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A traceability matrix is primarily used in software development projects to trace, identify and verify that a specific functionality or component is being developed. Typically, a traceability matrix is a worksheet type document consisting of a table(s). Two different sets of values are compared against each other by placing an identifier for one set in the top row, and the other set on the left column. If there is commonality or a relationship, a mark is placed where the column and row intersect.
For example, if software being developed is to be evaluated for completion using a traceability matrix, project requirements can be placed within the left column and their pertaining test cases on the top row. If the project requirement and its test case are completed, a mark can be placed where they intersect on the chart, and all of these requirements can be added to calculate software completion status.