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PMP Q#9 – What is an Epic?

Q9. Which of the following statement is NOT true about epics?

A. Epics represent a bigger requirement as compared to user stories
B. Epics get split into small user stories before we develop them
C. Epics are recorded in Product Backlog
D. Epic must get completed in one iteration

The correct answer is D; the other 3 are epic characteristics. 

Option A – “Epic describes a big requirement”. It is the definition of an epic. Epic is a large requirement you cannot develop in a single iteration.

Option B – “Epics get split into small user stories before we develop them” – It is true. You never work directly on epic – you split into smaller user stories but not necessarily in one go, for example – 

You make extract two stories from a large epic to develop them. Then, you may further extract three stories from one story in the next iteration and develop them. 

Option C – “Epic is a part of the product backlog”  Yes, it is true. Product Backlog includes both small-size (user stories) and large-size (epics) requirements. At the top of the Product Backlog, you can see small-size items, and as you go down, you start seeing the large sizes that are not yet on priority. The agile way of working with the requirement is progressive elaboration. It would be best if you did not elaborate on things in advance. You should do Just in Time because you incrementally discover and learn about the requirement. It is not a good idea to create a very refined detailed product backlog 3 or 6 months in advance. Because if you do that, whatever you have worked on this week, next week or two weeks together, and you discover some learning, you are not including those learning subsequently. So, incrementally you are expected to split these epics into small user stories and get things done.

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