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The Indexing Society of Canada / Société canadienne d’indexation (ISC/SCI) is Canada’s national association of indexers. We invite you to find an indexer for your project, read our publications, discover our conferences, events, and resources for indexers, find out about membership, and learn about the Society.

Find an indexer

Find an indexer in your subject area for your project.


Find resources

Find information about indexes, indexing practices, and training in indexing.

Attend an event

Visit an indexing get-together in your region or attend the annual conference.

Become a member

Join the Society and enjoy the benefits of membership.

Call for Submissions: ISC/SCI Ewart-Daveluy Award for Excellence in Indexing 2022

Submissions are open! The application has never been easier.

  • It’s all online.
  • You don’t need a hard copy — just send a PDF of the published book AND/OR the PDF sent to you by the publisher plus your Word/RTF file of the index.
  • The cost is only $30.
  • We provide feedback for up to three runners-up.

No restriction on the subject matter or genre — textbooks, cookbooks, guidebooks, memoirs, art books, how-to books, travel books, all books — it’s your index we will be looking at.

Show us how you creatively overcame challenges, resulting in an outstanding, well-structured, easy-to-navigate, clear and comprehensive guide for all of its users.

Give us a challenge. You have nothing to lose and everything to gain. Maybe you’ll get the prize (which won’t happen if you don’t apply). And if not, you’re very likely to get expert confidential feedback. That’s worth a lot.

This year you can submit indexes published in 2020 and 2021. If you are a Canadian indexer or a Canadian resident, this is the time to do it. If you are not a Canadian citizen or resident, you may submit an index if you were a member of ISC/SCI at the time you wrote the index.

The deadline for submissions is March 15, 2022. Please see the awards page for guidelines, criteria, and the submission form.

What’s in a Name? Invert Your Thorns into Roses (ASI Virtual Event)

Date: Saturday, December 4, 2021

Early Registration deadline: November 19, 2021

What’s in a name? Seemingly simple, in reality, a name can be a thorn in the side of indexers. To invert or not to invert?—that is just one question. Other times, you cannot tell what the dickens the name is. The American Society for Indexing is excited to bring together four experts who will share their knowledge about indexing names. No longer will you be false to any person’s name.

This virtual event will be presented live via Zoom, and the sessions will be recorded. Your registration includes all four presentations (3 hours of programming plus 30 minutes of breaks). Each session will be followed by a 10-minute break or networking time. Take advantage of early registration rates through November 19.

If you are a member of ISC/SCI, you can receive the member discount using the coupon code on the Member Benefits page.

Program

Challenges in Indexing Names (Noeline Bridge)

10:00 AM, Pacific / 1:00 PM, Eastern (60-minute session)

When and how to index names can appear easy—and mostly is. But the minority can consume an undue amount of time, maddening when time is short. Noeline Bridge describes several categories of names that often pose difficulties, providing examples of each, many drawn from her own experience, along with tips on resolving questions.

Issues in Indexing Russian Names (Sergey Lobachev)

11:10 AM, Pacific / 2:10 PM, Eastern (30-minute session)

Indexing Russian names may seem straightforward, but there are some challenges that may confuse indexers who are not familiar with the language. This session explains how to avoid common mistakes when dealing with Russian names. Topics to be covered include handling spelling variations, use of patronymic names, rules for indexing names of royalties and Orthodox clergy, disambiguation of geographic names, and indexing abbreviations. In addition, some differences between Russian and Ukrainian names will also be discussed.

The Mystery of Spanish Personal Names, a Look at Gender and Culture (Francine Cronshaw)

11:50 AM, Pacific / 2:50 PM, Eastern (30-minute session)

Spanish names present unique challenges to the indexer. Cultural folkways are examined, especially around women’s names. With cultural change and online databases, presentations of names have evolved. Knowing how to index both historical and contemporary names is important for consistency and reliability. Portuguese names flip Spanish structures and are treated briefly.

