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					How to Find Standards
Finding Standards: Confused about ASTM, UL, IEEE, ISO, 802.11, NFPA 13?

                           Christine Drew
                                Gordon Library
                         Worcester Polytechnic Institute

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Source: ANSI & American Standards Association, "Through History with Standards" Ed. By
Rowen Glie Speaking of Standards, Cahner Books, Boston, MA, 1972
    Standards, Regulations, Codes?

A standard was defined by the National Standards Policy Advisory
Committee as:

      A prescribed set of rules, conditions, or requirements concerning
      definitions of terms; classification of components; specification of
      materials, performance, or operations; delineation of procedures; or
      measurement of quantity and quality in describing materials, products,
      systems, services, or practices 1

American Heritage® Dictionary: Definition of code
American Heritage® Dictionary: Definition of regulation

1. National Policy on Standards for the United States and a Recommended Implementation Plan,
National Standards Policy Advisory Committee, Washington, D.C.,December, 1978. p. 6.
         Who Creates Them?
• Standards developing organizations,
  government, industries, trade associations,
  consumers such as:
  – American Society for Testing and Materials (ASTM)
  – Society of Automobile Engineers (SAE)
  – Department of Defense (DOD)

• ANSI – American National Standards Institute
  – U.S. standards clearinghouse & member of ISO
    International Organization for Standardization
                  the simple crayon
For your design project, you choose to redesign
  the crayon, what standards apply to arts
  materials for children?
Determine who has a vested interest

• Consumers, parents, doctors: organizations such as
Safe Kids worldwide or American Academy of
• Toy Industry Association – trade groups represent
• Government - US Consumer Product Safety
• Look at product packaging: “Conforms to ASTM D-
  Glean Clues from Web & Database Searches

• Global Toy Safety Standard (ISO 8124-1)
• ASTM F963, “Standard Consumer Safety
  Specification on Toy Safety”
• Federal Hazardous Substances Act (FHSA). 15
  U.S.C. §§ 1261 et seq.
• Conforms to ASTM D-4236

                      Find leads & follow up…
                How About Fido?
Are there pet food standards or
regulations? How about other pet products?

Take two minutes on your own to find a
few leads and share what you find.

• Web search to find a few leads

• Hint
   – Scan for organizations, government
     agencies, trade associations
        search & obtain them
Have a specific number? Title of a specific
Search NSSN or Global Engineering
 Documents to find the number, title &

     1. Web search the title for more information, you
        may even find the text online
     2. in the library, search Library Catalog,
     3. request via Interlibrary Loan or,
     4. you may have to purchase the standards
               search & obtain
Need to find the standards of a specific
  – Most standard making bodies have a search
    feature for their standards on their web site,
    but often they are pay per view
  – Follow above mentioned steps 1-4:
       1.   Web search
       2.   Library Catalog,
       3.   Interlibrary Loan or,
       4.   purchase
               search & obtain
Need standards for a specific project you are
 working on?
  – Web search on ("craft supplies" OR crayons)
    (standards OR standard OR federal regulations OR
  – Search NSSN or Global Engineering Documents
  – Track down trade associations: a web search on
    (Council OR Society OR Association) and your
    industry keyword may come up with some:
         – Craft & Hobby Association
         – Toy Industry Association
  – Follow above steps 1-4 to try obtain the full text
           Standards @WPI
• Search the Library Catalog
  – We own or subscribe to:
    • ASTM
    • National Fire Protection Association
    • Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers
    • Building Officials and Code Administrators
      International (BOCA),
    • and others, refer to our Finding Standards guide as
      well as Library Catalog
       Choose Your Own Adventure
    5 minute challenge – search & share
               You are designing a new type of
               bicycle helmet, what standards
               or regulations apply?

                                                 You are designing a new
                                                 type electronic toothbrush,
                                                 what standards or
                                                 regulations apply?

   You are planning to
    start an advertising
            agency that
specializing on internet
       advertising, any
 standards that apply?
Christine Drew,
Gordon Library WPI
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