Alternatives for testing of context-aware software systems in non-academic settings: results from a Rapid Review

Santiago Matalonga*, Domenico Amalfitano, Andrea Doreste, Anna Rita Fasolino, Guilherme Horta Travassos

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)
127 Downloads (Pure)


Context: Context-awareness challenges the engineering of contemporary software systems and jeopardizes their testing. The variation of context represents a relevant behavior that deepens the limitations of available software testing practices and technologies. However, such software systems are mainstream. Therefore, researchers in non-academic settings also face challenges when developing and testing contemporary soft-ware systems.

Objective: To understand how researchers deal with the variation of context when testing context-aware software systems developed in non-academic settings.

Method: To undertake a secondary study (Rapid Review) to uncover the necessary evidence from primary sources describing the testing of context-aware software systems outside academia.

Results: The current testing initiatives in non-academic settings aim to generate or improve test suites that can deal with the context variation and the sheer volume of test input possibilities. They mostly rely on modeling the systems' dynamic behavior and increasing computing resources to generate test inputs to achieve this. We found no evidence of test results aiming at managing context variation through the testing lifecycle process.

Conclusions: So far, the identified testing initiatives and strategies are not ready for mainstream adoption. They are all domain-specific, and while the ideas and approaches can be reproduced in distinct settings, the technologies are to be re-engineered and tailored to the context-awareness of contemporary software systems in different problem domains. Further and joint investigations in academia and experiences in non-academic settings can evolve the body of knowledge regarding the testing of contemporary soft-ware systems in the field.
Original languageEnglish
Article number106937
Number of pages16
JournalInformation and Software Technology
Early online date6 May 2022
Publication statusPublished - 30 Sept 2022


  • context-aware software systems
  • testing
  • software testing
  • rapid review
  • contemporary software systems


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