User Experience Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for user experience researchers and experts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I caught this term at a UX workshop recently, and jotted it down. A couple of weeks later, I can't find a reference for it - and I'm wondering if I misheard (miswrote?).

"Phased obligation", as I understood it, was the process of "not asking too much at any one time".

e.g: On a donation form, this might take the process of letting the user pick their donation amount on the first screen, then their personal details on the second, and their CC data on the third.

Donate workflow from

Is this "phased obligation"? If not, what's the correct term?

share|improve this question

Maybe you are looking for staged disclosure, a variant of progressive disclosure.

share|improve this answer
I think Sebastian got it right. Never encountered "Phased obligation" in the UX literature. Progressive disclosure is the closest term I know of. – Yosef Waysman May 21 '13 at 13:05

Though I am not sure about 'Phased Obligation'..;'Deferred Create' is also one of the interaction patterns which behaves like the shown example. It lets user shows required information at first, then after user selection rest of the information is shown. It is mostly used in transactional processing. Example, After selecting one of the payment modes (netbanking, Credit Card & Other); it shows available banks' options which user can select and go further.

share|improve this answer
up vote 0 down vote accepted

I believe the term I heard was in fact Staged Obligation.

Referred to in this 2009 Ask Tog:

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.