Test criterion

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  • A test criterion defines what properties of a program must be exercised to constitute a "thorough" test, i.e., one whose successful execution implies no errors in a tested program. <bibref>goodenough-gerhart:1975</bibref>


  • A test criterion provides an indication of how test cases should be selected in order to increase the chances of detecting faults. <bibref>vincenzi-etal:2007</bibref>
  • The complexity of a test criterion is defined as the maximum number of test cases required to satisfy it in the worst case. <bibref>vincenzi-etal:2007:slides</bibref>, <bibref>maldonado:1991</bibref>
  • Test criteria for test set selection and evaluation are crucial to the success of the testing activity. <bibref>vincenzi-etal:2007</bibref>
  • Application of a test criterion can be an unproductive and error-prone activity. <bibref>vincenzi-etal:2007</bibref>
  • A test criterion must satisfy at least these minimal properties:
    • Guarantee, from the control flow perspective, the coverage of all conditional deviations;
    • Require, from the data flow perspective, at least one use of all computational result;
    • Require a finite test set. <bibref>maldonado:1991</bibref>, <bibref>vincenzi-etal:2007:slides</bibref>, <bibref>vincenzi:slides:2009</bibref>