Skip to content

Software Testers Academy

The Software Testers Academy was a training programme which aimed to give graduates the skills to compete for new job opportunities within the IT sector.

Applications closed

Applications for this intake closed on Friday 29 August 2014.

Skills and experience

The Software Testers' Academy was a 16-week training programme to provide non-IT graduates with the skills and experience required to take up exciting new opportunities in the ICT industry.

The Academy was split into 10 weeks' college-based training and a six-week work placement. Successful Academy participants will gain an industry-recognised qualification - the International Software Testing Qualification Board (ISTQB) Foundation Certificate - and a potential offer of employment.

To date, 96 per cent of the participants who completed their training through this Academy have secured ongoing employment in software testing.

What do software testers do?

When software products such as large banking systems or mobile phone apps are being developed, they are designed to meet particular requirements. The role of the tester is to ensure that software systems work correctly, by:

  • testing them against these requirements
  • working with key stakeholders at every stage in the process

Software testing includes manual testing or automated testing.

Manual testing involves the tester taking over the role of an end-user and testing the software to identify any unexpected behaviour or bug.

Automated testing is a process in which software tools execute pre-scripted tests on a software application before it is released into production.

Testing runs throughout a software product’s lifecycle and ensures that it runs as it should at all times. It is increasingly recognised as a critical element within software and product development.

Key stakeholders include customers and end-users of the software. For example, people who use an internet banking system, mobile phone app or electronic till system.

Who can apply?

Experience is not required but applicants had to possess a HND, degree or equivalent in any discipline. It was anticipated, however, that the Academy would be of interest primarily to graduates from a non-IT background.

Applications were welcome from those who met the criteria irrespective of religious belief, political opinion, age, sexual orientation, disability, race, marital status, gender or whether or not you have dependants and women returning to the workforce.

Application form

You can apply online at the Mindmill website.

For further information:

The closing date for initial applications is 4.00 pm on Friday 29 August 2014.

Selection process

The selection process included an online aptitude test and a second supervised aptitude session, followed by interviews, scheduled for week commencing 22 September 2014.

Training for successful applicants will take place in Greater Belfast starting in October 2014.

If the programme was oversubscribed, preference may be given to non-IT graduates.

What will successful applicants be paid?

For the duration of the programme participants will be paid £150 training allowance per week.

Successful applicants claiming Jobseekers Allowance should complete a ‘Better off Calculation’ before proceeding with the programme.

Successful completion of the programme

If you successfully complete the training programme, you will receive an industry-recognised qualification. You will also have the opportunity to compete for a job with your placement company through their recruitment process.

Participating companies include:

More useful links