May 26, 2022

Book Industry Study Group (BISG) Releases Taxonomy For Educational Materials

Ed. Note: BISAC Subject Headings also from BISG and mentioned below are primarily used in the book industry. However, we’ve posted and read about their use in both public and school libraries.

On a related note, about six weeks ago we posted about the launch of a Library of Congress Demographic Group Terms (LCDGT) pilot also aimed at improving discoverability.


From BISG (July 6, 2015):

BISG’s new Educational Taxonomy is now available as a free online resource here; or as an appendix to the new Recommendations for Citing Educational Standards and Objectives in Metadata [Free Download, Registration Required].

The Educational Taxonomy is intended to increase the discoverability of appropriate educational resources by providing an organized list of key terms used to describe learning objectives within books and other resources.

Common learning objectives found in Common Core, Next Generation Science, and other emerging educational standards were evaluated to create the taxonomy. Input was also solicited from publishers, wholesalers, service providers, educators, librarians, and others through in-depth research to identify the most consistently used terms.

The taxonomy will be useful to individuals within educational and trade publishers, libraries, course material suppliers, and other organizations who are responsible for creating and maintaining learning resource metadata, or who support their distribution and discovery.


Using the taxonomy in conjunction with BISAC Subject Headings allows for a fuller description of the content so that educators, librarians, parents, and others can more easily identify the educational resources they are seeking. It was developed by the BISG Educational Taxonomy Working Group of the Subject Codes and Metadata Committees, based on extensive research and feedback from educators and librarians.

Direct to New BISG Educational Taxonomy

See Also: Library of Congress Preparing to Implement Changes to Cataloging in Publication (CIP) Data Block (April 24, 2015)

About Gary Price

Gary Price ( is a librarian, writer, consultant, and frequent conference speaker based in the Washington D.C. metro area. Before launching INFOdocket, Price and Shirl Kennedy were the founders and senior editors at ResourceShelf and DocuTicker for 10 years. From 2006-2009 he was Director of Online Information Services at, and is currently a contributing editor at Search Engine Land.