I am recapping my software testing foundations by writing posts about software testing foundation topics. Doing that I came across James Bach’s post about transpective dialogs that he uses for learning. What is transpective dialog? The post is aligned with the Black Box Software Testing Foundations course (BBST) designed by Rebecca Fiedler, Cem Kaner, and James Bach.
I was part of a transpective dialog, not one on one, but as part of a group at Michael Bolton’s and James Bach’s various teaching sessions and workshops. If you plan to be part of their future classes, it is good to know about transpective dialogs.
The Mac Dictionary application found nothing.
Michael and James often do that. None existing word, or Mac dictionary error?
Transpection basically means to learn by putting yourself in someone else’s place.[Bach]
Problems With Transpection
Most people feel like being interrogated, tortured, or judged. I was one of them. But I stuck with those dialogs and reward was that I learned a lot.
How To Do A Transpection Dialog
I will try to apply it. Here is how James is doing it:
- Ask a question or present a problem
- Think through the same issue while listening to them work it out.
- As it proceeds, ask handfuls of Socratic questions. Ask each question out loud, and answer it yourself silently, and compare answers with the ones you hear from your counterpart.
These are the reason why people feel mostly bad about transpection dialog.
Socratic questioning is based on the foundation that thinking has structured logic, and allows underlying thoughts to be questioned.[Wikipedia].
As Transpection is critically questioning every statement of your counterpart in the discussion, you need to explain it to another party to create a safe learning environment.