Mob Testing

Course Description

“All the brilliant people, working on the same thing, at the same time, in the same space, and at the same computer.“ – that is Mob Programming. When the activity we mob on is exploratory testing or the viewpoint to being a programming mob is that of an exploratory tester, we call it Mob Testing. Mob testing – a group testing activity utilising one computer – voices out the tacit knowledge in the group of individuals on shared tasks. Facilitated by an expert, it makes a great mechanism for building habits and transferring skills over passing knowledge.  

In this course, we amp up our testing skills by learning from one another and learn in a mob, getting the best knowledge out of the team into the task at hand. With mob testing, we get a glimpse into the head of the testers while they test because “for an idea to go from your head to the computer, it must go through someone else’s hands”. This is a specific communication style called Strong-style pairing, and it connects the group of brilliant minds in the mob in a shared experience. The course is set up for a maximum 16 participants, and everyone joins the mob for the day.

We will work on different types of activities as a group: from analysing a user interface to analysing an individual feature; from having ready code to creating some with test-driven development; and from focusing on testing to focusing on teamwork dynamics.

The training day shows you:

  • How mobbing gets the tacit knowledge out of the team in an actionable format
  • How to introduce learning in mobbing format at your place of work
  • What would it look like to think like an exploratory tester, with intent of understanding coverage while uncovering useful information
  • What would it look like to apply testing skills while joining a group programming activity
  • How you can improve your collaboration skills in hands-on work

Note: Course is a hands-on course, but you do not need your own laptop.


Opening of the Day: Learning Goals and Introducing the System Under Test

The Brief Basics to Mob Testing

  • Mob Testing
  • Exploratory testing
  • Strong-style pairing exercise

Activity: Exploring in a mob part 1

  • Find the happy path: why would anyone want to use this
  • Retrospective: what have we learned?

Activity: Exploring in a mob part 2

  • Coverage: identify what is there
  • Retrospective: what have we learned?

Activity: Test-Driven Development Kata

  • Glimpse into mob programming: contribution of a non-programmer tester
  • Retrospective: what have we learned?

Introducing Mob Testing as a Learning Activity

  • Facilitation: speak through questions, introduce constraints, concepts and tools
  • Discussion on Kindness, Consideration and Respect in action
  • Learning to learn: removing the need of facilitator

Course Instructor

Maaret Pyhäjärvi is a software professional with testing emphasis. She identifies as an empirical technologist, a tester and a programmer, a catalyst for improvement and a speaker. Her day job is working with a software product development team as a hands-on testing specialist with a focus on exploratory testing. In addition to being a tester and a teacher, she is a serial volunteer for different non-profits driving forward the state of software development. She was recently awarded as Most Influential Agile Testing Professional Person 2016. She blogs regularly at and is the author of two LeanPub books.

Course Length

This is a one day class

Next Course

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