What is a standard?
"A standard is a document that provides requirements, specifications, guidelines or characteristics that can be used consistently to ensure that materials, products, processes and services are fit for their purpose." ISO (International Organization for Standardization)
Who creates standards?
Standards are created by a variety of organizations including:
How to find standards in the library?
For all other standards see our Finding Engineering Standards and Specifications guide
Standard: "A standard is a document that defines the characteristics of a product, process or service, such as dimensions, safety aspects, and performance requirements."
Code: "Laws or regulations that specify minimum standards to protect public safety and health such as codes for construction of buildings. Voluntary standards are incorporated into building codes.”
Specification: "A set of conditions and requirements of precise and limited application that provide a detailed description of a procedure, process, material, product, or service for use primarily in procurement and manufacturing. Standards may be referenced or included in specifications."
"One way of looking at the differences between codes and standards is that a code tells you what you need to do, and a standards tells you how to do it. A code may say that a building must have a fire-alarm system. The standard will spell out what kind of system and how it must work." ~ NFPA
Why are standards important?
IEEE Standard Association states:
Standards form the fundamental building blocks for product development by establishing consistent protocols that can be universally understood and adopted. This helps fuel compatibility and interoperability and simplifies product development, and speeds time-to-market. Standards also make it easier to understand and compare competing products. As standards are globally adopted and applied in many markets, they also fuel international trade.
It is only through the use of standards that the requirements of interconnectivity and interoperability can be assured. It is only through the application of standards that the credibility of new products and new markets can be verified. In summary standards fuel the development and implementation of technologies that influence and transform the way we live, work and communicate.
Types of standards:
Standards are created by a wide variety of organizations. The most common are:
What are some points to remember when using standards?
IEEE standards and National Electrical Safety Code and Handbook
IEEE Redline Versions of Standards provides clearly highlighted changes in a standard to allow for quick and efficient changes to procedures, products, and more.
Redline versions of standards are beneficial as they allow technical professionals to easily see what has changed from the previous version, leading to faster implementation of necessary changes.
For non IEEE standards:
IEEE Standards University - classes, workshops, e-zines, student grants, news, etc.
Standards.gov - offers background materials and useful links for locating information about the use of standards in government.
University Outreach Program - ANSI Education and Training
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