Should testers know how to code?

Following the example of Are developers good testers, it seems like the opposite version of it, is quite the debate as well. Being a QA tester is totally different from being a developer, but should these two coexist?

To code

A QA tester knowing how to code:

  • Has better understanding of under-the-hood complexities and risks
  • Knows what and where changed, resulting in specific targeted areas to test (time-saving)
  • Understands what his/her developers/coworkers are actually talking about
  • Can, easier and better, write automated tests

Or not to code

On the other hand, not coding can result to:

  • Actually do more testing than coding (eg automation)
  • Not losing the importance of being closer to the casual user testing process and not code-driven testing
  • Leave everyone at what they do best. Developers code while testers test.

“What” is the question

I think here, there is no definite path to take.
What are the project’s needs?
What is the available workforce?
What are the available resources?
What are the most critical priorities?
What are the tester’s priorities and needs?

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