Writing Effective Java Tests with Assertion Libraries

Writing Effective Java Tests with Assertion Libraries | ninjasquad

Java has several assertion libraries that can help you with testing and debugging your code. In this article, we’ll look at various assertions libraries and compare them.


There are multiple libraries available in the Java ecosystem, some of the popular ones are: JUnit, Hamcrest, AssertJ, TestNG, and Truth. Let’s look at each one of them:-


  • Junit is the most widely used testing framework in Java.
  • Junit comes bundled with many popular IDEs such as IntelliJ IDEA, Eclipse, NetBeans, and Visual Studio Code and build tools such as Maven, Gradle, and Ant
  • Junit is the default testing module in Spring Boot Framework
  • Junit serves as a foundation for developing and launching testing framework on the JVM
  • Junit provides basic assertion methods.

As a developer, you should be using Junit to write and run test cases in Java most of the time. Junit has limited assertion methods which are enough for writing basic test cases. You should consider using AssertJ or Hamcrest assertion methods along with Junit framework for writing complex test case conditions.

Also Read Write Efficient Test Cases with JUnit in Java

import org.junit.jupiter.api.Test;
import static org.junit.jupiter.api.Assertions.*;

public class MyClassTest {
    public void testAddition() {
        int result = MyClass.add(2, 3);
        assertEquals(5, result);     // pass
        assertNotEquals(0, result);  // pass
        assertNotNull(result);       // pass
        assertTrue(result > 0);      // pass


  • TestNG is a testing framework inspired from JUnit and NUnit but introducing some new functionalities that make it more powerful and easier to use
  • TestNG provides more advanced features than JUnit, such as data-driven testing and parallel test execution
  • TestNG is designed to cover all categories of tests: unit, functional, end-to-end, integration, etc…
import org.testng.Assert;

public class MyClassTest {
    public void testAddition() {
        int result = MyClass.add(2, 3);
        Assert.assertEquals(result, 5);


  • Hamcrest is widely used library that provides a set of matchers for testing conditions. It allows you to write more complex assertions by combining matchers using logical operators.
  • Hamcrest matchers are available in a number of languages – Java, Python, Ruby, Obj-C, PHP, Erlang, Swift, Rust, JavaScript (JsHamcrest), JavaScript (Hamjest), GO (Gocrest), and C# (NHamcrest)
  • Hamcrest can be used with JUnit (all versions) and TestNG
  • Hamcrest provides the ability to write custom matchers for testing custom classes

Also Read Write Efficient Test Cases with Hamcrest in Java

import static org.hamcrest.MatcherAssert.assertThat;
import static org.hamcrest.Matchers.equalTo;

public class MyClassTest {
    public void testAddition() {
        int result = MyClass.add(2, 3);
        assertThat(result, equalTo(5));


  • AssertJ is a fluent assertion Java library that provides a rich set of assertions and truly helpful error messages.
  • AssertJ is composed of several modules:-
    1. Core module to provide assertions for JDK types (String, Iterable, Stream, Path, File, Map…​)
    2. Guava module to provide assertions for Guava types (Multimap, Optional…​)
    3. Joda Time module to provide assertions for Joda Time types (DateTime, LocalDateTime)
    4. Neo4J module to provide assertions for Neo4J types (Path, Node, Relationship…​)
    5. DB module to provide assertions for relational database types (Table, Row, Column…​)
    6. Swing module provides a simple and intuitive API for functional testing of Swing user interfaces
  • AssertJ has a very good starter guide and documentation to follow:- https://assertj.github.io/doc/
  • AssertJ assertions can be used with Junit framework to test complex conditions.
  • AssertJ is designed to be super easy within your favourite IDE. Type assertThat followed by the object under test and a dot …​ and any Java IDE code completion will show you all available assertions like this:-
    AssertJ assertThat Content Assist
  • AssertJ assertThat can be used like this:-
    import org.junit.jupiter.api.Test;
    import static org.assertj.core.api.Assertions.assertThat;
    public class MyClassTest {
        public void testAddition() {
            int result = MyClass.add(2, 3);
            assertThat(result).isEqualTo(5);     // pass
            assertThat(result).isNotZero();      // pass
            assertThat(result).isPositive();     // pass
            assertThat(result).isOdd();          // pass
            assertThat(result).isLessThan(6);    // pass
            assertThat(result).isGreaterThan(0); // pass
  • The Assertions class is the only class you need to start using AssertJ, it provides all the methods you need.
    One Assertions static import to rule them all …​

    import static org.assertj.core.api.Assertions.*;

    … or many if you prefer:

    import static org.assertj.core.api.Assertions.assertThat;  // main one
    import static org.assertj.core.api.Assertions.atIndex; // for List assertions
    import static org.assertj.core.api.Assertions.entry;  // for Map assertions
    import static org.assertj.core.api.Assertions.tuple; // when extracting several properties at once
    import static org.assertj.core.api.Assertions.fail; // use when writing exception tests
    import static org.assertj.core.api.Assertions.failBecauseExceptionWasNotThrown; // idem
    import static org.assertj.core.api.Assertions.filter; // for Iterable/Array assertions
    import static org.assertj.core.api.Assertions.offset; // for floating number assertions
    import static org.assertj.core.api.Assertions.anyOf; // use with Condition
    import static org.assertj.core.api.Assertions.contentOf; // use with File assertions

Also Read Write Efficient Test Cases with AssertJ in Java


  • Truth is an assertion library developed by Google’s Guava team. It provides fluent assertions for Java and Android.
  • Truth is used in the majority of the tests in Google’s own codebase.
  • Truth is inspired from AssertJ and you will find many similarities between Truth and AsserJ
  • Truth provides fewer assertions as compared to AssertJ
  • Similar to AsserJ, If you’re using an IDE with autocompletion, it will suggest a list of assertions you can make about the given type.
import static com.google.common.truth.Truth.assertThat;

public class MyClassTest {
    public void testAddition() {
        int result = MyClass.add(2, 3);


Each assertion library has its own strengths and weaknesses, and the best one for your project may depend on your specific needs. JUnit is a good choice if you’re using the JUnit testing framework, while AssertJ and Truth are good choices if you’re looking for a more expressive API. Hamcrest is a good choice if you need a wide range of matchers, and TestNG is a good choice if you need more advanced testing features. Ultimately, the choice of assertion library will depend on your personal preference and the needs of your project.

Source: Internet

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