Articulate concrete descriptions of real-world people doing their real-world tasks and use these description to determine which users and what tasks the system should support

Prototypean interface that satisfies these requirements and then evaluate the interface by performing a task-centred walkthrough (see: interviews and data recording)


  • practical way to ground designs to real user tasks
  • finding requirements at pre and early design stages


  • tasks almost always embody a process even if they are not specific to a specific technological implementation
  • may not encourage consideration of alternate ways to do tasks
  • may be hard to produce pure system- or process- independent tasks

Understanding Tasks

Establishing requirements starts with identifying and understanding task examples (users and their tasks).


Personas are rich descriptions of typical users of the product under development on which the designers can focus on in designing products.

Based off of user profiles, they include description of user’s behaviour, attitudes, activities, environment

A persona has 2 goals:

  • to help the designer make design decisions
  • reminds the team that real people will be using the product


Scenarios show how tasks are handled by design:

  • what the user would see / do step-by-step when performing the task
  • task + design = scenario

Scenario is design-specific; task is design-independent

Natural way to explain what people are doing and stakeholders relate easily