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Find Standards

What are standards?

  • Standards are published documents that establish provisions, procedures and protocols to ensure reliability of a product, method or service.
  • Standards are published by standards bodies. Examples of standards bodies include the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), CSA Group, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), and ASTM International.
  • By establishing consistent universally accepted protocols, standards ensure:
    • Product/service development, compatibility, interoperability and credibility.
    • User safety and public health.
  • Standards are useful for comparing competing products and services.

How do I find standards?

  • Standards have unique associated codes, which can be used as access points.
  • The format of the code varies somewhat from one publisher to another, but the first letters generally identify the body that created the standard. 
  • Sometimes standards are jointly issued by two standards bodies.
    • Example: CSA B651-04, IEEE Std 610.13-1993, ANSI/ASME N509-2002.
  • Standards can also be searched for by subject, category, or committee. 
  • Standards go through a development cycle. Some databases and websites provide access to standards at different stages (i.e. active; draft; redline; withdrawn; etc.).
  • The word ‘standards’ has been used interchangeably with ‘specifications’, ‘regulations’, and ‘codes.’
  • Note: Standards are usually not available free of charge. The Library subscribes to some standards databases. Inter-library loan is not available for standards. We suggest that users purchase their own copy from the appropriate standards body if it is not available through the Library.

Find Standards

Resources to Help Find Business Information

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