Genealogical Indexing: The Name’s the Thing! (Carolyn Weaver)

12:30 PM, Pacific / 3:30 PM, Eastern (60-minute session)

Genealogical indexing focuses primarily on the names of people and the significant places and events affecting their lives. Spelling of personal names in official records is often fluid, affected by literacy, geographic location, immigration, politics, marriage(s), or adoption. Similarly, names of places, institutions, geographic borders and jurisdictions, and fixed sites such as cemeteries, churches, or battlegrounds cited in family histories are subject to change. This session will focus primarily on the disambiguation of names and the sources available (online and in print) that are useful resources for indexing family histories, publications of genealogical or historical societies, and related works.

Visit the conference page.

2021 Ewart-Daveluy Award: Stephen Ullstrom

The ISC/SCI Ewart-Daveluy Award, inaugurated in 2015, is presented each year to an individual who has created an index that demonstrates outstanding expertise through a combination of skills.

The 2021 Ewart-Daveluy Indexing award was presented to Stephen Ullstrom for his indexing of The Shield of Psalmic Prayer: Reflections on Translating, Interpreting, and Praying the Psalter, by Donald Sheehan, published in 2020 by Ancient Faith Publishing.

The Shield of Psalmic Prayer is a collection of essays, study notes, and personal journal entries on interpreting, translating, and praying with the Psalms in light of Orthodox Christian theology. The author, Donald Sheehan, was an English professor and long-time director of the Robert Frost Place in New Hampshire. The collection was gathered and edited posthumously by Donald’s widow, Xenia Sheehan. Because the text originally was not intended for publication, the pieces are often unfinished and unpolished, which gives the book a contemplative and quiet tone. About two-thirds of the chapters focus exclusively on a specific psalm or two. Stephen’s challenge was to understand these fragments and tie them to the broader themes of the book.

Stephen met the challenge of creating an excellent index. As one judge noted, “really nice detail and solid breakdowns under the Psalms.” Said another, “this is a properly done scripture index.” Other comments included “a good solid job on a difficult subject” and a “thorough, thoughtful index.” Finally, “it addresses the main needs of potential users.”

An excerpt of the index is available courtesy of Ancient Faith Publishing.

Stephen Ullstrom is a freelance indexer and writer residing in Edmonton, Alberta. He wrote his first index ten years ago, never imagining that that would lead to a full-time indexing career. In 2014 he won the Purple Pen Award for best new indexer. Stephen indexes in the humanities and social sciences with a special interest in Asian studies, religious studies, history, and biography.

Society of Indexers announces first online conference

Registration is now open for the first SI online conference on 9–10 November. The theme is “Boosting Your Business”.

Day one features a keynote presentation by Dennis Duncan and Paula Clarke Bain on Index, a history of the. There will also be opportunities for networking, a Q&A session and a series of demonstrations showing how software can help you index smarter.

Day two includes advice on finding work, using social media to boost your business and dealing with financial issues (especially getting paid), as well as the tricky question of indexing the metatopic. There will also be topic-based breakout rooms and more opportunities for informal networking with indexing colleagues.

You can find more information on the main conference page, where there are links to the outline programme and the booking form. If you are a member of ISC/SCI, you will find the coupon code on the Member Benefits page and receive a 10% discount on your registration.

New ASI course

ASI has announced a new series of online learning, “The Queen of Sciences—Indexing Theology, Spirituality, and Religion”. This 3-part course is given by Kate Mertes and runs on October 13, 20, and November 3. The session topics are

  • Session 1 – Introduction to indexing religious material
  • Session 2 – Acquiring and using specialized knowledge
  • Session 3 – Practicum on theological indexing

Visit the ASI course page for details and registration. Members: be sure to look up and register with the discount code for “ASI online learning” found on the membership benefits page.

Dennis Duncan to speak at 2022 Conference

Following the success of the 2021 conference, ISC/SCI will again be holding the annual conference online, with dates to be announced soon. And so we are thrilled to announce that the keynote speaker for the 2022 Annual Indexing Conference will be Dennis Duncan, author of the newly released book Index, A History of the.

