How is the compliance of DITA specializations with DITA standards ensured?

Compliance of DITA specializations with DITA standards is essential to ensure that the specialized content remains interoperable and consistent. Here’s how organizations typically ensure this compliance:

Reference to DITA Standards: Organizations start by referencing the official DITA standards, which include the DITA Architecture Specification. This provides the foundation for understanding the core DITA structure and requirements.

Customization Rules: While introducing DITA specializations, organizations carefully design customization rules that align with the core DITA standards. They ensure that the custom elements and attributes are integrated seamlessly with the existing DITA structure, preserving interoperability.

Validation Against DITA Standards: Content created with DITA specializations is subjected to validation against the DITA standards. This involves checking that the specialized content conforms to the rules and constraints defined by the official DITA specifications.

Testing and Review: Specialized content is rigorously tested and reviewed to ensure that it remains compliant with the DITA standards. This process identifies and rectifies any discrepancies or non-compliance issues in the content.

Updates and Maintenance: As DITA standards evolve, organizations periodically review and update their DITA specializations to ensure continued compliance. This adaptation helps them stay current and maintain consistency with the evolving DITA ecosystem.


Suppose an organization specializes DITA for software documentation and introduces a custom element <custom-code-sample> to represent code samples. They ensure compliance with DITA standards by adhering to the DITA Architecture Specification and validating the specialized content accordingly:

<!-- Ensuring compliance of a custom DITA specialization for code samples with DITA standards -->
<!ELEMENT custom-code-sample (code-text, language)>
<!ELEMENT code-text (#PCDATA)>
<!ELEMENT language (#PCDATA)>