Which of these forms is better: list of tasks or tasks' list? Another question is whether I should use an apostrophe or not (tasks's list vs tasks list).

Other phrases which are similar to this, but aren't quite what I'm looking for, are list of projects and task's action (one task this time).

Maybe the answer is obvious, but English is not my native language so I need to understand it.

  • This is also commonly called a 'to-do list'.
    – user13141
    Sep 23, 2011 at 11:11
  • Not exactly. These "tasks" are some kind of items in my application. If I mention task list in documentation, I mean a list of these items.
    – alekwisnia
    Sep 23, 2011 at 11:18
  • Oops! Got it now.
    – user13141
    Sep 23, 2011 at 11:25

2 Answers 2


The usual phrase is "task list" (without plural or apostrophe).

"List of tasks" is perfectly acceptable, and perhaps preferable in general writing; but in referring to a list (almost like a name for it) "task list" is overwhelmingly the common expression.

"Tasks' list" would be very unusual: the possessive 's and its variants are usually used only for real possession, not for more general relationships; and tend not to be used for abstract nouns, though this is not a firm prohibition.

  • 2
    Ok, so generally I use possesive 's in phrases like "person's belongings" or "Joe's umbrella" and ommit this in phrases like "project launch date" or "task duration".
    – alekwisnia
    Sep 23, 2011 at 12:14
  • Absolutely. All four of those examples work.
    – Colin Fine
    Sep 23, 2011 at 12:53

I'd like to add one suggestion to Colin's answer: preferably you'd use "task list" instead of "tasks list" form.

See the following thread for reference: should a list of tokens be called a "token list" or a "tokens list"

  • Your post doesn answer the question and reads more like a comment than an answer.
    – user140086
    Jun 21, 2016 at 12:23

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