The Relationship between and  

A user scenario is the fictitious story of a user’s accomplishing an action or goal via a product. It focuses on a user’s motivations, and documents the process by which the user might use a design. User scenarios help designers understand what motivates users when they interact with a design — a useful consideration for ideation and usability testing.

When people talk about user scenario or test cases, usually means that they are talking about product or data that need to be tested. Yes absolutely, if you have a product you need to make sure that your product is ready before you make it public with many conditions.

Tester or we usually known as Quality Assurance (QA) will become your first costumer who will use your product with many out of the box conditions before it lunch to public. Tester should know well about the product and collect as much as possible scenarios before start testing.

The Importance of a Complete User Scenario

Why this step is really important? Because many people will use your product. Means the users have many ways to use your product and we as the owner should prepare many possible scenarios to cover all case possibilities. Not only QA, every person who involved in the product should aware that user scenario is really important. Of course, you want to deliver good and useful product to help each other.

Scenarios help us imagine the ideal solution for a user’s problem.

How to Define User Scenario

Two things you need to understand before you start to define user scenario. No matter who you are, not only QA, you need to set your mindset as a user. Not just one user but a lot of users. If yes, you can go to next steps. This is the steps:

  1. Learn your users. Learning your users may helps you in scenario and cases. You can learn their habbit and what their needs in your product. If you do Persona research, this step may helps you when you define the scenario
  2. Learn by using your own product. Start using your own product, play it in every possibilities you can. Imagine you are a real user who want to do something in your own product.
  3. Breakdown all your modules become some parts. For example you need to separate user scenario for login cases and payment or add to cart cases.
  4. Breakdown for each parts with positive and negative scenario. For expample let’s focus with login module. You should identify all positive case like user input username and password and they success login. Negative test case like user let username field empty and user failed to login. And any other negative cases.
  5. Try many negative cases. We sometimes found new gap that not covered yet if we try negative cases as much as we can.
  6. Sit together with your team. We never realize that we can ask our team to sit together, lists scenario, ask them to play with your product and complete the scenario. Many perspectives will help the product.
  7. Create a Scenario Mapping. Create a document contains all possible scenarios to avoid repetition. You also can review all listed scenario and make sure all scenario already covered.

How to Make Designer More in Determining Cases

Designer should listed basic scenario before creating flow. After that, invite QA to complete the lists of scenario together with you. Repeat this flow till all scenarios covered. And you can start implement it to next phase of development.

Make sure every steps above you do and make a note case by case. Be more aware and detail to all negative cases.


We as a Product Designer should be more active. We should more active to everyone in a team and have a convertation with them. Get every possible angle from everyone in your team. Always breakdown again and create a note when you want to define the user scenario or cases.

Build a better communication to each member on your team, and you will get a lot insights from every different perspective. And it’s really helpful for you when designing a product.

“Scenarios are the engine we use to drive our designs.” influencer,Kim Goodwin

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