Writing tests for Django Admin Custom Functionality

I’ve been working on a Django app side project for a while and came across the need to write a custom filter for the Django Admin section.

This was a first for me, and it was pretty straight forward to accomplish the task. I wanted to add a filter on the drop down list so that only certain records would appear.

To do this, I sub-classed the Django Admin SimpleListFilter with the following code:

class EmployeeListFilter(admin.SimpleListFilter):
    title = "Employee"
    parameter_name = "employee"

    def lookups(self, request, model_admin):
        employees = []
        qs = Employee.objects.filter(status__status="Active").order_by("first_name", "last_name")
        for employee in qs:
            employees.append((, f"{employee.first_name} {employee.last_name}"))
        return employees

    def queryset(self, request, queryset):
        if self.value():
            qs = queryset.filter(employee__id=self.value())
            qs = queryset
        return qs

And implemented it like this:

class EmployeeO3NoteAdmin(admin.ModelAdmin):
    list_filter = (EmployeeListFilter, "o3_date")

This was, as I said, relatively straight forward to do, but what was less clear to me was how to write tests for this functionality. My project has 100% test coverage, and therefore testing isn’t something I’m unfamiliar with, but in this context, I wasn’t sure where to start.

There are two parts that need to be tested:

  1. lookups
  2. queryset

Additionally, the queryset has two states that need to be tested

  1. With self.value()
  2. Without self.value()

This gives a total of 3 tests to write

The thing that helps me out the most when trying to determine how to write tests is to use the Django Shell in PyCharm. To do this I:

  1. Import necessary parts of Django App
  2. Instantiate the EmployeeListFilter
  3. See what errors I get
  4. Google how to fix the errors
  5. Repeat

This is what the test ended up looking like:

import pytest

from employees.models import EmployeeO3Note
from employees.tests.factories import EmployeeFactory, EmployeeO3NoteFactory, EmployeeStatusFactory
from employees.admin import EmployeeListFilter


def active_employees():
    return EmployeeFactory.create_batch(ACTIVE_EMPLOYEES)

def termed_employees():
    termed_employees = TERMED_EMPLOYEES
    termed = EmployeeStatusFactory(status="Termed")
    return EmployeeFactory.create_batch(termed_employees, status=termed)

def o3_notes_for_all_employees(active_employees, termed_employees):
    all_employees = active_employees + termed_employees
    o3_notes = []
    for i in range(len(all_employees)):
        o3_notes.append(EmployeeO3NoteFactory.create_batch(1, employee=all_employees[i]))
    return o3_notes

def test_admin_filter_active_employee_o3_notes(active_employees):
    employee_list_filter = EmployeeListFilter(request=None, params={}, model=None, model_admin=None)
    assert len(employee_list_filter.lookup_choices) == ACTIVE_EMPLOYEES

def test_admin_query_set_unfiltered_results_o3_notes(o3_notes_for_all_employees):
    employee_list_filter = EmployeeListFilter(request=None, params={}, model=None, model_admin=None)
    assert len(employee_list_filter.queryset(request=None, queryset=EmployeeO3Note.objects.all())) == total_employees

def test_admin_query_set_filtered_results_o3_notes(active_employees, o3_notes_for_all_employees):
    employee_to_test = active_employees[0]
    employee_list_filter = EmployeeListFilter(
        request=None, params={"employee":}, model=None, model_admin=None
    queryset_to_test = employee_list_filter.queryset(request=None, queryset=EmployeeO3Note.objects.all())
	assert len(queryset_to_test.filter( == 1