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Industrial Technology Research Guide

Standards (from the Engineering Guide: )

What is a standard?

According to the International Standard Organization, 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.  

Who issues standards?

Standards are issued by dozens of different professional and governmental organizations.  The acronym at the beginning of standard generally identifies the issuing organization.  A few of the most common are:

Acronym Organization 
ASCE American Society of Civil Engineers
ASME American Society of Mechanical Engineers
ASTM American Society for Testing and Materials
IEEE Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers
ISO International Standards Organization

I need to find a specific standard

The library has access to some standards in electronic or print format.

AREMA Handbook - American Railway Engineering and Maintenance-of-way Association

  • 2014 edition available in print in library's reference collection.  Call number TF145. A52 

ASCE - American Society of Civil Engineers

  • Full text for all ASCE Standards can be found in the ASCE Library database. 

ASHRAE Handbooks - American Society of Heating, Refrigeration, and Air-Conditioning Engineers

  • Various ASCRAE handbooks are available in both print and CD-ROM format.

ASM International Handbook - American Society for Metals

  • 1990 edition available in print in library's reference collection.  Call number TA459 A5

ASTM - American Society for Testing and Materials

  • ASTM standards available electronically through ASTM Compass

ICC - International Code Council

  • Free online access to most ICC codes

IEEE - International Electrical and Electronics Engineers

  • All IEEE standards available in full text.  In IEEE Explorer, click link for Standards.

ISO - International Organization for Standization

  • Instructors may be able to obtain ISO standards to use in their courses for free through the ANSI University Outreach Program. Contact Chris Langer ( for more information on ISO standards or the ANSI University Outreach Program.

How to get other standards through the Fresno State Library

If you need a standard that the library doesn't have, the library may be able to get your standard for free through a few different services.  Contact Chris Langer ( for assistance in requesting the standard you need.


You may be able to find and request your standard from another library through CSU+. Keep in mind that many libraries won't loan materials that are in their reference collections, which is often where standards are located.

Interlibrary Loan

If you only need a single standard that is included in a large volume, you can sometimes get it through interlibrary loan by submitting a book chapter request.

Other ways to find standards

Sometimes you can find standards online for free.  Try searching Google for the name of your standard, along with .pdf