A scenario is a real-world sequence of operations that you create to describe how an element works in real-time; for example, its functional behavior, business work flows and end-to-end business processes.

You can create scenarios in most types of element, but they are generally most applicable to Use Cases.

The Scenario tab of the element Properties dialog has two internal tabs:

  • The Description tab, which enables you to create scenarios and provide a simple text description either of each scenario, or of the structure of each scenario.
  • The Structured Specification tab, which enables you to create scenarios or select those you have created elsewhere and, for each scenario:
  • Create a series of steps for each part of the scenario
  • Structure the scenario to show how the basic path diverges into the alternate paths and exception paths
  • Generate a number of types of diagram from the structure
  • Generate a structured scenario from an Activity diagram
  • Generate a structured scenario from text on the clipboard; this option has a variation in the Description tab that enables you to translate scenario descriptions created prior to release 8.0 of Enterprise Architect, into structured scenarios in the latest release.


  • The Scenarios tab does not prevent you from creating more than one basic path, but it would be unusual to define more than one.
  • All the functions available on the Scenarios tabs are also available through the Scenarios & Requirements window/view. Use the Browse Element icon in the window toolbar to list and select the scenarios for the element.

Description Tab

When you first select the Scenarios tab, it defaults to the Description tab and sets both the Scenario (name) field and the Type field to Basic Path, to enable you to define the basic path first. You can overtype the scenario name with more appropriate text if required. As you go on to create other scenarios, you set the type to Alternate or Exception as appropriate.


Complete the fields as described below.


Use to


Type in the name of the scenario (or, for existing scenarios, click on the drop-down arrow and select one from the list).


Specify the type of scenario; the options are:

  • Basic Path - the direct set of steps for the scenario
  • Alternate - an alternative set of steps, in parallel with part of the basic path
  • Exception - the path the scenario follows if a step of the basic path does not produce an appropriate result.


Record a textual description of how the user uses the current element.

As for the Notes window, you can format the notes text using the Notes toolbar at the top of the field.

As well as  the Notes window facilities, you can also generate a structured specification from the text in this field. Highlight the text, right-click on it and select the Create Structure from Notes context menu option.

The text is copied to the Structured Specification tab for the current scenario, either as a new specification or as the continuation of an existing specification, with a new step created at each carriage return. Subsequent changes to the text on the Structured Specification tab are not reflected on the Description tab.


Clear the data fields so that you can enter data in them to create a new scenario.


Save a new scenario, or changes to an existing scenario.


Delete a scenario selected from the Scenarios panel, below.


Display a list of defined scenarios for this element.

You can change the order in which the scenarios are listed, using the uphand and downhand buttons.