cover image

In engineering and its various subdisciplines, acceptance testing is a test conducted to determine if the requirements of a specification or contract are met. It may involve chemical tests, physical tests, or performance tests.

Acceptance testing of an aircraft catapult
Six of the primary mirrors of the James Webb Space Telescope being prepared for acceptance testing

In systems engineering, it may involve black-box testing performed on a system (for example: a piece of software, lots of manufactured mechanical parts, or batches of chemical products) prior to its delivery.[1]

In software testing, the ISTQB defines acceptance testing as:

Formal testing with respect to user needs, requirements, and business processes conducted to determine whether a system satisfies the acceptance criteria[2] and to enable the user, customers or other authorized entity to determine whether to accept the system.

Standard Glossary of Terms used in Software Testing[3]:2

Acceptance testing is also known as user acceptance testing (UAT), end-user testing, operational acceptance testing (OAT), acceptance test-driven development (ATDD) or field (acceptance) testing. Acceptance criteria are the criteria that a system or component must satisfy in order to be accepted by a user, customer, or other authorized entity.[4]