Graduation Year

2005

Document Type

Thesis

Degree

M.S.C.S.

Degree Granting Department

Computer Science

Major Professor

Dewey Rundus.

Co-Major Professor

Alan Hevner

Keywords

Return on investment metrics, Automated testing feasibility, Manual vs. automated testing, Software quality assurance, Regression testing, Repetitive testing

Abstract

Software test automation is widely accepted as an efficient software testing technique. However, automation has failed to deliver the expected productivity more often than not. The goal of this research was to find out the reason for these failures by collecting and understanding the metrics that affect software test automation and provide recommendations on how to successfully adopt automation with a positive return on investment (ROI). The metrics of concern were schedule, cost and effectiveness. The research employed an experimental study where subjects worked on individual manual and automated testing projects. The data collected were cross verified and supplemented with additional data from a feedback survey at the end of the experiment. The results of this study suggest that automation involves a heavy initial investment in terms of schedule and cost, which needs to be amortized over subsequent test cycles or even subsequent test projects.

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