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Drafting IEC publications



14 Scope

14.1 Purpose or rationale


The Scope clearly defines the subject of the document and the aspects covered, thereby indicating the limits of applicability of the document or particular parts of it.


For the purposes of clarity, the Scope can indicate other subjects that are excluded from the document, when other subjects can be implied by the wording of the Scope or title.



This document excludes…


In documents that are subdivided into parts, the Scope of each part shall define the subject of that part of the document only.


The Scope shall be succinct so that it can be used as a summary for bibliographic purposes, for example, as an abstract. If further details and background information are necessary, these shall be included in either the Introduction or in an annex.


14.2 Normative or informative?

The Scope is a normative element because it delimits the subject of the document.


14.3 Mandatory, conditional or optional?

The Scope is a mandatory element.


14.4 Numbering and subdivision

The Scope shall be numbered as Clause 1. It may be subdivided; however, this is not normally necessary as it is meant to be succinct.


14.5 Specific principles and rules

The Scope shall not contain requirements, permissions or recommendations.


It shall appear only once in each document and shall be worded as a series of statements of fact.


Forms of expression such as the following shall be used:


Statements of applicability of the document shall be introduced by wording such as:

  • "This document is applicable to …"
  • "This document does not apply to…"