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ISTQB Certification – Foundation Level syllabus

ISTQB- Certification – Foundation-Level-syllabus

  • Total number of questions in the exam: 40
  • Each correct answer carries 1 point
  • Minimum percentage for passing : 65% (26 or more points)
  • Total exam time: 75 minutes
  • Questions are multiple choice in nature
  • There is no negative marking in the exam
  • This is an online exam
  • All questions are taken from the syllabus
  • Complete syllabus is split into cognitive level of knowledge:
    • 40% K1 (remember, recall type)
    • 35% K2 (Understand, Compare, contrast type)
    • 20% K3 (Apply type, Numerical type as well)
    • 5% K4 (Analyse type)
Level of


Keywords Learning Objective Example
K1 recognize, remember, retrieve, identify, recall Under K1 type topics candidates have to recognize, remember, retrieve, identify, recall a term or concept. Can remember the definition of “Failure” as:The inability of a system or component to perform its required functions within specified performance requirements.
K2 Compare, conclude, contrast, interpret, represent, translate, infer, categorize, summarize Under K2 type topics candidates has to select the reasons or the explanations for the statements related to the topics and then u can compare, classify or conclude and give examples of the testing concepts. Explain the reason why tests should be designed as early as possible?

  • To avoid the downward flow of the defect.
  • To find defects when they are cheaper to remove
K3 Apply, implement, execute, follow a procedure, apply a procedure Under K3 type topics candidates has to select the correct technique and apply it to a given context Can identify boundary values for valid and invalid partitions.Can select the most appropriate and minimum test cases for the given application.
K4 Analyse Under K4 type topics candidates has to understand the procedure or technique and can distinguish between facts and inferences. Analyse a document, software or project situation and propose appropriate actions to solve a problem or task.


Syllabus for ISTQB Preparation Material:

1) The Fundamentals of testing: (K2)

  • Why is testing necessary? (K2)
  • What is Testing? (K2)
  • Testing Principles (K2)
  • Fundamental Test Process (K1)
  • The psychology of Testing (K2)

2) Testing throughout the life-cycle: (K2)

  • Software development models (K2)
  • Test Levels (Eg. Unit testing, Component testing, Integration testing,etc.) (K2)
  • Test types (Functional, non-functional, structural, change-related testing) (K2)
  • Maintenance testing (K2)

3) Static testing: (K2)

  • Reviews and the Test process (K2)
  • Review Process (K2)
  • Static analysis by tools (K2)

4) Test design techniques: (K4)

  • Identifying test conditions and designing test cases (K2)
  • Categories of test design techniques (K2)
  • Specification based or Black Box techniques (eg. BVA, Equivalence Partitioning) (K3)
  • Structure based or white Box techniques (K4)
  • Experienced based techniques (Error guessing and Exploratory guessing) (K2)
  • Choosing a Test techniques (K2)

5) Test Management: (K3)

  • Test organization (K2)
  • Test Plans, estimates and strategies (K3)
  • Test progress, monitoring and control (K2)
  • Configuration management (K2)
  • Risk and testing (K2)
  • Incident management (K3)

6) Tool support for testing: (K2)

  • Types of test tools (K2)
  • Effective use of tools (K2)
  • Introducing a tool into an organization (K1)
Chapter Number of Questions expected from each chapter
The principles of testing 7
Testing throughout the life-cycle 6
Static testing 3
Test design techniques 12
Test management 8
Tool support for testing 4