Skip to Content

Unified Modeling Language (UML)

Owen Schacherer
Apr 22, 2024

The Unified Modeling Language (UML) was originally adopted in 1997 by OMG, after its creation by Grady Booch, Jim Rumbaugh, and Ivar Jacobson. OMG first adopted version 1.1 and has now carried it to version 2.5.1. In 2005, UML was standardized by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO) and International Electrotechnical Commission under ISO/IEC 19501.

UML is a language for expressing and visualizing systems, especially their structure and behavior. These systems include business processes, software systems, and others that can be objectified. UML uses standardized symbols and terms for the creation of diagrams. These diagrams are useful for analysis, design, and implementation for architects, engineers, and developers.

What is an UML Diagram?

An UML Diagram is a visualization of the structure or behavior of a system, through the use of UML. They are used for documentation, analysis, and design. UML Diagrams can be made for many things, most of which can be summed up by architecture, components, interactions, and processes.

What are UML Behavior Diagrams?

Behavior diagrams model the dynamic, internal processes of a system, including interactions with other systems. There are many types of behavior diagrams, one of which has children. The set of behavior diagrams include Activity, State Machine, Use Case, and Interaction; Interaction having the children diagrams Communication, Interaction Overview, Sequence, and Timing. 

What are UML Structure Diagrams?

Structure diagrams model the static structure of a system, these are used in detail for documenting software architecture. The seven Structural Diagrams described in UML 2 include Class, Component, Object, Composite Structure, Deployment, Package, and Profile. 

What are UML Diagrams made of?

UML Diagrams are built of elements. These elements are documented alongside their designated notations to create a standard. Take the UML shape “Initial Node” for example, shown below.

Similar to other UML elements, this shape is used in multiple different diagrams like the Activity and State Machine Diagrams. Different diagrams require different elements. Other examples of the elements used to build UML Diagrams include Classes, Objects, Components, Interfaces, Associations, Dependencies, Messages, Activities, and States.


Using UML Diagrams to visualize systems gives a standard for the documentation of all designs, processes, and architectures. Organizations and teams have a tendency to lack transparency and accuracy in their documentation and, through UML diagramming, Whether onboarding new team members, planning service deployments, or wanting to show exact end-to-end processes to stakeholders, UML Diagrams are highly valuable.

About the author

Owen Schacherer

Software Consultant | USA
I am a Software engineering consultant within Sogeti with a passion for innovation, growth, object-oriented design, and artificial intelligence/machine learning.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Slide to submit