What is Agile and What are User Stories?

by alexandrialecs100w

The Brief Goodies:

  • What:  Agile is a type of method created to make the software development process easier and more effective.
  • Who and When: In 2001, some software developers wanted to create a new and easier development method process.
  • How: Agile consists of having a team, a several steps process, and a product.

What is Agile?

Before Agile existed, there were previous methods introduced such as the original Code-and-Fix development and the Waterfall model. However, although these methods were helpful at the time, it still was an ineffective way for software development. Code-and-Fix involved fixing the code as you go, and unfortunately caused the software to be delivered all at once. Waterfall involved a sequential process which has scheduling risks, little flexibility, and little to none customer involvement.  (Layton, 2012)

Eventually, developers realized the issues with those previous models and soon enough, Agile was born.

The creators of Agile wanted a model (product) that consistently improved itself from its previous model. As a result, Agile was the most effect, flexible, and team-oriented than any of the previous software development methodology. (Layton, 2012)

How does the Agile development methodology differ from other development methodologies?

  • The Agile methodology involves Scrum, which places the importance of feedbackteam self-management, and striving to build a fully tested product. (Silva da Silva, 2012) It also breaks down the big project into several little parts, in which when each part is completed, it is possible to release a usable product to customers


(Photo from Neos,2012)

  • Compared to the Waterfall Method, Agile is more flexible, requires much more collaboration between team members(Stakeholder, Product Owner, Team Leader, & Team Member), involves more customer participation, and it is a process that involves releasing several improving different versions of the same product.(Silva da Silva, 2011)

What are User Stories?


  • Every software development team that uses the Agile methodology, uses User Stories.
  • User Stories come from the product owner and they describe what the software aims to do and how it will benefit the user.
  • It is “a simple description of a product requirement in terms of what is required for the customer/user” (Layton, 2012).
  • It’s a simple way to convey what you want your product to include.

Can Agile methodology be applied to other software testing and development projects? What projects would you suggest Agile for and why?

  • Of course it can! With businesses growing at a faster and more consistent rate, they are always looking for faster and more efficient ways to improve. Agile not only helps business have a competitive advantage, but it creates a better collaborative work environment for developers. (Silva da Silva, 2011)
  • Smartphones are the new craze and do not forget the apps that come with it. Projects that I would personally suggest Agile for include anything that involves apps for smartphones. I would also recommend it to any business that involves a product to customer based product such as healthcare offices, retail stores, and the government.


Reference List:

Neos. (2012, December 12). Agile Methodology. Retrieved September 15, 2014.

Layton, M. (2012). Agile project management for dummies. Hoboken, N.J.: Wiley ;.

Silva da Silva, T., Martin, A., Maurer, F., & Silveira, M. (2011). User-Centered Design and Agile Methods: A Systematic Review.

Williams, L. (n.d.). What agile teams think of agile principles. Communications of the ACM,71-71. Retrieved September 15, 2014.