4 Big Fears That Junior Tester Meet When Apply Exploratory Testing (ET)

I’d like to share 4 big fears that I have met when I started my software testing career by applying ET approach. If you are encountering these, it may be helpful to read this article.


We know when applying exploratory testing (ET), it requires exploratory testers to build test models, use them with all skills, heuristics, practices to explore, reasoning questions, evaluate and find hidden things from what they test. With this approach, all tests are designed, executed, reported in parallel from rapid learning. But, this is just a theory! With Junior testers, when they start off their test, a lot of things appear such as: Where should we start the test? Which way to perform Exploratory Testing effectively not to be missed bugs?, How can we test without given test cases and lack of product knowledge?…etc. A lot of questions that make you confused, don’t worry these articles might help you Effective Exploratory Testing (Part 2): More Effective With Pair Exploratory TestingEffective Exploratory Testing (Part 4): A Practice of Pair Exploratory Testing.

Traditional testing is a scripted-based approach. Almost testers have their own test cases designed prior to executing the testing. This brings a “safety” feel for tester because they believe that it is good enough to perform all those test cases. Testers, then, are responsible for task execution rather than taking into account of building the quality. On the contrary, exploratory testing is less-scripted-based approach and use the heuristics through the process of thinking to test the product. This, sometimes, makes scary for new testers in deciding how enough the testing is. Even when they are exploring the facet from the application much more than the traditional approach.


One of the most fear of junior testers is “We cannot find any bugs!”.

I remember when I started doing ET for a product that has been implemented for a long time and I was just following the stories that need to be tested. In some sessions, I have just moved around and around the functions hour by hour to see if there anything wrong, the end of the day, I could not find anything. So, I assumed that “Oh! This is awesome, I don’t see any issues, we can move this story to be Done!”. After that, I tested this product with the assumption that “This product is stable, and very hard to see any issue.” Everything has been fine until there was a defect escaped…

I realized that it’s dangerous to think that “There is no bug”, “this function is stable we can test slightness”. Believe that “existing bugs is the natural” and “Testing never end”.


Most of Junior testers we cannot build good test models, and lack of skills & product domain. When we are faced with some issues, we are fear to ask questions, clarify issues. However, this behavior must be eliminated,  you must ask your supervisors, your colleagues who have much more experience To help your testing better.

In the ET session, we should always put yourself to ask and answer, ask and answer every time.

Putting up questions will help the junior tester to refine our purpose of testing. Questioning is an essential skill for a good tester. You need to make sure none of the questions (how so ever small or silly) is ignored.

And, in turn, questioning will also enhance the domain knowledge of the person who is performing the testing.

Never hesitate to ask questions and presenting your viewpoint. As a tester, you have all the rights to ask questions about application’s behavior and its real-time usage data, etc,…


Although having a lot of advantages, documentation is a challenge in ET. When doing Regression testing (Re-running previously run tests and checking whether previously fixed issues have re-emerged). So, notice that when executing ET, we should spend an appropriate effort to take notes about what to be tested in this session, what happened during this session,.. these things would help us when making the report, doing a regression testing…

You can visit here to see the tool is support performing exploratory-testing.


Anyway, feeling fear is just a fear. Always keep yourself up to date, keep learning new and in-demand skills, share knowledge, information, and problems, never hesitate to ask, make a change to demand a better quality of your testing.

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