Specification By Example

Specification By Example (SBE) is a collaborative approach to building valuable, high-quality software. SBE aligns your development team using realistic examples instead of abstract statements as the focal point for discussing, discovering, documenting, implementing and testing requirements. SBE is particularly successful for managing requirements on large-scale projects of significant domain and organisational complexity.

Specialised courses developed by Assurity

This is a private event. Contact Catherine Saganic at education@assurity.co.nz for a consultation.

This course can be run in Auckland, Wellington and Christchurch as a private course.

Please contact education@assurity.co.nz for further information.

Specification By Example – also known as Behaviour Driven Development – significantly reduces feedback loops in software development leading to less rework, higher product quality, faster turnaround time for software changes and better alignment of activities of various roles involved in software development such as testers, analysts and developers.

Teams that apply Specification By Example successfully commonly apply the following process patterns:

  • Deriving scope from goals
  • Specifying collaboratively – through all-team specification workshops or smaller meeting
  • Illustrating requirements using examples
  • Refining specifications
  • Automating tests based on examples
  • Validating the underlying software frequently using the tests
  • Evolving a documentation system from specifications with examples to support future development

Developed by staff with an unmatched breadth and depth of experience using Specification By Example as coaches and consultants, testers and developers, this course will get you started with SBE, or take you to the next level if you’re already using it.

Learning outcomes

By the end of this course, attendees will be able to:

  • Describe the SBE process patterns
  • Explain the benefits of using SBE
  • Run effective specification workshops
  • Create specifications with examples
  • Utilise patterns for analysing examples
  • Use ‘Gherkin’ language to describe examples
  • Use recognised good practices for refining and documenting examples and critique examples that exhibit poor practice
  • Understand how to evolve a living documentation suite from the executable specifications
  • Determine how SBE would alter current team process and roles and the impact this has on day-to-day activities


This is one day course. Your whole team should attend this course to start them on their journey of change to implement effective SBE practices.


This course requires no prior knowledge and is aimed at your whole development team.


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