Software testing is good in practice, but it’s even better in principle. If you don’t have the principles first, things can get messy fast. Randy Rice explains it’s a little like washing dishes. If you’re teaching someone to wash dishes, you can teach them how to wash every single dish, or you can teach them the basics and let them figure out the rest. No one wants a partner hovering over their shoulder to ensure every speck of dirt is gone, so let’s go with the second option.
Just like you need to rinse the big stuff first, you should also take sample tests early to find the big problem areas. Hot water is a must, but water that’s too hot will lead to scalded hands. Likewise, your tests should be strong, but not so robust that you don’t have time to finish them. Your team needs to understand why something is being done before they can do it properly. That’s where the principles come in. Put them before the practice, or you could end up eating from dirty dishes (or working with poorly constructed software testing procedures).