Subject Indexing - Term Selection - Assignment Indexing

Assignment Indexing

An alternative is assignment indexing where index terms are taken from a controlled vocabulary. This has the advantage of controlling for synonyms as the preferred term is indexed and synonyms or related terms direct the user to the preferred term. This means the user can find articles regardless of the specific term used by the author and saves the user from having to know and check all possible synonyms. It also removes any confusion caused by homographs by inclusion of a qualifying term. A third advantage is that it allows the linking of related terms whether they are linked by hierarchy or association, e.g. an index entry for an oral medication may list other oral medications as related terms on the same level of the hierarchy but would also link to broader terms such as treatment. Assignment indexing is used in manual indexing to improve inter-indexer consistency as different indexers will have a controlled set of terms to choose from. Controlled vocabularies do not completely remove inconsistencies as two indexers may still interpret the subject differently.

Read more about this topic:  Subject Indexing, Term Selection