Testing Maturity Model

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The Testing Maturity Model (TMM) was based on the Capability Maturity Model, and first produced by the Illinois Institute of Technology.[1]

Its aim to be used in a similar way to CMM, that is to provide a framework for assessing the maturity of the test processes in an organisation, and so providing targets on improving maturity.

The five Levels in the Testing Maturity Model
Level Description
Level 1 – Initial At this level an organisation is using ad hoc methods for testing, so results are not repeatable and there is no quality standard.
Level 2 – Definition At this level testing is defined as a process, so there might be test strategies, test plans, test cases, based on requirements. Testing does not start until products are completed, so the aim of testing is to compare products against requirements.
Level 3 – Integration At this level testing is integrated into a software life cycle, e.g. the V-model. The need for testing is based on risk management, and the testing is carried out with some independence from the development area.
Level 4 – Management and measurement At this level testing activities take place at all stages of the life cycle, including reviews of requirements and designs. Quality criteria are agreed for all products of an organisation (internal and external).
Level 5 – Optimization At this level the testing process itself is tested and improved at each iteration. This is typically achieved with tool support, and also introduces aims such as defect prevention through the life cycle, rather than defect detection (zero defects).

Each level from 2 upwards has a defined set of processes and goals, which lead to practices and sub-practices.

The TMM has been since replaced[2] by the Test Maturity Model integration and is now managed by the TMMI Foundation.[3]

See also[edit]


The article describing this concept was first published in: Crosstalk, August and September 1996 "Developing a Testing Maturity Model: Parts I and II", Ilene Burnstein, Taratip Suwannasart, and C.R. Carlson, Illinois Institute of Technology (article not in online archives at Crosstalk online anymore)

  1. ^ Article in Crosstalk, I. Burnstein, A. Homyen, R. Grom and C.R. Carlson, “A Model to Assess Testing Process Maturity”, CROSSTALK 1998, Software Technology Support Center, Hill Air Force Base, Utah
  2. ^ TMMi reference Archived 2009-08-02 at archive.today, Sources of TMMi
  3. ^ TMMi Foundation, TMMi Foundation