Acceptance Criteria

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Acceptance criteria (AC) means a collection of predefined requirements that a software product needs to fulfill to be admitted by the end-user. They define the characteristic behavior from the end-user perspective and are different for every user story. Skillfully written acceptance criteria guarantee that all users are satisfied with what they get and avoid unexpected outcomes at the end of a developing stage. The related AC must be established before the development team starts working on a specific user story. If not, there is a fair chance the deliverables will not satisfy the customer’s expectations and requirements.

Acceptance criteria explain the foreseen outcomes of a user story in a compact way. It also provides QA and developers a precise method to discover whether a story is “made.” Product managers need to combine these requirements into their process for some reason. When a product manager specifies their required result before development starts, they assist in shared understanding and promoting alignment. That understanding helps in decreasing the possibility of shocks below the line. Further, assisting product bodies in managing and setting expectations is too essential for developers. The added context produces a prominent defense against scope creep and reduces doubtfulness.

What are the Main Objectives of Acceptance Criteria?

Following are the main objectives of the acceptance criteria.

More detailed feature scope: Acceptance Criteria describe the boundary of a user story. They give accurate specifications on functionality which assist the team members in understanding works as expected and whether the story is done.

Explaining adverse outlines:  Acceptance criteria may need to block a user from proceeding further if it identifies insecure password input. An adverse scenario will occur when a user behaves unexpectedly or does invalid inputs. Acceptance criteria explain how the system must react to the described scenarios.

Establishing communication: AC adjusts the visions of the client and development team. They assure that everybody has a basic knowledge of the demands: Developers understand precisely what action the feature needs to express. In contrast, the client and stakeholders understand what is demanded from the feature.

Directing feature evaluations: AC defines what must be generated by the team members. Team members can break user stories into tasks that can be accurately determined once they have precise requirements.

As various people can have different solution ideas regarding one problem, building a concentrated vision of implementing the functionality is necessary.

Features of a Good Acceptance Criteria

  • Each product user story or backlog item should have at minimum one acceptance criteria.
  • The Product Owner verifies acceptance criteria after the team members write them.
  • Every AC should be individually testable.
  • Acceptance criteria need to have a clear fail/pass result.
  • It concentrates on the final result.
  • Include non-functional as well as functional criteria.
  • The Product Owner verifies acceptance criteria after the team members write them.
  • Before implementation, write acceptance criteria.


AC is a vital part of each user story on which an energetic team works. It clearly defines the desired outcomes, scope, and testing standards for pieces of functionality on which the delivery team works. Designing and agreeing on AC is also a priceless communication opportunity b/w products and developers. Please do not ignore the AC, as they are approachable and straightforward and solve various obstacles simultaneously. They document customer expectations, clarify requirements, prevent ambiguity, provide an end-user perspective, and improve QA tests if the development goals are reached. It is harder to sneak it in midway through if a demand is not set and defined at the start of a sprint. Ultimately, acceptance criteria usually determine whether a user’s story is finished.

Acceptance Criteria
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