foundations Instructor

Ray Oei is currently team leader QA at Innovation Labs by AVG and has been active in the IT field for over 25 years, of which several years as trainer and coach.
He is a founding member of DEWT (Dutch Exploratory Workshop on Testing) and has been a speaker at several test conferences. He is greatly interested in the human factor of testing as well as the challenges in investigating software in different contexts. He enjoys teaching and helping people learn more about the beauty of testing.