Charting its curious path from the monasteries and universities of thirteenth-century Europe to Silicon Valley in the twenty-first, Dennis Duncan reveals how the index has saved heretics from the stake, kept politicians from high office and made us all into the readers we are today. We follow it through German print shops and Enlightenment coffee houses, novelists’ living rooms and university laboratories, encountering emperors and popes, philosophers and prime ministers, poets, librarians and – of course – indexers along the way. Revealing its vast role in our evolving literary and intellectual culture, Duncan shows that, for all our anxieties about the Age of Search, we are all index-rakers at heart, and we have been for eight hundred years.

Dennis Duncan is a writer, translator, lecturer in English at University College London, and a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society. He has published numerous academic books, including Book Parts and The Oulipo and Modern Thought, as well as translations of Michel Foucault, Boris Vian, and Alfred Jarry. His writing has appeared in the Guardian, the Times Literary Supplement, and the London Review of Books, and recent articles have considered Mallarmé and jugs, James Joyce and pornography, and the history of Times New Roman.

The Summer 2021 Bulletin is here

The post-conference issue of the Bulletin is here. In this issue: Tere Mullin reports on the 2021 Virtual Conference “Indexing Unlimited”, Janet Perlman looks back on what indexing was like before computers, Siusan Moffat explains sensitivity reading of Indigenous content, meet this year’s winners of the Ewart-Daveluy and the Tamarack awards, the bursary winner, and the Emeritus winner, and more.

ANZSI’s latest newsletters

As a member of ISC/SCI, you can read about what our affiliated societies around the world are doing. This month, the the Australian and New Zealand Society of Indexers shared their April and June newsletters with us.

Content available to members only. Please log in.

2021 Tamarack Award: Siusan Moffat

Toronto: The Indexing Society of Canada / Société canadienne d’indexation (ISC/SCI) is pleased to announce the 2021 recipient of the Tamarack Award. Siusan Moffat (Toronto) is being recognized for her contribution and commitment to the society.

Siusan was chosen for her drive to help ISC/SCI be more representative of the diversity present in Canada. Siusan’s colleagues had the following to say about her:

She took the Truth and Reconciliation Commission work to heart, and used her passionate energy to found The Inclusion, Diversity and Equity Committee (TIDE). She has consistently looked for ways to get the word out about indexing to people from marginalized or otherwise underrepresented groups who might be interested.

The TIDE committee is accomplishing something wonderful, and this is thanks in large part to Siusan—from Bulletin articles to webinars to the Diversity in Canadian Publishing Bursary, now seeing its second year. Thank you, Siusan, for your hard work that is affecting real people. And thank you for so positively affecting me, as a colleague, team member, and friend.

She was additionally a hard-working and diligent member of the Executive Committee, and in every instance, I found her to be a kind and compassionate colleague to work with.

“I am thrilled to present this award to Siusan, and we are honoured to have her as a member of our society,” said Alexandra Peace, President. “Thank you, Siusan, for all you have given to the society and its membership.”

The Tamarack Award was instituted to recognize members who go “above and beyond the call of duty” in their volunteer work for the Society.

Annual General Meeting 2021 (revised time)

ISC/SCI’s announces its 2021 Annual General Meeting on Saturday, June 19, 2021 at 1 p.m. EDT, online via Zoom.

This is an election year, so we will be voting in a new executive committee. We also need membership approval for our financial statements for 2020–2021 fiscal year.

If you are unable to attend but would still like your voice heard, you can request a proxy form from presidents@indexers.ca.

If you plan to bring a motion to the floor, please email presidents@indexers.ca by June 5, 2021 so it can be added to the agenda.

In addition to those housekeeping items, we will also tell you a bit about what the executive committee has been up to over the past year: Conference 2021, national video chats, results from the general membership survey, and more!

And of course, there are some awards to be given out. Please check the agenda for a more detailed listing.

All the documents—the agenda, financial statements, the annual report, and last year’s minutes—are now available.

We are asking you to RSVP, as we need to make sure that we will have quorum. Please let us know that you plan to attend by emailing Alexandra Peace at presidents@indexers.ca. Alex will respond with the link for the meeting.