Can mixed-topic documents have a standard structure?

Mixed-topic DITA documents can have a standard structure that provides a consistent framework for organizing different types of content within the document. While DITA allows flexibility in combining various topic types, having a standard structure enhances readability, navigation, and user experience.

A standardized structure for mixed-topic DITA documents involves the root topic, front matter, main content, and back matter.

Root Topic

The root topic serves as the top-level container for the entire document. It typically includes general document metadata, such as the document title and author information.

Front Matter

This section, which can be placed within the root topic, includes content that precedes the main content of the document. It may contain elements like an abstract, copyright notice, table of contents, list of figures, or other introductory information.

Main Content

The main content of the document comprises various subtopics, each of which can be a different DITA topic type (e.g., concept, task, reference). These subtopics address specific aspects of the document’s content, such as explanations, instructions, or references.

Back Matter

Similar to the front matter, this section, which can also be placed within the root topic, includes content that follows the main content. It may contain elements like appendices, glossaries, references, or any additional information relevant to the document.


            <title>Product User Guide</title>

            <!-- Front Matter -->
                <p>This user guide provides detailed information about Product X.</p>

            <!-- Main Content -->
                <title>Introduction to Product X</title>
                <!-- Concept content -->

                <title>Getting Started with Product X</title>
                <!-- Task content -->

                <title>Technical Specifications</title>
                <!-- Reference content -->

            <!-- Back Matter -->
                    <title>Appendix A: Troubleshooting</title>
                    <!-- Appendix content -->