Are Testing "Schools" a Good Idea?

There has been some controversy with Cem Kaner announcing the Context-Driven School of Testing will no longer be called a school. Cem believes (as I understand it) calling something a “school” is too divisive resulting in an exclusionary system that might possibly ignore people with great ideas who don’t necessarily identify themselves as being in the school.

Division for classification purposes seems to have worked for numerous scientific branches and to me doesn’t seem like something to worry about. I understand how those placed in a school might find it offensive but that doesn’t mean the classification should change. It might change how one talks to other testers (i.e. not making it a divisive issue) but I personally don’t feel like I’m trapped in one school and am blind to other peoples ideas.

I’d prefer to hear a debate between James Bach and Cem Kaner but instead a video has surfaced between James and Doug Hoffman called “Are Testing “Schools” a good idea?” from CAST 2011:

As someone who is constantly exploring the testing “body of testing knowledge” I look first to those who subscribe to Context-Driven schools but even those who subscribe have very different interpretations / views on testing.

Perhaps at some point I’ll understand the greater implications of this but as of right now it seems like a far off issue.

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Jamie Larson