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QA Tester Interview Questions

Position Summary

Quality assurance (QA) testers create testing plans that test plans from beginning to end. The purpose of testing plans is to make sure all thresholds to ensure test objectives are met and the solution works as expected. 

Testing plans are required to test all standards relevant to the project. Common standards include performance, functionality, stability, and reliability with other systems. Testing plans require meticulousness and careful planning, so QA testers should be prepared to devote their time and energy to the job.


QA tester responsibilities may include:

  • Developing functional testing plans
  • Documenting all steps and outcomes of testing plans
  • Automating testing scripts
  • Testing plans against different external systems
  • Reviewing testing plans with team members


QA testers are vital in making sure software works the way it’s supposed to. In order to provide the best software possible, a skilled QA tester will:

  • Possess an eye for detail to observe flaws within software
  • Possess the skill needed to plan a strategy to fully test software
  • Convert technical data into easily understandable reports
  • Communicate software flaws clearly with developers
  • Work to identify bugs as quickly as possible


In order to gain an entry-level position, candidates will need to possess at least a bachelor’s degree in computer science or a related mathematics field. Additionally, most jobs will want candidates to have at least three years of experience in the QA technical field with business systems.

If you’re getting ready to interview for a position as a QA tester, you can prepare by researching the company as much as possible. Learn about the 9 things you should research before an interview.


Salaries for QA testers range between $36K and $51K with the median being $41K. 

Factors impacting the salary you receive as a QA tester include:

  • Degrees (bachelor's, master's) 
  • Years of Experience
  • Location
  • Reporting Structure (seniority of the manager you report to and number of direct reports)
  • Level of Performance - Exceeding Expectations

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QA Tester Interview Questions

Question: Can you discuss the differences between quality assurance (QA) and software testing?

Explanation: This is a general question which the interviewer will use to open the conversation and get you talking. It also gives them some insight into your background and may provide information they can use when asking additional questions.

Example: “The main difference between quality assurance and software testing is the stage it occurs within the development process.  Quality assurance is an ongoing process that monitors the quality of the software while it is being developed. Quality assurance can be performed at any stage during the software development cycle. Software testing, on the other hand, happens after the software is fully developed and is meant to ensure there are no errors or bugs before the software is released for production.”

Question: What are the elements of an effective test strategy?

Explanation: This is an operational question that helps the interviewer understand your knowledge about the QA testing process.  Operational questions are meant to determine how you go about doing your job. They are best answered directly and concisely with little embellishment. The interviewer will ask a follow-up question if they need more information.

Example: “There are several elements required to ensure a QA testing strategy is effective. These include an introduction, a list of resources, the scope and schedule for testing, the tools to be used, priorities, and a list of tests which will be performed.”

Question: Can you list some of the different types of software testing procedures?

Explanation: Several procedures can be used when testing software. As an experienced QA tester, you should be familiar with them and able to provide a list of some of the more common ones. Make sure you are knowledgeable about everything on the list because the interviewer may ask a follow-up question about one of the items you discuss.

Example: “I employ a wide variety of testing procedures while performing my job. The most common of these include unit testing, functional testing, performance testing, integration, and regression testing, white and black box testing, Alpha and Beta testing, load testing and stress testing, and system testing.”

Question: What are the contents of test plans and test cases?

Explanation: This is an operational question that tests your knowledge of the QA testing process. As an experienced professional in this industry, you should be able to provide the answer to this question easily. Keep your answer short in case the interviewer asks follow-up questions that explore one of the items provided in your answer.

Example: “The content of the test plan will vary depending on the software you are working with and the objective of the QA testing.  However, common elements include testing objectives, testing scope, testing time frame, the test environment, the testing deliverables, and any risk factors.”

Question: What do the terms build and release refer to in the software development and testing process?

Explanation: This is a technical question that asks you to define some terms and describe how they are used in the QA testing process.  The best way to respond to technical questions is to define the terms and provide an example of how they are used in the work you do.  Keep your answers short and to the point. The interviewer will ask a follow-up question if they need additional information.

Example: “In the context of QA software testing, the terms build and release refer to identification numbers assigned to the software at various stages during the development and testing process. Build is the number of the software version that is handed off by the development team to the testing team. Release, on the other hand, is the version number assigned to the product which is delivered to the customer after final testing.”

Question: What are some of the challenges the software quality assurance team faces while automating the testing process?

Explanation: This is another operational question which asks you to identify some of the challenges or roadblocks you encounter during a QA testing process. Operational questions are meant to demonstrate the scope of your knowledge and the extent of your experience.  Make sure you are prepared for follow-up questions when you provide an answer to the interviewer's inquiry.

Example: “During an automated QA testing process, testers are likely to encounter several challenges which are usually overcome easily as long as you’re prepared for them and have some experience addressing them. Some of these challenges include developing competency with the automated testing tools, creating automated testing scripts that can be reused, adapting the automated testing procedure to the product you are investigating, and automating very complex testing processes.”

Question: Walk me through the steps of a bug cycle?

Explanation: This is another operational question in which the interviewer is asking you to describe the process you use to accomplish the task about which they are asking. The best way to respond to this type of question is to provide a step-by-step description of a process.

Example: “A bug cycle begins once the tester identifies a bug in the software. The first step is to assign the bug to the development manager for remediation. If the bug is valid, it usually gets fixed. If it is not, the development team will acknowledge this and return the bug to the QA tester. The next step is to determine if the bug is within scope for the software. If it is, it will be ignored. If not, it will be repaired.  The status of a bug will move from open to in-progress and finally closed.”

Question: What is a bug leakage and bug release, and which of them impacts the final product more?

Explanation: This is another technical question in which the interviewer is asking you to identify two terms and compare them. Remember, the process is to define the terms and then describe the differences between them. You can also provide an example of how they are used in your job.

Example: “A bug release is when the software is turned over to the testing team with a known bug. This enables the QA tester to begin the testing process with the knowledge that the bug will be fixed or allowed in the final version of the software. Bug leakage is when a bug is identified by the end-user after release and was not found by the QA testing team.”

Question: What is the difference between branch testing and boundary testing?

Explanation: By now, you’ll recognize this as a technical question comparing two different terms. As a QA tester, the majority of questions you will be asked during an interview will either be technical or operational. You can prepare for such questions before the interview by reviewing the job posting and brushing up on the terms, procedures, and processes used in your profession.

Example: “Branch testing refers to the process of examining each of the branches of code within the software. This is usually done only once. Boundary testing, on the other hand, refers to focusing on the limiting conditions of the software and determining if it performs per the end-user specifications.”

Question: What is the importance of Agile testing in the context of Agile development methodology?

Explanation: Agile uses the most common software development methodology employed. As a QA tester, you should be very familiar with this framework and the testing used within Agile. This will demonstrate your qualifications for the job and the scope of your knowledge about QA testing techniques.

Example: “Agile testing is just like any other QA testing for software. The main difference, however, is Agile testing occurs frequently during the development process. Normal QA testing usually takes place at the end of the process to ensure the product meets specifications.”

Additional QA Tester Interview Questions

  • What is testware?

  • What are the steps in the bug cycle?

  • What is the strategy for an automation test plan?

  • What is a bug triage?

  • Can you tell me what a regular expression (RedEx) is? 

A word of warning when using question lists.

Question lists offer a convenient way to start practicing for your interview. Unfortunately, they do little to recreate actual interview pressure. In a real interview you’ll never know what’s coming, and that’s what makes interviews so stressful.

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