Effective Use Case Analysis in Enterprise Architect

Webinar April 2016
In this webinar you will learn how to:
  • Create a simple Use Case model in Enterprise Architect.
  • Add Structured Scenarios to your Use Case models.
  • Automatically generate downstream artifacts and undertake Use Case analysis.

How do you take advantage of Use Cases in Enterprise Architect?

How can you link Use Cases and scenarios to formal requirements for improved traceability?

How to leverage your Use Cases to drive other downstream activities like testing and modeling?

Use Case Analysis is a well established technique to identify and improve system requirements. This webinar will examine how Enterprise Architect can model the proposed functionality of a new system using Use Cases and Requirements.

Scott Hebbard
Scott Hebbard

Explore the Example Use Case Model

We have provided the example Enterprise Architect use case model used in the webinar.
Example Model: Shuttle-Launch-Use-Case.eap Download the Enterprise Architect Example Model

Questions from the Audience

Click on a question to see the answer.


 What version of Enterprise Architect was used throughout the webinar?

Enterprise Architect 12.1, Build 1229.

 For someone new to Enterprise Architect, is there a step-by-step, how-to tutorial on Use Cases and other UML features?

Enterprise Architect provides an in-built Learning Center with a step-by-step guide to help you get started.

The UML Tutorial on the Sparx Systems website can help provide a technical overview of the 13 UML diagrams supported by Enterprise Architect.

You may care to examine the following Community Site video that introduces diagram creation and building a Use Case.

 How do we adapt Enterprise Architect to cater for an Agile methodology?

Please refer to the Help topic Agile Requirement Processes. The Community Site also refers to the Agile Business Analyst.


 Is highlighting of glossary terms in the scenario text automatic or manual?

Automatic. Items that appear in the Glossary are automatically highlighted when they are used in text fields in Enterprise Architect.

 Is it possible to create a glossary of definitions that can be exported to Word document?

Yes, you can easily export Enterprise Architect's glossary to a Word, RTF or PDF document. You can learn how to do this from the Help topic System Document Templates. See the Glossary section.

 Where is the Glossary content stored?

The Glossary is stored in Enterprise Architect's model repository, within the table: t_glossary.

 Where in the Project Browser are the saved/highlighted definitions?

Glossary definitions are not stored or displayed in the Project Browser. To access the Glossary, use the Project menu, or the keyboard shortcut, Alt+2.

 Is there any way to access the Glossary from outside of Enterprise Architect?

Yes, through the Automation Interface or via the table in the model repository, t_glossary. For more information on using the Automation Information to access the Glossary, see the Help topic Term Class.

 Can Glossary Terms in Enterprise Architect be loaded and/or synchronized with an external glossary?

Yes. It is possible to undertake an XML import of Glossary terms.

The related Import process covers Glossary terms in the exported XML format. For an alternative using an Excel import see: Community Site article Simple VBA Excel to EA importer.

Use Case

 Can the stick figure representing the Actors be replaced by a custom image?


  1. Select the Actor you would like to change.
  2. Right-click to invoke the context menu.
  3. Choose Appearance | Select Alternate Image. This will open the Image Manager, which will display a list of loaded images. You can use a button on the right of screen to Add New images.
  4. Choose a suitable image.
  5. Click OK to replace the stick figure.

For more information, see the Help topic Using the Image Manager.

It is also possible to download an image library from the Sparx Systems website.

 Could you please elaborate on the "include" and "extends" options found in Use Cases?

Include and Extend are UML connector types. For details, see the Help topics Include and Extend.

 Can you add an exception path to an alternate path?

No. This is not supported.

A Use Case scenario is intended to be a simple scenario conveying a single alternate flow. Where there is more complex detail involving multiple alternate flows, then it is best depicted using an Extend connection to the alternate Use Case and placing the nested Alternate scenario in this extended Use Case.

 You showed alternate flows within the use case - is it possible to do an alternate flow on an alternate flow?


 Is there a way to get an overview of all alternative paths out of the normal path?

Use the in-built diagram generation to create an Activity diagram.

 Can I automatically generate a Dependency diagram between Use Cases and Requirements?

Yes. You can automatically create a Realization relationship between a Use Case and a Requirement. Simply drag the Requirement from the Project Browser onto a Use Case diagram. If the relationship already exits, Enterprise Architect will automatically add the dependency relationship where it already exists.

You also have the option of placing a Requirement or a Use Case onto a blank diagram and using Insert All Related Elements command to build an appropriate Dependency diagram.

 What is the difference between a dependency and realization link to an existing Element?

A realization connector shows that the source element implements, or realizes, the destination element. Dependency connectors model a much broader range of relationships between elements. Once you create a Dependency you can further refine its meaning by applying a specialized stereotype.

For more detailed explanations, please refer to the Help topics Dependency and Realization.

Scenario Editing Structured

 Can the Structured Specification (steps) of a scenario be converted into an Activity or Sequence diagram?


When you have created a structured scenario, you can generate any of these diagrams from it:

  • Activity
  • With ActivityParameter
  • With Action
  • With Action Pin
  • Rule Flow
  • State
  • Sequence
  • Robustness

For more information, please refer to the Help topic Generate Diagrams.

 What is the difference between the State and the Result Columns in the Structured Specification Editor?

The values in the 'Uses', 'Results' and 'State' columns, whilst optional, are significant if you want to generate a diagram from the specification.

Result: Indicates the result or outcome of completing this step. This information is often quite valuable for testing purposes to ensure accurate and timely results are being produced.

State: The name of the State that the system enters, as a result of completing a particular step in the scenario. This information is typically used to create a State machine so Business Analysts can identify the contributing factors that cause State Change within a system.

 Can you convert text to a structured scenario in Enterprise Architect 11?

Yes, the Structured Scenario Editor was available in Enterprise Architect 11.

It was first introduced in Enterprise Architect 8, however the Structured Scenario Editor has undergone many enhancements since its inception.

 Is the information in the 'Uses' column used for anything other than business requirements?

Yes. The scope of this is very open. It is commonly a Realization or Dependency relationship to a Requirement, Feature or another element elsewhere in the model.

 Is there any way to export the Use Case Scenarios to a Word or PDF document?

Yes. For more information, please refer to the previous webinar on Model-Driven Use Case Analysis with Structured Scenarios.

Requirements Management

 Can you link more than one requirement to a use case step (e.g. one functional and several non-functional)?

Yes. You can link to functional and non-functional requirements on a single line.