ISTQB® CT - Usability Testing


Usability testing focuses on measuring a human-made product's capacity to meet its intended purpose. 

ISTQB® Usability Tester certification complements the core foundation level as a specialist module. It provides an theoretical background for testers who are validating the usability of software.


Chapter 1: Basic Concepts of Usability Testing

  • Fundamentals
    • Understand the concepts of usability, user experience and accessibility
    • Understand the objectives of usability, user experience and accessibility evaluation
  • Evaluating Usability, User Experience and Accessibility
    • Compare usability, user experience and accessibility evaluation
    • Understand the three approaches to usability, user experience and accessibility evaluation: Usability review, usability testing and quantitative user surveys for satisfaction measurement
    • Understand the differences between formative (qualitative) and summative (quantitative) usability evaluation (15 mins)
  • Usability Evaluation in Human-Centered Design
    • Understand the key elements of human-centered evaluation
    • Understand the human-centered design process
    • Understand the usability evaluation approaches that work well in agile software development lifecycles

Chapter 2: Risks in Usability, User Experience and Accessibilit

  • Understand typical usability, user experience, and accessibility risks
  • Analyze a given project at the design or evaluation stage, and identify the types of usability risks that are likely to occur

Chapter 3: Usability and Accessibility Standards

  • Usability Standards and Manufacturer Guidelines
    • Understand the general content and applicability of ISO usability standards and manufacturer guidelines to particular types of project/application (45 mins)
  • Accessibility Standards
    • Understand the general content and applicability of ISO 9241-171 (Software Accessibility) and the Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2.0 to particular types of project and applications
    • Understand the general content of accessibility legislation (UK Equality Act 2010 and Americans with Disabilities Act)

Chapter 4: Usability Reviews

  • Introduction and Approach
    • Understand usability review as a method for evaluating usability, user experience and accessibility
  • Types of Usability Review
    • Understand the differences between informal usability review and expert usability review
    • Analyze the usability aspects of a software application using the usability review method “heuristic evaluation” according to a checklist provided in the syllabus

Chapter 5: Usability Testing

  • Step-By-Step Approach to Usability Testing
    • Understand the principal steps in the usability testing approach (15 mins)
  • Preparing a Usability Test
    • Understand the content of a usability test plan
    • Understand the content of a usability test script
    • Define a simple usability test task for a given project
    • Understand considerations to be applied when deciding on a location for usability tests
    • Understand the advantages and disadvantages of a usability test lab
  • Conducting a Usability Test Session
    • Understand the key activities in a usability test session
  • Analyzing Findings
    • Understand the procedure to apply for analyzing findings from a usability test
    • Understand the classifications and ratings for usability findings
  • Communicating Results and Findings
    • Review a usability test report for a given project
    • Understand how to overcome internal resistance to usability findings
    • Apply a given list of best practices to report and communicate results
  • Quality Control of a Usability Test
    • Understand the quality control activities for a usability test
  • Challenges and Frequent Mistakes
    • Understand the most frequent and serious mistakes in usability testing

Chapter 6: User Surveys

  • Step-By-Step Approach to User Surveys
    • Understand the purpose and approach adopted in user surveys
  • Standardized Questionnaires
    • Understand the principal content and objectives of the public user questionnaires SUS, SUMI and WAMMI

Chapter 7: Selecting Appropriate Methods

  • Criteria for Selecting a Method
    • Select appropriate method(s) for verifying and validating usability, user experience and accessibility in a given project

Chapter 8: Summary of Roles and Responsibilities

  • Usability Tester
    • Understand the principal tasks and responsibilities of the Usability Tester
  • Moderator and Note-taker
    • Understand the principal tasks and responsibilities of the Moderator and the Note- Taker

Target Audience

Testers, Test Analysts, Test Engineers, Test Consultants, Test Managers, User Acceptance Testers and Software Developers that are working to validate the usability of software.


  • Successful completion of the ISTQB® CTFL certification exam and certification.
  • Previous usability testing experience is recommended, but not required.

Download the syllabi for this certification or see sample exams.

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