Exploratory Testing Week - Challenge 2 - Risks and Charters

Challenge 2: Risks and Charters

This challenge is one of the Exploratory testing week challenges that get you thinking about and practising Exploratory testing. Our challenges offer activities for you to learn new skills and knowledge as well as practise Exploratory testing. Whether you are just starting out in Exploratory testing or looking to try out something new. We have the challenge for you.


When it comes to Exploratory testing how do we organise it and ensure we’re discovering the right information? Fortunately, with the use of charters we can plan and prioritise exploratory testing and use them to help us focus our testing. In this activity we’ll learn how to build charters quickly based on risks we feel might impact our products.


This activity is designed to help you become more familiar with the link between risks and charters and how we can use charters to test for specific risks. We’ll also learn how to use identified risks to help us create a range of charters for exploratory testing.


For this challenge we would like you to:

  1. Download one of the attached User stories for this challenge
  2. Read through the User story and support information
  3. Start by writing down a series of risks that you feel could negatively impact the feature
  4. Once you’ve captured your risks, write out five to ten charters that you can use for running exploratory testing sessions

Some tips:

  1. Consider using tools like RiskStorming to help you generate risks

  2. Try different templates for creating charters such as:

  3. My mission is to test to discover

  4. Explore to discover

  5. Look at to test for

  6. Help one another out by sharing risks and charter templates in this Club thread

Share your experience report

Did you manage to complete the challenge? Share your journey to solving the challenge and what you’ve learnt in an experience report session during Exploratory Testing Week.

What we need from you?

All we need is up to 30 minutes of your time for a demo of your solution and a chat with our host, answering questions on what you learnt. Not only will you help your peers within the community, but we’ll pay you £100 for your time! We will be focusing on this challenge on Tuesday, the 27th of April, from 5:00 pm (UK Time), so you will need to be available around this time.

Deadline to submit

If you want to get involved all you need to do is complete our form sharing which challenge you took and what you would like to share. The deadline for submitting an experience report is 16th April.

Submit here


I can’t see the link to the user stories in this post. Are they the same as the ones used in challenge 1?

Hi @lgibbs

You are free to use any user story you like for this challenge. However, you can pinch the User stories from challenge 1 if you want to.

Hi all,

So just like Challenge 1, I completed this challenge using MetroRetro. I started out by doing some risk storming using my TestSphere deck, identifying Quality Aspects which I thought were most important and could create some interesting exploratory testing ideas. I used these quality aspects to create a new template in metro retro and added post-its. I also used my TestSphere deck to come up with some ideas on how to test, and added these to the metro board. I also added some questions, things that we might want to check for in an exploratory testing session.

I didn’t base this on a specific platform, but I did have a hotel room booking form in mind (a little like the RestfulBooker platform)

Here is a link to the metro board so you can see some of the risks and ideas I identified. Please feel free to add some of your own.

It was a fun exercise to associate risks with charters! Completed the challenge!

@testervenkat the questions from the other attendees about your experience report:

  1. @shalinigt: How did you come up with those Risks? Did you use any heuristics?
  2. @bpennell: Once you’ve set out your risks and associated charters here, how do you prioritise the risks?
  3. Monika s: When do you draft these charters? Do you share them with other testers or does each tester have his/her own?

@lgibbs mentioned TestSphere

and RiskStorming in her experience report

Great questions! Thank you for passing them along @heather_reid !

@shalinigt : I usually go with 5 aspects. Configuration, Functionality, Performance, Security, and Accounting. These would typically cover all the aspects that need to be tested. Under each of the categories, I try to come up with risks based on what I see as missing in the scenarios, and what’s important for the end-user.

@bpennell : I prioritize the risks based on what’s important to the end-user. Discussions with the customer with the Product Owner / Representative engaged about the risks will help prioritize the risks.

Monika S: We can draft the charters as soon as you have the scenarios identified and the risks identified. These artifacts can be shared with all stakeholders for discussions. There will typically be an owner for the artifact, who will make the edits, but anyone can go through, comment, give feedback, and suggest improvements.

Hope that helps! Glad to answer if there’s more!


@simon_tomes mentioned this Club thread during his experience report Take the 5 minute challenge! What are Risks?

Along with TestBuddy of course

Simon has gathered all sorts of excellent things here: A Really Useful List for Exploratory Testers

Software Testing Essentials Essentials - Introduction to Software Development and Testing | MoT

The big list of naughty strings, a great resource in any testers tool belt

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@berenvd used this tool for his live experience report

Beren and Vernon chose the following quality aspects to explore:

  • Clarity
  • Business value capability
  • Adaptability

What quality aspects did you choose?

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I choose Care.

That might sound philosophical, but unless you care, you won’t pay attention. And unless you pay attention, there won’t be clarity!

So, the real question is would I care. This takes us to a whole another dimension of personal values.

More on this soon, as I deliberate on this!

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