Some Tips for CSQA exam
Some tips for CSQA exam
I will be covering some of the points that were helpful to me in clearing my exam in 30 days preparation. Needless to say, this is not a cheat list to clear the exam. My experience tells that unless you have a background of handling development projects, it is difficult to answer the subjective questions. Some
references are given at the end of the article:
• Focus on any one quality model: say ISO, CMM, Malcolm
Baldrige etc.; understand the principles on which they are based and the principles behind their applicability. Please note that the exam will not be testing comprehensive knowledge of the various clauses, procedures etc. but your understanding of the concepts and their links to quality processes in the organizations.
• Understand Deming’s 14 principles: By this I mean that understand the reasons behind Deming’s espousing these principles; do not just memorize the principles as mentioned in the CBOK (they have been
slightly modified to fit them to the IT context); instead try to lay your hands on the original principles enunciated by Deming and link them to the current IT context. Then revisit the CBOK for getting a clear understanding of the same. Refer links on this site to get more info on Deming.
• Quality tools: Quality tools are an indispensable aid to a quality manager to collate data, analyse and arrive at meaningful conclusions. The coverage to the tools in the CBOK is limited. Do read more about the tools (check out any good book on quality, it is bound to cover them). Remember, the stress is on understanding the principles and their applicability to real life. Which means do not waste time drawing control charts (say) and calculating the UCLs and the LCLs
• Web based projects: A recent session by George Winters in the SEPG conference held at New Delhi by QAI India focused on the changes happening at SEI to accommodate web based applications and the concepts behind them. Web based projects turn the SDLC life cycle on its head. It also challenges
the applicability of the software engineering fundas like requirement management etc. Besides George Winters stressed on the concept of ‘trusted software’. Trusted software by definition means software that does what it is required to do, by people who are authorized to use it, and which alerts the people in case anyone abuses the ‘trust’. Needless to say this is a real challenge for web based applications.
As a QA we must be aware of the ramifications of security violations. It is no longer the sole preserve of the system administrator.
For the exam do some background study on the challenges posed by web based projects and their impact on the software engineering principles.
• Real life case studies of software engineering principles: get a good grip of the real life case studies of software engineering.
1. Tools: used for testing, metrics, configuration management and why?
2. Function Points: their usage with examples
1. The Mythical man-month (an excellent book for Software engineers)
2. Software Engineering by Pressman (just to get an overview; don’t waste time reading the whole book end to end)
3. Statistics by Levin and Rubin (to get an idea of the applicability of some of the QC tools)