<descrules> Descriptive Rules

The <descrules> occurs within <profiledesc> and enumerates any “rules, standards, conventions, and protocols used in preparing the description.” It should not be confused with the RULES attribute in the subelements of <controlaccess>. The attribute is used to specify descriptive rules (AACR2, etc) which were used to formulate individual access points.


  • ALTRENDER – not required. Use if the content of the element should be displayed or printed differently than the rendering established in a style sheet for other occurrences of the element.
  • AUDIENCE – not required. Use to set whether the element’s contents will be visible to external users or to internal ones. Possible values are: “internal” and “external.”
  • ID – not required. Creates an ID for element. Can be used for linking.
  • ENCODINGANALOG – not required. May contain information to map this tag to a particular element in another schema.


<descrules> can (and probably should) include PCDATA. It has no required subelements.

However, it can also contain a handful of generic subelements: <abbr>, <archref>, <bibref>, <emph>, <expan>, <extptr>, <extref>, <lb />, <linkgrp>, <ptr>, <ref>, and <title>.


See DACS Section 8.1.4, Rules or conventions. Added value. (DACS 2013, p.83)

Our EAD file so far

Adding in a simple <descrules> field:

		<eadid countrycode="us" mainagencycode="dgwl" url="http://www.eadiva.com/sample/">rkt-01</eadid>
				<titleproper>Inventory of Something Useful for Learning EAD <date>2012-2013</date></titleproper>
				<subtitle>A totally awesome finding aid with a subtitle too</subtitle>
				<author>Ruth K. Tillman, the EADiva</author>
				<sponsor>Encoding thanks to EADiva's donation of her spare time.</sponsor>
			<editionstmt><edition>1st ed.</edition>
			<p>Didn't need to specify since it's first edition, but wanted to use the fields.</p>
					<addressline>1600 Pennsylvania Ave</addressline>
					<addressline>Washington, DC, 20001</addressline>
					<addressline>Phone: 202-555-1234</addressline>
			<seriesstmt><p>Bell Family Papers</p>
					<p>The materials in this finding aid are based on an actual collection of Sarah J. Bell Kitchin's letters.</p>
					<p>This finding aid was created as a project for the EADiva.com website.</p>
			<creation>This finding aid was encoded by Ruth K. Tillman, on <date normal="20121118">November 18th, 2012</date>, using Notepad++. Material was generated off the top of her head.</creation>
			<langusage>This finding aid is written in
			<descrules>This finding aid was prepared using Ruth's understanding of EAD and her use of the LOC EAD 2002 official website.</descrules>
	<frontmatter><!--we're going to display it here just to show how it's used-->

EAD tag library entry for <descrules>.