The Mutation Testing Coupling Hypothesis
The mutation testing coupling hypothesis
says if a test suite is good enough to detect
all first order mutants, it will detect ``a large percentage'' of
higher order mutants
(Offutt92, page 6).
Demonstration of the Coupling Hypothesis
16383 test suites were generated by selectively including parts of
the triangle test suite.
Test suites that kill more
first order mutants tend to kill more higher order mutants.
Not only does the graph support the coupling hypothesis,
it shows that there can be a strong (non-linear) relationship
between how effective a test suite at detecting first order mutants
and how effective it is against higher order mutants
Figure 17 (page 2434) and
Table 3 (page 2421) in
Efficient Multi Objective Higher Order Mutation Testing with Genetic Programming,
W. B. Langdon and M. Harman and Yue Jia,
Journal of Systems and Software,
83 (2010) 2416-2430.
W. B. Langdon
Department of Computer Science,
27 May 2010
(Last update 3 September2013).