Library of Congress Subject Headings (LCSH)
BIC Subject Categories
Book Industry Communication (BIC) Subject categories were developed originally for use in the book trade. Version 1 was launched in May 1998 and Version 1.1 released in September 2002.
It remains the intention of the Review Committee to release an extensively revised Version 2. The major aims for Version 2 will be the removal or amelioration of all parts of the scheme that have a perceived bias towards the UK (and to a lesser extent, towards the English language), and a rationalisation of the code hierarchy to ensure that top level categories are meaningful and form groups of subjects of comparable importance wherever possible.
The categories have a top level (Level 1) of subject terms with associated single letter codes. Each Level 1 category is subdivided into a number of level 2 categories represented by two letter codes. Level 2 categories are divided into level 3 categories with three letter codes. The letter codes are used in BASIC bibliographic records by the UK book trade. The terms may be single words or phrases and reflect current areas of interest (e.g. Mind, body, spirit) as well as established areas of academic interest (e.g. Chemistry). There are also four sets of qualifiers which can be added to the category: geographical, language, time periods, and educational purpose.