Your go-to resource for acronyms, jargons, terminology, and useful words for product and customer experience teams.


Acceptance Criteria

What are acceptance criteria?

Acceptance criteria are specific conditions that a product or feature must satisfy to be accepted by the customer or end-users. They outline what is expected from a deliverable in clear, concise, and testable terms.

Why are acceptance criteria important?

They provide a clear understanding of what is needed for a deliverable to be considered complete and acceptable. This helps ensure that all stakeholders have the same expectations and helps prevent misunderstandings or scope creep.

Who defines acceptance criteria?

Typically, acceptance criteria are defined by product owners, business analysts, or project managers in collaboration with stakeholders, including customers, end-users, and the development team.

What should be included in acceptance criteria?

Acceptance criteria should include specific conditions or capabilities that must be met, the scenarios under which the criteria will be tested, and the expected results. They should be clear, concise, and testable.

How do acceptance criteria differ from requirements?

Requirements define what the system should do, while acceptance criteria define how to verify that the requirements have been met. Acceptance criteria are more specific and detail the conditions for acceptance.

Can acceptance criteria change during a project?

Yes, acceptance criteria can evolve as more information becomes available or as project priorities change. However, changes should be carefully managed and agreed upon by all stakeholders.

How are acceptance criteria used in Agile methodologies?

In Agile methodologies, acceptance criteria are often written as part of user stories and are used to define the conditions that must be met for a story to be considered done. They guide the development process and ensure that the team understands what is needed.

What is the format for writing acceptance criteria?

Acceptance criteria can be written in various formats, but a common approach is the Given/When/Then format:

Given: The initial context or conditions.

When: The event or action that triggers the criteria.

Then: The expected outcome or result.

How do acceptance criteria help in testing?

Acceptance criteria provide a basis for creating test cases. They define the expected outcomes and scenarios, helping testers to verify that the product meets the specified requirements.

What is the role of acceptance criteria in project management?

Acceptance criteria help in scope management, quality assurance, and stakeholder communication. They ensure that the project deliverables meet the agreed-upon standards and facilitate the acceptance process.