PPIG 2016 - 27th Annual Workshop
Teaching Software Testing with a Mutation Testing Game
José Miguel Rojas, Gordon Fraser
Abstract: Software testing is crucially important in a world dominated by software. Software testing is also inherently difficult and requires theoretical expertise and practical experience. However, standard testing techniques are often perceived as boring and difficult, and thus do not feature as prominently in programming education as they maybe should. In order to address this problem, we aim to make testing education more interesting with gamification. The Code Defenders game uses gameplay elements to engage students in the testing process in a competitive and fun way. Our hope is that if students perceive writing tests as a fun activity, they will later become better software engineers, with better testing skills, and with more inclination to apply thorough testing. In this work-in-progress paper we describe our initial experiences with Code Defenders, as well as open challenges on the way to making testing education fun.