STAREAST 2017 Focus - Personal Improvement | TechWell

STAREAST 2017 - Personal Improvement

Sunday, May 7

Python® for Testers (2-Day)

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Sunday, May 7, 2017 - 8:30am to Monday, May 8, 2017 - 5:00pm
This is a course for testers who are frustrated by the laborious and manual work that makes up day-to-day test activities. Participants will gain a solid understanding of the Python language, its philosophy, and the code syntax.
Conrad Fujimoto
Intellectica Systems Inc.

Software Tester Certification—Foundation Level (3–Day) - SOLD OUT

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Sunday, May 7, 2017 - 8:30am to Tuesday, May 9, 2017 - 5:00pm

Accredited training for the ISTQB® Certified Tester—Foundation Level (CTFL) certification. Find out what it takes to be a successful software tester and learn about the relationship of testing to development, test levels, black-box methods, white-box testing, exploratory testing, and more.

Monday, May 8


Critical Thinking for Software Testers

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Monday, May 8, 2017 - 8:30am to 4:30pm

Critical thinking is the kind of thinking that specifically looks for problems and mistakes. Regular people don't do a lot of it. However, if you want to be a great tester, you need to be a great critical thinker. Critically thinking testers save projects from dangerous assumptions and ultimately from disasters. The good news is that critical thinking is not just innate intelligence or a talent—it's a learnable and improvable skill you can master. Michael Bolton shares the specific techniques and heuristics of critical thinking and presents realistic testing puzzles that help you practice...

Isabel Evans
Independent Consultant

Influence Diagrams: A New Way to Understand Testing

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Monday, May 8, 2017 - 8:30am to 12:00pm

Influence diagrams provide a simple-to-create and easy-to-understand approach to address the complexities of real-life problems. As testers, we may want to find more bugs, but this may have an unintended consequence for developers. Developers now have more defects to debug, which affects their capacity to deliver new functionality. Isabel Evans has found that influence diagrams provide a means of understanding and managing the complexities of key interactions among testers, developers, and business stakeholders. In the past few years, Isabel has used influence diagrams as a practical tool...

CA Technologies

Applying Emotional Intelligence in Your Testing

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Monday, May 8, 2017 - 1:00pm to 4:30pm

As test managers and test professionals, we're constantly dealing with fragile egos, highly-charged situations, and pressured people playing a high-stakes game under conditions of massive uncertainty. We're often the bearers of bad news and are sometimes perceived as critics, activating people's primal fear of being judged. The concept of emotional intelligence (EI), popularized by Harvard psychologist and science writer Daniel Goleman, has much to offer test managers and testers. Key EI skills include self-awareness, self-management, social awareness, and relationship management. Julie...

Tuesday, May 9

CA Technologies

Get Your Message Across: Communications Skills for Testers

Sold Out!
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Tuesday, May 9, 2017 - 8:30am to 12:00pm

Communication is at the heart of our profession. If we can’t convey our concerns in ways that connect with key members of the project team, our contribution is likely to be ignored—no matter how advanced our testing capabilities are. Because we act in an advisory capacity rather than being in command, our power to exert influence is almost entirely based on our communication skills. Join Julie Gardiner as she draws on techniques from psychology and marketing to help you get your message across. With people suffering information overload and deluged with emails, it is more important than...

Wednesday, May 10

Zeger Van Hese

The Power of Doubt: Becoming a Software Skeptic

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Wednesday, May 10, 2017 - 8:30am to 9:45am

No matter what the language, “I don’t know” might just be the most difficult words to say. We avoid them, afraid of coming across as hesitant or unsure. Colleagues expect us to be firm and certain, providing definitive answers. However, in the past years, I grew increasingly doubtful. I had a hard time being sure of anything. “You're rejecting certainty,” someone said. “That's skepticism. You're a tester, embrace it!” That seemed like a good idea, but this left me with a new challenge: How do I embrace skepticism, and can it improve my testing? In hopes of finding clues to help my...

Dorothy Graham
Software Test Consultant

The Tester's Three C’s: Communication, Criticism, Confidence

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Wednesday, May 10, 2017 - 11:30am to 12:30pm

Whether you are in an independent testing team and need to communicate formally or in an agile context communicating face-to-face, it can be difficult to do your job well when you are telling people what they don’t want to hear. Dot Graham presents examples of different types and styles of communication, including Virginia Satir’s communication interaction model, that can help you get your points across without rancor. Dot examines criticism—what it is, different types, and the DASR (Describing, Acknowledging, Specifying, and Reaffirming) model for sharing criticism. Since testers are...

Ramsey Solutions

Seven Fundamentals of a Successful Testing Team

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Wednesday, May 10, 2017 - 1:45pm to 2:45pm

So you want to build an effective testing team and you’re asking yourself, “Where do I begin?” Greg Paskal, a quality assurance engineer with thirty years of testing experience, shares seven keys to building a successful testing team. Learn the fundamentals every tester should know and how to build on them to achieve an effective manual and automated testing strategy. Greg shares his Minimal Essential Testing Strategy (METS)—coupled with proven experience—to help you build an amazing testing organization. He also provides specific instruction through each, including fundamentals of...

