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Information about finding ASTM and IEEE standards at Morris Library and other standards not at Morris Library
Last Updated: Jan 31, 2017 URL: Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts
About Standards Print Page


What is a standard?

According to IEEE, "Standards are published documents that establish specifications and procedures designed to maximize the reliability of the materials, products, methods, and/or services people use every day.  Standards address a range of issues, including but not limited to various protocols to help maximize product functionality and compatibility, facilitate interoperability and support consumer safety and public health."

Standards can help simplify product development, allow for the comparison of products, ensure consistency, and improve safety.

Who creates standards?

Standards are produced by a variety of organizations, including scientific and professional associations, industry and trade organizations and governments. National bodies, such as the American National Standards Institute (ANSI), coordinate standards within a country, and international organizations, especially the International Organization for Standardization (ISO), coordinate standards across different countries. These national and international coordinating organizations typically do not make standards but often add legitimacy to a standard that makes it more likely that the standard is accepted and adopted. Not all standards go through the formal processes that ANSI and the ISO require, though.

How do I get the full-text of a standard?

Because standards are produced by so many different organizations, finding standards often involves first determining if a standard (or more than one standard) exists that applies in a particular situation, what organization produces the standard, and (often) what the standard number is.

The work involved in producing standards can be expensive. Although some standards are available for free, often standards can be expensive (e.g. hundreds of dollars for a thirty page document). Morris Library carries ASTM and IEEE standards as well as some others. The library can supply some standards by interlibrary loan, depending on availability and price.

Learn about Standards

    ANSI (American National Standards Institute) Web tutorial about standards.
    * Find out how U.S. rail system gauge of 4 feet 8.5 inches is related to ancient Rome.
    * Learn about different standards-setting organizations and how they relate to each other.
    * Get an overview of the legal issues related to standards.
  • Engineering Standards & the Design Process
    Slides from Frederick Elder at the University of Wisconsin that give an overview of standard setting and locating standards.

IEEE Standards (online)

Full Text IEEE standards may be found in IEEE Xplore Digital Library.  The database allows users to search IEEE standards or browse the standards by collection, number, topic, or ICS Code.

ASTM Standards (print)

Print ASTM Standards: Call # TA 401 .A653

Morris Library's most recent copies ASTM standards are kept in the reference section on the first floor of the library.  Older copies of the Annual Book of ASTM Standards can be found elsewhere in the library.

ASTM prints a complete set of the standards each year, but only a fraction of the standards are new.

Interlibrary Loan

Morris Library may be able to order a standard that the library doesn't own for you through Interlibrary Loan. Interlibrary loan works best for standards that can readily be borrowed from another library or that can be purchased inexpensively, and it may not be able to fulfill a request if the standard is too expensive or difficult to obtain.

U.S. Government Standards

  • provides information about the use of standards in the government, particularly use by federal agencies. It also includes links to information about locating standards.
  • OSHA Standards
    Contains links to all current Occupational Safety & Health Administration (OSHA) standards. Also includes Federal Register notices that are open for comment.
  • NASA Technical Standards Program
    The NASA Technical Standards Program (NTSP) is intended to promote technical assistance and further mission success by providing access to standards, specifications, application notes, lessons learned, and other documents.
  • National Institute of Standards and Technology
    The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), is a non-regulatory federal agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce. The mission of NIST is to advance measurement science, standards, and technology.
  • ASSIST - Quick Search
    The ASSIST Quick Search provides access to specifications and standards approved for public release in the official Department of Defense's ASSIST repository.

Standards Databases

  • ANSI Search
    The American National Standards Institute’s (ANSI) comprehensive standards search engine. Allows users to search standards from several different organizations. An alert can also be set up to notify users when revisions or amendments to standards they specify occur.

Contact Morris

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Information Desk: (618) 453-2818
Administrative Office: (618) 453-2522
Circulation Desk: (618) 453-1455

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