We have a systems that pulls large sums of data from an external system then we transform the data and afterwards we need to verify this transformed data is correct.

How do we call this type of verification?

Is this a typical form of testing and does it have a clear definition?

  • It can be a unit test, a system test, an acceptance test or another type of test, depending on when and why you test it
    – Serpiton
    Commented Apr 6, 2016 at 15:35
  • 2
    Are you describing an ETL system?
    – user246
    Commented Apr 6, 2016 at 15:48
  • @Serpiton that is the type of test used to validate the data. I am looking in the line of Data Validation Test or Data Integrity Test to name the type of testing you do in those tests.. Commented Apr 6, 2016 at 17:11
  • @user246 I think I am, will look into ETL examples, thanks. Commented Apr 6, 2016 at 17:11
  • As a developer, we usually got things like "well it has to come out the same as that report" RIP correctness...
    – corsiKa
    Commented Apr 7, 2016 at 3:47

4 Answers 4


This type of testing is known an:

  • Extract
  • Transform
  • Load

.. or ETL testing for short.

ref: ETL testing- checklist for testing


I would consider this to be a set of unit tests.

For a given piece of data you want to apply the transformation and then validate that the results are as expected. I would expect there to a number of these tests handling the various different cases.


Going by "Integrity = Validity + Completeness", I use the following terminology:

  • Data validity testing - checking that all of the data you have is correct
  • Data integrity testing - checking that all of the data you have is correct and all of the data is there

Although the previous citation uses validity and completeness in the context of relational databases, I use those terms for any sets of data, whether they're extracted/transformed/loaded from a database, or simply in regular files. Furthermore, I refer to a particular rule that holds true for a particular set of data as a "data invariant."


I would term it:

Data Validation


Data Transformation Validation

You are validating that the data has been transformed correctly.

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