PLATO Testing

Changing Lives with Software Testing: The PLATO Testing Story

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Wednesday, May 10, 2017 - 3:00pm to 4:00pm

Aboriginal people across Canada face an unemployment rate more than twice the national average. Meanwhile, vacant IT positions continue to rise across the country, with an additional 218,000 new openings expected by 2020. Denis Carignan shares how PLATO Testing is building a network of Aboriginal software testers across Canada to help solve these problems. Students begin with intensive lab-based training, followed by an immersive internship, and end with full-time employment at PLATO Testing as professional software testers. As this initiative grows, so does the ability to capture large...

Lee Copeland
TechWell Corp.

Lightning Strikes the Keynotes

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Wednesday, May 10, 2017 - 4:15pm to 5:15pm

Throughout the years, Lightning Talks have been a popular part of the STAR conferences. If you’re not familiar with the concept, Lightning Talks consists of a series of five-minute talks by different speakers within one presentation period. Lightning Talks are the opportunity for speakers to deliver their single biggest bang-for-the-buck idea in a rapid-fire presentation. And now, lightning has struck the STAR keynotes. Some of the best-known experts in testing will step up to the podium and give you their best shot of lightning. Get multiple keynote presentations for the price of one—and...

Thursday, May 11

Isabel Evans
Independent Consultant

My Failures in Software Testing

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Thursday, May 11, 2017 - 1:30pm to 2:30pm

In her more than thirty years in the IT industry, Isabel Evans says she has learned more from her failures than she has from her successes. Why is this? And what has she learned? That making mistakes is the way to learn, and that allowing yourself to be wrong allows you to grow. Join Isabel to enjoy her greatest failures, and learn not to make the same mistakes she has made. Recently, someone described Isabel as unusual in the technology industries as she is an “elderly woman,” so she has taken as her motto Bob Dylan’s line: “I was so much older then—I’m younger than that now.” Isabel...

John Hazel

Adapting Test Teams to Organizational Power Structures

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Thursday, May 11, 2017 - 3:00pm to 4:00pm

Scapegoats, spin-doctors, white knights, and sycophants—have you found your test team playing these roles? Organizations, both large and small, often have distinct cultures and power structures with significant but insidious impact on how individual testers and teams are expected to operate. Sometimes the difference between doing what sponsors and stakeholders request and doing what is really needed becomes blurred. John Hazel helps you learn how to recognize the cultural characteristics of different types of software development teams, and how they drive expectations for the test team....

Joel Montvelisky

Communication and Testing: Why You Have Been Wrong All Along!

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Thursday, May 11, 2017 - 3:00pm to 4:00pm

You ran all the tests you planned for your team, you reported all the bugs with clear and to the point descriptions, and you sent a weekly email with a professional PowerPoint presentation including graphs and statistics pointing out the risk areas and project issues. However, you still feel the organization is not taking your testing seriously, management is unaware of what your team is achieving—and apparently no one is actually reading your reports. Sound familiar? Everyone else is not the problem; the way you are communicating your testing information is! Join Joel Montvelisky to...

Friday, May 12

Dawn Haynes
PerfTestPlus, Inc.

The Power of Collective Experience

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Friday, May 12, 2017 - 10:45am to 12:30pm

Bring your biggest challenges to this session and tap the wisdom of others. In this immersive session, you will tackle some of the most widely mentioned challenges brought to light from the group. Whether it’s a software testing conundrum, a project setback, a management blocker, a group or team dysfunction or an interpersonal hurdle, all of these can slow our progress and reduce our effectiveness.  And when we hunt for options, we all have blind spots and biases that prevent us from thinking out of the box and finding new and different solutions. Typically the best ideas come from...

Alison Wade
TechWell Corp.

Panel–Career Superpowers

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Friday, May 12, 2017 - 1:30pm to 2:30pm

Let’s discuss and define the most important career superpowers for women.  Hear what industry professionals, leaders, and idea disruptors think the important career superpowers are for women in 2017 and going forward.



Building your Personal Brand for Success

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Friday, May 12, 2017 - 2:30pm to 3:15pm

Building the right personal brand is one of the critical success factors in today’s workplace. Organizations develop a brand and image, but not many individuals think about their personal brand and how it can affect their career. As we interact with people, we want to influence them to support our efforts—approving projects, budgets, and funding; supporting our next career move; or recommending us for that promotion or raise we want.  As a professional, it is critical to understand how you are being perceived by your “target audience.” During this interactive session Jennifer shares...

Alison Wade
TechWell Corp.

Wrap-up and Ongoing Informal Discussion with Speakers and Attendees

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Friday, May 12, 2017 - 3:15pm to 4:00pm

This concludes the Women Who Test events.