Geert Bellekens has proposed five rules and best practices to draw better Unified Modeling Language (UML) diagrams. The UML diagramming best practices discussed in his blog post are:
- Avoid large diagrams with too many items, as UML diagrams containing heaps of elements actually convey less information than smaller and focussed diagrams.
- Avoid any two lines in your diagram crossing each other. This will make your diagram more readable and understandable.
- Lines in a diagram should go only horizontal or vertical, with only right angles.
- Parent elements should be higher than the child elements in generalization or realization hierarchies of UML Class diagrams.
- Diagrams should be nice and clean to make a positive impression.
His conclusion is that “[…] following these diagramming rules will not make you a better analyst, nor will it result in better UML models. But it will allow you to make a better impression when trying to explain the fruits of your hard labor to your stakeholders.”
You can read the full blog post on https://bellekens.com/2012/02/21/uml-best-practice-5-rules-for-better-uml-diagrams/