Make no mistake, the title of this article got changed a few times and took me more than I was estimating. “Women in IT environments” or “Female testers and why?”, are just a couple of them. But, in reality, the point of this article is to show the benefits of having employees from both genders working in QA. Because, Testing is all about viewing angles, perspective, perception or altogether, cognitive differences.

WHY WOMEN

Usually representing the smallest percentage in the QA field of work, the female species best exceeds in: Empathy The capacity to understand or feel what another person is experiencing from within the other person’s frame of reference, i.e., the capacity to place oneself in another’s position. Processing speed Women, in many different tasks, process information about five times faster than men, and use much less of their brain to do identical cognitive performance. It doesn’t refer to reaction time or the ability to play video games “It’s the ability to effectively, efficiently and accurately complete work of moderate difficulty”. Observation skills Women see what, often times, others don’t see. “A woman’s lens of skepticism oftentimes forces them to see well beyond the most obvious details before them.  They enjoy stretching their perspective to broaden their observations”. Memory I think it is already known and well-proven, of womens’ mnemonic prowess. This is separated in two main types of memory: Short-term memory. The capacity for holding, but not manipulating, a small amount of information in mind, in an active, readily available state for a short period of time. The duration of short-term memory is believed to be in the order of seconds. Long-term memory. The capacity to store informative knowledge for long periods of time. While short-term persist for only about seconds, informative knowledge can remain as long-term memory indefinitely. Long-term memory is also commonly labelled as episodic memory. It allows an individual to figuratively travel back in time to remember an event that took place at that particular time and place. In practice, this means that women perform better at tasks such as remembering words, objects, pictures and other everyday events with descriptive language, which permeate the testing lifecycle, whether it is remembering conversations about clarifying requirements or recalling details of a defect found during test execution.

WHY MEN

The male counterpart, usually dominating the science/tech environment, has its own virtues : Visuo-spatial ability This is the main male ability point, which breaks down in more sub-points. “Visual-spatial abilities are used for everyday use from navigation, understanding or fixing equipment, understanding or estimating distance and measurement, and performing on a job. Spatial abilities are also important for success in fields such as sports, technical aptitude, mathematics, natural sciences, engineering, economic forecasting, meteorology, chemistry and physics. Not only do spatial abilities involve understanding the outside world, but they also involve processing outside information and reasoning with it through visual representation in the mind.” Spatial perception The ability to perceive and visually understand outside spatial information such as features, properties, measurement, shapes, position and motion Mental rotation The ability to mentally represent and rotate 2D and 3D objects in space quickly and accurately, while the object’s features remain unchanged. Mental representations of physical objects can help utilise problem solving and understanding. Spatial visualisation. Characterised as complicated multi-step manipulations of spatially presented information. It involves visual imagery which is the ability to mentally represent visual appearances of an object, and spatial imagery which consists of mentally representing spatial relations between the parts or locations of the objects or movements. Spatial visualisation is especially important in the domains of science and technology. Whereas spatial perception involves understanding externally via the senses, spatial visualisation is the understanding internally through mental imagery in one’s mind Attention Males are usually faster at shifting attention from one object to another as well as shifting attention within objects In practice, men are presenting better performance at remembering and describing things visuo-spatially. There are two main advantages to this approach. • It enables men to focus more intently for longer periods of time. • Men tend to have the advantage when relating one aspect of technology to another. In testing, there are times when intense focus and understanding of relationships is needed, such as when decomposing requirements, executing tests or troubleshooting. WE LOVE DIVERSITY After all that is said about gender diversity, yes, we love it, we welcome it! And not not only gender specific. It could be about age, nationality, religion and many more. Because if our customers are diverse, so should we. References https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sex_differences_in_cognition https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Episodic_memory https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Long-term_memory https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Short-term_memory https://eric.ed.gov/?id=EJ893899 https://centricconsulting.com/why-you-need-female-testers-on-your-team

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