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IEEE 1063

2001 Edition, December 5, 2001

Complete Document

Software User Documentation

Includes all amendments and changes through Reaffirmation Notice , September 26, 2007

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Superseded By: IEEE 26514

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Description / Abstract:

This standard provides minimum requirements for the structure, information content, and format of user documentation, including both printed and electronic documents used in the work environment by users of systems containing software. This standard is limited to the software documentation product and does not include the processes of developing or managing software user documentation; it applies to printed user manuals, online help, and user reference documentation. It does not apply to specialized course materials intended primarily for use in formal training programs.

This standard is intended neither to encourage nor discourage the use of either printed or electronic (online) media for documentation, or of any particular documentation development or management tools or methodologies. Users of this standard may want to develop a style manual for use within their own organizations to complement the guidance provided in the standard, or to adopt an industry-recognized style guide. Users of this standard may also want to perform usability testing on the software user documentation. The works listed in the bibliography provide guidance on the processes of managing, preparing, and testing user documentation (see Annex A).


This revision provides requirements for the structure, information content, and format of both printed and electronic documentation. It addresses the interests of software acquirers, producers, and users in standards for consistent, complete, accurate, and usable documentation.